8 Marketing Strategies That Will Make a Difference in 2021
Marketing is the cornerstone of most successful businesses. A good marketing strategy is key to the growth of every company that wants to make a difference in 2021. Yesterday’s brilliant ideas may not work today, and yesterday’s impracticalities are today’s necessities.
When the world went under lockdown, many companies were forced to explore non-traditional working models and new marketing strategies they wouldn’t have tried otherwise.
In 2021, many businesses will be exploring more creative ways to get their brand names out there despite the challenges of these uncertain times.
In the past few months, marketing experts have been speculating about surefire marketing strategies. To make your job easier, we have outlined and enumerated some of these tactics.
In no particular order, here are 9 marketing strategies that are bound to make a difference in 2021.
#1 Showcasing value despite budget cuts
A survey conducted by Dun & Bradstreet has shown that 70% of senior marketers, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, have had to experience the struggle of marketing with budget cuts. Despite this, companies still required business and cash flow to continue with vigor, which posed an immense challenge to marketers. In 2021, marketers will inevitably have to deal with the challenges of working remotely while meeting tight deadlines and targets.
Furthermore, budget cuts are not likely to disappear after 2021.
There are a couple of ways to prepare for this and showcase company value:
- Prepare ahead of time: Expect the unexpected. Darryl Sparey, MD and Co-Founder of Hard Numbers stated that the expectations to deliver quality results is unlikely to decrease in the coming year. Given the likelihood of unforeseen pressures, companies will need to plan out for as many possible outcomes as can be determined. This will provide them a framework to deliver consistent results while being against all odds.
- Performance-Based Marketing: Abi Jacks (VP of Marketing at Rakuten Advertising) has suggested that performance-based marketing can be leveraged for success during these difficult times. She has also predicted that advertising budgets are set to fall by 8% this year. Due to this, companies will be forced to provide verifiable and quantifiable results to demonstrate their value to their clients. This, in turn, will somewhat “force,” or rather motivate, companies to produce desirable results for their clients, the result of which is showcasing tangible results.
#2 Leveraging social media just a little more
Given the current pandemic and the number of people who are not only working from home but keeping themselves indoors for precautionary measures, people are more likely to engage in social media as physical engagement is advised to be kept at a minimum.
One way of getting a brand name out there that is quite popular these days is using popular influencers to advertise a product. With more people working remotely, influencers and social media are more likely to reach the work-from-home market.
For example, various YouTube stars advertise products and services in their video content. The companies of the said products and services sponsor the YouTuber, who gives a “shout-out” to the company and briefly explains the product to their users. This can be a strategic move for certain products depending on the content of the YouTuber. For example, advertising on hunting gear on a YouTube channel on hunting is an excellent way to reach out to the crowd that will buy those products.
There are various other social media platforms wherein companies use influencers to reach a niche group of customers.
#3 Optimizing for local SEO
Another marketing strategy that is intuitive, but not commonly discussed, is SEO. This applies more to local SMEs. Optimizing local SEO will lead to more visits on a company website, thereby creating more leads and conversions—that too, to the local customer base.
A business need not be the best in the country to get customers. But if it’s the best business in that town, or on that street, it will have a loyal customer base.
Focusing on quality marketing towards the local population is more likely to generate positive reviews because people are more likely to support their local businesses.
#4 Pricing strategies to go beyond mere survival
Several companies went from well-off and thriving to full-on survival mode in almost an instant when the pandemic hit the scene last year. Companies went from spending extra on quality to tightening their fists and belts to save as much as they could on costs.
Is this the right time to offer discounts? Probably not, but it is an excellent time to let your clients and potential customers know that you care about them. It’s important to think about client relationships and profits as something long-term.
#5 Optimizing for voice search
The latest statistics show that 41% of adults using the internet engage in at least one voice search per day. Another study predicts that this will increase in 2021 since social media devices are being used more often during the pandemic.
In the words of Polly Kay, Senior Marketing Manager at English Blind: “… [P]eople were more willing to explore what their smart home devices could do and open a dialogue with them and begin to learn and rely on them.”
Leveraging this sense of curiosity, marketers should optimize voice search by focusing on commonly used phrases, requests, and manner of voice searches.
Not only will this diversify the work done in SEO, but it will also prove to be a better outreach to a group of people who are more open to technological innovation (given that they are using voice search over typing).
#6 Interacting with customers via engaging content
One way for a company to add value to their brand is by creatively engaging with customers via publishing content on their social media accounts or on their website.
Visual content marketing statistics suggest that customer loyalty soars when the brand constantly churns out creative content on social media, mass media and on their websites. In 2021, brands will double down creating pleasant experiences for their clients through pleasant content.
For example, Company X is selling high-quality leather bags. Company X starts a contest to promote the brand name where customers will have to create a video (such as a comedy sketch involving a bag). The reward for the best video will be either a gift from the store or a hefty discount. The videos posted by different contenders will garner viewers who will notice the company brand name. If the videos are entertaining, people will likely associate the brand name with that positive image.
#7 Sparking a better relationship through customer satisfaction
Marketing experts recommend more engagement with current clientele than focusing on obtaining new ones. A company’s current and well-established clients are their bread-and-butter.
Without being too pushy or making multiple attempts at reaching out to them, communicate with your clients to obtain their feedback, in addition to asking them how their operations are holding up during rough times.
Parvesh Benning, founder of Protect Your Wealth, checks in with his clients at least twice per year. “Maintaining personal relationships and ensuring my clients are completely satisfied is crucial.” He adds, “Client retention means gathering feedback and understanding their ever-evolving needs.”
Firstly, they will appreciate the investment of curiosity in their well-being.
Secondly, this also presents the opportunity to learn and understand any pain-points that the client may not be directly communicating due to being in survival mode during the pandemic or for any other reason. This is what keeps and brings in a loyal customer base, which will bring in more business through referrals.
#8 Improving client retention to strengthen the brand name
Marketing experts recommend that higher engagement in the latter stages of the client business is more beneficial in cost-saving.
During the pandemic, client loyalty was put to the test. Although the statistics vary across different industries and situations, it doesn’t take much sense to realize that companies that show their clients that they care about them through thick and thin—meaning that they are willing to communicate and offer solutions—are more likely to retain clients.
Clients who are content with exceptional services, especially when they receive quality services, during difficult times will be more likely to suggest or refer a company to other potential clients.
Additionally, retaining business from a client is more cost-effective than spending money on new prospects, and it has the additional perk of fortifying the brand name.
Wrapping It Up
Ideas are born, not only out of innovation, but necessity produced by a given situation. The key is to keep one’s eyes peeled for trends, changes, and signs. Many marketers will have to make their peace with working from home. They’ll have to collaborate online, share marketing strategies at teleconferences and very likely explore telemarketing.
Some important takeaways include:
- Be customer-focused; show them that they matter
- Review current trends and leverage upon people’s interests
- Customer retention is more important than new business
- Always be ready to demonstrate your value despite challenges
- Build trust and integrity
Remember to be ready for change. Being adaptable requires preparedness.
Chioma Iwunze writes about productivity, remote work and time management. Her twitter handle is @cwritingnews.