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19 February 2021
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6 of the most crucial marketing trends your company needs in 2021

2020 was a chaotic year. The global pandemic changed the way we live our lives: how we socialise, use services, predict marketing trends, and attract customers to our business. However, while there’s been unprecedented upheaval, we’ve still seen some developments in the world of marketing trends COVID-19 has not touched that could make a massive difference to your business in 2021. The landscape of marketing trends is constantly evolving, with what worked one year suddenly becoming a waste of time the next. Why are marketing trends important? Because they are the most effective way of reaching potential customers. We’re going to look at some of the most likely success stories of 2021, letting you know which marketing trends you should start investigating right now.

1. Search Engine Optimisation has moved on from simple keywords with new SEO marketing trends for 2021

Search engine optimisation, or SEO, has been the holy grail of online marketing trends. In its crudest form, SEO marketing trends depend on using keywords in your site copy that are likely to be searched for. However, the world of SEO being what it is, it’s never been a level playing field for marketing trends. Google and other search engines are extremely secretive about just how they format the algorithms that respond to searches, making it hard to create 100% concrete marketing trends. As a result, finding a winning combination has never been simple, and most businesses are left, asking what are marketing trends in relation to SEO. Today, however, one thing’s for sure: SEO marketing trends online are about more than just keywords.

User experience is pushing website development

One of the major new terms in the world of SEO is user experience or UX. This is one of the bigger marketing trends today based around the idea that the worse the website, the shorter amount of time a user will spend on it. In effect, this points to one of marketing trends right now: you can’t afford to neglect investment in your site’s usability. While you may have exactly what your potential customers are looking for, if the UX is low, they’ll leave, and you’ll drop in the search rankings. This can be solved by using a number of different marketing trends, such as making the site easily navigable or simply more modern and attractive. But the key takeaway from this is that poor site design will not only turn off your customers, it may also turn off SEO and reduce any benefits you may get from one of the most established marketing trends. It is worth paying attention to the fact that when creating a successful design, you need to pay great attention to detail. And it’s not always cheap.

SEO semantics give you the questions you need to answer

While there are some new developments in SEO marketing trends, some are just updated versions of established wisdom. One thing to take into account is the fact that search engines are becoming far more adapted at translating basic words and phrases into reliable search results. For instance, the terms ‘can I’, ‘do I need’, and ‘should I’ have all seen between 65% and 85% increases this year, in questions such as “can I win money online?”. SEO semantics are becoming better at translating these kinds of terms into effective searches. That means that you need to follow marketing trends and adapt your site to ensure it’s capable of providing the answers to these questions.

2.   Artificial Intelligence gives you immediate marketing insights

Artificial Intelligence is surely one of the most valuable marketing trends to watch in 2021. AI is a broad term, referring in marketing trend terms to any kind of program or software that can accurately analyse data and provide you with predictions, recommendations, and other useful data. Out of all the marketing trends we look at, this is one to really take seriously. AI software can carry out, in a matter of seconds, the kind of analysis and calculations that would usually need expert knowledge and a lot of time. They let you stay a step ahead of marketing trends, and create responsive campaigns and projects that would otherwise not be possible.

Data Analysis provide valuable predictions

One of the many effective applications of AI lies in interpreting how your customer base behaves in relation to your industry, marketing trends, and the general economic landscape. Dynamic software can keep track of what your customers are buying, as well as providing you with potential ways of decreasing the cost of these products while increasing your profit off them. AI may not yet be adept at creating actual marketing campaigns for you. But it can identify marketing trends and tell you what your customers want at any given time, as well as marketing trends for the next five years.

Supply Chain Analysis lets you streamline your business

In conjunction with AI predictions based on current marketing trends, you need to ensure your business can provide your customers with what they want, when they want. AI has another solution for this: supply chain planning. Today’s average consumer is increasingly time-poor and used to convenience. That means that you need to be able to streamline your supply chain, and ensure that you always have inventory that matches whatever is needed. Supply chain planning can analyze your supply chain and logistics, ensuring that you are always stocked, and can provide your customers with products and services in the shortest time possible, especially when marketing trends lead to an increased demand.

3.   AI marketing trends are becoming the perfect tools for reaching your customers

So far we’ve looked at how AI marketing trends can be useful tools for you, the business owner. But there are also many applications when it comes to interacting directly with your customer base. One of the most popular current marketing trends for AI is chatbots. This technology has largely taken the place of conventional support lines, and even email correspondence. You’ve probably seen them on multiple websites, and as one of the top marketing trends of 2021, you’re sure to see a lot more of them in the future. Chatbots mimic the experience of a text-based chat with an actual human. There are a number of benefits to this digital marketing trend: they’re always available, respond in seconds, and are capable of machine learning. That means that the more they interact with your customers, the more effective they become. It’s no surprise they’ve joined the ranks of marketing global trends.

Personalised emails show customers you are invested in them

Chatbots are not the only part of AI marketing trends that let you stay in touch with your customers. Another of the useful digital marketing latest trends of 2021 is personalised emails. For most businesses, unless there’s a special reason for it, emails are generally sent to an entire mailing list with updates, offers, and information. AI lets you automatically personalise emails, depending on age, location, preferences, marketing trends, and a whole host of other variables. That means that all you need to do is put in the necessary details, and AI software can craft personalised emails for your entire mailer list. It may not sound like one of the most exciting marketing trends of 2021, but it’s become widespread in a number of industries. And you should never underestimate the effect that the personal touch can have on a potential customer.

4.   Zero Click searches are now the number one search result

This new feature of Google has gradually defined how we search for information and is also the driver behind potentially significant digital marketing trends in 2021. Unfortunately, in some ways, the existence of zero-click searches puts businesses in a difficult position. You’re essentially forced to make the most out of any Google-owned properties such as YouTube, or Google My Business, pushing these marketing trends ahead of your own actual website.

Google Tools marketing trends take top priority

Zero-click searches are one of the newest marketing trends, and focus on the new feature of Google, whereby a search will immediately provide you with information taken straight from Google’s various tools. At the top of the page, you’ll have a selection of videos from YouTube, business hours and details on Google My Business, business location on Google Maps, and various other details. However, that means that if you’re not up there, the odds are that traffic won’t pass through to your site. This makes it one of the marketing trends that you can’t really afford to miss.

Ensure your business is listed and updated

The best way you can utilise these marketing trends is by ensuring that you have a solid presence on Google’s tools and platforms. That means that, if at all possible, you upload YouTube content relevant to your business, with related marketing trends keywords to bring business in. If you have a bricks and mortar business, you need to make sure you’re listed on Google Maps. And ahead of all these things, you need to make sure that you’re on Google My Business. These are all easily accessible marketing trends for small businesses. By putting up basic but essential details about your company, you can make sure that you’re the first stop for anyone looking for the goods and services you provide, and stay on top of the latest marketing trends. Google My Business is also one of the effective marketing trends in 2021 for responding to the growing need for local businesses. By creating a presence on Google Maps and Google My Business, you can ensure that you build a local, loyal customer base. It’s one of the simpler marketing trends on offer, and one that requires zero investment.

5.   CRO Marketing trends convert traffic to customers

Conversion rate optimisation, or CRO, is a combination of marketing trends focused on one thing: turning potential customers into actual customers. CRO is a suite of different techniques and marketing trends that can be used to keep people interested, and make your business as accessible as possible to them. Many websites maintain a blog, related to their own progress, and any interesting news and information related to their industry. This is a really smart marketing trends example that changes how your search traffic views you. By showing that you’re interested and invested in your industry and constantly moving forward as a business, you can reassure potential customers that you’re a professional with a deep interest in your business. It’s also a good way of making the most of SEO marketing trends. If there’s one of the marketing new trends that can change your customers’ impressions, here it is.

Leaders in marketing trends recommend site personalisation

We’ve already talked about the value of personalised emails and the difference they can make to current and potential customers. Current marketing trends point to the fact that a personalised site improves user experience and makes people more likely to take an interest in your business. This can be anything from a language change, a welcome message directed to the country the person is coming from or specialised offers based on geolocation. Your landing page is the main place to implement this strategy, and it’s got proven returns. 90% of leading marketing trends experts say that personalisation significantly contributes to your profits, and 84% of consumers feel that a business needs to treat them like a person if they’re going to spend their money. The numbers clearly illustrate that this is one of the most reliable marketing trends for the coming year.

6.   Social Media remains as powerful as ever

It goes without saying that just about every successful business maintains a strong social media presence. However, with so many channels on offer, it’s not easy these days to know which social media marketing trends are here to stay, and which ones are a flash in the pan. It can seem tempting as a business owner to simply try and maintain accounts on as many platforms as possible, but in reality, this could be a wasted effort. Social media marketing trends during pandemic depend on finding your target audience and providing material suited to the channel.

Facebook may have passed its peak for marketing trends aimed at the younger generation

Facebook held the lead in social media and marketing trends for years. Today, however, it seems like it may have gone as far as it can. Forbes has found that 41% of the platform’s users are over 65, a marked change from a decade ago, and a clear sign that young people are increasingly moving to programs like Instagram. However, this doesn’t mean that marketing trends on Facebook are a waste of time. All it means is that you may have to consider your target audience.

Instagram is the platform of choice for 2021

It pretty much goes without saying that Instagram is the go-to social media platform for the foreseeable future. It’s already reporting a usage increase of 40%, and 70% on Instagram Live, with 100+ million downloads in the first quarter of 2020. The trend looks set to continue, given that it’s a versatile platform that all kinds of users can find applications for. Our best advice for any business looking for social media marketing trends of 2021 to follow is to choose Instagram as your go-to marketing app.

The pandemic has certainly hit many businesses hard around the world, with many wondering about marketing trends after COVID-19. However, the emergence of dynamic marketing tools that can be applied to just about any business, is a real game-changer. The rise of AI, and the refinement of other marketing strategies that have formed the foundation of marketing trends of the future, mean that a range of tools are available that can have a real effect on your marketing plans. Analyze your business structure, and consider which of the above is best suited to your model.

Ellen Royce is a business consultant with experience of over 15 years. She specialises in training for web development and social media marketing. She has written articles for many prestigious newspapers and five marketing bestsellers. An avid reader, Ellen likes to recharge the batteries in her ancestral home library at Bibury.