Every year, social trends and digital resources change so much that marketers need to adapt. Not only does the industry call for flexibility, but an ability to disrupt and stay ahead of the curve. With the rapid digitization that happened in light of the pandemic, digital marketing has seen some of its most future-forward changes. Here are some major developments in 2021 that consumers can expect to see more of in the future
Brands Cater to No-click Searches
Digital marketers have long had to be privy to the importance of search engine optimization (SEO). When people look up services, products, or related queries on various search engines, marketers want to ensure that their content comes out on top of the results page. However, as Google introduced Instant Previews in their Results page, clicks drastically declined.
Many online surfers only have base-level questions, and when they immediately see the information they need on top, most assume its position equates to credibility. Because of that, they don’t bother to look through or even click on other search results.
Industry data from 2020 revealed that eCommerce searches saw a 48% no-click rate, while media searches had an even higher 63% no-click rate. In that light, marketers and brands will need to find ways to attract engagement and URL interactions. A reputable SEO company even notes that website visibility now comes from creating a UX that attracts actual clicks.
Artificial Intelligence Takes the Forefront
When it comes to utilizing artificial intelligence (AI) in marketing, teams have been able to keep track of online consumer behavior and predict it. Research from IBM expounded on AI analysis of reviews and consumer purchases to understand individual preferences and general sentiment better. With this insight, retailers can not only respond to trends efficiently but also stay a step ahead of the curve with data-driven predictions.
Some of the biggest uses for AI are how their analytics can help improve user interaction, pinpoint UI and UX bottlenecks in terms of engagement, and monitor reach. Since the digital world is fast-paced, it’s easier for marketers to create actionable campaigns when bots and machine learning can accurately cover data collection. We can already see the adoption of this widely jump from just before the pandemic. Today, 84% of marketers make use of AI.
Social Media Marketing Becomes Even More Immersive
With a continuous stream of content now available to social media users, marketers need to rise above the pack and foster consumer interaction. Because we are at a time when most people scroll and skim continuously down their feed, immersive social media marketing has become the name of the game. While this still inherently lies in the stories told and how it resonates with the demographic, effective ads these days have hinged on getting people to interact and feel encapsulated by the ad itself. Think polls, mini-games, and videos.
Enter Augmented Reality
Although AR is not necessarily a new technology, it has become more refined in recent years. Plus, with the restrictions brought on by the pandemic, this has been a great way to grab consumer attention and hone in on their desire for interaction. Not only does it pique one’s curiosity, but it also creates unique experiences that feel more personalized. Hence, 78 to 86% of US professionals across industries use personalization in marketing now.
It’s also relatively accessible for a wider net of audiences now that almost everyone is connected online. Plus, rapid digitization across industries has made this one of the most viable prospects.
Live Streams Are the New Avenue for Marketing
Two things have stood out as some of the most effective ways to capture audience attention — videos and influencers. It’s no surprise to see the power that combo wields, as there has been a boom in livestream viewership from 2020 to 2021. Statistics show that Twitch, one of the most popular streaming platforms today, saw 6.3 billion hours of viewer watch time in the first quarter of 2021. That was an almost 100% jump from the previous year, which already saw a staggering 3.2 billion hours watched.
Now, marketers are jumping on that bandwagon by involving brand live streams on their campaigns and enlisting influencers for product placements. Not only has this pathway helped various influencers to extend their reach, but it has also allowed insightful ROIs and form the boss.
These changes have already taken hold of the digital marketing scene and will likely continue to evolve. From here on out, it will be interesting to note who will successfully hinge on these developments and achieve success along the way.