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6 Marketing Trends for 2021

Nicky Bartlett
January 18, 2021

Every new year  marketing trends change. It’s normally something to get quite excited about, as change brings about new opportunities and challenges us to flex our creative muscles. However, given the way in which 2020 unfolded and the extreme rate of change industries experienced due to the pandemic, it’s become quite apparent that many industries will need to adapt their business models if they want to stay abreast with their customers’ needs, and marketing is no exception.

Being well aware of changing marketing trends has never been more of a priority for brands in 2021. We have pin pointed 6 predicted marketing trends that caught our attention, as being common practise at Image Matters already:

  1. Branded content

A whole new level of branded content has been predicted to accelerate this year, through the means of video, artificial intelligence and interactive content. We can look forward to more technically advanced content that will feel more like an experience than just a marketing method. Users are expecting far more from their interactions with brands, and brands are going to have to kick it up a gear in terms of giving consumers what they want, before they themselves even know what they want.

  1. Building relationships

We all are longing for interactions and connections after the isolation and confinement that lockdown brought with it. Brands will endeavour to fill this void by prioritising building relationships with their customers more than ever. Through engaging content and interactive platforms, we can expect brands to start working even harder to build trust and bond with their contacts.

  1. Online shopping

Although certainly not a new entity, there has been a significant increase in online shopping through social media platforms, like Instagram and Facebook. So it’s not surprise that social commerce has been predicted as becoming one of the largest e-commerce and marketing trends for the year. Social Media platforms who started out as a means to create connections and discovery, will be making sure that online shopping is easier than ever. Users will not even have to leave a specific platform to make their purchases.

  1. Brands taking a stand

Given the global increase in political activism regarding social and environmental issues, it is going to become more and more imperative for brands to take on social responsibility. Its stands to reason that more customers have more respect for brands who take a stand on important issues and voice their opinions. Ultimately, brands will be expressing their beliefs and values far more than we have seen in the past. This may have been quite a risk for brands to do in the past, but in the year 2021, it looks like it might have the opposite effect.

  1. Nostalgic Marketing

Research has shown that nostalgia gives people the feeling that their lives have meaning and therefore purpose. Nostalgic marketing has therefore become a very popular style of marketing, as it offers familiarity and provides a sense of security to consumers – which has been proven to encourage more spending. This is especially true in our current society, where consumers are often left overwhelmed by the fast pace of daily life and are seeking something they recognise and trust.

  1. Live content

With statistics showing that users are watching billions of hours’ worth of live videos on social media, is makes complete sense that live videos have become one of the most popular forms of content on the internet. In 2020, live videos certainly filled another void by bringing live events and footage to users while the pandemic had them locked indoors. 2021 will be no different as brands will use live content to get their services and products our into the market place. From live launches, behind-the-scenes footage and interviews, this is a marketing trend we can expect to see plenty of this year.

A lot of the marketing adjustments made in 2020 were brought about out of sheer necessity, but they have certainly gained traction and have set the scene for this year’s trends. If brands are clever they will seize the opportunity to reach out and forge stronger connections with their consumers on a much more psychological level, and to start becoming more vocal about their policies and opinions on global matters.

Pandemic or not, it’s a new year and we are ready for it!

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