Welcome to the Dove Direct Print and Marketing Blog. Today's post, "Improving Marketing Strategies for 2021," examines various paths and tools that brand marketers can implement in 2021. Before we dive in, we want to update Covid-19 and its impact on vendors and suppliers. Recent reports have indicated that Covid-19 is mutating around the globe. There are multiple mutations, and the medical community is developing "booster" shots. According to Dr. Anthony Fauci, Director of the National Institute of Health and Infectious Diseases, the "booster" shots are comparable to an upgrade of the current vaccines or a new vaccine. The South African strain is said to be more virulent, which in medical terminology means more deadly. Therefore, we will continue to follow the CDC protection protocols for the foreseeable future. We note that the CDC recommends wearing multiple masks (2-3) layers for better protection against the virus, along with social distancing and hand washing.
Our Quote of the Day: "Trust is the lubrication that makes it possible for organizations to work." - Warren G. Bennis
As for new marketing tools and methodologies set to provide brands and marketers with an edge, there are far too many choices to consider. Albeit as it may, if you plan to remain competitive, brands must adapt or perish as technology and the consumer are moving and evolving rapidly. 2021 will be no different in that new technology coupled with current best of breed marketing tools will appear and provide consumers with multiple ways to engage with brands.
Consider 2020 and the plethora of marketing tactics, including personalization, social media, video marketing, email, storytelling, and direct mail, which, along with a captive audience, delivered increased ROIs, especially when used in conjunction with digital marketing. Forbes recently published an article referencing a survey from industry leaders regarding the emphasis they will place at the top of the marketing stack in terms of strategies, tactics, and tools. Simultaneously, various digital marketers have predictions that should be a part of the annual marketing strategy process. These marketing considerations began in 2020 and will most likely, given upgrades, remain throughout 2021.
Building Trust Tops the List
Most people are well aware of the data breaches and the plethora of disinformation campaigns of 2019 and 2020. Due to the challenges marketers and brands face in media environments where fake statements, claims, and disinformation continue to abound, brand marketers are looking at ways to establish, build and maintain trust amid the noise.
Mike Barrett, President of Heat, a creative agency within Deloitte Digital, states, "It is self-evident that consumers buy more from companies whose values they believe in and reputations they can trust. It follows that trust will be the most important brand measure in most sectors in 2020." The pandemic, new government policies, and the economy will keep trust front and center throughout 2021.
"Success starts with the understanding that consumers are going to be more suspicious than ever towards marketing and advertising. In this environment, brands will need to recognize why they sell what they sell. Now matters more than ever before as consumers are demanding transparency and authenticity before opening their wallets," said Barrett.
Lifecycle Marketing and Growing Awareness
You may have heard the chant, "The funnel is dead," as the new mantra for the next demise of consumer marketing traits and purchasing habits. However, the B2B world continues to evolve with efforts aimed at shortening lengthy purchasing cycles.
For the most part, consumers now follow a non-linear purchasing journey, regardless of the product or service. That said, it is always the primary focus of any brand to grow awareness, followed by garnering new leads and prospects.
Altimeter/Prophet's 2020 State of Digital Marketing Report identifies critical insights into what strategies, channels, and practices perform best. The report's top key findings include the primary concerns for brand marketers based on a survey of 476 senior digital marketers across North America, Europe, and China. The significant findings include:
Acquiring new customers - 40% and increasing revenue from current customers - 39%
More effective personalization - 52%, better segmentation - 42%, and optimized owned channel performance - 37%
Technology integration is the top digital marketing challenge - 52%; hiring the right talent - 51%; and scaling innovation across the organization - 49%
The findings also show that many innovations such as personalization, testing and optimizing, and multi-factor segmentation are now mainstream. To realize more significant benefits from these practices, marketers will need to turn to artificial intelligence.
Innovation and Transparency
In effect, 2020 provided a slower rollout of the acceleration of AI and the emergence of 5G than anticipated, but it will in 2021.
Marvin Chow, VP, Global Marketing at Google recently stated over a year ago that, "2020 will bring more innovation than ever with the ushering of 5G, the acceleration of AI and the rise of voice as a universal computing interface, but these are still just tools to connect with people and build the brand. Amid all this advancement, brands will need to focus more than ever on authenticity and transparency. It goes beyond having a purpose. Brands will have to take inventory and assess where they stand in the marketplace and how consumers really feel about the brand and its products. Only by being honest about their vision and relationship with consumers can brands meaningfully engage people, grow the brand, and drive the business."
The 5G Impact, Feminine Perspectives, Data and BrandVoice
Naz Arandi, Creative Director, Airbnb, has another perspective. She says, "I grew up hyper-aware of the dominance of the male gaze through art and architecture history. The digital content movement's shift toward the female gaze—that is, seeing the world through a feminine perspective—feels like a revolution that's brewing. I'm excited to watch it take shape."
Data-Driven Decision Making
David Benigson, Founder and CEO of Signal AI, recently stated, "Looking forward, we will continue to see artificial intelligence evolve into augmented intelligence – analytical technology that focuses on amplifying human innovation and capabilities, rather than to replace human labor. Access to information is now at an unprecedented scale. As a result, organizations are being exposed to critical risks on a minute-by-minute basis, and it is data, not instinct, that is driving decisions at the highest level."
Frederic Charles-Petit, CEO and Founder of Toluna's mind, added, "First- and third-party data are on a collision course. Privacy and compliance regulations could encourage third-party data aggregators to seek alliances. First-party data companies will benefit from the hundreds of extra data points that third-party data brings to research results. The consolidation of both data types could power companies to make even better and more nuanced business decisions."
Paid Social Versus Organic
According to Arielle Loren, Founder & CEO of the 100K Incubator, who chimes in on social media marketing and states that paid social pays off. "As the first business funding mobile app for women entrepreneurs, we encourage our community to allocate 50-70% of their funding budget to paid social advertising. Gone are the days of small businesses getting tons of organic traffic from Instagram, Facebook, LinkedIn, YouTube, and Google. You have to learn how to leverage these platforms through their paid advertising programs, and get the funding you need to target the data they collect to help you reach new customers."
Customer Data Platforms (CDPs)
Martech (Marketing Technology) usage and adoption rose in 2019 and grew exponentially during 2020. Martech can be overwhelming when it comes to finding the right mix. Martech offers a staggering array of software service possibilities for marketers and brands that want to improve digital media management, including customer experiences and supporting data. When a business or agency selects the right blend of Martech, the investment could provide a competitive edge. Conversely, when opting to avoid a Martech solution, that brand or marketer may miss out on valuable insights and automation processes that could deliver a competitive difference.
Martech is the solution for providing Customer Data Platform integration. Raviv Turner, Co-Founder, B2B service @CaliberMind, states, "No MarTech stack is complete these days without the third leg of CRM, MAP & CDP. The only way to map, store, analyze, and act on the complete end-to-end customer journey is [by] having all the data in one place using a Customer Data Platform (CDPs)."
Martech is set for explosive growth in 2021. Martech also provides speed, which will be a critical piece in combating the rapid changes consumer behavior will undergo, driven by the variants of the Covid-19 disease.
While new marketing strategies and tactics were introduced in 2020, it's clear that we will have to build on and invest in this stack and those on the horizon—the new decade ushers in an era that will demand more trust and more transparency. To improve customer experiences across all platforms, brands will need to be nimble and ready to invest. More will be required for investments in paid social media, preparation and implications of 5G, and creating or buying a robust Martech solution designed to consolidate customer data in one place. It's a lot to consider but well worth the investment in terms of time and implementation. Thanks for reading "Improving Marketing Strategies for 2021!"
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Welcome to the Dove Direct Print and Marketing Blog. Today's post, "New Marketing Strategies for 2020," examines what marketers, digital innovators, and brands are now contemplating if they want to re...