Welcome to the Dove Direct Print and Marketing Blog. Today's post, "Revisiting Marketing Strategies for 2021," re-examines what marketers, brands, and digital innovators are contemplating to maintain a competitive edge through 2021. As the second half of the year gets underway, marketing strategies are in full swing to achieve revenue and year-end branding goals. Many of these plans arose in early 2020 due to the pandemic, most notably during the "stop the spread" lockdowns. Although we are in the vaccine phase, we have a significant percent of the population (>25%) resistant who don't plan to take the vaccine. Couple that with the new, more aggressive variants, like Delta-9, and you can surmise that the nation will likely remain vulnerable and unlikely to reach herd immunity. However, it isn't all bad news given the Biden Administration's investment in recovery stimulus and pent-up demand from consumers ready to spend. Between the stimulus and pent-up demand, the opportunity to recover remains within reach. That said, the marketing community will test various tools and tactics to identify and utilize the most efficient and effective marketing methods to deliver a profitable 2021.
Our Quote of the Day: "The word 'listen' contains the same letters as the word 'silent.'" -- Alfred Brendel, Musician
As the saying goes, adapt or perish. Your brand must adapt or perish as technology and the consumer are rapidly evolving. 2021 will not be any different. Consider 2019 and the plethora of choices, including personalization, trust, transparency, data, social media, video marketing, influencers, email, storytelling, and direct mail marketing. All of which delivered increased ROIs when marketers use any of the tactics in conjunction with digital marketing!
Forbes recently published an article that references 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. This review and the seven points highlighted should be helpful for the second half of 2021.
Building Trust Is Paramount
Most of us are well-versed in data breaches and the plethora of disinformation campaigns that continue to this day. These acts of fake claims, statements, and disinformation create havoc and distrust in a free marketplace. The distrust leads to a breakdown of societal norms and courtesies. As a result, brands must find ways to restore and build more trust instead of noise and confusion.
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." Trusted measurements will continue 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."
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 admittedly 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 State of Digital Marketing Report demonstrates the role and importance of increasing brand awareness when growing and maintaining lifecycle marketing.
37% - Increase brand awareness and brand health
26% - Increase the number of new leads/customer prospects
20% - To deliver high quality, unified customer experiences across all digital channels
13% - Increase awareness and positive sentiment around new products
Innovation and Transparency
Marvin Chow, VP, Global Marketing at Google, recently stated, "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. It's 2021 and 5G is now ubiquitous throughout the cell phone provider lineup. In the midst of all these continuing advancements, brands must focus more than ever on authenticity and transparency. In fact, being authentic transcends having a purpose. Brands will have to take inventory and assess where they stand in the marketplace and how consumers really feel about them and their products. Only by being honest about their vision and relationship with consumers can they meaningfully engage people, grow the brand, and drive the business."
The 5G Impact, Feminine Perspectives, Data, and Brand Voice
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."
Moreover, 2021 is set to refocus on how we perceive facts and pertinent information through the lens of female interpretation. Therefore, marketing tactics should include more female perspectives to be included in the overall marketing strategy.
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."
Data Collisions - First and Third Party are on Frederic Charles-Petit, CEO and Founder of Toluna's Mind, who 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
Paid social pays off, according to Arielle Loren, Founder & CEO, who chimes in on social media marketing. "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, grew exponentially during 2020, with more Martech applications are rising to the fore. 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 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 make the 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)."
As marketers, we know that each year brings a new set of challenges. This year is no exception. We will have to build on and invest in marketing strategies that may be unfamiliar or seem unattainable. However, we live in a new normal that requires more trust, transparency, and better customer experiences across all platforms. Brands will require more investments in paid social media, 5G preparedness, and assembling a robust Martech solution designed to consolidate customer data. It's a lot to consider but well worth the investment. Thanks for reading "Revisiting 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...