Digital marketing is a dynamic industry, and being a digital marketer requires one to be on the bandwagon all the time. With that being said, it becomes more than essential to be up-to-date with digital marketing trends. To ease that pain for you, we have perpetuated the digital marketing trends that you must adopt in 2021 and beyond!
Without further ado, let’s get started with the trailblazing digital marketing trends. These drifts are here to steer you on the precise track for steadfast business growth.
15 Must-Follow Digital Marketing Trends in 2021
Gen Z is a 24/7 online generation with an urge to search, shop, or sell at any odd hour of the day. Would you want to let the potential customer go empty-handed from your doorstep, obviously NO! Here comes the savior Chatbot, who is there on your behalf to direct your onlookers to their respective places, thus validating the user experience.
These AI-based Chatbots are the real gem to engage site visitors and divulge instantaneous messaging with the visitants. Such instant interactions could be both textual as well as auditory, making the customer experience easy as pie.
Indeed, AI-induced Chatbots are a hot commodity nowadays, as researches show that as much as 63% of people prefer Chatbot messaging. Thus, as a digital marketer, you must leverage it on your business website.
Take, for example, TechCrunch- a website providing technology news that has ideally rendered Chatbots to serve customized content to its users. It explicitly uses Chatbots to deliver the type of content to its readers as and when they want. Now, isn’t it awe-inspiring?
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With the hoard of content, products, and services available at their disposal, target audiences tend to ignore content until and unless it directly speaks to them. Automated content can only drive the customer to a certain extent, but to convert them into potential customers requires Personalizations.
Big brands like Amazon and Netflix have already leveraged the bespoke content strategy to churn out and suggest personalized content for their viewers. Then, there are Music Apps like Spotify and Wynk, which propose bespoke songs as per your interest and moods.
Put all together, there is no rocket science to believe that customized content speaks and interacts with the customer at a personal level. Thereupon, elevating the user experience of your website or app to a whole new level. Consequently, it has become of the best digital marketing trends in recent times.
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3. Voice Search Optimization
As per the research done by Review42,
- Around 3.25 billion people use voice search and assistants worldwide. That’s close to half of the world’s population.
- Reports predict that the number could hit 4 billion in 2020, 5 billion in 2021, and 6.4 in 2022.
- According to Gen Z stats, 38% of them are willing to purchase via voice-activated ordering.
Voice Search option, introduced by Google in 2002, is taking the world by storm these days and in the years to come. The breakneck speed popularity accumulated for two strong reasons. The first being, the appealing adoption of Smart speakers such as Alexa and Siri by people.
More detailed researches point out that 65% of people who use an Amazon Echo or Google Home can’t imagine their lives without a smart speaker.
Secondly, Google’s steadfast claims of achieving 95% accuracy on the Voice search option further acts as a launchpad for the growth of Voice search usage worldwide.
Researches and predictions outline that 50% of online shopping will be induced by Voice search by 2022. With all that Gangratuan data supporting the spine of Voice search accounts for Voice search optimization as a recent digital marketing trend. Now, comes the question How to Optimize for Voice search optimization?
Here are few points to track on:
- Author content that talks back.
- Enhance mobile search options
- Add FAQs.
- Blend simplicity with curiosity.
- Voice search SEO, similar to regular SEO
4. Augmented Reality
Augmented Reality (AR) makes used of advanced technologies such as digital elements, sounds simulations, or other stimuli to create a real interactive physical experience. On simplifying terms, AR results from an amalgamation of real and virtual worlds via 3D projections to foster real-time user interactions.
Brands and big businesses are excessively harnessing the potential of AR technology to strengthen user experience. Lenskart 3D try-on is one such precise example. This feature enables the viewer to make their video covering all face angles. Thus, trying and analyzing how different glasses look on their face.
Another plausible example of this potent AR technology is Gucci Brand. The extravagant brand allows people to try on a slew of sneakers via its AR featured app. Tipping over the edge, not only Gucci supports you to try on as many as 19 sneakers with simple swipes but also lets you share the same on social media or messenger apps.
With brands becoming more user-centric, this AR-induced feature is a must-have for businesses in the offing. If this suits your brand, you can leverage this AR technology to top-notch the user experience of your potential consumers.
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5. YouTube Shorts
Another recent digital marketing trend that became increasingly popular at a breakneck speed is the YouTube Shorts. YouTube has always been an incredible platform for users, with a World user base of approximately 2,240.03 million users (as per Statista).
YouTube Shorts, akin to Instagram Reels, are 15 seconds tad videos. For creators with a firm hold over the Youtube target base, Shorts is an excellent opportunity. With Shorts, you can not only sway the prevailing audience but also magnetize new lookers.
6. Instagram Reels
Instagram has been in the long game since the reign of Tik-Tok came to a standstill due to intermittent bans across countries. Instagram reels were quick to take over the central position and serve as a platform to empower businesses.
Instagram fuelled and epitomized as the ideal social media platform with its incessant vivid features to the delight of its users. One such staggering feature is crisp Instagram reels, which are capable of providing twice the engagement as compared to videos. For digital marketers pals, this is the breakthrough to make the most out of it.
Under 60-second videos, you can showcase whatever milestone or striking features of your brands that you wish to promote. For instance, product reviews, new product launches, product tutorials, behind-the-scenes content, and most importantly, build brand authenticity.
Interestingly, the afresh insights features of Instagram Reels even let you track and analyze your performance. So, what is there to miss on this fruitful content strategy to acquire and retain viewers and customers.
Take, for example, Louis Vuitton-the global fashion Brand aced the use of Instagram reels with an average of 5M views on every single reel. The high-quality, super-creative, astonishing, and compelling reels are swaying the platform to reach the target audience rapidly. Without a shadow of a doubt, Instagram hacks are the way forward to touch more and more people across the World.
7. Email Marketing: Automated and Personalized Blend
Emails have been reigning in the game of marketing for a prolonged time. Promotional emails adroitly trade and make known about the company and business to subscribers and customers. Emails work as a conduit between you and the end-users to enlighten them about the latest deals, discounts, and discoveries.
As they say, excess of everything is bad; that’s what happened when businesses jammed the customers’ inboxes with numerous automated promotional emails. Eventually, people stopped paying heed to such emails. However, marketers pushed the email strategies back in the game with personalized emails that speak directly to the customer. That way, customers are far more inclined and engaged with the brands and businesses.
According to the HubSpot sources, 78% of marketers have seen an increase in engagements (including click-throughs) in the last 12 months. Now, that’s the prowess of emails and one of the evident reasons why Brands and businesses don’t give up on email marketing.
In this dog-eat-dog world, the one that touches the heart of the consumer-run high on success. Thus, the success key lies in using customer-centric strategies, such as personalized emails. Such personalized emails mirror and convey the silent message that the customer is talking to a person rather than an automated machine.
An effective success-runner of email marketing campaign is Uber, which sends applies simple yet profound tactics. To-the-point newsletters bonded with direct CTA make the readers quickly skim and scan the email. Moreover, Uber projects promotions, maps journeys and rides to acquaint people with relevant information.
8. Video Marketing
Another one of the forerunner digital marketing trends is Video Marketing. Indeed, there is no rocket science to believe that people are far more inclined to watch a video over plain text.
Let us look at some WordStream stats to back up the greatness of Video marketing in the Digital marketing world:
- 64% of consumers make a purchase after watching branded social videos.
- 51% of marketing professionals worldwide name video as the type of content with the best ROI.
- Marketers who incorporate video into their campaigns experience 34% higher conversion rates.
Showcasing long-form text on small screens like mobiles was one of the ingrained challenges faced by marketers that led to the exploration of Video Marketing. The video illustrates the long-form message captivatingly to make it up to the target audience’s mind. Furthermore, researchers show that viewers retain 95% of a message when they watch the same in a video compared to only 10% while reading it in text. Both of these facts trade for video marketing as the top-most digital marketing trend in recent times.
Another thing to look at here is that Google favors and prioritizes video content and lists it on the top page. Hence, the SERP rankings of your content can be ratcheted. Notwithstanding, one needs to be sure of what type of Video content works its magic on digital trends:
- Livestreams on mobile
- explainer videos
- testimonial videos
- Short-form videos
- user-generated video content
- Video advertising
- Interactive AR content
- Shoppable videos
9. User-generated content (UGC)
Word-of-the-mouth marketing through the use of User-generated content has long been one of the digital marketing trends. The artistic technique prompts users of a product or service to share their realistic experiences on their social media profiles. Photos, videos, text- anything generated by an unpaid user attains the head of the User-generated content.
Now, what makes it so successful? Let us find out!
As we know, UGC campaigns work their magic through the creative entries by people reinforcing the challenges or prompt created by the company. Now, here is the icing on the cake, UGC accumulates 28% more engagement rates in comparison to the mundane post.
One of the success stories of User-generated content is Starbucks. Dating back to 2014, Starbucks adroitly conditioned a #WhiteCupContest. The contest required customers to submit their out-of-the-box doodled entries to win a $300 gift card and an opportunity to have their design immortalized on a limited-edition Starbucks cup. The campaign was a stellar success garnering more than 4000 entries in a week.
10. Influencer Marketing
Another twin-sister of Word-of-the-Mouth marketing is Influencer Marketing, which too sways the digital marketing trends in recent times. But here is the catch, Influencer marketing relies on the vocal promotion and advertising of a brand by prominent stars, Youtubers, Instagrammers, or other people with amassed popularity and whose word-of-mouth people believe in. These influencers who have a gargantuan
following spread message and awareness through their social media handles, in return for money or free gifts from the Brands.
Let us have an overview of eye-opening stats by HubSpot:
- Influencer Marketing Industry is set to grow to approximately $13.8 Billion in 2021
- Back in 2015, there were just 190 influencer platforms and agencies. This grew to 335 in 2016, 420 in 2017, 740 in 2018, and 1120 in 2019 –nearly three times the number that existed just two years previously.
- 90% of our survey respondents believe influencer marketing to be an effective form of marketing
Growing by leaps and bounds, Influencer Marketing is the next big thing when it comes to digital marketing trends. #PlaytheLifeGame by Baggit is one quintessential example that launched an influencer marketing campaign to set the paradigm for others to follow. The campaign raised the Baggit Event, which became the talk of the town. Conforming to the drive, influencers cum bloggers showcased their products (bags) throughout the event.
Moving along, the influencers were hurled with questions such as why did they choose the bag? If given the chance, will they want to exchange it for something else? The campaign was a success creating a buzz around the digital media even before the event launch.
11. Quora Marketing
Who hasn’t heard about Quora these days? Yes, it is that Question-and-answer platform that capitalizes the doubts and inquiries by people. Though Quora has little room for marketing and advertising, yet one can use the same to answer relevant questions pertinent to your brand to harness audience toll. For instance, Neil Patel leverages Quora to his best use by writing long-winded answers to acquire audience friction.
What makes Quora a mascot?
Answers by individuals or human touch are what fuels Quora marketing beyond authority. At Quora, it’s not the Brand talking, but an individual is sharing an experience or knowledge- this adds more trust and credibility to the saying. This personal or human touch is the vivid highlight that makes Quora marketing favored digital marketing trends in 2021.
Geofencing is an advanced technology that uses location-based marketing or advertising to form a virtual geo-fence around a point of interest. As and when a device enters this area, geo-fence triggers several actions and events.
Digging up the details, Geofencing uses programs and software such as GPS, radio frequency identification (RFID), Wi-Fi, or cellular data to incite an action such as notification, advertisement, email, or something of that sort.
Business2community stats show that Geofencing can be a complete game-changer for your business, here is how:
- Mobile ads with geofencing have double the click-through rate.
- Geofencing is compatible with 92% of smartphones.
- 53% of shoppers visited a retailer after receiving a location-based message
As per the prediction by the Market Research Future report, the global geofencing market expects to grow to $2.2 billion by 2023.
Specific targeted audiences, personalized customer experience and augmented data collection spice up the success of Geofencing. Let us savor it with an awesome example. Sephora’s “Store Companion” features enable a customer to track former purchases, product recommendations, reviews, limited-edition offers, store experiences, wishlist product availability, and history as soon as a customer walks into the store. The success rate of this tactic can be measured by customer satisfaction and loyalty that Sephora gained through the smart location-data solution.
13. Hyper-local SEO
This particular tactic serves as a boon for small businesses or startups. True to its relevance, startups’ realization of digital marketing tactics has never been easier before the emergence of this algorithm.
As the name suggests, Hyper-local SEO conforms to the fringes of the “near me” searches. Basically, it promotes foot-in traffic to the store location of small businesses. In all honesty, it is one of the chief digital marketing trends for all small businesses and startups.
To see how it works, Google’s algorithm accumulates people’s prevailing NAP- Name, Address, and Phone Number. The data collected helps to provide results to the personal navigations of daily queries such as “Best coffee shop near me”, “Grocery store near me”, to name a few.
Hyper-local SEO lets a traditional marketing business, small business, or startup business utilize its supreme prowess to get a hand over the regional market. Daily queries plus voice search results lead the customers straight into your brick-and-mortar stores.
Now, if you are wondering, it would be an overhauling task to get yourself registered; the answer is quite the opposite of what you expect. All you have to do is sign up for your account in Google My Business Listings and fill in your business details. Rest assured, your business will soon enough garner immense popularity.
14. Social Media Stories
Back in 2013, Snapchat was the first to springboard Social Media Stories feature, which became the trailblazer for Instagram and Facebook to follow.
Social Media Stories comprise images, micro-videos, and other types of content that anyone wants to disseminate. As we all are well aware that these social media platforms have incessant traffic and shares, one can leverage them to valorize Brand recognition, Brand authority, and Customer engagement. Whatever the story be about, including proper hashtags and, most specifically, Call to Action (CTA’s) are the key factors leading to a success trail.
Moreover, giving it up to the researcher’s expectations, social media platforms have an elevated future on a sharp rise. Thus, any digital marketer should play with it to make the best out of their brands.
Step up your game with these Social Media Stories tips:
- Tailored content
- Try Gifs and ARs.
- Instagram Polls
- Gain from Snapchat Geofilters
- Add Location tags
- Give a shot to live videos
- Direct followers to clear and compelling CTAs
15. People Also Ask
There is nothing new to the fact that people searchers and queries take the center stage as and when we propagate marketing tactics. Google was quick to realize this thing when it thought of introducing the “People Also Ask” catalog to provide instant and ready-made answers to all questions.
People Also Ask carousel answers to all the related queries to the term or keyword that you are searching. Ultimately, it is an incredible algorithm by Google to enhance the user experience by making provisions to serve on-the-spot answers.
Now, how it becomes one of the best digital marketing trends for a digital marketer? Truthfully, whichever website aids Google to answer these quick queries in a simple, concise, and precise manner gets the reward for being on the first page of the Google SERP.
If you have noticed, the systematic position of “People Also Ask” questions lies relatively below the first 2-3 organic links. Indeed, such questions harness high click-through rates. What it means is that, despite your Domain authority or website, you can rank on the topmost page of Competitive keywords by assisting Google to answer these People Also Ask questions.
FAQs about Digital Marketing Trends
Q1. What is the latest trend in digital marketing?
Being dynamic, Digital marketing is made up of different moving parts. Anyone can increase organic traffic through SEO and brand visibility using Social Media platforms. Social media stories, Youtube Shorts, Instagram reels can be used to attract the target audience. User-generated campaigns and influencer marketing are among other digital marketing trends with the potential to enhance ROI.
Q2. What are the top trends in digital marketing for 2021?
#3. Voice Search Optimization
#4. Social Media Stories
#5. Email Marketing: Automated and Personalized Blend
#6. User-generated content
#7. Instagram reels and Youtube shorts
#8. People Also Ask queries
#9. Hyper-local SEO
#10. Video marketing
Q3. What is the latest trend in social media?
Augmented Reality (AR) and Virtual Reality (VR) are the two in-trend on social media in 2021. Both are advanced software that lets the user try on something before actually making a purchase, thus, enhancing the user experience.
Digital Marketing is a combination of a lot of moving parts. Thus, lurking on the bandwagon is more than imminent to stay ahead of the curve. As a result, one needs to be cognizant of the latest and most recent digital marketing trends. This article does just that and equips you with the latest digital marketing trends juggling around in the market.
Through the eye-opening stats and success stories of renowned brands, you must have got an idea about the power of digital marketing trends, which you can leverage too. Well, now that you are aware of the latest trends, sweep your content strategies around the same and ace the Digital market to see your name as an example in the list of the trends.