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Marta Peral Ribeiro

Marta Peral Ribeiro
– Communication Consultant –

“Ignoring online marketing is like opening a business but not telling anyone.”

— KB Marketing Agency

In this article we explore some of the main trends of digital marketing for this year, divided into 4 major areas, complementing each other: customer focus, digital platforms focus, social and environmental responsibility, and the use of Voice in conjunction with Artificial Intelligence.

Marta Peral Ribeiro
– Communication Consultant –

“Ignoring online marketing is like opening a business but not telling anyone.”

— KB Marketing Agency

In this article we explore some of the main trends of digital marketing for this year, divided into 4 major areas, complementing each other: customer focus, digital platforms focus, social and environmental responsibility, and the use of Voice in conjunction with Artificial Intelligence.

1. Customer focus

What is the top priority for your business in the next 5 years

E-commerce that improves the consumer experience

In 2020, the evolution of e-commerce was higher than that recorded over the previous 5 years:

Internet sales as a percentage of total retail sales

This development has to do with two aspects:

  • Targeting the products to digital channels, as a direct consequence of the consumer’s limitation in acquiring them in the usual physical spaces;
  • With the increasing improvement of the user experience.

As such, we have all noticed the adoption of technological measures aimed at our security: preferential payment with Mb Way, restaurants and cafes with online orders, in many cases free shipping costs for online purchases, click & collect option, among others.

That is, e-commerce solutions focused on the consumer experience are the soul of the business. This obviously assumes, the existence of the product or service online and the company’s positioning in the digital sphere.

The focus on e-commerce is so strong that, step by step along with the presence of consumers on social networks, these have created configurations that allow brands to expand their business through their profiles.

Who’s your client?

Tracing customers’ personalities is essential to understanding the target audience, being able to predict their preferences and meet their needs.

Moreover, consumer behavior analysis can reveal the true persona of your business: are they more expansive or introverted people? Are they empathic and cooperative or more individualistic? Anxious or serene? Thoughtful or impulsive?

With the amount of data about the users which they have access to through the digital platforms there is no doubt that marketers today have a facilitated task.

Interaction on social networks

When the human connection was no longer possible in the exterior, we looked for it on the Internet.

In 2020, many companies recreated themselves, betting on interaction with their customers through social media.

This year, the brands can go further, becoming influencers of the virtual community – especially if the hosts are the representatives of the brands themselves.

Even if there is some fatigue from digital sourcing, if the content is interesting and the team is aligned with each other and with the guests, it will attract audiences.

Lives

Happening in real time, this format is convenient for webinars, lectures and interviews.

The most common channels for this purpose are Facebook Live and Instagram Live, but also Youtube, Twitter and recently LinkedIn have explored this tool.

Conversations

Through public debates on digital platforms, companies connect with their community, leading conversations about politics, culture, sustainability, racism, marketing or education.

Twitter

Twitter is one of the networks with the highest degree of community involvement, as interactions unfold as news and controversial issues emerge around the world.

2. Focus on digital platforms

Taking the last point further: where do people research brands, products and services? On social networks and on the websites of brands. That’s why it’s really worth investing in digital channels, energizing them to stand out from the majority:

Vídeos

More professional or more spontaneous, these brief and creative contents can serve several purposes: entertain, advertise, educate or inform.

Most digital platforms already explore this feature, and Apps as Facebook, Instagram (Reels) and TikTok are well known for their massive use.

UGC and Influence Marketing

User Generated Content is all types of content (videos, photos, images, reviews or comments), produced by any user, with reference to the products/brands they use.

This content is later shared by the brands themselves, for example through stories or challenges launched on TikTok or Twitter.

Because it is produced by the user and not by a brand, it seems more autentic and serves as social proof for other consumers. Therefore, it is a very effective marketing because it reveals its market segments to brands.

This is the case of digital microinfluencers, who having between 5 and 20,000 followers on social networks and generating various identifications (hashtags) they get higher rates of interaction and conversion.

Interactive content

Interactive elements on digital platforms are very appealing to users. Who can resist an infographic, a small game, a quiz or other small challenges?

3. Social and environmental responsibility

The behavior and consequent purchasing decision of the current consumer focuses on the impact that brands have on people and on the planet.

Especially if they are Generation Z individuals, or even Millennials, they will give priority to companies that make social and environmental commitments by standing up and advocating for them. Some actions to explore:

Inclusive attitude

  • Valuing the company’s employees with actions that benefit them;
  • Cultivating an inclusive attitude within the team;
  • Manifesting the principles of the brand through an open letter (in the face of racism, actions of violence, among other causes or events);
  • Involve the community through “lives” of awareness on social issues;
  • Create podcasts where current events of the social sphere are discussed;
  • Develop partnerships with entities that defend the same values;
  • Promote solidarity initiatives by sharing results.

Green Marketing

  • Create greener products;
  • Communicate practical information on the sustainability of its products and services;
  • Share visually attractive content about healthy lifestyle on social networks (Pinterest, Instagram, etc.);
  • Reveal the progress the company is making in its environmental commitment;
  • Donate a percentage of the company’s profits to support environmentalprojects.

4. Use of Voice and AI

Voice searches

On Youtube or search engines, for example, users often choose to search with voice by simply pressing the microphone button in the search area.

Recently Twitter, attentive to this trend, created a new feature: the voice tweet. The user records their voice message, which then turns into written content, appearing in the feed just like other tweets.

twitter voice

twitter voice

The goal? “Create a more humane experience for listeners and storytellers.”

Thus, as the communication team optimizes the written content for SEO, they should likewise optimize the content for voice search, catapulting their company to the top of search results.

Podcasts

These audio publications are an increasingly popular feature, because users are free to do more tasks while listening to episodes of their choice.

On the other hand, podcast listeners can be redirected to other channels used by the brand, such as a community on Facebook.

Therefore, in addition to engaging the audience, podcasts facilitate the connection between people who share the same interests.

Artificial intelligence (AI) in everyday life

Siri, Alexa, Google Home, are some examples of virtual assistants who, receiving orders or questions requested by voice, are able to facilitate simple processes such as: provide information, activate other devices and User’s App’s or turn on the light in the room.

As the trend of “talking” to our devices is increasing because they speed up some day-to-day tasks, it’s easy to understand the importance of setting up digital platforms with Voice technology.

Chatbots

When we open some sites currently, we are greeted by a virtual assistant, who through artificial intelligence welcomes us and offers us help through chat.

In order to facilitate the user experience, this type of robot allows:

  • The operation of the company not only at a distance but also at times that would not be compatible with those of many customers;
  • Streamline the resolution of simple problems, reducing the workload of employees who support the customer;
  • Reduce costs for the company in the long term;
  • Generate leads, increasing the likelihood of conversion of more customers.