COVID-19 upended how businesses operate. More services and products have moved online and many employees continue to work from home or in a hybrid setting; most of them may maintain the same set-up for much of 2021. As a result, businesses are brainstorming new ways to market and sell. Using pre-pandemic tactics is no longer an option because COVID-19 changed business marketing.
Months of different consumer responses to the pandemic has given businesses and marketers insights into trends that worked during the new normal and what they can expect in the next year.
So what does 2021 have for businesses and marketers?
All-In On Local SEO and Google Listings
If you are a small business owner, ensure your local listings are verified and accessible on all search platforms. For instance, if you are an electrical company, draw consumers shopping for electrical plans in TX by being accessible on Google My Business, which is a listing that provides customers with valuable information about your business: hours, geographical location and services.
Consider this protip: your business should have a defined service area within your local listings so it will show up in “near me” searches. Search engines’ search algorithms prioritize relevance. Limiting your business’s service radius might seem counter-intuitive, but by narrowing your target market, you have more chances of penetrating
Regularly updating your listings also enables your customers to stay informed with changes concerning your promotions, hours, services or other information you wish to convey ASAP.
Social Media to Retain and Engage with Customers
Businesses are highly likely to dedicate more resources to social media marketing in 2021. According to reports, global ad spending increased by 56.4 percent during Q3 of 2020. Also, during the pandemic, businesses and marketers prioritized customer retention, which is a trend that will continue into 2021. COVID-19 drastically increased the amount of time people spend online, which includes their research for information on products and services, as well as companies.
This shift in consumerism created new opportunities for businesses to increase their reach with new target markets, as well as re-engaging with long-time customers. All you need is a hundred dollars per month to create a content plan, share regular posts and encourage customer responses.
Harness The Power of Voice Search
Voice search may currently be not a part of Google’s search algorithm but it can still influence the search results. Voice search queries often result in different answers compared to if the user typed their searches, so it’s a good idea to consider voice search components, too.
If you want to maximize voice search, optimize your content for voice queries. It needs to be conversational and direct to ensure accurate synchronization with search queries.
More Interactive Content
Adding interactive elements to your social media posts or websites offers value for visitors, which encourages them to learn more about your business and engage with you. For instance, if you are a real estate agent, a simple mortgage calculator on your website proves helpful to curious visitors. You’re offering them value now while encouraging them to share consumer data that you can use for targeting.
Other types of interactive marketing include polls, games, assessments, interactive videos, quizzes, contests and surveys. Specifically, contests are great at increasing your consumer reach, as well as improving your visibility. It is also the fastest way to put your business in front of new prospects without spending too much on ad budget. All you have to do is share a contest, encourage followers to join and share and wait for people to join.
So Where Do You Go From Here?
These trends do not represent a complete list, but it’s a great way to start planning for your 2021 marketing strategy. Improve your traffic and sales by shifting more of your resources to local search and social media, adding more interactive and personalized content. These strategies can also help you understand marketing trends and how they can impact your digital plans.