How Online Marketing Strategies Are Evolving Into 2021
So if you’re wondering how 2020 has generated lasting changes in the world of online marketing strategies (and how that might impact your plans for 2021), we’ve got you covered.
Brand Activism, Engagement, and Transparency on Social Media
Constructing Conversations and Cultivating Communities
Did you know that, according to Forbes, approximately 62% of millennial consumers have affirmed they’re more likely to become a loyal customer of brands who interact with them on social platforms?
And not only can this form of relationship-building generate immediate lead conversion, but sparking and participating in these online conversations can attract a wider audience as well as allow you to lead the ever-changing narrative of your brand’s story and identity — particularly when it comes to the matter of values and transparency.
After all, with the rise and diffusion of social movements over the internet in the last several years — such as with the resurgence of the Black Lives Matter movement over the summer of 2020 — consumers are becoming more and more invested in whether or not the brands they buy from are taking a stand, be it social, political, or otherwise.
For example, an online survey conducted by Nielsen determined that “a whopping 81% of global respondents feel strongly that companies should help improve the environment,” placing sustainability and environmental activism as top priorities for consumers across various markets.
Social Media? Meet PR
When breaking news emerges and spreads like wildfire or, worse, when your brand or client has a public crisis that needs to be addressed and put out, social media has quickly become one of the most versatile and efficient tools marketers have in their arsenal.
“PR and social media are based on communication, but social media, with its real-time messaging, amplifies your message, allowing PR to be [that much] stronger and more impactful,” Georgetown University reports.
Particularly with the advent of Twitter as a breaking news community and crisis management resource, more and more we’ve seen brands and agencies utilizing social media as their first line of PR defense. And once the 2020 lockdowns and election went into effect, that phenomenon only increased in frequency.
Don’t believe us? All it takes is one glance at any given Twitter account belonging to a politician, regardless of party affiliation. Not only will posting on social media allow them to reach their constituents immediately, but it is also a relatively surefire means of attracting the attention of journalists.
Diving Into the Digital Dynasty
Greater Engagement in E-Commerce
There’s little doubt that the coronavirus pandemic has changed the way consumers buy products, and with the continued spread of the virus, that change is likely here to stay. In particular, e-commerce has grown significantly as lockdowns led people to buy products online that they might have otherwise bought in-store during the long-past “precedented” times.
For example, Adobe Analytics announced that, on Black Friday of 2020, online sales had hit a total of $9 billion, thereby jumping up a whopping 21.6% in the span of one year.
But that’s not where it ends — social media wants in on the game, too. According to Business Insider’s projections, over 76 million Americans will complete a purchase through a social network at least once this year, making up approximately 38.4% of all U.S.-based social network users.
Thus, we recommend getting your online store up and running while the new year is still fresh, or at the very least revamping it to be more accessible via your social media channels.
A Continuation of Digital Developments
Did you know that approximately 60% of the global population were internet users as of April 2020? What’s more, 2020 effectively escalated overall digital traffic as a result of the pandemic, thereby introducing about 346 million new users to the internet over the course of about 12 months.
But wait — there’s more. Statista reported an overall 38% year-over-year increase of home data usage between March 2019 and March 2020, meaning more people than ever before are spending recreational time on the internet at home; thus, marketers can more effectively launch campaigns, catch their attention, and capture leads.
Oh, and don’t forget to make way for new mediums in the digital realm. After all, not everybody on the internet is out to read social updates and watch cat videos. Rather, some people just want to listen.
For instance, today, more and more consumers are using their digital devices to access podcasts for educational and recreational purposes. In March of 2020, Edison Research revealed that, at the time, “more than one-third of Americans age 12 and over (104 Million) are consuming podcasts regularly.” And almost a year later, that volume of digital listeners has likely continued to increase.
And we know, we know — we just launched a lot of numbers and changing information in your direction at once, so why not also let us take the lead in helping you adjust your 2021 strategy accordingly?
Here at Mad Men Marketing, we believe that businesses should not only be rooted in a position of interaction (as opposed to interruption) with their audience, but we, as marketing experts, should also specialize in the ever-fluid nature of online engagement and advertising so as to ensure your long-term success and growth.
That’s why we offer comprehensive digital advertising solutions, creative design, and web development services for clients of any industry or market. If you’re ready to interact with your customers (as opposed to interrupting them), contact Mad Men Marketing today by calling 904-355-1766!
Services, Solutions, and Skills: Why Social Media is Integral to Your Marketing Strategy
After the days of shuffling around your “top friends,” adding music to your profile, and seeing Tom’s face consistently popping up across the platform, it’s hard not to laugh a little as we now watch TikToks, monitor political news on Facebook, and plaster our pet photos across Instagram.
That is to say, social media has grown, hasn’t it? And, in that case, shouldn’t your marketing strategy, too?
Saying “Hello” to Social Media
With the advent of the internet came the inherent opportunity for marketers to embark upon the newest advertising frontier. And as the total amount spent on online advertising grew exponentially by the early 2000s, it was only a matter of time before social media platforms began to dip their toes into the waters of online revenue generation, too.
Today? Social media advertising is expected to amass a total of $39.6 billion by the end of 2020, which is approximately 9.4% higher than that of 2019.
Of course, many entrepreneurs today seeking social media glory (or attention, at the very least) may not necessarily find that surprising, seeing as internet users are reported to spend a daily average of 2 hours and 22 minutes per day on social platforms.
Thus, as social media continues to flourish, so, too, will the opportunities for businesses to attract and advertise to new audiences.
It Pays to be Social
While we may have started by discussing the advertising-specific avenues of social media, it goes without saying that these platforms act as more than mere digital billboards for brands. Rather, they act as the venue by which businesses can attract new individuals, thereby increasing their overall rate of exposure.
In fact, according to a 2020 analysis conducted by Hootsuite, “52% of all online brand discovery still happens in public social feeds,” meaning that, on a year-over-year basis, more and more consumers are turning to social media to feed their spending habits.
In fact, this trend is likely to increase in the near future, judging by the current breakdown of active social media usage by generation:
Baby Boomers — 48.2%
Gen X — 77.5%
Millennials — 90.4%
And that’s before we take Gen Z into account. In short, social media isn’t just another avenue for advertising your particular brand or product (though it is that, too)! It also allows you to interact with your audience, rather than interrupting them, thereby increasing your ability to strengthen your brand identity, monitor and track leads, place yourself at the center of the conversation, and more.
Social Innovation and Integration
By integrating social media into your overall marketing strategy, you’re providing yourself with the opportunity to innovate and explore new methods of audience engagement that you might not otherwise have with other forms of traditional media advertising.
After all, social media may be just one cog in the proverbial marketing machine, but it’s also one that continues to grow and thrive as technology and communities develop.
That’s why, here at Mad Men Marketing, our social media team comes equipped with an arsenal of services, including the ability to help you generate effective paid social media and strategize your organic social media!
We understand that your attention should be rooted in the day-to-day responsibilities of running your business, not reading every little social media comment or message that lights up your push notifications. Thus, we don’t just offer social innovation and management, but we also provide you with monthly analytics to clarify your brand’s return on investment, as well as strategize the effectiveness of future social media campaigns.
If you’re ready to interact with your customers (as opposed to interrupting them), contact Mad Men Marketing today by calling 904-355-1766!
The Rise of Social Commerce (s-Commerce)
We've seen companies like Amazon and Facebook transition from a laser-focused CD and movie source and social media network respectively, into multi-faceted money making machines. Amazon has positioned itself as THE online marketplace in the United States and has diversified into other web services like hosting and marketing as well as developing its own distribution infrastructure to the point that it can rival virtually any logistics company and it has its sights set on grocers too.
Meanwhile, Facebook has gone from cool collegiate exclusivity to the most ubiquitous social channel in the world. Recently, Facebook revealed that it would amplify its existing e-commerce ads to account for showcase shopping ads. Just like Google, Facebook is taking advantage of their online resources to help advertisers push more merchandise just in time for holiday shopping. The new ad format allows advertisers to display one main picture with several product images that would, ostensibly, have their own unique landing pages. This gives the potential consumer a broader understanding of what the retailer may be selling and what's specially priced.
Pandora's box is open and there's no going back. Linking a bank account to everyone's personal Facebook page isn't far off and this may raise security concerns all over the world, but for now, social media will undoubtedly see a rise in sell-through, especially with reasonably priced impulse buys. It will continue to command an ever-increasing amount of your advertising budget as their ads evolve in terms of what can be done with them creatively and who can be targeted strategically. Currently, only a few heavy hitters are testing out the new format, but look for a wider roll-out soon with other companies following suit in 2017. Admittedly, I laughed derisively when some people claimed that Facebook was coming for Google. Well, it appears that not only do they want to compete with Google, but with Amazon and Alibaba as well. What's more is that they seem to have the golden touch right now and I wouldn't put anything past them.
The Less You Do….The More You DO
As I perused AdAge this morning, I stumbled upon a lengthy article about Eat24 parting ways with the “social” giant. I must say that Eat24 made some very valid points. Facebook has been acquiring a wide array of social media companies as well as some more questionable acquisitions in the form of Oculis Rift, a VR gaming company. The push for monetization on Facebook's end has been maddening. The downward spiral seemingly stemmed from its IPO some time ago. Since then, a myriad of questionable decisions and frivelous spending have plagued the once mighty social giant.
Eat24 wrote “We made mistakes too. We actually paid for some of those annoying promoted posts. You were all like, 'Dude, you gotta try out promoted posts, It'll help you make more friends and then more people can enjoy your LOLZ.' So we tried it because we loved you. Also, YOLO… And it's true, we got a ton of new likes on our page. Look at all these new friends, we thought. There's a guy in Houston, and this guy in… Bangladesh? And this girl in… Dubai? WTF Facebook!?… Right now we're only in the U.S., so even though we love our new international friends, we'd prefer not to piss them off by showing them a photo of a delicious calzone that they can't even order.”
While this was hilarious, it was also frighteningly true. You couldn't hit the nail on the head any better, unless you were to read further….
“But the bigger picture issue is that we can't trust you. You lied to us and said you were a social network but you're totally not a social network. At least not anymore… Why should we have to wade through a dozen promoted posts about how to lose belly fat (are you trying to tell us something?) and requests for Candy Crush (NO! Just no.) and suggesting we like our arch nemesis' page (seriously, WTF) before we can finally find the perfect Doge meme? It really seems like you've lost your way and have become nothing more than an ad platform.”
As someone who must delve into the social realm on a daily basis, sometimes against my better judgment, I can completely understand. So why do we stay active on Facebook. Simply put, it's the perceived lack of alternatives. I WILL, however, step out on a limb and vouch for the legitimacy of Google Plus. Not only can you network with anyone regardless of whether you originally knew them or not, but you can receive feeds from people that you actually want to hear from and organize your contacts into endless sub-groups. This past week, I even played trivia in real-time via Google Plus Hangout's Sporcle app.
What's more is that Facebook is constantly changing their user interface as well as the frequency with which organic reach for small businesses occurs. Change happens far too often and sometimes things are best left alone.
End of rant.
One Spark, Endless Opportunities….
Jacksonville could become synonymous with this festival and it could beckon innovators, philanthropists, community organizers, and more for years to come. If this event is as successful as I anticipate it will be, our One Spark could rival several other festivals simply because of the uniqe crowd-funding opportunity that exists. Everyone will be vying for a piece of the $250,000 pie, but if that weren't enough, investors like our own Shad Khan have pledged massive amounts of money to innovators and fledgling companies. One Spark has electrified social media and the entire city has been buzzing about it for months. It's truly a testament to the power of networking. I foresee the next festival really upping the ante and bringing even more money to the table and even more international talent to the shores of the First Coast. I'll see you there, April 17-21 in downtown Jacksonville! Be One Spark.