Just turning on a news channel this year has provided the viewer with numerous statistics, datasets and graph illustrations. The world’s population has had to shift and adapt in many ways through 2020, and the adoption of new technology has seen workplaces change environments and practices, families connect in different ways and innovative medical care delivered in methods never seen before.
As businesses look toward 2021 and consider how to survive during and (hopefully) after uncertain times, there are some emerging marketing trends that can help inform them on how best to proceed through the ‘new normal’. Lessons learnt from 2020 come in the form of some surprising stats, and it’s these that will help shape the tech world to come.
68% of CX Experts Strongly Believe That Customer Expectations Are Rising
This statistic, backed up by a recent report into 2020 CX trends by Feefo, was identified by CX Network and has seen a sharp increase in customer expectations. As consumers recognise the vast number of businesses being forced to hibernate, close, or even shut down entirely, there is an ongoing expectation playing into the ‘survival of the fittest’ rhetoric.
In 2021, businesses will have to focus on all aspects of their customer experience including a focus on digital experience. Even when consumers are again able to purchase in more traditional ways, it is likely many of those who have moved to digital commerce and communications will remain with their virtual mediums.
In less than 6 months, TikTok’s popularity increased in the UK by 93%
The first UK lockdown saw social media feeds filled with banana bread recipes, lip-sync videos and rainbow-printed merchandise. Chinese short-form video channel TikTok had largely been unrecognised by the British public since its launch in 2016, but with time on their hands and a desire for new distractions, the network skyrocketed in popularity, and fast. Within months, social media giant Instagram had adopted a similar format in Reels, in order to compete.
2021 will see tech teams need to remain agile and continue to adopt, adapt and move to new channels and mediums rapidly. Allowing another network to expand without a presence on it would be foolhardy and not make for good business sense.
iOS 14 is Implementing 8 New Privacy Features
Apple rolled out iOS 14 across its devices in summer 2020, and it set a precedent that tech firms should not ignore, on how to expect the company (and its customers) to deal with privacy and security moving forward. Visibility of camera, location and microphone usage is now overt and Apple customers are being made more aware than ever of their opt-out rights for data sharing.
In the new year, those in tech will need to be able to move rapidly to both new data regulations and legislation, and to gain – and retain – the trust of consumers.
$10billion was spent on Influencer Marketing in 2020
As people spent more time at home and had hours to idle away, social media marketing really took off, with more money than ever spent on influencer marketing, known for its personal approach and targeted audiences.
2020 saw the ASA and CAP bring in new regulations for the declarations of influencer sponsorship. Those within social media and related tech disciplines will need to find further ways of promoting transparency whilst still monetising and facilitating advertising through their platforms in 2021.
72% of consumers now only interact with marketing messages tailored to them
The marketing landscape is changing. There is no one-size-fits-all anymore. Consumers believe they’re entitled to and expect personal attention when it comes to the marketing communications they’re willing to go out of their way to interact with; and this is a behaviour unlikely to be changed once enacted.
Tech companies need to continue to work with personalisation, as well as identify and implement new methods of conversational marketing and targeted messaging.
87% of online shoppers believe that social media helps them make a purchasing decision
Influencers aside, all messaging that consumers are exposed to on social media should be carefully curated and managed to ensure it is consistently working towards the end goal of making, facilitating or encouraging a purchase, contact or relevant call to action. In 2020, Instagram shifted its layout to incorporate Instagram Shopping and this had an immediate impact upon product-based businesses.
2021 will continue to see innovation in the monetisation of social media, and those working in related tech fields will find themselves working on cross-channel purchase functions, further integration of commerce options and the development of further profit channels.
It is hoped that 2021 will see the ‘calm after the storm’ of coronavirus, but for those in tech, work will continue to be fast-paced, reactive and agile throughout the year ahead. If recent turbulent times have taught us anything, it’s that technology is key to dealing with disruption and weathering difficult situations; and those hard workers in the related industries will be at the forefront of making that happen.