2020 saw a seismic shift in how businesses were run. This also meant that how we market those businesses had to change dramatically too. To make sure we’re already one step ahead going into 2021 here are our top marketing trends to keep an eye out for this year. 

Virtual Events & Influencer Live Streams Are Here To Stay

Stay at home orders and national lockdowns meant events were cancelled and consumers weren’t able to attend in-person events. This led to a huge rise in the number of people tuning into live streams whether it was from a huge brand, an online workshop or a celebrity. On Facebook, live viewings spiked by 50% during lockdown periods whilst viewings on Instagram shot up by a staggering 70%. 

There’s a very good chance we’ll see this upward trajectory continue to play out in 2021 as human-lead content like influencer livestreams (such as the one NYX Cosmetics created over Pride Month in the USA) help create trust and tap into the ‘in-the-moment’ connection that locked-down customers crave. 


User Generated Content That Enhances The Customer Experience

Customer experience has never been more important for businesses. Modern consumers want enjoyable experiences with brands that will be memorable. With so much competition around, they want reassurance before siding with a particular company.

Having videos, blog posts or Instagram photos from previous customers raving about a product or service builds trust because it’s genuine. User-generated content (UGC) ticks all the boxes when it comes to connective content:

  • It builds and strengthens communities
  • It’s relatable and uplifting
  • It enables brands to meet customers where they’re already hanging out
  • It helps brands generate tons more content against a backdrop of stay-at-home orders and restrictive measures

A Greater Emphasis On Sustainability

A huge 81% of consumers feel strongly that companies should help improve the environment. Whilst the number is big, it shouldn’t come as a huge surprise. Over the past couple of years we’ve seen a shift in brands building a more sustainable future, whether it’s through the materials and manufacturing they use, their systems or something else. 

As our hunt for a greener planet continues, consumers are actively seeking out brands that are purpose driven and conscious about the environment. 

A huge example of this was Lego, after plastic was shunned due to the lasting harm its chemical components do to the planet, they vowed that their iconic bricks will be 100% sustainable by 2030. 

Inclusivity Is Key

Here in Brighton, we’re very fortunate to live in a city where our diversity is our strength. However, inclusivity became a huge focus worldwide in 2020 with the Black Lives Matter Movement highlighting issues that linger within various elements of our society. 

What might surprise you though is a study showed that the cultural shift towards inclusivity is also impacting purchasing behaviour. 41% of shoppers distance themselves from brands and retailers that don’t reflect their views on identity and diversity.

Brands that are seen to be non-inclusive or who don’t appear to be a part of the conversation, will likely see impacts in 2021. On the flipside, brands which side themselves with inclusive causes will drive a deeper connection with buyers. 

Easy To Consume Content

2020 saw more people trying out easy to consume content. This covers things such as podcasts that can be consumed on the go, or newsletters that land directly in a subscribers inbox. Over 55% of people now listen to podcasts making them incredibly effective for reaching customers with your message.

Advertisers are spending more on podcasts too, which is a hint towards their continued success in 2021. 

Email newsletters are also becoming an easy way to update your customers, to get the best out of this – a catchy subject line is key. 

Are you ready for 2021?

Whilst 2020 was unpredictable, we have a much clearer idea of what to expect going into 2021. Hopefully some of these trends will inspire your marketing strategy over the next 12 months. As always, if you have any questions about how to market your business, don’t hesitate to get in touch with us. 


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