What’s just a trend and what’s here to stay?

Last year set many records and  trends in motion that will play a major role in 2021. Our team came together to discuss the digital marketing trends and changes that we predict will impact the world of social media, advertising, and design this year. 

Digital Advertising Spend on the Rise

Digital advertising is on the rise and the ideal time for larger campaign pushes is when the economy is down. While everyone is staying home, digital has become the best way to reach people through social media, streaming, and in-search advertising. 

“In Gartner’s CMO Spend Survey 2020-2021: Technology and Digital Channels Withstand Budget Cuts, CMOs are expected to increase digital marketing spend in 2021 with roughly a quarter of their budget dedicated to paid advertising. Not surprising, considering the stay-at-home economy has caused consumers to flock where advertisers are spending their dollars – online.”

The Ease of Ecommerce Across Social

Raise your hand if you’re guilty of impulse shopping because you saw a great Instagram ad. Now, raise your hand if that purchase helped support a local business. If you’re raising both hands right now, we should totally be friends!

With many changing restrictions, local retailers, restaurants, salons, and so many more took to social media to sell their products and services in new ways. Making ecommerce more accessible, user friendly and manageable is a trend that is here to stay.

Simplifying Digital Branding

Have you seen major brands like GM and Burger King making the shift in branding to more simplified imagery? We’ve noticed many brands making their digital presence as user-friendly and minimalist as possible. With many customers using online ordering, scheduling and more, it makes sense to rebrand as a digitally friendly company. 

Our creative team weighed in on the shift and their suggestion is to stick with your brand identity. If you have a signature color palette that has been well established for many years, don’t stray. But instead, consider the versatility of your current branding across web, social, print, and all other traditional avenues. 

Evaluating Virtual Events 

We’ve all become pros at virtual meetings and webinars now right? Well, we’ve all tried at least! Even with social distancing, critical events such as fundraisers, conferences, networking, and more still need to happen somehow. Businesses have gotten creative making virtual gatherings more engaging while saving more costs than ever before.

This year, event planners should carefully consider all the pros and cons of virtual versus in-person events. Virtual events tend to be cheaper to produce, but could have lower engagement rates. Traditional events or conferences on the other hand also have the networking appeals and 

Stories, Stories, and More Stories

We all know that one person who posts the same thing to Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and adds a screenshot of the post to their stories just for attention. Don’t just jump on the stories trend unless your willing to commit energy to producing original, creative and engaging content that will be valuable to your audiences.

Our take, know your audience and stick with the platform they engage most with. If short call-to-action tweets get more conversions, make Twitter your priority and explore the “fleets” options. If visually compelling content is your jam, stick to your Instagram strategy while fully utilizing the stories functions. 

The Return to Social

We get it, 2020 was not exactly a fun time to be on social media. Many people opted to log off for a while or even delete their accounts instead of being overwhelmed with all the negativity, fights, and ugliness that came out last year. Once the clock struck midnight and we welcomed in 2021, it’s almost like we could hit a reset button for a more peaceful time across social media. 

Don’t get us wrong, tensions will always be elevated when angry people turn to social media. But, as we begin to reopen and return to a new sense of normal, the comfort levels of social media should also return. Until then, be kind to others online and in person (while social distancing of course).