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Marketing is a constantly changing landscape. You know that. We know it. But 2020 presented a different challenge than in previous years, leaving marketers to dig deeper into what they need to do to attract and nurture prospects and customers.

2021 will be no different – which shouldn’t freak you out! Part of marketing is doing your due diligence, and we’ve combined our resources to come up with some powerful strategies to consider prioritizing in 2021.

SMS Marketing

The popularity of texting was already accelerating before COVID, but the pandemic has made the importance of fast, timely and relevant messages more necessary than ever. People needed quick updates on everything from shutdowns to switches to distance learning. And SMS marketing provided that, plus an average read rate of 98%.

SMS marketing is also useful for prospects and customers in non-COVID campaigns, as you can implement various campaigns that engage both audiences. For example, for current customers, you can send them text reminders of appointments or meetings. For prospects, you may want to consider sending them brand awareness campaigns or coupons that may encourage them to buy from you.

The best part? With a platform like SMSZap, getting started in SMS marketing is a snap. You can set up your account in minutes, connect with your contacts in HubSpot, and send personalized, engaging messages.

Content Marketing

COVID restrictions have sent most people home at some point – to shop or work, or both. This has caused the demand for digital consumption to skyrocket. What does this mean for your efforts in 2021? Your content should be of high quality and abundant, as well as:

  • Interactive
  • Categorical
  • Engaging
  • Relevant to current events (2020 has seen it all from social change, major elections and COVID)
  • Designed for diverse crowds

This translates into the creation and sharing of educational and quality content about your products, services and your business with your prospects and customers. You can use various resources such as blogs, e-books, infographics, social media, and videos to get your messages across. Regardless of the type of content, it should address the specific issues of your target audience at every stage of its buyer’s journey, including the stages of awareness, consideration, decision, and enjoyment.

Video

Video can technically be considered part of your content marketing – but its importance in our « new normal » is nothing to shrug off. People yearned for a human connection that they couldn’t make in person. Think about how you can use video in your previously “typical” marketing efforts. Are you switching to more online conferences, events or webinars? These types of remote content are not getting anywhere anytime soon.

Likewise, video has proven to be a useful tactic. In fact, 79% of consumers said a brand’s video convinced them to buy a software or app. A whopping 92% of those viewers also said they shared videos with others. That alone should help you realize the value of an investment in video creation and distribution.

Chatbots and customer support automation

When COVID initially hit, people rushed to cancel flights, hotels, concerts, trips, appointments; you name it. The importance of a fast and solid customer support experience was essential. But customers weren’t the only ones dealing with the aftermath of such an uncertain year. Support agents were hit by an influx of tickets to their helpdesk. Fortunately, chatbots and other customer support automations have helped and will continue to do so in 2021.

Chatbots automate specific tasks and conversations by speaking with a customer or prospect through an easy-to-use interface. They lighten the workload on your teams by tackling simpler conversational functions that are necessary but can take time. Advanced customer service automation can offload a large portion of support tickets with a high degree of accuracy. These resources also delight users, as more and more people want information as quickly as possible and are not afraid to speak through a chat app.

Social media

2020 certainly had a predominant theme, and it was that a lot of people were home for a good part of it. Because of this, more people were also on their phones looking for news and updates from their favorite brands. One of the most common places to find it is usually Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, or LinkedIn.

Brands have also recognized it. In fact, social media budgets accounted for 24% of all marketing budgets in the second quarter of 2020. And momentum has held steady. There is a tremendous opportunity to ride on these coattails and continue to engage and re-engage with new and existing customers through fun and engaging social media campaigns or ads.

SEO

When the pandemic subsides, businesses with physical locations will likely want to return as many people as possible to their stores. Local Search Engine Optimization (SEO) can help. Try:

  • Optimize your « Google My Business Page »
  • Include local keywords in your website content
  • Strengthen your social media presence and include location specific content

Position Zero, or the code snippet presented by Google, is also expected to take priority in 2021. As humans increasingly depend on technology, they expect the best response as quickly as possible. Position Zero has the most relevant information that answers this user’s question without clicking any links. Here are some tips for getting a code snippet:

  • Determine what your business can get an extract for
  • Write the exact question you are trying to answer in your website or blog content
  • Use lists or tables
  • Look for related questions and answers – any question can lead to another!
  • Create high quality content that doesn’t contain keywords.

Another essential thing to consider when fighting SEO is to remember that people are looking for things differently now. People ask more questions or phrases than just words. They also use devices like Alexa or Google Home. Search engines recognize this more nuanced context, meaning and intention to deliver results, so keep it in mind for 2021.

Need help?

You still have time to consider implementing one of these essential tactics in your inbound marketing strategy. If you think you can use tips, contact our team today.
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