Small businesses trends to adopt digital marketing in 2021
2020 was a hard year for small businesses because of the global pandemic. small businesses were forced to be responsive and survive in 2020. As a result, more small businesses quickened their digital transformation efforts to quickly and effectively reach customers online.
Through all of the confusion, key marketing trends developed that will impact the way small businesses work in 2021. Here is my foresight for how these trends will play out this year:
Small businesses put their foot on the gas to digitally transform
According to the Small and Medium Business Trend Report from Salesforce Research, one in three small business leaders said that the pandemic has quickened their digitization drives, and more than half of growing small businesses said technology drives their customer intercommunications. Brick and mortar small businesses that once depended on a physical presence changed to the times and pivoted to eCommerce. Also farming businesses that nevermore lodged an online appearance set up integrated payment systems and chat services to actively serve customers.
This year, small businesses will keep their path to digitalization and spend in creating and managing an online demeanor. There will be a greater emphasis on tracking the complete customer lifecycle journey online and using data to inform decision making. This will open up more possibilities for small businesses to compete with larger businesses that work in the same markets.
- Conversational marketing takes center stage
During the pandemic, internet traffic has skyrocketed and more customers are joining in conversations with brands online. While this offers an opening for marketers, it also has produced an unusual request. Now, more than ever since, marketers are experimenting with conversational marketing to produce personalized events and get rich customer insights. With the release of cross-app communication features from Facebook earlier this year, it is growing even easier for brands to reach consumers where they spend most of their time.
In 2021, small businesses and strong brands will invest in conversational marketing to increase brand loyalty and increase sales. Personalization will become key and brands that don’t offer customized communications for consumers will fall quickly. As marketers and small businesses invest in conversational marketing, the choice of instant chat and messenger services as communication channels will elaborate.
- Machine learning and AI become feasible for small businesses
In the past, artificial intelligence and machine learning have been seen as important technologies, yet only recently have AI and ML-driven methods become mainstream practical tools. Marketing automation is now smart enough to adjust messaging based on intent signals, but it relies on artificial intelligence and machine learning to make this happen.
This year, artificial intelligence and machine learning will become more useful for small businesses, allowing them to immediately and completely target and interact with desired audiences online. Progress in AI-based chatbot services will take place and consumers will be able to engage in a rich two-way conversation, which will provide rich data and valuable insights for small businesses in 2021.
- Data privacy demands intensify – Small businesses should plan
As big tech advances to draw more government investigation around how user data is pulled and executed, the need for privacy protection and clarity from customers remains to heighten. According to RSA, nearly half of Americans have had their personal information negotiated by a data breach within the past year and according to a study by Cisco, 84% of consumers want more control over how their personal data is handled.
Digital marketing is no exception to this and as small businesses continue to completely digitize, they will be faced with the same level of investigation on how they handle customer data. While sourcing data is an indispensable element of flourishing marketing, in 2021, small businesses will need to spend in achieving data privacy compliant methods and delivering those transparently to customers. This displays an even greater difficulty as these small companies fight to survive in the current economy.
- The market need increases for an all-in-one digital marketing platforms
The need for an all-in-one digital marketing platforms has grown significantly within the past year as more small businesses are joining with their clients online to make sales. This has led to extensive change beyond multiple industries including food and beverage, fitness, farming, retail, and more. Larger businesses are also turning to these platforms to efficiently handle all of their marketing needs in one place.
As the demand for these platforms remains, more businesses that offer corresponding solutions will become partners with companies that offer these answers to address the market need. Integrations for payment, sales, helpdesk, and contact management services will become even more important and easy to use. Other combinations will also be established to help small businesses streamline their digital marketing companies. As more businesses invest in providing helpful solutions for these platforms, a thriving ecosystem will be established where the services offered for small businesses continue to increase in value.
Heeding forward in 2021
To win in 2021, it will be vital for small businesses to focus on creating seamless customer backgrounds online. The small businesses that excel in this area and harness the power of creativity will enhance more fixed than ever before.