Virtual Events Are Here To Stay
That all important virtual ‘pivot’ that took place in 2020 appears to be going nowhere in 2021! Events that became virtual in nature out of sheer necessity will continue to exist in this sphere due to the very nature of how accessible these events have now become and the ability to attract a new audience – a wider one, in many cases.
Jim Kruger, Chief Marketing Officer at Veeam (Cloud Data Management), recently told Forbes.com:
“Virtual events started out of necessity, but are here to stay because of ROI and accessibility.”
Reduction in Social Media Channels
Did you spend last year scrambling to push content out across multiple social media channels? Relax, take a deep breath! Now is the time to de-clutter and refine which platform is working best for your brand! Different platforms naturally attract different audiences and call for different tones and approaches. Not all of them will be valuable for your brand. For example – should your company be posting on TikTok or LinkedIn?
Lisa Apolinski, president of 3 Dog Write Inc, recently told Forbes.com:
“Many companies are starting to reduce the number of social media channels they are using to share and influence.”
Measuring Results Never Goes Out of Style!
How do you know if your digital marketing strategy works? Are you monitoring your analytics? When it comes to digital, especially today, there is no excuse not to know what worked and what fell flat. We’re experts in measuring and tracking results and ROI, and we bring that to bear on all our campaigns for clients.
According to a recent blog post on vuelo6.com:
“Analytics is one of the great advantages digital marketing has over traditional marketing.”
LinkedIn Product Pages
In late December, LinkedIn announced a further enhancement to pages on LinkedIn, called LinkedIn Product Pages. These product pages will connect your products to the world’s largest professional community. Is this a step towards the e-commerce fever that’s seized Facebook, Instagram and other social media channels in the last few years? Will this feature be used primarily by B2B companies, as seems to be the intention, or will B2C step in as well? Watch this space!
According to Dacheng Zhao, Principal Product Manager for LinkedIn Pages:
“We see Products as the next horizon for Pages.”
While this of course is not a trend, we feel it’s important to acknowledge how profoundly this virus continues to affect global strategy and plans for 2021, not to mention our personal and professional lives to date. Some brands were able to leverage the cultural and work shifts we saw take place, and we hope to see and help more businesses thrive in this temporary environment in the coming months.
Sig Ueland detailed recently on a blog post for practiclecoomerce.com how Zoom ran a virtual background contest:
“The simple, fun giveaway helped Zoom promote the platform’s core tenets.”
Less is More
A major update has been issued this week from Facebook, in a move that will certainly shape business’ 2021 experience with the platform. The update focuses on dramatic changes to Facebook pages, including the removal of page ‘likes’ in favor of focusing on ‘followers’ instead, a redesigned layout, a refreshed news feed specifically for business pages to interact with fans, updated controls on page admin access, insights you can action, text based Q&As and features to prevent spam and fake accounts. It’s a lot to change, and we can’t see how businesses adapt to the shift!
According to Asad Awan, Head of Public Connections and Monetization at Facebook, these changes will:
“make it simpler for public figures and creators to build community and achieve their business objectives.”
Influencers and Bloggers who have stood the test of time over the past several years have evolved into content creators. Audiences relate to brand relationships that are authentic. Instagram has been looking at rolling out a series of updates to branded content on Instagram, in particular on Reels and Live. Will this be a wise move on Instagram’s part, or will everyday users see it as contributing to the continued commercialization of the platform?
According to the Instagram Business Team in San Francisco, CA:
“Instagram is now launching a new workflow where advertisers can create Branded Content ads without the need for creators to post organically on Instagram first.”
Pretty As A Picture
We are going to see a more relaxed approach to the static imagery that is used across Facebook and Instagram advertising. The pressure is off to create ‘photoshoot’ material, but rather more emphasis is being placed on what looks real. Some of this is about an increased focus on authenticity, and some of it is about adapting to the available resources in the pandemic.
Tara Zirker, reporter, recently told socialmediaexaminer.com:
“Focus on relaxing your ad imagery just a smidge and see what kind of impact that has.”
Thank You, Next!
If your business, brand or an employee has recently been featured on Instagram, don’t forget to share but also to respond with a simple thank you to the customer who engaged. We are always being asked about how to grow organically, and while it’s difficult as organic reach lies around 1%, hard graft and a thank you has never gone out of style!
Lisa D. Jenkins, reporter, recently told socialmediaexaminer.com:
“When people visit your business and post about it on Instagram, they may tag your location rather than your account’s username. Be sure to search your location tag and open every conversation to provide a personalised reply to thank people for their purchase or for visiting your business.”
TikTok – the countdown to what is next!
You may have just grappled with TikTok, but have you been introduced to Clubhouse yet? If so, send an invite our way!
According to Tim Marcin, journalist on mashable.com:
“Basically, you can jump in and out of different chats, on different subjects, in something akin to a live, free-flowing podcast. You can simply listen or choose to throw in your thoughts. Imagine a cocktail party or, clubhouse.”
If friendly chaos suits your brand, Clubhouse may be the app for you!
Need help with your digital strategy or have a specific topic you want us to cover?
If there’s anything in particular you want us to cover in our future Sparks Roundups, or if you need help planning and implementing your digital marketing campaigns, just pop email@example.com an email and we will be happy to get back to you.