How Has 2020 Affected the Future of Digital Marketing?
2020 has been, by any measure, a challenging year. Many businesses have permanently closed their doors, and many more have faced unprecedented financial hardships. At the same time, some businesses have thrived, marking a dichotomy between the old way of conducting business and – for better or worse – the new.
With that in mind, let’s take a look at some of the trends that are expected to animate digital marketing in 2021, a year that will be characterized not only by the ongoing misery of the COVID-19 pandemic, but also by hope and (with some luck) profound economic resurgence.
Around the world, more than 3.6 billion people used social media in 2020, up from 2.86 billion in 2017. By 2025, that number is expected to surpass 4.4 billion. In some regions of the globe, social networks like Facebook are synonymous with the internet.
It’s impossible to predict what impact this mass adoption will have on the planet’s political, social, and environmental wellbeing. From a digital marketing standpoint, though, rest assured that a tsunami of social commerce is about to make landfall. Platforms like Facebook, Instagram, and TikTok are weaving retail into the fabric of their interfaces, empowering billions of consumers to make purchases with a click.
E-Commerce in General
The shift to online shopping was already well underway by the beginning of 2020. Lockdowns intended to mitigate the spread of COVID-19 accelerated the trend. Today, consumers are more comfortable than ever making purchases online, and many businesses are more comfortable fulfilling them. That doesn’t mean brick-and-mortar retail locations are suddenly a relic of the past, but it does suggest that in-person retail businesses should adopt delivery and curbside pick-up options going forward.
Wider Access to High Tech
Technology that was once considered cutting-edge, such as machine learning and augmented reality, will become more accessible than ever to businesses and digital marketing agencies in 2021, thanks to determined advancements made by advertising behemoths like Facebook and Google. Expect AR to hit the mainstream in the coming 12-24 months, especially on visual social media platforms, and expect automation to play a bigger role in your digital ads strategy in 2021.
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