2020 was a year that saw a need for many sectors to pivot and change their strategies, and this was no different for marketing and digital marketing. Despite changes and restrictions in spending being forced upon consumers from lockdowns, brands continued to market themselves in different and more innovative ways. The flexibility of marketing comes from a thorough understanding of your audience and the cultural mindset at the time. Last year, marketers had to understand how to tow the delicate line of sympathetic and understanding advertising without pandering to an audience going through a collective struggle of isolation, health anxiety, and lifestyle changes.

After almost a year, we can now look back on how the marketing scene has changed and what we should look out for during 2021 and beyond.

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Hybrid Events

After the global culling of planned public events in 2020, companies who knew to pivot to a virtual environment were those who stood the greatest chance of survival. Existing technologies like Zoom and MS Teams have been a lifeline for many who couldn’t otherwise do business, and whilst office workers and separated family households are deep in video call fatigue, there’s been no ignoring what virtual conferencing can do.

Convenience is the biggest factor in embracing virtual. It has allowed business to reach a global audience in different places at different times and at a much smaller cost. Some estimates put savings of virtual events at about 75%, with factors like accommodation, food, and transportation not having to be taken into account. On top of this, virtual events also allow for those with financial and logistical challenges to join in on events that they may not have otherwise been able to reach or afford.


The digital nature of these events, along with the sophisticated platforms that they’re hosted on such as All in the Loop and Conference+, allow business to track the performance and engagement of their events through online dashboards and analytics. This sort of thing is not possible at physical events (except maybe with a little feedback card at the door), so companies now know that if they want to host something that they require more intricate engagement details on, that online hosting is the way to go.

In recent months, with the world opening back up and looking to the future, talk of ‘hybrid events’ that combine aspects of physical and digital meeting is becoming more and more common. We may all be looking forward to going back to physical events but now that marketers know the value of the interactivity of virtual events, you’d be hard pressed to find a physical event in 2021 that doesn’t include some kind of interactive digital element.

Community Marketing

A large part of consumer spending is rooted in finding identity with a brand and its community of customers. According to a report by Salesforce, 84% of customers say being treated like a person as opposed to just another customer or number is important for winning business.

This year more than ever, a renewed sense of community would be the first step in reclaiming some sense of normality for many consumers, and so it’s up to marketers in 2021 to understand what their target market is feeling, what it is they want to spend their money on, and what they’re missing in their lives. Aligning yourself with the emotional needs of your target market is a surefire way to gain repeat custom from them, as they will subconsciously look to your brand as a source of relief and solace.

Community marketing can also provide marketers a good understanding of their customer base so that a more authentic approach can be used when handling things like complaints, feedback and more; all so that your brand can figure out the best experience for your target market.

Nurturing this kind of environment for your customers inspires further purchases and repurchases, consistent customer relationships, and reduces costs related to customer acquisition.

Customer acquisition is a tricky thing to figure out for digital marketers especially. Loyalty programs are an already common way of encouraging repeat custom, but some studies have shown that over half of consumers who participate in loyalty programs consider themselves ‘loyal’ to the brand.

Outside of what companies can do in creating and nurturing customer loyalty, another large part of community marketing comes from word of mouth growth. Brands with strong communities around them tend to be filled with those who advocate them to their social networks, creating further growth and revenue.

Video Marketing

Video is a relatively new aspect of digital marketing that only came about with the rise of portable tech (aka smartphones & tablets) and social media about ten years ago. The increasingly more sophisticated recording technology and software from mobile phones combined with the video-centric nature of social media and entertainment apps like Facebook, Snapchat, TikTok, and YouTube meant that the demand and expectation of video content from its (typically) younger generation userbase was sky-high.

Read more: Marketing in the Weird World of TikTok & Video Sharing

The reality of consumer behaviour in 2021 is that everything is just more fast-paced and people’s attention spans are being contested for at all times. So, if you want to market your brand most effectively, know that people would rather watch a few minutes of video than sift through 15 minutes of text that gets the same message across.

Our founder, Michaela Wain, knows the power that video has on social media and has been sharing short marketing tips on the Framework Marketing socials from the beginning

Marketers and consumers aren’t the only ones who understand the importance of video – even Google’s almighty algorithm that controls 95% of the internet’s search results accounts video into its SEO ranking when crawling through websites.

Read more: What is SEO?

Similarly, video is a great way to establish a personal side to your brand and allow potential customers to see a bit more of who you are as a company, reinforcing trust and increasing the likelihood of a sale later down the line. The more videos you can provide customers to educate or inform, the more you’re helping them with their buyer’s journey.

There are just a few easy ways in which you can instantly improve your future marketing strategy. If you’re looking for help in digital marketing – including SEO, web design, and content marketing – then let us know here to see how Framework Marketing can help out.

You can also read our latest blog post here: Chatbots: The Virtual Employee of the Future

Photo by Markus Winkler on Unsplash