In this practical article, we therefore propose to offer you an overview of the trends to keep an eye on not only because they relate to digital marketing activities to be implemented in the short and medium term , but also because they will almost certainly represent the basis on which trends will also develop. of the year to come .
The ability to interpret and even predict the trend of the sector has in fact been undoubtedly altered by the shock caused by the COVID-19 pandemic which, starting from 2020, has forced marketers and companies to run for cover. However, the next few months will serve to evaluate how it is appropriate to proceed to “adjust” one’s strategies by adapting them to the actual needs of the market .
So let’s see what it will be appropriate to keep in mind for our present and future social media marketing projects .
More attention to communication and information, less to sales
The first trend for 2021 regarding social media is related to a marked “shift” in their way of use . From the current year and probably also from the first months of the next, companies are expected to exploit these platforms mainly to communicate, converse and inform their customers and prospects , even before trying to sell something at all costs .
The pandemic has, in fact, abruptly changed the relationship between brands and consumers : the latter now pay much more attention to the quality of service and the ability to listen to the brand , and much less to the commercial proposal as an end in itself . Doing well in this sense today will allow for greater conversion and loyalty tomorrow
Space for marketing nostalgia
This trend is already taking hold , and again the reason is emotional and linked to the profound social changes that the Coronavirus epidemic has brought with it: in a world where going out, traveling and having social relationships has become extremely difficult, digital goes to replace the face-to-face meeting and also helps to dream and remember “the good old days”.
Brands are therefore advised to focus heavily on a communication that evokes strong emotional reactions , that fosters positive nostalgia and hope , and that is deeply sentimental . Because? Because in times of uncertainty we all need to connect to something that we consider comforting, familiar and safe , and the past – memories – have just that purpose .
A curiosity: nostalgia marketing has already been used successfully in the past. Not surprisingly, during the great American depression of the 1920s and, in more global terms, during the great international recession of the early 2000s
It is now known that consumers are increasingly socially-conscious , and this is a detail that brands can no longer ignore .
The collective social conscience is generating significant impacts on politics , on the reputation of brands and on society as a whole , and this means that topics such as mental health, education, finance, inclusivity, alternative eating styles, eco -sustainability are now discussed daily on social media.
New consumers, millennials , consider these topics to be crucial : any company that is even tangentially involved in them will therefore have to act accordingly, and study targeted marketing strategies that also take into account these important aspects of the new company .
Beware of fake news
The paradox created by social media is that, over time, perfect platforms have been found for spreading disinformation and fake news . The very high conversational potential and a substantial lack of control by a team of moderators made up of real people has made the problem prevailing and, very often, even irrepressible .
It is (also) up to companies to contribute to solving the problem , through communication and marketing based on truth, transparency, scientific evidence and absolute precision .
Ever heard of memetic media?
The term “ memetic media ” refers to the famous “ memes ”, ie those contents of a generally humorous nature that are disseminated on the net through the creative reworking of scenes taken from films, TV programs or music videos , becoming viral .
Statistics tell us that 55% of users between the ages of 13 and 35 use memes on a weekly basis , and that those percentages have risen by 26% in the past 13 months . The trend is therefore not destined to decrease, quite the contrary!
Memes can impact users on opinions, decisions and purchasing habits , and should therefore be considered as part of an effective social media marketing strategy . Connecting your target audience through viral memes can help the brand, as long as the company is always fully aware of all the meanings that meme implies . So be careful!
Other trends to keep an eye on
What we have illustrated to you are, in our opinion, the five fundamental trends for social media of 2021 and which should therefore not transcend the digital marketing strategies of organizations.
However, they are not the only ones . We therefore conclude our article with a quick overview of the other trends to keep an eye on:
- Focus on the 4Cs after the Coronavirus experience : Community, Cleanliness, Contactless and Compassion. What does it mean, in short? That the majority of consumers (to be precise, 78% according to Social Media Today ) expect brands to offer not products, but real solutions that help make daily life easier and safer, through correct communication, contactless products and services, health / safety and compassion understood as the ability to understand the real needs of users.
- An increasingly gaming social network : compared to last year, 32% more users over the age of 13 describe themselves on social platforms with the term “gamer”. It is clear that online games are being a great form of distraction at this particular time, and brands should take advantage of this trend by focusing on solutions and messages that engage this particular audience.
- Co-production between brands and users : it is also called remixing, and consists in reworking or even just relaunching digital products of one’s community to involve it even more, retain it and convince it. Remixing, however, also means providing your target audience with templates on which to base their content, be it textual, photographic or video, so as to create increasingly organic connections between brand and customer.
- Old school marketing arrives on social media : radio, live TV, real-time footage allow us to maintain contact with the “real” world and with the human component that is outside our homes. Old school marketing, i.e. content that sees people as protagonists and not machines, has made a comeback especially in the last year and has landed on social media, which are now seeing a surge in the popularity of tools such as podcasts. The production of these contents is therefore favored to create engagement and loyalty.
What trends will your company focus on in the coming months? Which of the trends we have listed are you able to integrate into your social media marketing strategy ?