5 Marketing Tips for Kicking Off 2021 Right.
Written By Tyler Riddell
Are you trying to finish 2020 right and make Q1 2021 planning feel like less of a moving target? The trends are taking shape, so here are 5 marketing tips to consider for your content plans next year.
1. Be agile and connect experiences
COVID-19 and all of the other things in 2020 have significantly shifted content strategies to digital. Also, it forced a refocus on what is important to audiences. Experience should be high up on the priority list of content goals for 2021. However, creating experiences is difficult. How do you integrate digital – video, social, email marketing, pdfs, phone calling, advertsing (all your audiences preferred channels) into a high-value, memorable experience? Ask them. Then, how do you act on those needs. Start with humanizing the support you can offer and the content and actions need to reflect the delivery and change your metrics to engagement and feeback.
So, explore what experiential programs that will add value, feel good, and humanize your brand. Your marketing lead and its team should begin with people first (e.g., Persona, Brand Positioning, the Buyer Journey) then integrated your marketing campaigns across several marketing channels. Set up your programs for short and mid-range sprints so you can optimize messaging based on results. You may want to pivot, so commit to change.
2. Understand your audience’s current priorities
There’s been a hyper-focus on understanding the target audience for many clients because audiences have reset their priorities. Their priIf you get that right, everything else becomes more manageable, and you filter out the noise of creating content that is, frankly, irrelevant.
The digital transformation has accelerated that investment for our customers. But it needs to be a customer-first transformation and listening, hearing and acting on their needs. Trying to market to customers isn’t the best approach. It’s how you can help solve their priority problems through listening and making sure their voices are part of your content strategy.
Virtual summits bring together different speakers and communities from all over the country to share what they were doing. Some other online virtual ideas for your efforts can include:
- Launching a Slack community to encourage collaboration and connection.
- Biweekly 15-minute chats over coffee
- Lunch & Learns – Video
- Peer-to-Peer learning
These types of experiences are going to be essential as economic barriers pass. They also provide experiential, technographic, and intent data — married to digital campaigns focused on humans stepped in authenticity.
3. Lead with empathy and get emotional
My education in Cultural Anthropology and years as a Product Manager and Product Marketing Manager has taught me that you need to “walk a mile in (our audience’s) shoes,” eliminate our own biases, and leverage every facility to understand their needs.
Customer Needs Assessment:
— Problem needs
— Functional needs
— Emotional needs – Leads to innovation
— Experiential needs
— Competitive differentiation
— Economics for profitability.
The content plan must be in alignment with customer needs and address the buyer’s journey. If you are in a position collecting emotional insight (survey, interviews, social listening), your brand can own it. And I believe it will lead to exciting ideas, concepts, and experiences.
4. Acting swiftly, but with prudence
It’s vital to act on insights quickly, especially at this time, because you never know when something’s going to be irrelevant, even in a couple of weeks. For example, dedicate resources to bring about real-time storytelling. So, after you talk to a customer, how can you turn that story around really quickly?
Think you need to take a calculated risk? Yes, because of the opportunity to market a story virtually maybe gone in sixty days. This is the time to take calculated risks because everyone is a little bit more forgiving right now.
5. Tell Better Stories
Your audiences should need positive and reinforcing stories that represent your unique brand and value. Delivering empathy and understanding your consumer’s source of pains – how they see the world, how they make meaning, and how you are in business to support their people and business. It has to be more than a feature and function. Discuss empathy and humanity in terms of your audiences. But it should start with how you are purposefully creating and ideating on (those ideals) before you put (your content out) into your marketplace.
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