Stick a fork in 2020. It’s not only done – it’s overcooked. As we gear up to ring in the new year, marketers are reflecting on the past year, what worked, and changes to make moving forward. In our last article we discussed marketing trends that we expect to see in 2021. For today’s topic, we will set forth some marketing goals and resolutions that every advertiser should strive towards next year.
Mobile Site Speed
Google’s core algorithm update will go into effect early in 2021 with a focus on website speed as a ranking factor. Google will also index websites based solely on their mobile version. As more users turn to mobile as their device of choice when searching the internet, Google wants to make sure that they continue to provide the most relevant content that provides a great user experience. Fast mobile websites that provide great content will be rewarded with better rankings. Marketers and brands must ensure that the websites they promote provide the most optimal mobile user experience. There are many auditing tools available to help identify site speed and mobile usability issues. Doubling down on mobile, Google will also only index mobile websites. Any outdated websites that are not mobile-friendly will not be included in Google’s index and will therefore become completely obscure. Make sure that your website is fully optimized towards these very important ranking factors in 2021.
SEO or PPC?
Filling the sales funnel is important for every business. In the digital-heavy marketing landscape, it can be tricky to fully understand different tactics, how they work in the sales cycle, and when they are best utilized. Depending on whether you provide B2C or B2B products or services, the sales process may be shorter (B2C) or much longer (B2B). With a shorter sales process, you might find success with more of a focus on PPC ad campaigns and less focus on SEO. You will want to still have great content on your website to help the buyer decide to purchase. In a longer sales cycle, a little more focus on SEO can help at the top of the funnel when buyers are typically in the research phase. They have a need that they must fulfill and are likely wanting to learn more about a solution to their need. At this phase, having content that can answer specific questions that a buyer might ask is very important and can take the form of branded whitepapers, case studies, or blog articles. Quality, robust content on the main product or services pages will also aid in filling the top level of the funnel. Even traditional marketing platforms such as radio and television can be used to help drive direct or branded organic traffic to a website. As buyers get closer to the point of purchase towards the bottom of the funnel, PPC campaigns can be used as a decision-centric marketing tactic designed with calls-to-action that drive potential buyers and convert them into customers. Having a diverse marketing plan will help drive buyer decisions at whatever stage they are at in the sales funnel. Be sure that your marketing plan covers each of these stages in the funnel to ensure success.
A Winning Social Strategy
Social media platform strategy planning should be approached differently in 2021 than is has been over the past few years. In the past, a lot of focus has been based on a social selling strategy where hard sales tactics try to immediately convert the buyer. Ad platforms such as Facebook have also built-in conversion-based tools that focus on driving conversions directly on Facebook so that the buyer doesn’t even have to leave to go to the seller’s website. The social sales tactic slowly saw less conversions in 2020 and moving forward, advertisers will need to shift towards social commerce tactics. Where social selling focuses on the bottom levels of the sales funnel, social commerce focuses on the top level of the funnel and is meant to generate more interest in the brand and build trust with the buyer. The average modern user of social media has grown to distrust ads and advertisers alike, always feeling as though they are being sold something. A softer approach to social advertising will help regain the trust that was lost in 2020 and should focus on top-funnel strategies.
The New Consumer
A new generation of consumers has entered the market and advertisers should pay attention. Generation Z (Gen Z) are a much different type of buyer than the older Millennials (who are now turning 40) and Generation X (who are in their mid-40s and older). What has worked when marketing to Millennials and Generation X will not work with Gen Z. Advertisers will need to adjust their strategies if they want to reach the younger consumers. It is important to note as well that 40% of the consumers in the US fit into the Gen Z category so it is unwise to leave this largely untapped consumer out of your marketing strategy. Marketers and brands should research how Gen Z thinks, how they use the many different technologies available to them, and the best ways they can reach this audience and provide value to their everyday lives. This is a huge opportunity for advertisers that they simply should not ignore.
Share some of your thoughts in the comments section. We would love to hear about your marketing resolutions for 2021. Wishing everyone a great holiday season and a very happy new year!
As a full-service marketing agency, Brand Ranch Media develops and manages diverse marketing strategies that can propel your business into solid year-over-year revenue growth. Our experienced marketing experts bring diverse skillsets and understand all components of successful marketing campaigns. There is always time to adjust your marketing goals and that’s where we come in! Call us at 713-309-6380 or contact us to discuss!