One thing that 2020 taught us was that Digital Media has transformed the way we do business. Everything and anything is taking place online. The new era of marketing is taking place on the digital platform.
Being present on social media is essential for brands in every part of the customer journey. A recent study shows that 52% of new brand discovery happens on Instagram. Social media also allows businesses to communicate directly with their customers and vice versa, which helps create trust, engagement, and ultimately, brand loyalty.
Let us have a look at what we expect to see in 2021 with consumer engagement marketing strategies.
#Trend No. 1: Instagram Stickers
Instagram stickers are very popular for both brands and consumers. Study shows that in 2020, 60% of businesses use interactive elements like stickers in their Instagram stories. Stickers are a good way to boost engagement and to generate a conversation with the audience – both for photos and videos. A study shows that videos that have stickers on them perform 83% better than those that are not.
#Trend No. 2: Text Focused Post
With the popularity of stories gaining momentum, the grid is still where most of the engagements happen. They remain a great way to visually represent your brand and share your unique message. Engagement should be at the front of the mind when posting on the grid. That means getting creative with text-focused layouts that encourage comments, shares, and saves. To get engage your customers you may ask them to post a question that is related to your brand or product. This way you not only generate more engagement but to also ensure you are providing your audience with information that is useful to them.
#Trend No. 3: Cross-Posting
The idea of cross-posting has always been there since the advent of social media platforms. Content, be it video or a blog, made on one platform can be shared across other platforms for amplification. This trend will continue, and brands should utilize this opportunity to gain organic followers and also get their content a social media mileage.
#Trend No. 4: Game-based Content
The social distancing and the lockdown made people get online and consume content more than ever before. This made ways for brands to engage their audience creatively. One trending format is engaging the audience with game-based content. Whether it is quizzes, bingo, or ‘choose your own adventure’ style posts, these are a fun way to encourage interaction on your posts.
#Trend No. 5: Live Streaming
The lockdown has got people more connected digitally, where everyone is getting live streaming from their daily chores to exercise, dog tricks to make-up classes, and so on. Brands can gain a lot from live streaming, either directly from their factory or get it endorsed by an influencer. Even though live streaming has been there for quite some time, the recruiting platform LinkedIn released a feature ‘LinkedIn Live’ for live streaming just last year and say that their broadcast generates 23 times more comments and 6 times more reactions per post than native video.
#Trend No. 6: AR-based Filters
Over 500 million people are using Instagram Stories every day. One of the ways where companies can engage their audiences is by creating branded augmented reality (AR) filters, and upload them not only to their profile, but also the broader filter library, which would allow billions of users to use their filter on their content, with the brand’s name on it. AR-based filters allow the user to layer interactive designs and other visual elements when taking a photo or video in stories mode.
#Trend No. 7: Direct Conversations
Social media has opened the door that allows consumers to directly interact with brands. With the focus on authenticity and connection, consumers are craving for personal interaction with brands. One way this is manifesting on social media is through the growing popularity of direct conversations. We’ve seen this not only through the introduction of the ‘DM’ me sticker on Instagram, but also the increasing popularity of brands using messaging tools like Telegram and Discord to communicate with their customers. This trend allows brands to cut through the noise of social media and communicate with their customers in a way that feels more personal.
#Trend No. 8: Infographics
The constant demand for bite-sized information and visual content has made way for infographic marketing, which is very popular as a format for digital content marketing. 65% of B2B marketers have used infographics for content marketing, which makes it one of the top five most used types of content. Infographics have been known to be an effective way to create awareness by educating and guiding the audience about a brand or product.
#Trend No. 9: Trending Topics
When Oreo posted ‘You can still dunk in the dark’ tweet during the massive power outage of the 2013 Super Bowl inside of the Mercedes-Benz Superdome in New Orleans, the tweet went viral, amassing thousands of likes and retweets. It remained to be the most talked-about viral post from a trending topic even to date. Riding on a trending topic is very popular with brands that increase their reach and connect with their consumers. It not only increases your chances of appearing in feeds, but people will be more likely to comment on and share your posts as well.
#Trend No 10: Ask a Question
One of the ways to start a conversation is by asking a question. Though basic, yet it is one of the most popular trends where brands engage with their audiences. Questions that you want to ask your audience should be creatively placed and should be connected with your industry to gain the attention and get the audience to converse. Asking with a question is not recommended to use it on every post, but it is still one of the most powerful strategies.
While most of these consumer engagement trends are not new, yet they are noteworthy as they are unlikely to go anywhere anytime soon. More than just being fads, they will continue and inspire innovation and creative content in digital marketing, in this coming year and beyond.
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