As one of the most challenging years that business markets have seen in a while, 2020 made us not being able to ignore how important digital marketing has been in our day-to-day life.
COVID-19 pandemic accelerated every business’ digital transformation journey by several years, in a matter of weeks and months whether the company has already started the journey or has just started it.
Without warning, companies with no e-commerce capabilities had to architect and deliver e-commerce solutions in record time and were forced to embrace video streaming technology simply to stay operational.
So, what can businesses learn from the accelerated digital revolution we saw in 2020, and what do we need to do to succeed and thrive in 2021? Here’s a primer:
1. Digital Marketing first, and for everyone 2020 has told us that social media is a part of the everyday life, available in every moment, and influences almost all consumer decisions. It has been, for many, the only way to keep in touch with their customers/audience during the lockdowns, but it has also been at the centre of an enormous increase in e-commerce transactions. With the introduction of digital commerce in 2020, it is even more essential that brands and businesses put social first in their digital strategies for 2021. No longer is it okay to just have an Instagram page and post once a week, success is now daily and hourly communication with your customers, which, moreover, must strive to be authentic, timely, and relevant to your audience.
2. Be more up to date to the market Speed to market has never been so important, and with it brings both opportunity and risk for businesses. With the world’s economy and consumer behaviour shifting at such a rapid pace, businesses can no longer afford to take months and months to decide if they need to adopt a new tech platform, or add a new payment gateway provider, or create a Social Media campaign. These decisions must now be taken in hours and executed in days. Digital is now about quick planning, rapid delivery, usability, and experimenting. It is no longer about roadmaps, drawn-out processes, and inflated budgets.
3. Be available everywhere, every time It was known that it is important for businesses to be present and focused to reach consumers efficiently. The year 2020, however, has transformed this idea into an omnipresent focus, but for another reason, because consumers are not only consuming digital content on a wider range of devices than ever before, but they are now connected to an evolving digital ecosystem constantly, regardless of where they are and what time of the day it is. Businesses and brands must be at the heart of this ecosystem and be always available and visible to customers.
4. Understanding Gen Z It is important to understand that 2020 is a year where we are targeting many young consumers who are only digital-first, in the sense that they do not know any other medium other than shopping on a mobile phone, and business must keep this front of mind when creating content and experiences across digital channels. As businesses become rapidly omnipresent and social-first, understanding this new and emerging customer and their needs cannot be ignored. 2020 has been a ride into the future, and the future is here to stay. No doubt there will be challenges still to come, but one thing is certain: this journey has changed the world and businesses forever. This time next year, the way we previously conducted business will be unrecognizable. That is what a revolution does.