It’s not a revelation, and is perhaps an understatment, to say that 2020 has been a challenging year for many businesses. With that being said, the digital advertising industry has experienced continued growth as potential customers spend more time online than ever before due to pandemic restrictions and work-from-home situations.
Planning for a digital marketing strategy in 2021 might look different than in past years, but there’s valuable data available that shows where the industry is currently, and where it’s headed in the future.
In this article, I’ll explain the most important stats and other information you need to know when building your strategy moving forward.
1. Video Continues to Grow (54%)
It seems that the demand for video has not yet platued, with roughly 54% of people reporting that they want to see more video content from advertisers. If you haven’t yet incoporporated video into your strategy, you risk falling behind in the future – but it’s never too late to get on board!
2. Start With Search (93%)
Investing is SEO (search-engine-optimization) can be frustrating at times. For one, it takes several months to see any tangible results, and it requires constant maintenance to stay relevant. However, the verdict is in, and you can’t afford to neglect this part of your strategy.
The latest research shows that 93% of all online interactions begin with a search engine. The good news? Based on a recent poll, 72% of online marketers stated that high-quality content was the most effective (and cost efficient) SEO strategy.
3. Social Purchases Grow (14%)
It wasn’t that long ago when social media was full of irrelevant ads for poorly made products. Nowadays, your news feed is full of ads for things that you look at and say, “Yeah, I’d probably wear/use that.” It’s not just you – others are thinking the same thing, too.
Perhaps due to increased screen time as a result of the pandemic, digital ads have led to significantly more purchases than any other year previously. In fact, 14% of shoppers report regularly making purchases through social media.
4. Rethinking Email Marketing (300%)
Email content marketing can feel a bit dated in terms of the products you have available for your digital marketing strategy. While the inbox might not feel modern, it’s still an extremely effective way to reach your audience in a way that’s undeniably more personal than a social media ad.
The key to maintaining success with email marketing is bringing your content up-to-date. According to one study that focused on email engagement rates, adding video content to an email marketing campaign inreased click rates by an astounding 300%!
5. Let’s Talk YouTube (32%)
From cat videos or learning a new instrument, to discovering and then later debunking a range of conspiracy theories, YouTube is a platform that has something for everyone. YouTube is uniquely valuable because its user base spans the demographic range. That means advertisers of all industries can reach their intended audience right why they’re already spending their time.
The latest reports revealed that 32%, or nearly one-third, of consumers engage with brand videos on YouTube. Whether you’re looking at branded content (ads), or simply videos posted to your company channel, viewers are taking the time to watch.
If you haven’t already invested in YouTube’s vast marketing capabilities, get on it in 2021 and watch brand awareness (and hopefully sales) increase significantly.
6. Podcasts (90 million)
“Have you heard [X’s] podcast?”
This phrase has undoubtedly been uttered more times during 2020 than in any year before. The data shows that 90 million Americans listen to at least one podcast per month.
As consumers begin to dive ever-deeper into the world of fascinating conversations relating to any topic imaginable, marketers are putting an increased emphasis on including audio ads into 2021 ad budgets. Based on the results of this past year, this seems like a prudent invesment.
Podcast advertising is attractive for several reasons, but cost and targeting come in at #1 and #2. In terms of cost, the general consensus is that advertising on podcasts only costs $0.01 per active user per hour. Additionally, it’s easy for brands to hone in on the exact audience they’re looking for based on the content of certain shows.
7. Google Still Performs ($2)
No advertising platform can outright guarantee a return on your investment, but Google is about as close as it gets.
Recent studies have shown that on average, Google advertisers earn approximately $2 in revenue for every $1 spent advertising on the search engine’s network. Now, just because it’s the average doesn’t mean every experiences the same performance, but with a sample size as big as Google’s it’s hard to dispute the reliablility of the data.
Digital marketing is often full of surprises, both good and bad. If you’re looking for stability, Google is a safe bet.
8. Blogging Titles and Backlinks Are Crucial (6%)
When writing a 1,000-word (or more) blog, it feels like the content of the article, not the headline, should be the main driver of clicks. Unfortunately, that’s not the case. The good news is that it’s not hard to make the necessary adjustments.
Based on data from Backlink0, a company that focuses on blogging insights, articles that have “very long headlines” outperformed those with short titles by more than 75% in terms of overall clicks to read the story.
Standing out in a sea of tens of millions of blogs might feel impossible, but it’s actually easier than you think. It’s no secret that backlinks, meaning hyperlinking text in your own post to another source, is a major factor in Google’s SEO algorithm. In fact, some industry experts say that backlinks are the number one way to find yourself in the good graces of Google’s machine learning system. That’s why it’s so surprising to learn that only 6% of blogs include backlinks. That means if you take a few minutes to include these links when writing your content, you’re already miles ahead than most of the competition.
Blogging continues to be the single-most important factor in driving organic traffic to your website. Consistently blogging in a way that is SEO-friendly is a great way to set yourself up for success.
What a year 2020 has been. We’ve lived the word “pivot,” adjusted campaigns on the fly, and had to go the extra mile to stand out in an increasingly crowded digital marketplace.
If your businesses needs assistance in putting together an effective digital marketing strategy for 2021, get in touch today and we’ll work together to find solutions that fit your budget as well as your business goals.