The digital landscape in Singapore is changing at an astounding rate. With the COVID-19 pandemic, the trend is set to change even faster. Coupled with the advancement in technology, the next round of revolution in the marketing industry has officially kick-started. Digital marketing has now become the talk of the town (especially among businesses) thanks to its immense power to turn almost any business from mediocrity to excellence. In this post, we explore how Singapore’s digital marketing landscape will look in 2021 with a great focus on the main target audience — Millennials and Gen Z.
1. Chatbots used on more websites
After the new norm was introduced, many online shopping and e-commerce platforms emerged. The use of chatbots became necessary on websites to converse and interact with customers. In fact, chatbots not only support live chat functions but also have the intelligence to assist customers in an automated way 24/7.
An intelligent chatbot that is well trained can assist customers around the clock and increase conversions and customer satisfaction. From the marketing perspective, chatbots are not only able to solve customer enquiries instantly but they also act to collect customer information and data. With more data collected, marketers can better understand customer behavior and become better product/service strategists and marketing strategists.
Chatbots tools are able to support live chat functions and broadcast messages. They are well-trained with customer behavior to respond to the enquiry. Most often than not, failures in implementing a chatbot is due to the fact that chatbots are not well trained to respond to customer enquiries like a human.
2. Implementation of AR/VR
Augmented Reality (AR) & Virtual Reality (VR) are the latest improved and trending technologies for business strategists. AR & VR help businesses create an immersive virtual experience for customers starting from the product development stage to storytelling, and to creating content that is engaging and real life-like.
In 2016, Alibaba introduced Buy+ virtual reality (VR) experience in Tmall and Taobao (source: BBC news). Customers can either use a VR headset or buy a cardboard frame (similar to Google Cardboard) to slot their smartphone in and explore virtual replicas of stores such as Macy’s and Costco. Customers can “walk” around the shop, “pick up” items to examine them virtually and make instant purchases by staring at floating buttons.
Today, it has become something rather general to implement. Virtual reality allows us to immerse ourselves in an environment that completely replaces our reality using a dedicated headset.
3. Hyper-Targeted Advertising
Having good knowledge of your target audience is the first step in developing tailor-made ads.
This year, what marketers should do is rethinking their marketing strategy and offer content and messages that are personalised to the audience. By targeting a more specific group of audience, businesses can reach those who are highly interested in their products or services.
What is Hyper-Targeted Advertising?
Hyper-targeted advertising is a marketing strategy that focuses on a very specific group of people to deliver advertising messages. It means that those who are not qualified in the same category will not be able to see the ads.
Hyper-targeted ads will only be shown to people based on what online AI/machine learning (like data gathered by Facebook) knows about them. It helps marketers narrow down their target audience to those with the highest propensity to buy thus achieving cost-efficiency in digital ads.
Segmenting, Targeting and Position (STP) are necessary for marketers to reach the right customer at the right time with the right content approach. In 2021, marketers need to focus on the hyper-targeted strategy to deliver the messages in more accurate, relevant and useful ways (whether it’s on ads, websites etc) based on the data collected.
4. Video Advertising: Deliver better quality video content
With the explosion of TikTok that democratized short videos, this content became a cornerstone of the brand content marketing strategy.
In 2021, digital business marketing strategists are looking to create content that can be consumed as quickly as possible. Short videos will be a good approach to grab viewers’ attention while getting the messages across without taking much of their time. Other social media platforms such as Facebook, Instagram and even YouTube understand this trend and have also introduced a similar feature in their own platform called Stories.
While Instagram is the fast mover to catch up with this trend by relying heavily on this engaging format that uses it as a gateway to e-commerce. Many e-commerce retailers focus more on introducing their products through Insta Stories. Indeed, Instagram allows influencers to add clickable links to link to their Insta Stories or e-commerce site so that viewers can make a purchase online.
5. Influencer Marketing in Ecommerce Business
Influencer marketing continued to take up space throughout 2020 and even more this year. Influencers are increasingly popular in recent years, especially on social networks, which have become the new channel of communications.
This method has become the most effective way to correctly target a specific audience. Having powerful influencers to promote your business will improve your brand visibility in the digital world and create noise in the market. This is because they have their own group of followers and thus are able to deliver messages in a more convincing way to reach the end-users.
Here is an example of Alibaba partnering with SGAG to combine content and commerce for their audiences. SGAS, an influencer company, provides a sustained, integrated digital approach that leverages social content, influencer marketing, live-stream commerce sessions, and more to achieve an effective and results-driven marketing outreach. This is a classic example of how SGAG, a digital marketing strategist/influencer management company leverages the power of influencer marketing to achieve business goals.
6. Content Marketing: Trending Video Content in 2021
What is Content Marketing to you?
Website Blog, Video Contents…
Content Marketing is a strategic marketing approach that focuses on creating and distributing valuable, relevant, and consistent content to attract and retain a clearly-defined audience — and, ultimately, to drive profitable customer action.
In recent years, the venue of content marketing has expanded from websites and blogs to social media, and today on video sharing platforms.
No doubt, these days people tend to spend more time on social media to watch, read and listen to information. Businesses should focus more on content marketing this year, for example, by coming out with better blog articles for users to study, and creating humorous and interesting videos to educate the community.
Content marketing is also the reason why influencers have become so popular, who share and influence the community with engaging and educational content.
7. Next Generation SEO
Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) will still be a key focus on digital marketing (in an organic way) to deliver non paid traffic even in 2021 today.
Build and improve UX
User experience is the highlight of any purchased product or hired service. A recent study by Small Biz Genius found that 88% of online shoppers will not return to a website after having a bad user experience. In fact, 70% of online businesses fail due to a bad user experience. This explains why UX testing is crucial.
Providing an attractive and efficient UI (User interface) is also important. Things that contribute to offering the best user experience include: Incredibly fast loading speed, encouraging users to explore, mobile user-friendly, etc.
Implement structured data
Structure data allows your content to be better understood by search engines. Google offers a Structured Data Testing Tool to familiarize businesses with the concept and allow them to start applying structured data for their website and landing pages.
It helps to deliver rich results from your website or landing page to appear on SERPs. A rich result gets more limelight and hence more attention from users to increase the click-thru rate to your website.
Having rich results increases the user’s screen time leaving a lasting impact on them and building authority in the eyes of niche market audiences.
8. Automated Marketing
Automated marketing or marketing automation is a technology that manages the marketing process and multifunctional campaigns, across multiple channels, automatically.
The implementation of an automated marketing strategy in business helps to better target customers with automated messages across email, web social and text. Messages will be sent out automatically with the workflow (set of instructions). Workflows may be defined by templates, custom-built from scratch, or modified mid-campaign to achieve better results.
Marketing automation helps with lead generation, nurturing and scoring and measuring overall ROI on campaigns. It improves the time and cost efficiency to leverage the business potential.
Some of the common email marketing automation tools we can see on the market are MailChimp, SendGrid, Zoho Campaigns and more. In fact, Exabytes has also introduced EBuzzz Marketing (promotional marketing automation goal) and Transactional Email Marketing.
Read more: Transactional Email vs Marketing Email
Email Marketing Automation, SMS Marketing Automation, AI Live Chat Software and Sales Funnel Software also implement automation functions with their own purposes.
Progress is impossible without change, and businesses that are slow to change cannot change anything. The disruption caused by change often brings both tragedy and opportunity. In this critical era, companies that are creative and innovative to keep up with the trends can greatly tap into the benefits the market has to offer. Just like what Charles Darwin said, “It is not the strongest of the species that survives, nor the most intelligent that survives. It is the one that is the most adaptable to change.”