For most people, the experience of a thing is more important than the thing itself, and it is this experience that shapes their overall perception of it. The perception and experience they have at every point of their customer journey will define your brand.
Humans have an intrinsic need to make connections with one another. We like to hang with our tribes. When your brand feels like ‘a human’, your audience will want to ‘hang with’ you.
Brand experience is the future of marketing. A great brand experience creates a connection by speaking to a target audience’s higher needs, bridging the gap between the brand and the people.
Let’s get into some specifics on what you can do to take this 2021 branding trend to the next level.
Be authentic and take a stand
More than ever, consumers now want brands to take a stance on social issues through their marketing, messaging, and actions. The pandemic has shown up inauthentic efforts from brands, celebrities, and politicians. This is why authenticity will be a defining brand strategy trend of 2021.
You can create a great brand experience by understanding what drives your target audience on a personal level and aligning your brand with their values.
Let’s break it down:
- Express clearly where you stand on issues that are aligned with your brand propositions.
- Tap into the psychological drivers of your target audience just like Nike did with the #BelieveInMore campaign.
- Identify subtle societal concerns that make your audience choose a brand over another and tap into it.
When you align your brand with your audience’s social values, you build an emotional connection that they crave for, as more and more consumers want their brands to be human.
Humanize your brand and build that emotional connection your audience is craving for.
Don’t make it about you, make it about THEM
Sure, it’s your platform, social media, website, and content, but it’s not about you. Your goal should always be to look for ways to connect and empathize with those you seek to engage. Your customer is the hero, not you.
Tell a story where your brand plays a supporting role to your customer on their journey to find the best solution for their needs. More than ever, adopting this 2021 digital marketing strategy approach builds trust and wins more customers.
Adapt to the Psychology of Your Customer
The pandemic has changed consumer behavior drastically, and many of these changes will stay with us. Convenience was a major driver of consumer decisions about where to shop. Hence, businesses that got most of their patronage were those with multiple purchases and delivery options, good brand visibility, and nimble communications.
We saw consumers spend more on essentials and cut back expenses on non-essentials. Your target audience has tried out different shopping behaviors they will incorporate going forward.
The pandemic isn’t over yet but COVID fatigue is setting in. Consumers are still observing social distancing and are trying to move on with their life. The news of vaccines has also renewed hope. So, it is time for brands whose engagements have been largely dependent on the pandemic to start striking a balance with the ‘new normal’. Brands should take note and introduce new content to stay relevant and engaged.
All these shifts in consumer psychology and buying motivations are defining current digital marketing trends. To stay ahead of the game, you need to reassess your customer profiles and adapt your offerings and messaging to match their new way of defining value.
Connect Emotionally, Not Just Rationally
We are more driven by emotions than most of us would like to admit, and our purchase decisions are not immune from this. It’s not enough that we now need a product; we also need to feel the product. It’s more beneficial to leave your audience feeling good about your product than overwhelm them with multiple messages or calls to action. Set a single goal for each communication.
Remember that your messaging is competing for attention alongside thousands of marketing campaigns. The average person is exposed to over 5000 brand messages every day, and they cannot process the barrage of information. To cut the queue and burn your way into the consciousness of customers, you must leverage emotion. 95% of our cognitive processes are in the emotional brain.
Emotions are key to our trust and decision-making. Investing in emotional connections isn’t just the latest branding trend. It’s always been the best path for building brand influence.
Embrace Digital Transformation
Necessity is the mother of invention. If there was ever any doubt about the truth of this statement, this year blew that idea apart. The pandemic sped up the move of many organizations and businesses online. Businesses invested in their Digital Marketing channels more than ever and were forced to quickly adapt or risk fading out of existence for good.
These current digital marketing trends are a signal to you that your customers are now online more than ever. Embracing digital tools to create a great brand experience will pay large dividends into the future for businesses who invest today. Partnering with an experienced brand strategy agency can help get you up to speed quickly.
Be authentic, be courageous and take a stand.
Playing it safe is the surest path to irrelevance. Be passionate, be proud and be bold to stand out and earn attention.
Let us know how you’d like to see your brand improved in the new year and we’ll build you the best strategy for your 2021 digital marketing success!