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2020: A year like no other.

Against the backdrop of COVID-19, strict lockdowns, and severe restrictions on international travel, businesses have had to innovate and change. Out of necessity, the rate at which businesses have transitioned towards embracing digital technology has been faster than anyone ever predicted.

A large part of the digital transition has been businesses developing their marketing campaigns to attract new clients from their online presence. At Straight Up Digital we have seen many local Gold Coast companies invest in improving their digital marketing this year.

This article will examine what has changed in digital marketing in 2020, such as:

  1. Customers are more familiar with using video calls.
  2. Lower organic reach on Facebook and Instagram.
  3. Instagram shifting towards business and in-app sales.  
  4. Stories unrolled on LinkedIn and Twitter.
  5. Increase in the value of video!

Customers are more familiar with using video calls

One of the biggest changes for everyone in 2020 has been the increased use of video calls for communication. Both in people’s personal lives and in business, video calls have been relied on more and more in the absence of face-to-face contact. The world has truly become more connected.

“ 87% more people choose to use video conferencing today than the past 2 years. ”

Slideshare

This presents opportunities for businesses to reach new customers that may previously have been restricted by location. As people get more familiar with using video call software such as ZOOM, Teams, Google Hangouts and Facetime, consumers are more comfortable doing businesses with people from outside of their immediate location. This presents a huge opportunity for businesses to attract new customers, both for B2B and B2C companies.

To maximise this unique opportunity for new customers, business should be looking to fine tune their digital marketing and website to appeal to customers from outside their local area. This can include changes to the content on your website, targeting new locations on social media with paid campaigns and setting up automated appointment booking on their websites by integrating software such as ZOOM with an appointment setting calendar such as Calendly.

If you aren’t offering your customers the ability to communicate with you via video calls, you could be missing out on a big opportunity!

Lower organic reach on Facebook and Instagram.

This is a trend that has been going for several years now and has continued again this year. Organic reach on Facebook is at an all-time low for Facebook pages.

“ Organic posts reach just 5.5% of Page followers, a drop of 2.2% in the last year. ”

Hootsuite

As organic reach on Facebook and Instagram has decreased, marketers have shifted towards running more ads on these platforms. This increase in demand for ad space has created an increase in the price of Facebook and Instagram Ads. It is forecast that Facebook and Instagram organic reach will remain low and the price of Facebook Ads will continue to increase as more businesses seek to gain qualified leads.

This presents several different digital marketing strategy opportunities:

1. Set up a Facebook Ad campaign. When set up correctly, Facebook Ads can be a cost-effective way to generate qualified leads. A well set up Facebook Ad Campaign needs good ad creative and copy, an effective landing page, strong calls to action, integration with a CRM system (so that you can follow up with the leads) and regular and effective monitoring and reporting.

2. Focus on organic digital marketing activities, these should include:

  • Local SEO Campaign – A fully optimised local SEO Campaign targeting search traffic in your local suburb and region – for example Burleigh Heads and the Gold Coast.
  • Email Marketing Campaign – A comprehensive email marketing campaign targeting your email list audience with a unique and specific offer, implementation of list building strategies, high quality email content and design, and automation sequences using software such as Mailchimp or Active Campaign.
  • Developing a following on YouTube – Creating and sharing videos that offer value and build trust with your customers. Developing an effective strategy in creating videos for YouTube can create high levels of organic reach and trust between you and your audience. The power of YouTube marketing should not be underestimated.

Instagram Shifting towards Instagram Shopping Account for businesses.

Photo from TechCrunch

Instagram has made a huge shift towards shopping accounts for businesses. Previously in Beta m­ode and exclusively for accounts of a certain size, Instagram Shopping has now been unveiled for any ecommerce business. This is a huge opportunity for anyone with an online store as it will reduce the friction between someone seeing a product in an Instagram post and adding the product to the shopping cart.

Any ecommerce business needs to be exploring this feature to maximise their digital marketing strategy and their investment on the Instagram platform.

Stories have unrolled on LinkedIn and Twitter.

First came Snapchat, then Instagram Stories and then Facebook Stories. In recent weeks, both Twitter and LinkedIn have unrolled similar features to their platforms. Like Instagram Stories, these features are for short form content and can be either photos, video or text.

Still in the early phases of being adopted by users on the platform, both Twitter Fleets and LinkedIn Stories will no doubt change the way people engage with businesses on these platforms, and as such should be considered as a great opportunity for your digital marketing strategy. 

Increase in the value of video

2020 has truly been the year of video! People are enjoying watching more video than ever before, and with lockdowns worldwide due to COVID, we have all had plenty of time to stream as much video as we can get.

Whilst it has been a record year for Netflix, it has also been an incredible year for YouTube, now the 2nd most popular social media platform. More people are streaming videos than ever before through the platform, leading to a record number of minutes of video watched during 2020.

“ 8 out of 10 marketers consider YouTube the most effective marketing platform. ”

– GO Globe

Video presents businesses a great opportunity to build trust and credibility with their customers and is a great way to share information and updates. Unlike other social media platforms, YouTube is primarily a search engine, and as such, good content that is relevant can be discovered by new viewers and generate a new audience for your business.

Creating content for YouTube is not as daunting as it may seem and is definitely a strategy we recommend every business consider for 2021!

Check out our YouTube Channel

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About the Author: Peter Austin

Peter is a business partner at Straight Up Digital with a wealth of experience in helping businesses maximise their potential online. When away from the office Peter enjoys sailing, camping and adventures

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About Straight Up Digital

Straight Up Digital is a full service digital marketing agency based in Burleigh Heads, Gold Coast, Australia. We specialise in Web Design, SEO (Search Engine Optimization), Social Media, Paid Ads (AdWords & Facebook Ads), Email Campaigns and Video Marketing.

Straight Up by name. Straight Up by nature. We prefer to tell it how it is and we aren’t afraid of the difficult conversations with our clients. Our goal is to become the most transparent and results focused digital marketing company of the third millennium!

We have been helping businesses for over 10 years across a variety of industries including restaurants, real estate, construction, manufacturing, certified trades, professional services, podcasts and events.

Whilst based on the Gold Coast we service clients all over Australia and around the World. If you have any questions about your website, social media or lead generation please get in touch.

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