Every year, Gartner makes predictions on what factors will become critical in the face of ever-changing technological advances — including how organizations must be prepared to adapt to the new trends. Several of its predictions are directly related to digital marketing.
Of special note is the fact that, more than any other recent year, 2021 will require organizations to find nontraditional ways to move forward due to the COVID-19 crisis. To rebound will require organizations to embrace innovation and efficiency in digital marketing.
The Gartner’s predictions that will impact digital marketing in 2021 and beyond include:
By 2023, individual activities will be tracked digitally by the Internet of Behavior to influence, benefit and service 40% of people worldwide.
You’ve heard of the Internet of Things (IoT), but what about the Internet of Behavior (IoB)? The concept means, simply stated, that companies can know a lot about a person from data collected from connected devices, including their interests, likes and dislikes, and how they make purchases. They can then employ this insight to influence behavior, such as activating and engaging prospects, personalizing content and testing campaign effectiveness.
By 2024, AI-driven identification of consumer emotions will influence more than half of the online ads.
During the 2010s, the marketing industry gained a deeper understanding of the role that emotions play in consumers’ actions. Now, advances in biometrics and AI are making it possible to detect emotions and use this insight strategically. In this way, AI-based advertising is poised to be the next frontier in consumer understanding and engagement.
Emotion detection and recognition work through a combination of facial recognition, voice patterns and deep-learning analysis technologies — all of which are still in the early development stages. However, they are poised for rapid growth. By 2024, the global market is expected to be worth nearly $25 billion.
Companies such as Amazon, IBM and Walmart are already researching ways to combine biosensors with artificial emotional intelligence (AEI) to detect sentiments that might influence consumers’ purchasing decisions. Publishers like ESPN, The New York Times and USA Today are developing and distributing advertising tools for matching ads to consumers’ moods.
By 2021, more than 40% of all data and analytics projects will relate to customer experience.
Customer analytics includes a range of tools that extract insight from customer data to improve customer experiences and reach business goals. Given the large amount of data processed by digital commerce platforms and the short window of opportunity to convert shoppers, customer analytics plays a critical role in digital commerce.
These metrics deliver several uses. For example, they can be used to define the rationale for previous investments, validate whether improvements have taken place, set goals for future improvements, and intervene when remedial action is required.
By 2024, content moderation services for user-generated content will be a top CEO priority for 30% of large organizations.
User-generated content (UGC) has been a Holy Grail of sorts in the marketing world. As part of the whole new era of self-expression on online platforms, UGC has been viewed like a virtual word-of-mouth opportunity to share users’ positive feedback about brands. According to Adweek, 93% of consumers stated they found UGC helpful when making purchasing decisions.
However, as social media has matured, UGC has sometimes become more contentious, with consumers sharing comments that are malicious on blog comments, videos, live streams and social media. What’s more, scammers are inserting malicious content to push their agendas.
Today, any organization that has an online presence faces the challenge of how to deal with malicious content, including harmful links, explicit material, targeted harassment and scams. Marketers must find ways to neutralize polarizing content to avoid a tarnished image. This often involves investing in content moderation services.
By 2023, 75% of organizations selling direct to consumers will offer subscription services, but only 20% will succeed in increasing customer retention.
If you’re like most people, you have a recurring billing account for multiple items on your credit card — including everything from Netflix to dog food delivery. Organizations benefit from the recurring subscription-based e-commerce payments with repeatable and predictable revenue. Customers like the convenience and cost savings.
Another benefit for organizations is gaining the ability to predict customers’ lifetime value (LTV) because subscriptions help them retain customers and predict future business potential. Further, marketers gain sharper insight into customers who purchase subscription services.
Along with delivering leading-edge insight, Gartner predictions also give organizations the opportunity to see into the future and lead the pack on the next great development in marketing. Taking a leadership position on the latest and greatest marketing development delivers its own unique value proposition.