Expect more text and marketing emails than ever in 2021

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A new report from Forrester Research predicts that consumers will receive more emails, texts and push notifications than ever before in 2021, as brands try to develop more direct relationships with customers amid the pandemic and economic benefits.Forrester’s “Predictions 2021: B2C Marketing” report predicts that the volume of marketing messages will increase by 40% next year as brands attempt to retain customers and generate new purchases. The report’s forecast describes some of the trends that may have been spurred by the pandemic, but are expected to continue to impact marketing over the next year.

Consumers began to notice an influx of emails from brands and other organizations early in the pandemic, as businesses sought to keep them updated on closures, safety protocols and programs like curbside pickup. .

But even if the effects of the pandemic subside next year, attempts to reach consumers directly will continue, particularly in the wake of Google’s plans to end third-party cookie support and changes. from Apple that will impact the way mobile advertisers track users.

“An unprecedented pandemic has rendered the existing plans and strategies of B2C marketers moot, and new announcements from Apple and Google are accelerating data depreciation. But these trends are not a flash, ”says the report. “In 2021, marketers need to prepare for an ecosystem without third-party cookies and device identifiers, while navigating an unpredictable economy and reducing budgets and headcount. ”

The report predicts that brands will spend more on loyalty and loyalty marketing to build on existing consumers who could limit spending in uncertain times. Getting consumers to accept loyalty benefits or buy directly with them through an app should also give marketers a way to send personalized messages more easily, even after privacy changes.

This extra awareness will lead to increasingly crowded inboxes, so expect marketers to rely on their email programs, including text messages, said Forrester analyst Stephanie Liu. .

“They think that if you don’t come to our stores, we should always be in the lead for you,” Liu said. “Window shopping is less of an opportunity these days. So how can we stay in touch?

Liu said brands might need to think about moving away from more marketing-driven messages, in which every consumer in a database receives a push notification at a certain point in time, a common tactic for retailers. These can be irritating and irrelevant.

“The flip side is a more responsive post: ‘Depending on how you’ve purchased with us before or how you’ve interacted with us before, we think this type of post will be relevant to you,” and take the time to build that logic, instead of blasting your entire customer list with the same message, ”she says. “It’s really like less is more. “

Forrester predicts that marketers will cut budgets for traditional corporate sponsorships next year, in part because ratings for sports have gone down and stadium attendance will be reduced or eliminated over the next year. Liu said the channel was also more difficult for marketers to measure return on investment, even before Covid.

Forrester predicts that some brands will reallocate their budgets to cheaper opportunities such as esports to continue reaching large audiences, but with more flexible contracts.

He also said marketers would focus more on marketing on “neighborhood-level” efforts with more geographically targeted messages.

“COVID-19 has resulted in increased sales of newly built homes as consumers flock to suburbs and rural areas for more space and affordability while enjoying flexible work options,” the report says. . “In response, brands will strive to shift from urban-oriented messaging to more geographically focused efforts to engage with local neighborhoods. “

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