150+ Marketers Share Their Marketing Predictions for 2021- Part 13
2020 was a tough year, we all hope that 2021 will be better.
As 2021 begins this is a good time to reflect on what we learned so far and how the future might look like.
In this comprehensive roundup from 162 marketers you’ll find diverse perspectives from a wide range of marketing professionals, founders, and CMOs. The predictions are sorted by categories to make them easier to browse.
You’ll notice that a few clear patterns emerge across categories, a number of themes repeat like video marketing, Clubhouse, community, regulation, customer experience, data, and work-from-home.
Happy learning from the collective wisdom.
Marketing Operations and Work
Jesse is Director of Marketing at Empower Africa, an Impact Business, Community and platform focused on driving investment, trade and job creation in Africa. Targeting VC, startups and enterprise corporations. Jesse is a multinational marketer that has worked globally for both enterprise companies and startups. His current focus is on growing and training marketing teams that scale.
Jesse 2021 marketing predictions & trends:
“From an operational perspective I predict that the “gig” economy in marketing will exponentially flourish. The result of so many people becoming accustomed to working from home creates renewed recognition in the power and flexibility of creating a global workforce. If anyone can work in your business from anywhere, then why not hire from anywhere? Especially if there is high quality talent at a lower cost than locally.
Companies that are offering a marketplace for freelancers will be a driver for success, which is why a company like Fiverr will have a Superbowl ad this year, they’re capturing the momentum of this shift. Even more so, developing economies are going to experience rapid digital transformation. The internet is a global equalizer and as more talented individuals from developing nations go online, they get better and quicker access to high quality free online training materials. Their living wages are much lower which will allow them to offer competitive services at a better cost. The future is global and 2021 will be a year of opportunities for those who know how to best capture the momentum.”
Konstantin is Digital Strategist and Co-founder at DVZN, they specialize in Strategy as a Service for SaaS & subscription businesses.
Konstantin’s 2021 marketing predictions & trends:
- Companies will focus on 6-12 month strategic roadmaps rather than 5-10 year strategies.
- Fractional CMO is the new normal – We will witness more part-time CMOs working on a remote basis at an affordable cost.
- Niche communities as part of the Passion economy – The amount of creators launching niche communities and sharing their content with “1000 true fans” will grow. Even more people will be able to make it their full-time job in 2021.
David is CMO at CloudTalk, they offer cloud phone solutions for sales and customer service teams, focused on mid market.
David’s 2021 marketing predictions & trends:
“The shift to remote work will continue and it will bring marketers both new challenges and new opportunities. Marketers should think of ways to incorporate their customers working from different (home) environments into campaigns.
Even though the target customer remains the same, their behavior in a different work environment might alter a little.”
Carly J. Cais
Carly does Marketing & Operations at ElleSpark, they work with early to mid-stage SaaS companies to grow their business from $0M to $15M ARR.
Carly’s 2021 marketing predictions & trends:
“With the pandemic still a part of daily life affecting buyer behavior, companies have had to reduce their full-time staff and make lasting cutbacks. In 2021 we will see a heavier reliance on consultants, freelancers, and outside help to bridge the gap and provide specialized expertise to downsized organizations. These outsiders will help restructure and improve the foundations of the business so that the business can stay profitable during uncertain times and be ready to hire in-house once economies rebound.
Marketing has evolved to where the approach has come full circle. First it was marketing to everyone, then it split into B2B and B2C, now it’s coming back to “approach your B2B clients as if you were in the B2C market.” More personalization and integration of the buyer’s journey as individual into a larger B2B buyer’s journey as an organization is paramount to success in a world where everyone is fighting for attention.
As Marketing becomes increasingly complex, organizing marketing assets, planning marketing initiatives, evolving marketing strategy, and staying on top of the marketing tech stack has become critical. Solutions such as Workfront, CabinetM, and Amplifi, and phrases such as DAM, Marketing System of Record, and Subscription Management – will move more into the collective consciousness and become must-haves for growing businesses.”
Anita is Founder and CEO at CabinetM. CabinetM is a marketing technology platform that enterprise organizations use to manage their technology, performance, spend, and strategy.
Anita’s 2021 marketing predictions & trends:
“As we move into 2021 it’s clear that the pandemic is a long way from over. As marketers settle into this extended “new normal”, we’ll see a continued focus on how to engage with customers and prospects who work at home and are on video conferences all day long.
I expect to see companies refine their video engagement strategy — webinars that used to offer a nice break from a daily routine have now become one more video conference in a long day of video conferences and as such, attendance is dropping off. Video is a great medium, companies will work to find better ways to leverage video in engaging customers.
Another area of focus in 2021 will be collection and cleansing of first party data. With Google planning to eliminate 3rd party cookies by 2022, companies need to be focus on building their own robust customer personas, profiles and lists and then working to define a plan to engage with native advertising. This bodes well for the media industry.”
Ian is Co-founder and COO at BeeLiked, they help companies to get, keep and grow business using interactive gamified promotions and campaigns.
Ian’s 2021 marketing predictions & trends:
“As more people work remotely the drive towards engaging and motivating employees digitally will accelerate.
Marketing is no longer just advertising and branding. Marketers need a more integrated approach with other teams so they can build a more engaging end to end customer experience.
Tech will equal the playing field. The rise of marketing software as a solution (SaaS) applications will allow smaller businesses that might not otherwise be able to afford sophisticated digital marketing and engagement to go digital and drive their growth.
Today’s digital consumers are aware of the inherent value of their personal data and marketers will need to continue to adapt to GDPR, CCPA and other privacy and regulatory initiatives. More so than ever marketers will need a way to cut through the noise and create a fully-consented two way value exchange.”
Follow Ian on Linkedin Ian Edwards
Zoe is Content Marketing Manager at Dgraph, which is an advanced graph database company. They have products for frontend developers building apps (like side projects and startups) as well as enterprise solutions for companies unifying their data for better performance and more complicated queries.
Zoe’s 2021 marketing predictions & trends:
“I believe that developer marketing, as well as “bottom-up” approaches, will accelerate in 2021. Companies will be expanding or rebuilding their teams this year, and relying on the expertise of those people who come on board to advise them on the best tools, practices, and processes.
B2B marketing will need to focus on getting buy-in from the teams that will actually use the product or service, rather than purely targeting top decision-makers and executives.
I also foresee LinkedIn gaining greater relevance as a social network, not just as a place for job seekers and sales leads, but also for connecting on key issues that resonate across companies and workplaces.”
Eric is CMO at Cience, it’s a B2B lead generation company focused on driving new sales opportunities for businesses large and small.
Eric’s 2021 marketing predictions & trends
This is the year that Revenue Operations moves front and center. Blending from the advances in Sales Ops and Marketing Ops roles, Revenue Ops performs the join that influences how data is collected around each sales cycle for B2B organizations.
From attribution, forecasts, to marketing / sales cycle conversion rates at every step of the buyer’s journey, RevOps roles are delivering insights that enable Revenue Leaders to make better decisions around their go-to-market strategies.
Kirti is VP of Marketing at Bugsnag, they specialize in error monitoring and application stability management. They target mobile and web application engineering organizations
Kirti’s 2021 marketing predictions & trends:
“Quality over quantity will matter more than ever before.
The role of marketing organizations is changing. They are being viewed more as demand generators and less as lead generators. Marketing teams are making sure they are shaping their market in their voice. The marketing mix along with product marketing work is being used to achieve outcomes across the entire funnel. As the breadth and depth of the marketing function grows, it can be easy to lose focus. Examples of diluted focus can show up, say, in the implementation of a martech tool, in the ABM campaign targets’ definition, or in joint Marketing and Sales programs. In spite of good intentions, Marketing is expected to deliver a target lead volume by funnel stage or by program source.
To achieve tightness in the GTM engine, Marketing teams will develop a laser-focused approach and build for quality over quantity in 2021. This will help GTM and Rev Ops in key ways:
- Funnel and levers’ management: Teams will keenly measure conversion rates across the funnel, closely monitor lead scoring, and study gates and triggers as opposed to going down the path of ‘we need to create more pipeline’
- Engagement through community: With the lack of human interaction in virtual events, teams will focus on more intimate, quality events to include their primary audience
- ICP development: A sharper focus on continual tracking and measurement and two-ways syncs between Sales and Marketing will make teams comfortable with targeting those who matter
- GTM alignment: With both Sales and Marketing teams rallying around shared goals, the planning and execution of programs and plays will be integrated and of high quality”
Follow Kisti on Linkedin Kirti Dewan
Kathleen is VP of Marketing at Clean.io, it’s a digital engagement security platform that helps businesses protect their brand, revenue and users’ experience.
Kathleen’s 2021 marketing predictions & trends:
“I predict that in 2021 marketers will be forced to take security seriously. With marketing increasingly owning spend on the business tech stack, and as more businesses shift to digital due to COVID, it will be critical to ensure the interactions that businesses have with their users, customers and audiences are safe, secure and optimized while also ensuring that marketing activities don’t put the business at risk.
From understanding how to build a secure website, to creating social media posts that don’t provide bad actors the information needed to craft phishing attacks and vetting the plugins and third party tools that marketing teams use and integrate, there’s a huge learning curve that will need to be overcome for marketers to gain fluency in marketing security. The cost of not doing so is enormous both financially and from a brand equity standpoint.”
Nichole Elizabeth DeMeré
Nichole is a B2B SaaS Consultant, she works with B2B SaaS Founders.
Nichole’s 2021 marketing predictions & trends:
“Customer Success is essential to SaaS marketing because there’s a focus on retention and CLV since it’s subscription-based, so we’ll see an increase in spend for Customer Success platforms, as well as educational content like webinars, teach-ins, knowledge bases, etc. There will be an increased focus on it for both SaaS and e-commerce.
We were already headed in this direction but the pandemic has accelerated this focus as more people are offering online services and also buying/selling products online.”
**continue reading: E-Commerce Marketing
Originally published at AllFactors.com on January 28, 2021.