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COVID-19's Impact on Digital Marketing


2020 has been a year unlike any other. From socio-political turmoil, the rise of a global pandemic, a presidential election, and destructive wildfires and natural disasters, these current events have drastically affected our lives, and our businesses. These events have created a plethora of unprecedented uncertainties, causing a dramatic shift in digital marketing trends.


It is now more important than ever for marketers to adopt new marketing and growth strategies to survive in this world and thrive once again in the market. Our team at Digital Thrive has taken a look at a variety of marketing strategies and analyzed how they will change in this upcoming year.


Email Marketing

Email marketing has been a critical component of marketing communications for a variety of businesses across industries. No matter the external market conditions, email marketing has remained reliable and efficient. A study from Omnisend depicted a 31 percent increase in Year-Over-Year open rates, and a 22 percent increase in conversion rates in what they’ve coined the “post-COVID era.” Open rates and unsubscribed rates have dramatically improved after the March 2020 COVID-19 lockdown. This marketing strategy has proved to be effective and resistant to dramatic changes, and will remain a key part of corporate marketing strategies for 2021.


Social Media Marketing

Social media has always been both a powerful tool and complex mystery to marketers. There are a variety of nuances, controversies, and ever-shifting demands in the social media space, and it’s become crucial for marketers to adapt quickly to these changes.


Social media usage has drastically increased ever since the start of the COVID-19 outbreak. Facebook recently stated that Gen Z, Gen X, and Baby Boomers alike have all been spending more time on social media due to their rising concerns about the pandemic. Facebook daily traffic is up by 27 percent, and Instagram usage is up by 40 percent. Overall, usage has drastically increased for everyone, but many experts speculate that this uptick in social media usage will go away once the virus is contained.


Human-Centered Strategies

COVID-19 has drastically impacted marketing strategies by shifting the focus to a human-centered approach. Deloitte notes that some key marketing trends and ideas that need to be implemented in businesses include engaging customers with empathy, personalizing digital communications, and optimizing budget spends. By listening to customers, utilizing real-time data to better understand consumer needs, accelerating digital channel adoptions and delivering targeted messages to key consumers, companies can ensure that they form loyal and genuine connections with their customers, and gather more insight to continue improving their business.


2020 has paved the wavy for 2021 to be “The Year of Putting People First.” It is now more imperative than ever that businesses create value and effectively adapt to shifting consumer behaviors by learning more about their customers. In order to achieve this, many businesses will have to alter the current ways they utilize digital marketing tools to empathize, recognize, and serve the needs of their consumers.


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