The pandemic has changed online marketing forever. But what can you do to get on the trends?
For the last twelve months, use of the internet and social media has increased exponentially due to the pandemic. With companies all over the world resorting to an online presence, the tools of social media have been used to create massive trends and build platforms.
Now, in April 2021, the pandemic is far from over, but this doesn’t mean the social strategies implemented because of the virus will stop being used when it is over. In fact, many businesses are realising that audiences have become used to online content, not just as a temporary solution to in-person events and meetings being cancelled, but as an effective strategy to keep using in the future.
In relation to this topic, we have seen the birth of many new trends for 2021, created by the influence of Covid-19 on our society and how digital tools have, in a way, become lifesavers for marketing strategy. But how exactly can your business benefit from 2021 internet trends, including in a post-pandemic world?
Advertise online consistently
Audiences spend the majority of their time online during lockdowns, which means that businesses have a larger platform to cater to. Because of this, it’s important to maintain a consistent online presence, perhaps more than you did before.
As an example, the Stories tool on Instagram (originating from Snapchat) is key to connect with your followers. People sitting at home will often scroll through stories to find out what their favourite brands are up to. Since there are no live events, virtual events and meetings have been on the up, and these will be advertised on social media. The Story tool is useful because of the short attention-span of younger users, and you can sum up any events or products through a quick Story post.
It has been reported by Jacqueline Zote in her article that “54% of social media users research products using social media,” and that “social media referrals can influence the purchase decisions of 71% of users.” In a post-pandemic world, this statistic is even more relevant, since the average user will now spend even more time on social media.
Connect with your audience on a personal level
Due to the difficult circumstances the pandemic has inflicted on us emotionally, it is always a plus to come across as approachable and empathetic as a brand. Make it clear you’re aware of the issues Covid-19 has brought and what you’re doing as a brand to resolve those issues. Zote states in the same article that “74% of respondents in a Twitter survey want brands to showcase acts of kindness,” and “77% feel more positively about brands that try to support society during this crisis.” 
For this reason, it’s important to stay aware of your audience and the issues they’re facing personally. Perhaps you’ll organize a campaign or a conversation to talk about the pandemic and those who are affected by it. Never shy away from topical trends and let minorities know you’re aware of them, showing support for all types of consumers.
Be involved in conversations with hashtags
Nowadays, hashtags are not just commonplace on Twitter but on every social media channel you can think of. Your company’s online presence must be influenced by the knowledge of what’s popular with hashtags.
For example, if you wanted to host a live event over Zoom and the topic is ‘job-searching during a pandemic’, you would create multiple posts to promote this with hashtags, including #jobhunting, #workfromhome, #virtualevent, #jobs etc.
That way, you can begin a conversation about your event and be part of a relevant hashtag that will be familiar to many people. An article from Newtek in 2013 talked about the value of hashtags for businesses and how they can “target certain areas or people”, and also allows you to “open up the social media world to better converse about your company.” 
Utilize what working from home can do!
We all want the pandemic to be over, but we can’t deny that it has opened our minds to what we can do from the comfort of our own homes. Thanks to the forever innovative world of social media, the ways we advertise and connect with people are changing and becoming more efficient.
Even in a post-pandemic world, your business should get on the 2020/2021 trends and make the most of what they can offer, whether that’s virtual events, livestreams, networking through hashtags, and keeping a consistent online presence with regular posts. There’s no doubt at least one of the recent trends will help make a difference to your brand.
- 8 Social Media Trends to Watch in 2021 by Jacqueline Zote (2021) – Sprout Social – https://sproutsocial.com/insights/social-media-trends/
- 4 Reasons Businesses Should Take Hashtags Seriously by Newtek (2013) – Forbes – https://www.forbes.com/sites/thesba/2013/06/19/4-reasons-businesses-should-take-hashtags-seriously/?sh=58764fc37312