Technology helps organizations transform themselves for the future by leveraging digital tools that enhance business initiatives’ efficiency and effectiveness. Marketing functions are no exception. Over the last few years, marketing has become a function that leverages technology optimally as many of the audience shift online, and digital markets are rising. Understanding the MarTech Trends for 2021 can help you decide the direction you want your organization to take.

According to a 2020 report by Cheifmartech.com, there are a staggering 8000 leading marketing technology tools for various purposes.

Artificial Intelligence (AI) Will Boost the Communication

AI will help businesses make their operations efficient with relative ease. Chatbots are leading the AI adoption to increasingly serve diverse use cases, from answering simple customer queries to handling the entire process workflows. By identifying patterns through Machine Learning (ML) and AI algorithms, chatbots can proactively manage customer interactions. Chatbots will support $142 billion worth of consumer transactions by 2024 in the retail sector alone. This figure marks a more than 400% rise from $2.8 billion in 2019. Of course, many other use cases that AI and machine learning will make possible for marketing technologies and tools to serve customers. AI & machine learning adoption will also drive cost-savings and revenue growth. According to a study, brands adopting ML and AI capabilities will see a 37% decrease in costs and a 39% increase in revenues by the end of 2021.

Automation Will Be the Key to Internal Efficiencies

Marketing automation is another area that will see an increased focus of marketers. As efficiencies become a vital element for growth, technological advances will see automation in all areas of marketing. These areas will include the entire customer lifecycle from outreach, onboarding, and then customer service.

Automation is the future of marketing. Most marketers already understand this. 87% of B2B marketers and 82% of B2C marketers use some form of automation. Unfortunately, only 19% of marketers are satisfied with the marketing automation and reporting tools they use.

Platform Adoption Will Enable Customer-aligned Initiatives

No-Code or low-code platforms will continue to rise in popularity as they bring technological capabilities to the marketers. Non-technical users can now leverage these platforms to roll out features that closely align with customer expectations. Many of these platforms provide out-of-the-box recipes to automate critical use cases and workflows.

These platforms also bring in agility for marketers. Since the dependency on the development teams will be less, they can respond quickly to changing customer needs and business scenarios.

However, since these platforms provide generic abilities, development partners will continue to play a pivotal role in more nuanced and complex implementations. These use cases consequently create a difference and edge. Hence capable development partners are not going anywhere.
20% of marketing leaders will make significant investments in a content marketing platform for their marketing organization. (welcomesoftware.com)

Data Analytics & Intelligence Will Power Decision Making

Data analytics is one of the essential parts of any marketing strategy. Data analytics means different things to different people. It is generally the process to collect the marketing data and analyze it to inform marketing strategies.

Big data is an often-used term lately. But what exactly is it? In its simplest form, big data is the gathering of a volume of information that is too high to process using traditional means. This data can come from every part of an organization, including retail stores, factories, and even internal computer systems. For marketers, big data has enormous potential.

Technology innovations have introduced a variety of new tools; the most impactful tools are the ones that help generate insights to enable better marketing. Today, data analytics is not just about using a limited number of data sources to help marketers with their tasks. Data analytics is a data-driven approach to marketing, where marketers use data to inform their decisions. Marketers need to understand available data, how organizations can use it, and what it means to use data effectively. The available data may include information about the data itself (such as data quality) and data about customers and the company.

According to a recent survey, 50% of the world’s top brands have implemented data analytics in their marketing strategy. These brands report that they can retain customers, create new products and services, and reach new markets.

Authentic and Trustworthy Content Will Be the Key Differentiator

Content has always been central to marketing. Marketers will continue to use content to drive their campaigns. However, there is a remarkable change in the type of content you should create and how you utilize it.

Expertise, Authenticity, and Trust

The volume of content will be less important than the value it provides. Successful brands will focus on informative and educative content that drives customer engagement. Customers will look for authenticity and authority from companies, and content marketers will focus on creating such good quality content. Content writers will focus on transparency of message, and marketers will focus on ensuring consistent and reliable delivery of those messages. Content marketing will undergo tremendous changes in terms of messaging. But it will also see huge support from technology tools and content marketing platforms. Innovations like GPT-3 are already indicating the future to come in this area.

Value Alignment

Brands will also need to articulate their value-systems and beliefs clearly. Customers prefer to work with the brands that they find genuine and humane. Kantar found that 68% of consumers expect brands to be clear about their values. Millennials and Gen Z are incredibly particular about what their brands stand for. They carefully evaluate the brands’ stance on various issues and how those values align with their own before making purchases. Marketers will focus on the optimization of their messaging to reflect the brand values.

Personalization Is No Longer Exception

As digital adoption increases, marketers can better understand customer mindset and expectations given the influx of data and interactions. While the incoming information provides marketers with an opportunity to better target customers, customer expectations also increase.

Based on a Salesforce study, between 78% to 55% of customers expect personalized communication that directly addresses their unique needs and expectations. While marketers should leverage automation for customer communication, they are no longer rely on generic content that tries to address everyone. Such communication must leverage the available data and technology to craft personalized communication for each customer automatically. Content marketing platforms will be increasingly used to make personalization possible.

Omnichannel Experience Will Drive Customer Engagement

With voice-based Natural Language Processing (NLP) evolution, extending the consistent experience across devices is now possible. These devices will include desktops, mobiles, as well as wearable devices of all kinds. Such consistent and intelligent omnichannel experience will drive customer growth and help marketers generate more upselling and cross-selling opportunities. Omnichannel marketing will be a reality and a necessity in 2021.

Leveraging the MarTech Trends for 2021: The Way Ahead

Ironically, the technology will be instrumental in marketing more humane and closely aligned with customer mindsets, expectations, and needs. Today’s MarTech capabilities enable organizations to bring in innovations in how they strategize the growth. However, implementation will play a vital role in the success of these initiatives. Deep technology expertise and experience will play a pivotal role in such deployments. That’s why over 60% of marketing leaders and CMOs will increase the technology implementation spending in 2021, with over 26% of their total budget being spent on technology implementation.

Reach out to us to know more, and we would be happy to share how we have helped leading organizations leverage technological capabilities.

Featured Image: Photo by Donn Strain on Unsplash

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