Marketer Approved List of Digital Marketing Trends in 2021 [Part 1]

Marketer Approved List of Digital Marketing Trends in 2021 [Part 1]

The top digital marketing trends in 2021 revolve around two key aspects- personalizing and humanizing the content and technological advancements that help you optimize the finer details of these campaigns.

So, we at Simplified have curated the top digital marketing trends in 2021 into a two-part blog series to give you a thorough understanding.

1. Artificial Intelligence

For decades, marketers have tried to segment users based on behavioral similarities (for example, subscribing to a particular newsletter) and produce mass content that appeals to this target demographic. However, in today’s hyper-personalized world, one size fits all approach is considered medieval. Thanks to artificial intelligence, finding prospects and delivering personalized messages is now achievable. Therefore, Artificial Intelligence is the biggest digital marketing trend of 2021 so far.

Here are some of the top reasons why organizations are adopting AI in their business:

reasons to adopt ai

Today, 76% of customers expect companies to understand their needs and expectations. Also, AI marketing allows marketers to crunch a huge amount of marketing data analytics from social media, emails, and the Web in a relatively faster time. Hence, capitalizing on AI marketing is indisputable for every business.

importance of ai in marketing
Source: Original

Currently, Artificial Intelligence is implemented in areas such as:

  • Chatbots and Other Communication
  • Email Personalisation
  • Product Recommendations
  • Content Creation
  • E-commerce Transactions

Starbucks is one example of a brand that is using its loyalty card and mobile app to collect and analyze customer data. Their app has evolved to record the details of purchases- when and where did the transaction take place. Starbucks then uses predictive analysis to process this data and serve customers with personalized marketing messages.

future of personalisation
Source: GeekWire

reward app

2. Influencer Marketing

Influencer Marketing has exponentially grown over the last few years. All businesses- big or small, are boarding the train to this marketing trend in hopes of going viral and gaining new customers. Furthermore, over the course of 2021, influencer marketing is forecasted to grow to be a $13.8 million market. In fact, the estimates say that 75% of brands will dedicate part of their marketing budget to this strategy in 2021. The stats below show a clear picture of why influencer marketing is all the rage today:

  • When it comes to millennials, only 1% of them trust advertisements. However, 33% of them trust blog reviews for their purchases.
  • Around 40% of people reported that they purchased a product online after seeing it used by an influencer on YouTube, Instagram, or Twitter.
  • According to a study by Tomoson, influencer marketing yields a $6.50 return on investment for every dollar spent.

Quick Tip: Video production is the latest craze. 4 out of 5 millennials go to video content when making a buying decision. Therefore, be sure to include videos as a part of your influencer marketing.

Moxy Hotels launched its own YouTube channel with the help of YouTube star Taryn Southern. Together they created Do Not Disturb, a video series featuring Southern interviewing other influencers inside a shipping container designed to look like a Moxy hotel room. Moxy also invested in a second “season.

3. Chatbots

If you’re an avid online shopper you must have at least once chatted with a chatbot. Truly, chatbots continue to be a part of digital marketing trends in 2021. In fact, companies are increasingly investing in intelligent chatbots to provide customers with intuitive, dynamic, and responsive 1:1 communication.

The top benefits of chatbots are 24-hour service (64%), instant responses to inquiries (55%), and answers to simple questions (55%). However, chatbot limits aren’t at direct customer service interactions. For example, Sephora’s Kik bot opens with a mini quiz about the user’s makeup preferences.

Sephora’s example proves AI-powered chatbots can provide advice in the research phase, giving way to a new form of content marketing.

Source: Single Grain

Mastercard created a Facebook messenger bot – which uses natural language processing software to interpret what the customer wants.

4. Programmatic Advertising

“Programmatic buying will be a subset of the automated movement – everything that can be traded programmatically will be.” -Oli Whitten, The Rubicon Project

The recent digital marketing trend that has taken marketers by storm is Programmatic Advertising. In the US, nearly 88% of display ads in 2021 are forecast to be bought programmatically. And it’s not just in the US – 65% of European and UK brands use programmatic advertising, and 86% of those even have in-house programmatic capability.


Programmatic buying is the use of software to buy digital advertising. Unlike the traditional method that involves requests for proposals, tenders, quotes, and human negotiations, programmatic ads use machines and algorithms.

Here’s how the programmatic buying flow works:

  • A person clicks on a website
  • The website owner puts the ad impression up for auction (Supply Side Platforms)
  • Advertisers offer bids for the impression (Demand Side Platforms)
  • The highest bidder wins the ad impression
  • The user is served the ad on the website
  • The user clicks on the ad and converts

Until now these competing bids were calculated manually, however, these bids are now calculated by algorithms to instantly determine the most cost-effective bids. This helps advertisers to target users based on varied tactics, across multiple devices in real-time. Additionally, the platform does the heavy lifting and monitors more platforms which are impossible by in-house teams.

As John Lincoln, CEO and founder of SEO company Ignite Visibility explained on Inc:

“Programmatic advertising is designed to do away with old-fashioned, hit-or-miss campaign design. That system was notorious for costing marketers way too much money.”


We hope these trends will help you tailor your marketing strategy to reach and connect with your customers better. So, to know about more digital marketing trends in 2021, watch out this space for our next blog!

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