What to expect for your business in 2021

Predicting the future feels particularly daunting after the year small businesses have experienced. However, there are trends and themes that are likely to shape the landscape for business in 2021.

It’s unlikely that we will be returning to any sense of ‘normal’ soon, and more likely move into recovery of a new business landscape. From more attention to social issues and more brand collaboration, to increases in digital spend, here are some changes you can expect for your business in 2021.

Continued monitoring of coronavirus

With the vaccine being rolled out throughout the country, the future is looking more positive for businesses as we move into 2021. However, this will be a gradual process as changes in restrictions continue. The best rule of thumb here is to stay on top of coronavirus news, and ensure your business is prepared should another lockdown or worst-case scenario occur.

We saw the country pull together in phenomenal ways during the first lockdown, with inspiring stories like Captain Sir Tom Moore’s journey, showing that a positive attitude and high morale can go a long way to carry individuals through tough times. Be sure to check in with your teams, your clients, and your network as we navigate these new waters.

More attention to social issues

2020 saw the re-emergence of the Black Lives Matter movement, with protestors drawing attention to the killing of George Floyd in May and the prominent issue of police brutality. Businesses rallied to show their support on social media, including Etsy, who announced their donation to organisations working for criminal justice reform. This marked an interesting time for businesses, stepping out of conventional impartiality and putting across the views that matter.

2020 was also a big year for addressing sustainability in business, and prioritising eco-friendly operations, as seen with Amazon’s Climate Pledge.

This year will likely follow in the footsteps laid out by businesses in 2020, moving away from an impartial brand image and addressing the issues that customers care about.

Changes in digital spend

The commonality between monitoring coronavirus and social issues within business is the role that digital spaces have played. Captain Tom’s story sky-rocketed due to its shareability, taking social media by a storm. The same applied with the Black Lives Matter movement. We’re predicting a rise in social media and digital spend in 2021 to keep this momentum going, as businesses boost their visibility on these platforms by embracing them, rather then avoiding them and sticking to tried and true methods. Digital ad spend is set to rise this year, and we’re expecting many businesses to follow suit with their websites and social media presences.

While these predictions for 2021 aren’t exhaustive, considering them is a great place to start when planning your marketing strategy for this year. By shifting more resources to social media and digital spaces, addressing more relevant issues in your business mission, and improving engagement with your client base, you’ll be more equipped to tackle the new year head-on.

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