From the demise of third-party cookies and privacy-first marketing, to the reinvention of email and the reign of content, CMO asks the experts about what digital marketing will hold in 2021

Click here to read the full list of predictions

Prediction #12. The value of authenticity and culture

Another significant prediction for 2021 is that it will be the year brands start taking culture seriously. “Culture has always been important to individuals and while brands have known this for years, many haven’t known where to begin,” says Twitter Australia head of client partnerships, Angus Keene.

“The significance of culture to consumers is simply too high for brands to ignore now though. It plays a hugely important role in shaping consumers’ purchase decisions and is almost as important as having a positive brand reputation. As we enter 2021, with many of the big sporting and entertainment events restarting – think the Olympics – it presents the perfect opportunity for brands to get involved.”

Keene suggests this could be through event sponsorship, competitions or even simply tapping into the conversations happening around the event. “Leveraging these events and taking a stance will help brands become more culturally relevant and can lead to a heightened influence on purchase decisions,” he says.

“Brands should remember, though, it’s not a one-size-fits-all method. They should be thoughtful in their approach to ensure both authenticity to themselves and their audience. Brands that do this and get it right will go a long way to win the hearts and minds of Aussies.”

Brand authenticity and culture play a significant focus for social media, agrees blueAPACHE head of marketing, Renata Di Stefano. “The greatest engagement from our audience over the past few months has been where our culture and brand DNA are on display,” she says.

“Everyone is striving for happy, light-hearted content and organisations want to buy from a company where their values align, where the marketing spin is not actually marketing, but the brand truth.

“With so much content available online, you only have a split second to engage interest before the visitor scroll past and honesty goes a long way to engaging a following. Getting the right mix of truth in your content, not pushing a product or service rather elevating your brand values will drive the social media tone of voice and this is where you will see the organisations who just say they are something actually have to prove it.”


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