The most important trends for digital marketing in 2021


Our director of international marketing, Alison Humphries, is back with another round of the news you need to know about. Read more from the top 10 digital marketing trends for 2021 to the mass adoption of Click and Collect.

What is new, important and interesting in international marketing? This week we’re looking at each other Top digital marketing trends that could emerge in 2021, the boom in CTV programmatic video advertising, the continued growth of the click-and-collect post pandemic, the future import and export trade administration between the UK and the EU as well as negate the efforts of the main ferry lines trade bureaucracy for imports and exports between the EU and Ireland.


1. Put on digital transformation

A Twilio study out of 2,569 companies found the pandemic accelerated digital communication strategies by six years. 2021 is likely to see greater investment in e-commerce, direct-to-consumer, and e-commerce pathways to market, a shift from physical to digital media, and equally to events, courses, etc. to hybrid models.

2. Reconnecting communities

In 2020, social distancing led brands to reach consumers through personal, empathetic communication, as demonstrated by Digital Boost’s Guild-led Good Growth Community, which connects women-run businesses and entrepreneurs. This could be a trend that will continue through 2021 to connect people with common interests.

3. Return to decentralization

The widespread remote working that will transform the way corporate headquarters operates is shifting from centralized social networks to the virtual equivalents of people’s living rooms.

4. Greater control over tech giants

The EU has proposed two new laws to reduce the power of big tech companiesThe Digital Services Act and the Digital Markets Act and the UK set up the Digital Markets Unit to oversee legislation on big tech companies.

5. A greater thirst for knowledge

In 2021 there could be greater demand for self-learning to improve and improve existing skills, as well as increased investment by companies in training and developing companies that can afford it.

6. Growing presence of ‘augmented’ marketing

Increasing use of tools with AI capabilities such as for automatically generated copies and for creating presentations.

7. Demand for slow and fast

The quartz curve developed in 2014 found that between 500 and 800 words isn’t the best place to go. There are clear digital examples of this. For example, Facebook stressed the importance of ensuring that consumers are no more than five steps away from purchasing a product, but that users have the ability to control their digital content consumption. For example, there is a growing trend for people to slow down songs but speed up podcasts and videos.

8. Movement towards Live Commerce

A combination of live streaming and e-commerce that sprang up on Taobao, Tmall, Pinduoduo, and Douying could hit the west in 2021.

9. Growing importance of marketing bothism

With greater emphasis on short-term and long-term tactics in support of pandemic survival, there has been a significant focus on short-term marketing with an emphasis on sales activation. However, having a strong SEO strategy and building the reputation of email senders are key to building brand reputation over the long term.

10. The “inconvenient truth” of digital

Businesses are striving to be more sustainable, and it’s easy to believe that digital works naturally that way. While digital is helping bypass negative environmental impacts such as pollution from large numbers of vehicles on the road so people can shop, just a year ago over a billion trees were felled to make e-commerce packaging for the US.

The question remains whether e-commerce will be a winner in the long term, but at the expense of the environment.


eMarketer Providing insight into how more and more video advertising has simultaneously led to growth in programmatic ad. The shift towards streaming videos via lockdown has improved impressions from video ads, especially with connected TVs.

U.S. advertisers spent an estimated $ 11.6 billion more on CTV programmatic ads in 2020 than they did in 2019. eMarketer forecast that figure could climb to $ 2.31 billion by 2021.

A survey conducted by the Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB) in November 2020 found that 60% of US advertisers plan to shift their advertising spending from linear television to CTV or OTT in 2021. 81% of respondents said targeting and efficiency are the most important benefits. 55% said that incremental reach plays an important role.

Conversely, eMarketer conducted further interviews with advertising experts on this channel, citing challenges in measuring CTV ad results as barriers to uptake, as well as difficulties in reaching target market segments as these devices are often shared by the entire household, and ads may reach the wrong ones Consumer groups.

Additionally, spending commitments are upfront rather than real-time, which makes it harder to reach target market segments when the timing for increasing conversions may be more optimal.

Improvements in cross-channel identity and measurement can help address some of these concerns, and the IAB has also developed solutions to reduce fear of fraud and fragmentation.

The pandemic sparked a trend towards mass adoption of click-and-collect

eMarketer Investigate the extent to which the pandemic has resulted in rapid movement to click and collect across a wide retail base. Initially, this trend was a “nice to have” for consumers who benefit from the convenience of online shopping and at the same time can collect their orders on the way home from work or are just out and about to run errands.

However, this became a necessity when the pandemic hit as logistics companies hastily expanded their capacity to cope with the overwhelming demand for home delivery and click and collect. In particular, curbside pickup offered a solution for consumers who couldn’t secure their home delivery spots.

Digital Commerce 360 ​​reported that this resulted in US retailers offering roadside pickup growth from 6.9% in December 2019 to 43.7% in August 2020.

While the pandemic has driven this trend, it is expected to continue growing in the future as consumer behavior evolves.

BARNIER quotes the new EU-UK trade administrator as “new normal”

The Institute for Export and International Trade Summarize the recent political developments in the UK-EU trade deal with Michel Barnier’s quote that the new cost and administrative challenges for importers and exporters between the UK and the EU will be the “new normal” as agreed on December 31st Trade deals will not be open to negotiation and advised that the current issues will be ironed out.

He also stressed that deviations from EU regulatory standards could have an impact on duty-free and quota-free business. This is a severe blow to Scottish seafood exporters after the EU stopped imports from Scottish farmers.

Health checks, IT malfunctions and the need for customs documents significantly delayed imports to France and Spain, resulting in canceled orders and food to rot.

DB Schenker and DFD have continued to suspend shipping and parcel delivery from the EU to Great Britain due to the trade bureaucracy after Brexit.

Barnier has now returned to his original position in France in the French political party Les Republicains.

STENA NEGATES POST BREXIT TRADE BUREAUCRACY by diverting the LIVERPOOL-BELFAST route of their new ship to Rosslorborg

The Institute for Export and International Trade Outline the measures taken by the largest ferry operator on the UK-Ireland routes, Stena Line, to divert its newest ship from Liverpool-Belfast to Rosslore-Cherborg to avoid the current delays on this route resulting from the new post-Brexit procedures Controls with ENS declarations and health certificates for agricultural and food consignments.

This was originally the fastest transport route, taking just 12 hours before Brexit. The new Stena ship increases the capacity of the Rosslare-Cherborg route to accommodate 50 more trucks, bringing this to a total of 190 loads per shipment.

DFDS started shipping from Rosslare to Dunkirk on January 1st to facilitate import and export between the EU and Ireland. Rosslare was originally a port dominated by passenger traffic and saw an increase in freight traffic after Brexit.

Brexit has led to an increase in the demand for direct freight routes, especially driver-accompanying freight, which has been made easier by the temporary diversion of the Stena Embla ship.

If you’d like to discuss any of the stories featured in this week’s international marketing recap, book a conversation with us today.

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