How To Capitalize On Changes in Consumer Behavior In 2021

Woman focuses on her laptop.

As we all know, things look very different this year than in years past. 

One thing that hasn’t changed is the shift in consumer behavior from brick and mortar shopping to online shopping.

The move towards ecommerce is a trend that’s been growing steadily for years, and the pandemic and other events over the past twelve months have only accelerated this growth.

So what does that mean for us, the agencies, businesses, and entrepreneurs who rely so heavily on consumer spending dollars?

Well… It means a couple of things, and in this blog post, we’re going to dig into them so you can capture your share of this growing pie.

Spending More Time Online

As a result of social distancing and canceled in-person (education, events, and entertainment) consumers around the world are spending more time online.

We’re virtually connecting with others to share happy hour drinks, attend cooking and yoga classes, and stream entertainment. We’re utilizing online meeting and education platforms to teach our children.

We’re spending more time online as a society… And we’re buying more stuff while we’re there. 

The facts don’t lie. 

According to TechCrunch, COVID-19 has sped up the shift to digital shopping by five years.

And McKinsey has reported that consumers continue to shift to online shopping across categories, with many consumers planning to shift almost completely online after COVID-19.

The Impact Of Non-Stop News

Not only are people spending more time online, but they’re also consuming media at a faster rate than ever before.

Over the past year, information on the coronavirus and the US presidential elections unfolded almost faster than it could be reported, causing a sense of urgency in many to scroll more, scroll faster, and absorb as many headlines as possible.

In fact: J.P. Morgan Research assumes the consumption of news coverage is at unprecedented levels across the internet and media sectors. And according to Merkle, Digital media consumption grew by 12 percent last year as a result of social distancing.

So more and more people are online. And more of those people are spending more time scrolling. They’re consuming more media, more frequently.

How do you capitalize on this behavior?

#1. Stop The Scroll!

Of course, stopping users from scrolling has always been important… But this feels like it is becoming even more critical in 2021. 

Getting people to watch or read your ad is the crucial first step to getting the clicks that lead to conversions. And in this new online age, your ads are really (REALLY) going to need to stand out.

Write short, sweet, compelling headlines. 

Create eye-catching visuals. Use high-contrast images in order to stand out, and make your buttons deeply contrast your other colors if you’re including them. If you’re running ads on Facebook, steer clear from using “Facebook Blue” in your ads.

If you’re running video ads, make sure to make the first (title) screen stand out, and get as much of your critical information in the first three seconds as possible.

This leads us to our second important tip:

#2: Frequently Refresh Creative: 

With more users checking their feeds more often, you’re going to need fresh creative more regularly to make sure users don’t start to experience “banner blindness”…

Especially if you’re running a limited set of creative right now, to smaller more specific audiences.

Of course… Running ads at scale has always required frequent creative refresh, so this isn’t necessarily new either. But it will become more important to smaller advertisers over the coming months.

How do you create a more robust set of creatives without saying the same thing over and over? 

Really dig into the pain points that different audiences are feeling, and how you alleviate those issues. Look at your USP and the ways in which you’re better, faster, or cheaper than your competitors.

And of course, building more dimensional creative by creating a messaging strategy that addresses each of the four stages of buyer awareness.

#3: Split-Testing: 

We talk a lot at AIMCLEAR about the importance of testing.

It’s impossible to lose money split-testing, unless you refuse to do it.

Testing allows you to identify audiences, segments, and messaging angles that work better than others. 

It allows you to isolate and dig deeper into these winners, creating a more robust set of creative around the key messaging that’s driving results.

Quite simply, you’ll rarely hit the ball out of the park with every swing. Split testing can turn an average campaign into a winner, and we’ve seen this dozens and dozens of times.

Your Mission, If You Choose To Accept It:

If you’re already using a robust messaging strategy to create compelling ads, refreshing creative on a regular basis, and split-testing every chance you get…

Just keep doing what you’re doing, and you can reliably expect to see rising returns in 2021. 

Otherwise, contact AIMCLEAR for help with your Paid Media, Conversion Rate Optimization, and Creative Testing campaigns.

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