Are you wondering what 2020 really taught businesses and what insights marketeers gained along the way? There were many reveals but the number one lesson has been that agribusinesses need to be agile in their approach to marketing and not rely on what they did before. When the rug is pulled from under your marketing tactics and your single most important string to communicating with your customers has vanished, agile marketing has separated the good from the bad.
Smaller businesses that never contemplated trading online now have ecommerce websites, have started engaging with their customers via social media, conference calls, webinars – the list goes on. Back in January, there is no earthly way any marketeer saw this kind of communication and engagement coming to pass by the end of 2020, and by many, digital marketing was approached as a random act here and there. One of the best comments I heard this year was that the challenges of Covid-19 didn’t invent a new approach to marketing and doing business, but more so just made it happen in a shorter timeframe. More efficient targeted communications were always on the horizon, but for many, they were afraid to take the step out of the norm into the unknown.
What is Agile Marketing?
Agile Marketing is an approach that allows marketing teams to be more flexible, where businesses involve themselves in responding to change over following a set plan, testing the waters on a new approach over said opinion, tailoring for individuals over suiting all and actually giving thought to what tools and tactics are out there that have been overlooked, completely unnoticed or coming on trend.
By taking a more agile approach to marketing you are allowing your business to change its marketing approach as required to deliver a competitive advantage. Agile marketing requires the ability to be able to build campaigns, measure them and then use the learnings to change what needs to be changed and to push on with what is getting results. The challenge here is to have a team that are so highly motivated for results that they want to incorporate these learning and constantly strive for better by bringing in new and better tools. Very often the strategy will remain the same but the detail in how it will be delivered may need to change.
Listening to agribusinesses and why many were still in the infancy of digital marketing techniques seems to come down to a few specific reasons; lack of digital mindset, lack of insights, lack of budget, lack of commitment and not knowing where to start.
What marketing tactics worked
For businesses that had existing ecommerce functionality, marketing teams saw a surge in online sales. For businesses that had social media platforms they saw a dramatic increase in both audience and engagement. For businesses that had brochure websites, they saw an increase in visitors and for businesses that were running digital advertising campaigns, they saw an increase in click through rates and reads.
So, while for many, 2020 was a year of new experiences and dabbling in a few new approaches to marketing, no 2021 marketing strategy will be complete without a more agile fresh approach to marketing.
What are we likely to see in 2021? We are likely to see companies improving their content to offer readers/viewers/listeners a better experience, repurposing good content, concentrating their efforts on SEO, more video and webinars, more targeted communications with the end user in focus and in general a fostering of communities.