As we leave a year marked by risks and disruptions and enter one that signals the start of mass vaccinations and recovery, many are wondering if the Year of the Ox is finally going to be our year.

Companies and brands have had their usual business operations, marketing and communications plans, and business model seriously curtailed. Marketeers worked hard to adapt to the evolving situation – lockdowns and shuttered store fronts, work-from-home arrangements (or live at work?), tightening budgets and the uncertain economic outlook. But the Year of the Ox might be a year where the hard work pays off.

What will ensure that you finally get the ROI you need this year?

What does a successful business look like now?

And what will it look like as we trudge through the Year of the Ox?

  1. Build Diversity

Building up diversity for your business means increasing the production channels (create redundancy). Which means you can have multiple factories to produce the same product, or multiple processes that direct to the same ends. This helps your business become more resilient when facing sudden shock such as the supply chain rupture as you can always find a suitable replacement.

This agility is also applicable to employing various marketing strategies for a 360 approach – digital marketing, social media channels and advertising – and being agile enough to switch focus amongst the platforms should there be changes in audience sentiments, consumer habits, demand or an opportunity for outreach.

In the struggle to meet demand or increase output to get more marketing ROI, be sure not to compromise on quality for quantity, especially for content marketing.

Roughly two-thirds of brands are increasing their output in the hopes of bringing in more leads and improving their engagement online.

By building a diverse, yet consistent integrated marketing strategy, you will reap returns to where you invest your money at.

  1. Make Real-Time Decisions Based on Data

It is important to be customer-centric, especially in times of economic turmoil. You need to be flexible enough to quickly understand and deliver what customers want, seize opportunities, and correct the problems as soon as possible.

Due to the great uncertainty of the future, more and more brands are abandoning traditional sales strategies in favour of real-time marketing. Being able to respond to current events and customer needs in a timely manner is an important advantage for brands, which can launch personalised sales activities to achieve the effect of empathy and build deep connection with the customers.

The only way to do this is to keep a close eye on the data, analyzing key metrics and real-time behavioural trends so that you can be as responsive as possible to catch up with the change in customers’ interests.

 One advantage is that as online purchases and E-commerce sectors grow, so will data. Marketeers have more insights and statistics at their fingertips than ever to visualise the customers’ next step.

  1. Comfort Onboarding as Part of Your Communications

For every four applications that are opened once, one will be abandoned.

User retention can only be improved by simplifying the registration process and demonstrating your value as soon as possible to create a good first impression.

Whether you bring your new customers to experience new websites, product demos, membership registrations or feature presentations, make sure the customers feel the benefit all the time.

Only ask customers for the necessary personal information and permissions, focus on building key features and UI elements that help users experience the value of your application.

  1. Mission-Driven Marketing

Staying true to your brand’s core values will not only get you through tough times or external crisis, but also get your customer through. By being a brand that demonstrates compassion, understanding and actual utility, customers will naturally gravitate to where they feel safe – meaning having a shared affinity.

Customers are more in tune with social issues than ever and will support companies that share their values. In the same vein as celebrities, politicians, athletes, leaders and innovators who have spoken up about social issues and stood firm in their beliefs, be it for racial justice, healthcare, political means, communicating your brand’s impact and position on issues that matter, will matter.

Utility and clarity are some of the best qualities anyone can have amidst a chaotic reality.

2020 has taught all of us that survival requires grit, unrelenting perseverance and due diligence.  

Resilience is not the ability to make forced adjustments in extreme situations, but rather to build a solid foundation based on constant change and experimentation.

To stay abreast of the constantly changing world of marketing, check out the top 7 marketing trends that you need to know in 2021.