We were all ready to put 2020 behind us, however 2021 has come in with its own challenges. Many businesses closed down in 2020 due to the financial havoc and operational difficulties of the Covid pandemic. New and continued lockdown measures put in place by some countries show signs that it will continue to be a challenging post-pandemic and recovery year. However, there are some trends that small businesses should look forward to in 2021.
Taking advantage of these business trends can lead your business to becoming more resilient and flexible in the face of new challenges in this post-pandemic era.
Social Media Advertising Budgets Will Increase
Leading social media platforms have billions of subscribers. It is one serious market trend in 2021. There is little surprise that many advertisers are flocking to these platforms.
This rapid growth of social media advertising is going nowhere anytime soon. According to conservative estimates by the insurance firm Finaria, the social media ad budget will skyrocket by 15% this year, raising the total ad spend amount to 105 billion dollars. This will almost double the amount spent on social media ads in 2017.
Even if it isn’t natural to your business, don’t underestimate the importance of social media marketing; small businesses should adopt the use of multiple channels to drive organic growth in building their audiences and awareness around their brands. Try to avoid the temptation of getting caught in a paid social media arms race with your competitors when organic strategies which yield better ROI can be utilized.
The Rise of AI, Data Analytics, And Big Data Will Rapidly Enhance Personalization of Business Offerings
Artificial intelligence and data analytics are a match made in heaven. Not only do they have the ability to collect large quantities of data; they can equally deploy machine learning algorithms to spot patterns and relationships in the data and make meaningful insights. These insights generated can be used to target marketing campaigns and spot inefficiencies in your business processes.
The amount of data collected can equally ensure that goods and services are customized to suit the taste or preferences of individuals with extreme accuracy. Whether your business intends to deploy machine learning or data analytics for targeted marketing or finding inefficiencies in the operations process, it can be much more affordable than you might imagine.
Alternative Capital Sources Will Bridge The Gap In Funding Needs For Small Businesses
It is advisable for small business owners to try avoiding the path of loans as a solution to their funding problems when possible. Especially for those who are experiencing the financial wrath of the pandemic, many alternative funding sources are available.
Alternative lending and investors can play a very influential role in closing this funding gap for small businesses. Strategic alternative funding can help ensure that businesses do not become insolvent. Some of these sources include grants, Fintech, government emergency loans, Venture capitalists, peer-to-peer lending, and crowdfunding.
These alternatives could be crucial as some businesses will not qualify with the criteria required by traditional lending sources that have changed during the pandemic.
Business Agility Will Continue To Increase
There are still many pandemic-related restrictions that are primarily negatively affecting small businesses. Use the flexibility that larger organizations lack due to their size and regulations to develop an edge over these businesses.
Small businesses have the potential to quickly shift their focus when necessary, whether in the service delivery domain, marketing, or structuring teams. The faster small businesses can adapt to turbulent environments, the higher their fitness, and probability of success. The ability to adapt to these market trends will separate winners from losers in the global marketplace.
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