In 2019, brands embraced a number of innovations in marketing. Some of these evolutions were necessitated by changes in consumer expectations, and other trends were fun cultural moments, like engaging rap stars to promote products. Across all the changes, one thing was certainly true in 2019, consumers started calling the shots on how and what they wanted from brands.
Subscriptions Continued To Grow In Popularity
With a growth rate five times that of other kinds of businesses, subscriptions continued to dominate as a trend in retail and across industries, including cars, sports and finance. Although often still being tweaked for the model that works the best, subscriptions can be an effective way to scale revenues and grow strong, loyal consumer bases.
Seamless Experiences Became A Priority For Consumers
A consistent theme this year was the expectation from consumers that shopping – both online and in person – be as seamless as possible. Frictionless integrations, including one-click payments, easier returns, BOPIS and tech-forward in-store sales, became the norm across retail verticals as brands used seamless marketing innovations to attract consumers, build brand status and drive customer loyalty.
Smart Use Of Data Grew As Consumers Became More Comfortable With Sharing
The acquisition of data from consumers has undergone a tremendous amount of scrutiny over the last several years. At the same time, consumers have become more comfortable sharing data if they are aware of how it is being collected and used — especially if they receive customized, quality customer service or some other value in return. Younger audiences, in particular, seem more open to exchanging personal information for value, offering opportunities for brands to collect first-party data and scale engagement.
Surprise Partnerships Between Brands And Rappers Popped Up Multiple Times
A funny trend that continued in 2019 was unlikely partnerships between brands and rappers, particularly Lil Jon who reprised his popular duet with Kool Aid Man and appeared in a Pepsi spot during the Super Bowl. Chance the Rapper did his thing for Doritos Flamin' Hot Nachos, Cardi B appeared in a Pepsi campaign and partnered with Reebok, and record-breaker Lil Nas X was featured in a Nintendo Switch spot. Unlikely partnerships are a fun way to create memorable campaigns and garner the attention of consumers.
Personalization From Brands Is More And More Expected By Consumers
An increased desire for personalization from brands became apparent in 2019, with personalization including targeted promotions as part of loyalty programs. As consumers become smarter and their options more varied, the demand for personalization will likely increase, with marketers forced to tailor campaigns to meet those expectations.
In 2020, marketers should expect advances in the digital innovations and consumer expectations that have taken hold the last several years. Those who place an emphasis on driving value will continue to win.
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About the AuthorMore Content by Sarah Cavill