3 Trends That Industry Experts Expect to Dominate 2021

The Start Of Business

It’s the first week of February, and more and more people are receiving the Covid-19 vaccine. I am feeling very hopeful. Before we get too far into the new year, I wanted to share three trends that industry experts expect to dominate 2021. We’re seeing them at Perficient as well.

Personalization and The Age of The Engaged Customer

“The next generation of personalization is not about cookies or third-party data, it’s not about merchandising, and it’s not about guesswork,” according to Cheetah Digital CMO, Richard Jones. “The next generation of personalization is about relying on deep data insights, and using machine learning to derive not only the right content, not only the right offer, not only the right channel but, the right sequence of events that leads to an automated path to conversion.”

What Does It Mean?

Customers have multiple options for each service or good they are seeking, and the companies who take time to dedicate personalized ads, or messaging, will truly prosper. Why? Because this is what customers are being conditioned to expect. From simple concepts like a direct thank you message after a purchase with their name versus customer, to specific messaging based off of collected data directing a customer towards an item.

Personalization is the future of consumer engagement. The fastest way to achieve this is with a specialized and dedicated data service. Companies have access to unlimited customer data, so why not utilize that information to help formulate specific messaging and offers for their customers? It’s up to companies to make their consumers feel like a valued individual versus a number from a sale.

Virtual Interfaces in A Socially Distant World

As companies raced to find new ways of delivering service to customers who were not walking into stores, they began to consider providing some of the services in digital forms using technology such as augmented reality, virtual reality, and mixed reality.

What Does It Mean?

Plain and simple, customers still want to buy and will engage with new and exciting platforms to make sure their product is the best to suit their needs. Makes up tutorials from leading brands, 360-degree views inside a new vehicle that can be delivered to your door, viewing an item in your home before you even purchase it, and a new mindset of “try before you buy.”

In order to provide the best options for customers to continue shopping and engaging with your brand, you should ensure your website, app, and social pages are up-to-date with the newest technologies and offers because you can guarantee your competitors are doing the same thing.

Working from Home but Collaborating Across the Globe

Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, the majority of non-essential jobs transitioned from a corporate workplace or office to a work-from-home environment. Looking forward to 2021, we hope that the transition to returning to offices will begin mid-summer, but just in case that doesn’t happen or your company wants to continue to work from home, how will you continue virtual collaboration methods?

To prepare for the future and to sustain the change, companies might want to consider a transition to a stable communication and collaboration platform providing secure and efficient workflows.

What Does It Mean?

Zoom, which grew from a startup in 2011 to going public in 2019, became a household name during the pandemic, but it had its share of issues (e.g., hacks, security). Other existing large corporate tools such as Cisco’s Webex, Google Hangouts, GoToMeeting, and Verizon’s BlueJeans are also providing state-of-the-art videoconferencing systems, facilitating remote work across the globe.

But, in order to fully transition to a secure and efficient virtual workspace, companies might want to consider adopting Microsoft Teams. This platform allows for instant messaging, calls, file sharing, and collaboration.

If the current engagement tool your company is using works, then don’t reinvent the wheel. But, if your company is looking for the next step in a remote workspace, then perhaps Teams is the answer.

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Garrett Hill

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