The COVID-19 pandemic is pretty much unpredictable - no one would predict that we would live in a year of pandemic - All changes have to be carried out because of this pandemic. Daily activities such as teaching, working, studying, have also changed. Less directly, these social activities have a huge impact on marketing activities such as branding.
Marketing as one of the important factors in the economic world has also been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. The changes were not small and they were indeed big changes and very significant. Therefore, the problem that has to be solved by all business people and marketers is;
How can a brand survive in the middle of these quick changes during a pandemic?
First thing first, the main aspect that has to be considered is the pandemic itself, and by that, COVID-19 is the key word to solve the problem. According to the previous research by Dentsu, the pandemic is the reason why long-term trends in every field, especially digital marketing, are created in the first place.
With the existence of the pandemic, people would automatically switch to a healthier lifestyle. This makes sense because we're currently living in the middle of a pandemic that has been going on for more than a year.
Not only healthy lifestyle, the pandemic has also made people or consumers pay more attention to climate changes and environment. People have become more sensitive and aware of all of these changes, and most of them are bad, obviously. Thus, it will also have a long-term impact where the consumers tend to avoid things that can do such damage and harm the environment.
The pandemic has also changed the way people perceive things such as, they want something that is more simple, healthier, and entertaining. This has something to do with lockdown and quarantine during the pandemic. For example; people who like sport, would prefer e-sport rather than the ‘actual’ one. Again, thanks to the pandemic.
If we take a closer look, in the long term, all of this would become a habit. Thus, what becomes a challenge for brands is that they have to provide such simple activities that people usually do during quarantine, even after the quarantine ends. This means that brands have to evolve and innovate.
The next challenge is, practical consumers are usually more focused on buying their needs at online retailment shops and e-commerce. What’s the main reason?
The customers are more comfortable using e-commerces because they provide the customers needs, all at once, on one platform or site only. This has caused brands to be almost invisible to customers.
So how do we solve this?
The solution for digital marketing to successfully implement long-term branding is that brands must continue to innovate and develop, just like technology, health, and climate change. Indirectly, these aspects have a huge impact on people’s daily lives including what people do like and dislike. To build a “human centric” brand is also very important so that the brand’s message can be delivered and would meet the customer’s expectations.
All of this can also be supported by Intensive Intelligence which is the ability to provide views, values, and the identity of a brand. These aspects have to support the consumer’s values as well such as inequality and so on. Remember, being transparent and collaborative also can help a brand to expand chances of success in a long term digital marketing.
So, the question is, how can a brand stay put for the next 10 years?
Brands have to follow current trends that exist in society so that they can survive. Thus, there are some “Key Trends” which are predicted to become the main trends that will be followed by society in the future. These key trends are not only focused on the continuity of the brand itself, but also can help brands build the long term vision for the next 10 years.
1. Healthy Lifestyle
Every brand is a healthy brand, where all brands offer a healthy lifestyle to their consumers. The prolonged pandemic period makes health a top priority for consumers. This has also become a consideration for consumers in choosing a brand.
2. Modern Virtual Technology
The quarantine has caused more virtual communications through technology. This has also become a challenge for brands to create a technology that provides a practical yet real-life experiences technology for the consumers to interact with each other.
3. The Connection Between Ecommerce and Customers.
Brands with online retail in the next 10 years will have a bigger size and scope. Consumers will also choose to rely on a brand that provides all their lifestyle needs. In the future, consumers prefer practical things. In this case, brands can collect the customers data and make the brand a one-stop shop for groceries, health care, and even financial services altogether in one platform only.
4. Climate Change
Consumers' concerns about the effect of climate change will increase in the next 10 years. Thus, always make sure that brands also represent the same values as customers. The more you care, the more customers can be intrigued by choosing your brand as their final destination.
5. New Form of Identity
In the next 10 years, consumers will also believe that existing advertisements and media are not enough to represent the real reality. Therefore, they need a new identity. By 2030, the way consumers respond to identity will shift from; name, age, gender, occupation, into gender not determined from birth, personality, and preferences. This makes brands must provide new identity templates for its consumers as well.
6. Tech Overload
Technological overload may occur in the future. Therefore, consumers will prioritize real life interaction with fellow humans. Of course, after such a long period of pandemic with less real life interaction, people would eventually get tired of that. They need some real life experiences, and that is what makes them want to take a break from technology for a while. This, of course, makes brands have to get used to selling something based on real life experience.