How Brands Can Prepare for 2021 (Plus 5 Consumer Trends You’ll Need to Know)

To map out your content for both your social media channels as well as your website (think: blog content and newsletters), keep in mind the following:

  • What type of content you’ll post
  • How frequently you’ll post content to social and web
  • Creating content in batches
  • The tools you’ll use to schedule and publish content
  • How you’ll organize your content
  • How you’ll promote your content
  • Which paid channels you’ll use
  • Whether you need to audit your existing content and target audiences

 

TIP: Use tools like Google Sheets for a free way to map and organize your content for all channels. This will give you a high-level overview of what you’ll post, when you’ll post it, and you’ll promote it.

When mapping out your content, don’t forget to take into account those paid channels! For example, if you’re setting aside budget for digital advertising in 2021, you can include the ad types and ad content you’ll need when mapping out your other content.

Set up your channels and website for e-commerce

Most pet brands will already have online shopping options or will be 100% e-commerce focused. However, if your brand has yet to optimize its channels for e-commerce, right now is the perfect time to rev up your plans to do so!

Your website is not the only place for your customers to shop, so it’s critical that you eliminate any barriers to making a purchase. To do that, try optimizing your channels with the following:

  • If your current website platform doesn’t offer e-commerce functionality, or it’s outdated/clunky, consider migrating your website to an e-commerce platform like Shopify or WooCommerce
  • If you haven’t already, set up Facebook and Instagram for shopping so you can tag products in your social media posts
  • Use a tool like Linktree to optimize your social media bios so audiences can quickly click and shop
  • Update your website platform’s post-purchase and Abandon Cart emails to include more prompts to purchase

It may seem like a lot of work to optimize your channels like this, but it can actually be simple with the right tools and does not have to take up days or weeks!

Map out promotions and campaigns

The global pandemic has made it difficult for many customers to shop the way they used to, with consumers becoming increasingly more spend-conscious and aware of value (quality). Knowing this, your audiences may not be able to purchase as regularly as they once did, pre-pandemic.

If you plan on running promotions, campaigns, and special discounts throughout the year in 2021, mapping out those campaigns now will help ensure you have everything you need to click “go” once campaigns are ready to launch.

An easy way of mapping out campaigns is to use a tool (again, Google Sheets works, but you can also use Google Docs or other free tools) where you can organize the why, what, when, where and how of your campaigns. Take a look at the table below as an example of how you can map out campaigns.

TIP: Ensure any campaign or promotion you run is intentional. For instance, holiday promotions are popular and make sense for shoppers looking for holiday deals, but you can also run a campaign around your brand’s anniversary or when you launch a new product. Mapping this out will help you maximize your campaigns with a budget in place.

Offer more local or regional shopping options

If you’re a small business owner, expanding your customers’ shopping options is a great way of not only acquiring more customers but retaining existing ones. Like we mentioned above, supporting local and small businesses is only going to continue being important to consumers in 2021, but you also want to eliminate any barriers customers have for making a purchase!

If you don’t have a physical storefront, you can still offer local or even regional shopping options for customers who want to shop both online and offline.

For example, you can work with local shops and boutiques to wholesale your products, or talk to small pet shops about stocking limited runs of your products. Alternatively, you could sell on additional platforms outside of your own website (like Etsy), and offer local pickup to customers in your city or hometown.

Another fun and creative option is to partner with other local brands and create subscription boxes for local customers, so you can subscriptions online or offer custom bundles around certain holidays. Most small business owners will be happy to work together to reach more customers and get products flying off the physical and virtual shelves!

Preparing to grow your business in 2021 doesn’t have to be scary or overwhelming! With the right tools and the right action in plan, you’ll head into the new year ready to serve your customers (and grow your pet brand).

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