The world is going through a dynamic period of change. Digital transformation has accelerated as it responds to the Covid-19 pandemic, while new tech and brand models are disrupting the traditional ways to engage your customers.
This has meant that many marketers are now struggling to keep pace with both their customers and the rate of change.

Here we’ll take a look at some of the biggest signals from the future, which are starting to shape this new marketing world. They’re all driving marketers to excel at knowing their customers, humanising their interactions, and optimising their performance. And they can help you raise your marketing game too. 


10 Business Trends Responding to Change


1. From Going Online to Living Online

The pandemic has rapidly changed how people shop, build relationships and work in digital spaces. Sure, there are no guarantees these behaviours will stick once the world opens up, but we believe a lot of the changes will last - especially in younger generations who are more in need of connection and peer engagement.


2. Designing for the Long Game

Creating long and deep relationships with your customers is where your marketing needs to be. We’re helping brands like yours invent models of engagement, processes, and metrics designed for more long-lasting connections with your customers – from new service models to new ecosystems or by switching to D2C.


3. Ecosystem Ready

Customers interested in creating ecosystems and marketplaces need to partner more effectively with a broader range of brands. We’re helping them design an ecosystem that can benefit everyone at all levels of scale.


4. Virtual Relationship Management

Of all departments, sales teams most miss the human touch of doing deals through meetings, handshakes or client entertainment events. But the world is adapting fast to meet the challenge and relationships are beginning to be strategically nurtured in virtual space. We predict this trend will continue as the use of technology evolves to add real value to their interactions.


5. Customer Experiences Go Social

Because the pandemic has cut us off from our wider social groups, new opportunities have come up for companies that offer online group experiences. Even local musicians are finding a way to market themselves in this way by simply joining work zoom calls to entertain work teams.


6. Going All-In on D2C

Your avid customers are now more prepared to skip the middleman and communicate with you directly. The demand for D2C is growing and growing. So many companies are looking for ways to leverage this without affecting their existing retail partners.


7. Reality Vertigo

With facts being equivocated to opinions and the label of ‘fake news’ being applied to almost everything, customers are increasingly confused and bewildered about what’s real and what’s not. And their need for trust and credibility is now showing up in business relationships as well. No matter what your industry category, every company needs to able to be both credible and trustworthy to effectively break through all the noise.


8. Physical Places Create Digital Options

Many companies that need physical places to operate are coming up with creative ways to serve their customers online. From using your phone to explore stores or art galleries to estate agents showing virtual house viewings to getting online haircut lessons from your barber.


9. Designing for the Last Mile

As people avoid going out in public, some delivery services are so booked up that time slots are rarely open, and supply lines often fall short. Businesses that didn’t offer delivery now need to design for the last mile. And many have found new ways to reimagine the consumer experience around ordering and contactless delivery.


10. Crisis Fuelled Brand Discovery

Because the Covid-19 pandemic has changed the way we’ve lived our lives, it’s also changed the way we shop. And this has opened up new opportunities for customers to trial new products. At least two causes are responsible: third-party shoppers are now doing a lot of our purchasing, which often result in last-minute product swapping, and many high-demand products have been low in stock. We predict new brand loyalties may emerge from this market disruption and companies that reward new consumers will be at an advantage.


The future of marketing

With so much change going in our lives and in tech, trying to get ahead of your customers and the competition is a massive challenge. But knowing these trends and putting plans in place to leverage them will mean you’re maturing into a high-performing marketing team.

Take a Look at what the Future of Marketing Looks Like with this 5-minute video recap, and for more marketing videos catch up on all the innovations from Dreamforce on Salesforce+