A Marketer’s Peek at 2021

News of promising COVID-19 vaccines has many people anxious to kick what remains of 2020 off their heels. But that requires planning for a new year. Jim Kruger, chief marketing officer at Veeam Software, a developer of disaster recovery and intelligent data management software, predicts three important workplace trends for 2021.
Virtual events started out of necessity, but are here to stay because of ROI and accessibility.

As we move into 2021 and beyond, many events will stay virtual not only because of continued safety concerns, but also as a result of lessons learned in 2020. Companies found that by going virtual, they opened up their event to an entirely new audience, as virtual events are more accessible than in-person events.

For virtual events, visa issues, travel restrictions and costs aren’t as much of a concern as with in-person events, and many companies have discovered this allows for higher attendance and more participation. That means lower cost for more people and a higher ROI.  The key is to get creative and drive engagement through great speakers, rich content and some fun of course. In 2021 and beyond, virtual events will continue to be a popular means to engage with a broad set of customers as companies see the many benefits of online events.
2021 will see a stark divide in an organization’s marketing budget spend, followed by consequential impact.

With the unstable economy projected to carry into the new year, there will be a resulting stark divide in marketing budget spend. On one end, companies will look to cut back on marketing budgets because they see it as a variable cost that can be managed up or down fairly easily. On the other end, companies will increase investment in marketing because they see driving demand and building the brand as top priorities.

Looking ahead, those organizations pivoting funds away from marketing will ultimately endure longer-term impacts. Marketing takes time to build on, and by toggling budgets up and down, past investments will begin to lose momentum. A dip in marketing spend will put these companies well behind others who continue to invest. Those who choose to navigate through this uncertainty and prepare for recovery will be far more successful in the long run.
The “new normal” of remote work is here to stay.

The traditional idea of remote work will no longer look as it did before 2020. Employees are going to continue to enjoy – and most importantly, thrive – in the new flexible work environments they have experienced since remote work became widespread. In the year ahead, companies will recognize the myth that you have to physically be in an office to be successful. This time of flexible remote work will further prove that employees can be trusted to find a way to make it work and achieve results from any location.

Jim Kruger is chief marketing officer of Veeam Software, a provider of backup, disaster recovery and intelligent data management software for virtual, physical and multi-cloud infrastructures.

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