Key digital trends for 2021

 Here are the seven digital trends for 2021.

1) Changes in B2B & B2C marketing strategies – Creating efficient strategies in lead generation and relationships

As well as engaging, social media now has to deliver sales results, and this is visible when a company begins to measure such results effectively. With the pandemic, some business models have been accelerated, such as online retail, click and collect, frictionless retail, and D2C e-commerce, changing the way companies position themselves to meet customer needs. Today, one of the basic principles of any content strategy is generating leads to build relationship with potential customers.

In the strategic domain, a big hit this year is expected to be big data-based natural language processing (NLP), which should help gain better understanding of the information obtained through big data systems and thus ease user interaction. Other highlights are the Data Warehouse (predictive, prescriptive, descriptive or diagnostic analytics) and Dark Data, which refer to all information that companies collect, process and store in the normal course of their activity, but are not intended for any other specific use.

2) Will 2021 be the year of AR and AI?

We are currently in the third wave of the Internet, a stage where Virtual Reality (VR), Augmented Reality (AR) and Artificial Intelligence (AI) are already part of all (or almost all) aspects of our lives. With these tools, brands can go beyond screens: they can experiment new formats and increase their creativity. However, like all new technology, using this resource requires a large investment in the development of prototypes.

Another factor pointing to the growth of Augmented Reality is the 5G technology, which should soon revolutionize how we connect with the Internet of Things (IoT). In the area of Artificial Intelligence (AI), we can expect a significant advance in technology being used to improve workflows and the buyer’s journey through personalization and hyper-personalization. In marketing, automation should go beyond naming the person to whom the message is directed; however, as artificial intelligence advances, some companies, such as content agencies, may probably be adversely affected.

3) Entertainment, Music, & Games – Creating online communities through influencers

It is often said that one of the paths to the future of social media is entertainment. However, several brands have difficulties in creating attractive content to their customers. An extremely viable solution is to team up with influencers who already do it very naturally. After all, real people connect with real stories, and nothing better than working with great opinion makers to bring entertainment to consumers who are increasingly demanding and seeking true connections.

Another big news is Spotify Studios , launched in 2020, which is aiming to include video podcasts. The gaming world is promising too: for instance, Fortnite has already performed several initiatives, such as including DC Comics characters in the game.

4) Flywheel – The clients are in the center

Several markets have used data captured in the digital environment and creating segment-oriented messages based on the user’s personal characteristics. Now it is time to have these data used not only by the marketing team but by the entire organization in a more strategical fashion aiming to design new products, services and solutions, and place the customer in the very center of all operations. Part of this change is related to the m-commerce, whereby purchase is made via cellphones. By the end of 2021, mobile devices are estimated to generate nearly 73% of the total e-commerce sale record, which entails that we need new digital strategies, especially content-centered strategies.

5) Engagement with purpose – Diversity and inclusion initiatives

Changing people’s lives through the enterprise’s activities is a growing trend in the market. Embracing diversity is currently a challenge for brands of which the public demands a more authentic position and long-term actions. Therefore, organizations should not decide to support a cause if they do not intend to live up to the expectations through actions. For example, if an organization is willing to invest in an LGBT-oriented campaign, it must ensure that its employees hold this ideal, provide job opportunities to this demographic, and treat LGBT people adequately. This is the only way for the campaign to be effective. This applies to any other topic of interest. Brands approaching diversity-related topics is a response to the constant changes in society, but it is necessary to be cautious and avoid superficial approaches.

6) New possibilities – Virtual Assistants, Twitch, TikTok, WhatsApp, Shoploop, & Kormo Jobs

Both voice search and use of virtual assistants such as Alexa and Siri should be taken into account in 2021. With the increasing use of voice search, brands are supposed to produce content aiming at these platforms. Twitch, which is widely used by the gaming community, has gained new audiences. Chinese social media TikTok already has offices in various parts of the world capable of designing solid strategies for brands. WhatsApp has promised to become an important sales tool, especially for small businesses.

The latest is Shoploop, a new video application that has come to compete with TikTok, but it has a more commercial focus that can truly benefit electronic commerce. This new project comes from Area 120, a Google department dedicated to innovation. For now, Shoploop is still in its trial phase, but another novelty, also from Google, that promises to draw attention in 2021 is Kormo Jobs, the Asian LinkedIn, Google’s newest professional tool. Already available in India, it promises to become the newest website connecting professionals worldwide.

7) Creative Talent – Senior professionals with a disruptive leader

With the increasing value of digital marketing over the past months, native advertising and programmatical advertising have joined forces, and now must work cooperatively. Having a team well directed by a manager with robust global experience and holistic vision is of essence. Having a well-aligned team delivering projects by the deadline is no longer enough; it is also necessary to innovate and be disruptive, to have the ability to leverage the social media and content team and assist the marketing professionals to make important decisions.

For example, in 2021 digital teams should create strategies for Bing and Yahoo! as alternatives to Google, and consider programmatical advertising for wearables, including the popular smartwatches. All that must be discussed and strategically lined-up with televised merchandising.

Babbel | ‘Understanding changes everything.’

The campaign focuses on the transformational effects that come with knowing another language. Highlighting the claim Understanding Changes Everything, two new TV Spots show how small interactions in other languages can have profound effects on a personal and professional level. 
This adds to one of Babbel’s core brand messages: to inspire conversations that transform your world. The campaign has been developed based on research and market tests done via the research institute IPSOS.

It’s the first cooperation between Babbel and the award-winning Amsterdam-based production company Media Monks together with creative director Charlotte Moore.

While much of the language learning space is about promoting language skills as a bullet point for your résumé or a tool for your next holiday, Babbel wanted to dive deeper. “It’s true that learning a new language can change your cognitive skills, your career options or your personal life”, says Charlotte Moore, Creative Director for the campaign. “But deeper than that, beyond that, it enhances what you understand about yourself and the world around you. When you put people together who share that experience, the possibilities of change for the better increase dramatically. Understanding is a power for good, and Babbel takes the responsibility of spreading it through language-learning very seriously.”

The message: Learning a language isn’t just a transactional skill, but a life-changing activity that changes how you see other people and therefore the world. Babbel’s courses, developed by language learning experts give users the necessary confidence to engage in a conversation with others. The efficacy of the courses has been demonstrated in several studies in collaboration with, for example, Yale University.

To test how this messaging would resonate in the markets before launch, Babbel enlisted the help of the market research institute IPSOS. "After talking to consumers globally, we understood that they wanted to be inspired to learn a language, but also wanted to know more about the benefits of Babbel,” says Ana Cavalcanti, Head of Creative Operations at Babbel.

“This is why our creative strategy addresses both, with a brand spot that delivers a fresh perspective of Babbel that inspires people to start their language learning journey, and a product spot that reminds learners that Babbel's expert-crafted learning experiences will motivate them and help them achieve the gratification of speaking a foreign language."

The international campaign kicks off with the two TV spots in 30-, 20- and 10-second formats in the United Kingdom, Germany, Switzerland, Austria, Canada, Brazil, France, Italy and Spain. Besides TV the multi-channel campaign will be rolled out across social media, display, YouTube, PR channels and SEM

Babbel is the new way to learn a foreign language. The comprehensive learning system combines effective education methods with state-of-the-art technology. Interactive online courses will improve your grammar, vocabulary and pronunciation skills in no time. You'll make fast progress and have fun doing it.

NHS | Covid it ain’t over yet

Covid cases are going down (slowly) in the UK but there are still lots of people in hospital, many on ventilators.

By: MullenLowe London 

Kraft | Heinz | Draw Ketchup

We anonymously asked people all over the world to “draw ketchup.” The result? They all drew Heinz.

Idea by: Agency Rethink -Canada.


Total and ultimate brand building is when your product is synonymous with the category. When you become the industry not only one of the top of mind brands.

Leica| Our Small, Magnificent World

The world deserves witnesses. Our minds tend to bias for negative events, a quality often stoked by all the things seeking to stimulate us over the course of the day. But there are millions of tiny miracles occurring around us all the time. When we don't look, we miss them. A whole life could be spent missing the beauty of watching someone you love breathe.

This is what TBWA\Paris conveys, so warmly, in camera maker Leica's "The World Deserves Witnesses."

It begins: "This is it. This is our world. Our small world, where everything happens…"

That voice you hear is American photographer Joel Meyerowitz, who gave us this compelling puzzle of a picture circa 1974 or 1975. In the video, his voice ripples with emotion as he lists all the everythings happening around us: revolution, peace, war, hate, love, tragedy.

Some 30 photographers contributed to the campaign, and their images punctuate each word. The work is so beautiful, the juxtapositions so mindful, that it's helpful to stop and really look at them: Peace is two men mirthfully kissing. Women in the trenches, wearing varied expressions, illustrate war. A stuffed bear sits, as if on a trip, atop the wheels of a tank for "the killing." A bodybuilder, shiny and proud, represents hunger; a nun licking ice cream is "the little sins."

Maybe we are more sensitive to the impact of this ad since the presidential inauguration, whose many images, shared over and over across social media, seemed so replete with promises. But this past year, and its many trials, also reoriented us, forcing people to interrogate what is truly important to them. Some manifested the answer to that question by getting really political on social media. Others quit jobs or left cities, left partners. Still others learned to bake an awful lot of bread.

There is something of that here, too—this sense that we are just more aware of the world itself, not as an abstraction but as a living place where we also live, and that requires as much nurture as we do. Dreams of joining a Musk-powered Mars colony aside, this really is it, as Meyerowitz says at the beginning. This is our world, our small world. Where everything happens.

The video "manifesto" was developed using only existing photos; none were staged to suit the campaign, and nothing was retouched or altered. It will air online, with accompanying visuals to appear in more than 15 countries. Images will rotate and change over time.

"I had goosebumps down my arms and along my ribs when I first saw the video," Meyerowitz, who also contributed an image, says. "It was astonishing! It was more human and inspiring than anything any camera company has ever done! No doubt about it."

Below, check out the gallery of prints.


Brand: Andrea Pacella, Director Global Marketing & Communication Jérôme Auzanneau, Global Director Brand, Partnerships & Accessories 
TBWA\Paris: Renaud Berthe, Matthéo Pressmar, Alexandre Stachowiak Executive Creative Directors: Benjamin Marchal & Faustin Claverie Associate Creative Director: Philippe Rachel 
Associate Creative Director: Carl Härborg 
Art Purchase: Elise Kubler, Isabelle Jaubert 
Legal: Caroline Paillard 
Post-Production: Eléonore Girard 
Sound Production: \Else 
Composer: Niccolò Pacella 
Head of Music and Sound: Olivier Lefebvre 
Sound Director: Fabrice Pouvreau 
Sound Engineer: Alexandre Robieux 
Photographers (print in bold):  
Emily Garthwaite /Institute  
Kai Wiedenhöfer  
Sarah G. Ascough  
Stephen Vanasco  
Chris Suspect  
Véronique De Viguerie  
Justin Mott 
Gabriele Micalizzi 
Eolo Perfido  
Craig Semetko  
Jonathan Eden-Drummond  
Christian Werner  
Godong/ Getty Images 
Hulton-Deutsch Collection/ Getty Images 
Dotan Saguy  
Brian Otieno  
Joel Meyerowitz 
Pierre Belhassen  
Matt Stuart  
Bree Garcia  
Bruce Gilden / Magnum 
Frédéric Lanoizelé  
Richard Tsong-Taatarii  
Damir Sagolj 
Jasper Doest  
Joshua Buana  
Sylvestre Dedise  
Lutz Müller  
Emil Gataullin 

Puma | How ambush marketing was taken to a new level at the Olympics?

Promoting at the Olympics is safely guarded. After all, the keys to sponsorships sell for more than a billion dollars every four years.

Outside of that, no shenanigans are permitted.

When the clearly-defined rules are tampered with, the IOC gets very angry. They impose steep sanctions on those who transgress.

Meanwhile, with marketing, the brilliance often occurs at the edges, the tiny, hidden grey area between what is allowed and what isn’t. It is in this small pocket, that guerilla marketers unlock fortunes.

This is why this story is so brilliant.

The Setup

Usain Bolt owns the word ‘fast’. He is sponsored by internet companies. He is sponsored by jogging apparel.

And at the time, he was heavily sponsored by Puma, who was paying Bolt $10M a year as his primary sponsor, making him the face of the company.

They needed to capitalize on the Rio Games to justify this investment. Running a mere minute-long commercial would cost millions. And they lacked the budget to become a full-blown Olympic sponsor.

They needed a workaround.

100m Final

Usain Bolt flew across the finish line in 9.81 seconds, securing his gold medal.

He lifted his golden shoes high up in the air, striking his pose, and then took a lap around the stadium

It was all staged.

And as soon as he’d crossed the finish line, the marketing department at Puma kicked into high gear. It was 4 a.m. in their German offices. Their social media teams started carpet bombing social media with these images:

Notice this image doesn’t include a picture of Bolt or a reference to the Olympics. This was deliberate.
Here’s why

If you look at the actual footage from the race, he was wearing his gold shoes but they were modified:

The Olympic Committee had strictly forbidden marketing slogans being displayed by athletes. This was enforced down to the most minute details.

How Puma and Bolt Tricked Everyone

Technically — they hadn’t broken the rules. At the time of his race, the phrase was not an official marketing slogan. It was just in the moments after that it became one.

Additionally, and with a slight twist, the phrase on his shoes ‘forever fastest’ was simply a homage to Puma’s official slogan ‘forever faster’, which was named after Bolt in the months prior.

Bolt and Puma planned beforehand that he would hold the gold shoes up while doing his pose to help them be seen on cameras.

The inscribing on the insoles of his shoes was also deliberate. Bolt was zoomed in on more than any other athlete during the Olympics.

There was an additional reason Puma didn’t reference the Olympics or medals when posting Bolt’s shoes: they didn’t need to.

Everyone on the planet who was following the Olympics knew Bolt won his 100m when they saw these images. They knew exactly what Puma was talking about, without Puma having to be explicit.

By circumventing the rules, they’d pulled off a monster free advertisement that would have easily cost them tens of millions to buy. In turn, it led to more than $50M increased sales of their product in the following months.

Meanwhile, Nike was infuriated. They’d paid more than $100M to be the featured shoe brand of the Olympics. They threatened legal action in the aftermath, but when push came to shove, there was nothing more they could do.

Following these Olympics, the IOC had to tweak the marketing rules yet again which, when it comes to ambush marketing, is the surest sign of a win.

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