The year 2021 is approaching quickly, and with all the changes we’ve been forced to adapt to in 2020, even the simplest of otherwise usual tasks may easily get overlooked. If we think back on how this year started and how fast we’ve had to cope with rapid changes, it’s only reasonable to stipulate that we have learned a lot.
One thing we’ve learned for certain is – more things can be achieved from the comfort of our homes than we thought was possible, and this doesn’t apply only to online hangouts and virtual parties. Jobwise, people unfamiliar with the fast-paced developments in the gig economy have learned that there are multiple tools and even more ways to make our lives easier and our productivity better.
Let’s take a look at the most important knowledge we can apply to the forthcoming year.
1. Make Sure You Love Your Email Client
It’s a well-known fact that people spend too much time checking incoming emails, even those that aren’t time-sensitive. It is also well known that every interruption delays the ongoing task and affects our concentration.
In addition, there are a number of other apps we keep checking regularly, thus creating additional distractions and disrupting the workflow. Simply put, we waste our time left and right while it doesn’t have to be so.
Much has been said about different approaches to better optimizing the time spent checking a multitude of platforms and email accounts. The best of them seems to be using an email client that integrates other apps, such as Asana and Slack, or allows you to manage multiple accounts.
By doing this, we not only save precious time but also learn to perform the tasks in a more efficient way. Getting used to the routine is, hence, the first goal for 2021.
2. Focus on Lean Operations
Lean operations have never been more important than these days when we’re witnessing people losing jobs at an alarming rate. Even if this is an extreme example, there is no reason why you shouldn’t learn to apply lean operations to optimize your business.
Simply put, lean operations portend a “do more with less” strategy. Basically, it means that the effort should be directed towards establishing an engaged workforce, increased profits, a productive workspace and overall, boosting internal functions.
3. Develop a New or Improved Marketing Strategy
Email marketing is the cheapest way of advertising and can be extremely effective if done right, even in the challenging times we’ve been weathering for months.
Much has been said about email marketing strategies, which depend greatly on a multitude of factors, but less is known about the focus and performance of prospective clients.
Hence, it would be a good idea to start 2021 with this intel in mind, especially since the rules of the game have changed due to the ongoing pandemic.
What we do know for certain is that some sectors traditionally perform better than others no matter the circumstances and external factors. Thus, top industries by open rate in 2020 include government (30.5%), nonprofit (25.2%) and education (23.4%). When it comes to the ranking of industries by CTR, the top performers are government (4.1%), real estate, design and construction activities (3.6%), and agriculture, forestry, fishing and hunting (3.5%).
Government, nonprofit and education continually top the list, and the trend is unlikely to change dramatically – even due to the pandemic. Hence, if your business can fit into some of these benchmarks, you should start preparing the best strategy for 2021.
Next on, think about improving click-to-open-rates and open rates. To do this, focus on the following:
- Check how your emails display across devices, making sure that subject lines are displayed in full.
- Send only segmented emails.
- Optimize the email copy and design.
- Feature a professional and clearly visible CTA.
- Automate email campaigns whenever applicable.
- Be careful with the timing and frequency of your campaigns.
- Compose stellar subject lines no longer than 60 characters.
- Write quality content, consistent with your brand’s tone and business promise.
- Optimize all emails and subject lines.
- Optimize pre-header text.
- Always send only relevant content.
- Advertise one offer or promotion only.
- Send personalized offers.
The checklist may appear rather long, but these items are crucial for your brand’s long-term email marketing success.
4. Research and Re-Research Your Target Audience
It’s a no-brainer that audiences change over time, but 2021 may just bring additional surprises due to everything we’ve witnessed in 2020. That’s why it’s more important than ever to know your audience and keep in touch on a regular basis.
It’s only to be expected that the approach will change. Actually, it already has. For months, the focus has been on empathy and unison, so it’s time to boost your performance by reaching out to customers old and new, in line with the trend.
5. Adapt Your Business Approach to Fit the Challenging Times
Many people have been struggling in 2020, and the fate of numerous businesses is hanging in the air. It is crucial, therefore, to stay positive and rethink your business approach.
Unless you’re operating in the tourist industry, you should be able to come up with a multitude of ideas to boost your performance.
For example, think how you can reduce the costs by allowing employees to remain working remotely after the pandemic is gone. This can save you significant sums of money that would otherwise be spent on office space, food and snacks, utility bills, etc.
Next, you can establish a regular online event the employees have enjoyed before. Why not create some new standards?
It’s fairly obvious that 2021 will be an interesting year for average people and businesses alike. Because we have witnessed changes to every aspect of our lives in 2020, it naturally follows that certain novelties will remain strong in times to come. After all, we’ve learned that lots of time can be saved by optimizing our tasks and working remotely, so the gig economy is likely to keep gaining popularity, challenging the traditional business model. The mantra for 2021 is definitely – be adaptable and learn on the go! If you consider the statement closely, you’ll realize that this is how things should always have been, anyway.