AFFIRM Guide to 2021 Marketing Buzzwords

2020 was a year for the books, where the COVID-19 pandemic changed many aspects of our daily lives. From increasing our online presence to changes in how we use social media and how products are promoted, marketers have had to change and adapt with the ever- evolving needs of their customers. But as 2021 counts down its remaining months still stuck in the pandemic, we continue to see how the marketing industry continues to evolve in our new reality. Therefore, we put together a list of the 2021 most popular marketing buzzwords (so far) that you may have encountered as either a marketer or consumer.

Growth Hacking

Growth Hacking involves a cross-disciplinary set of marketing skills that uses minimal resources and cost-effective digital marketing strategies to help grow a product or service at a faster rate. Its focus is short-term and aims to gain exposure as fast as possible for little to no money.

For example, Airbnb created a feature where hosts could post their listings to Craigslist with one simple click. This provided them immediate access to a huge market of users that were looking for cheap, alternate housing accommodations.


Humaning is a consumer-centric approach to marketing that creates real, human connections with purpose. The focus is not direct marketing to consumers but creating connections with humans that in turn create sales. This term describes a type of integrated marketing approach that has been around for years, but this buzzword provides a new way to describe the marketing of personal relationships with the consumer.

Snackable Content

This term describes all “easy to consume” content. This includes any sort of video, text, images, etc. that is brief, entertaining, and effective. Snackable content provides the ability to spread your message quickly and efficiently, making it more likely to be shared on social media.

This infographic made by Manoj Naduvath on LinkedIn, shows a good example of snackable content. It also tells us why this straightforward style of content can be important for your business to stand out, keeping in mind the vast amount of information consumers take in daily. Making it an easily digestible “snack” is key!

Contextual Marketing

Contextual marketing is the practice of using data to create targeted ads for specific customers. Have you ever noticed when you search for something on Google, you get a Facebook Ad for that same product an hour later? Marketers don’t look at your search history alone, they look at why you’re searching for these things. This also includes things such as location, language, and preferred apps.

Machine Learning

Machine learning is the process of using computer algorithms to process data and predict future outcomes. According to Amazon, nearly 35% of its sales comes from their personalized recommendations derived from machine learning. Although this style of data analysis has been around for a while and is used in almost every industry, be sure to keep an eye out for this newly coined phrase to describe big data analysis.


Geofencing is a location-based service that is used when the consumer goes in or out of a set boundary (or geofence). With this technique, you can use GPS technology to send texts, emails, or notifications to audiences when their mobile devices are in a specific area.

Geofencing allows marketers to send targeted messages to users at the exact time they are most likely to use them. 71% of consumers prefer personalized ads, making Geofencing an incredibly accurate and cost-effective tool.

Although some of these buzzwords are simply rebranding marketing strategies that have been around for years, others are brand new terms that you may have never heard before. Either way, be sure to keep them top of mind as the world continues to adjust and evolve how to effectively reach the right audiences for a specific product or service.

Get the most out of your marketing efforts by contacting our experienced team of marketing and advertising professionals. To learn more about all AFFIRM’s agency services, please email us at

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Affirm Agency

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