Every year, the digital marketing landscape matures, and every year, businesses need to alter their digital marketing strategy to account for shifting consumer tastes, advancing technologies, available data and more. The trends digital marketing experts followed to find online success in 2021 are starting to wane, and they are being replaced by new trends for the coming year.
Fortunately, business leaders have plenty of time to pivot to account for new trends — as long as they know what they are. Here are a few trends digital marketing experts predict will be big in 2022:
After enduring the pandemic for over a year and a half, most Americans have become accustomed to living much of their lives online. While fear of the virus has closed down many venues or else driven away a good portion of in-person crowds, digital events have kept people connected and entertained as coronavirus has reigned. Though the pandemic does not seem about to abate, many businesses are beginning to host in-person events once again — but they’re not abandoning their digital audiences.
Hybrid events, those that are available for both in-person and virtual attendance, help businesses engage a larger portion of their audience, and they will continue to do so even as fear of the virus begins to dissipate. Business leaders and digital marketers planning events for 2022 should consider how they can integrate their digital followers into the festivities.
In 2022, it will be more important than ever that a business’s digital content aligns across platforms and with other aspects of a business’s marketing strategy like PR and thought leadership. Cohesive content helps build visibility, credibility and authority, which will attract more consumers to build a larger and more engaged audience.
However, many business leaders have more experience in one area of digital marketing than in others, which can lead to an imbalance in where content is published or what kind of content appears where. Executives might consider pursuing a digital marketing programme, which can provide the tools and techniques for developing digital marketing campaigns and integrating them into broader business strategies. Check https://www.getsmarter.com/products/oxford-digital-marketing-disruptive-strategy-programme for more info.
Storytelling marketing is using narrative to inspire consumers to take action. As empathic creatures, humans have physiological responses to stories that resonate with them; when those stories are associated with brands, consumers are more likely to remember their positive brand interaction and develop deep loyalty toward those brands.
It can take years for a business to develop a strong storytelling marketing campaign; some of the most effective storytelling brands, like Disney and Coca-Cola have been telling stories in their marketing for decades. Fortunately, digital marketing channels make it easier to develop rich and rewarding stories as well as to engage with consumers moved by those stories. Thus, more brands are committing to storytelling in 2022.
It isn’t uncommon for businesses to outsource digital marketing to an experienced and dedicated digital marketing firm. However, there are risks to outsourcing this significant task, such as a lack of connection between digital marketers and the products or services they are promoting. Sometimes, marketers are less motivated to reach particular goals because they do not directly benefit from a business’s success.
Thus, many digital marketing firms are looking for ways to take some ownership of the products and services they are tasked to sell. Business leaders might consider working with their marketing firm to develop a system that the firm can use to cultivate ownership as they meet agreed-upon marketing goals.
More consumers are looking to support businesses committed to creating positive effects on the world around them. Therefore, savvy business leaders will start cultivating relationships with nonprofits that provide services that align with their organization’s values.
Businesses can use their established digital marketing resources to advocate for the nonprofit of their choice. Engaging with nonprofits shouldn’t be the beginning and end of a business’s digital marketing strategy, but it certainly helps create a well-rounded brand image.
AI and Influencers
Influencer marketing remains a billion-dollar market, despite small changes to the type of influencers businesses want to utilise. . These days, digital marketers tend to be interested in working with micro-influencers, or influencers with smaller audiences who are more highly engaged.
However, business leaders might also consider leveraging AI to help identify which influencers are right for spreading their marketing messages. Artificial intelligence tools will be able to consume influencer content faster and more accurately than humans are able to, which allows them greater insight for making decisions about influencer deals.
Google has postponed its phase-out of the third-party cookie until 2023, which means business leaders and digital marketers need to devote 2022 to finding and transitioning to an alternative method of identifying and understanding online consumer behavior. Gathering and exploiting first-party cookies should be a business’s first step, as they provide some insight without intruding on consumer privacy. Then, businesses might deploy more interactive content that allows consumers to report their behavior and motivation.
Studies on digital consumer behavior have found that most users ignore online advertisements, filtering them into the background as they navigate the web. In 2022, this will drive digital marketers in one of two ways: Either digital advertisers need to differentiate their online ads to attract consumer attention, or they can escape from the digital white noise and fall back on more traditional forms of advertising, like direct mail. These days, snail mail can feel more personal than email or other digital communications, which results in greater engagement from consumers. Companies need only be certain that their direct mail campaign aligns with their broader marketing strategy.
By no means are these the only digital marketing trends likely to develop in 2022, but they are certainly on marketing experts’ radar. By preparing their digital marketing strategy for these expected developments, businesses should keep their marketing metrics strong through the new year.