Table of contents
In today’s competitive marketplace it’s essential to stay ahead of the curve. Trends shape the way businesses operate and evolve, so unless we’re looking ahead at what’s to come, we’ll be left behind.
Early adoption of new technologies and ideas are often high risk, high reward ventures, so let’s look at the current marketing trends in 2021 to get a better grasp of how we can grow our businesses in 2022.
1. Marketing Automation
It’s hard enough to manage a marketing campaign on its own without having to worry about every little detail of the logistical struggles that come with it. Marketing automation streamlines the processes of marketing roles to allow for time to be spent more efficiently.
It’s a tool that helps implement marketing strategies and automatically creates and sends messages, blog posts, emails etc. based on instructions you create for it.
Marketing automation can be used for complex jobs or to simply handle basic, repetitive tasks, but regardless of the extra time and manpower that automation affords you can’t be understated.
The opportunity to implement automation into your marketing strategy with email marketing software is already at your fingertips so there’s no reason to hold off on what is a simple, yet effective part of any strong marketing plan going into 2022.
2. Artificial Intelligence
Marketing technology is constantly evolving, but artificial intelligence specifically has grown tremendously in the fields of data analysis. With the ever-growing importance of social media for businesses, AI programming has specifically found a use in determining what kind of content garners higher engagement This has led businesses to tailor blog posts and other content to hit on these pressure points for their audience.
The biggest hurdle with AI software is the complexity that comes with designing it. But, the proof is in the pudding with a PWC survey showing that of the 1,000 U.S based companies surveyed, 52% have increased their AI adoption strategies, seen improvements in customer experiences, product innovation, efficiency boosts and cost savings.
AI implementation is a long-term venture, and one way to prepare for this trend is to invest in software engineers that can develop and tailor AI software specific to your company’s needs.
3. Content Marketing
Although the previous two trends are rooted in technological advancement, content marketing plays more on driving sales through the first two steps of the buying cycle: awareness and research.
While the types of content used generally revolve around web pages, blog posts, videos, and podcasts the only limit to how you implement your content marketing strategy is your own creativity
However, the concept only works if the content is seen as valuable so that consumers don’t feel as if they’re being sold something and instead see it as simply content to enjoy.
Guitar and skateboard magazines have had this down to an art for years and have teenagers paying as much attention to the ads as they do the articles. How? They leverage the value of pro skaters and famous guitarists to influence their markets.
Content marketing can even result in consumers paying for this form of marketing (for instance, movies, spinoff tv shows, subscription-based models etc.) but the theory all works the same. Quality content that places your product in people’s worlds, not by force, but because they want to, is a powerful tool moving forward.
Customer service has long been one of the toughest crafts to master, some companies approach this by employing strict customer service training and guidelines, but thankfully Chatbot technology can circumvent all that and help in a different way.
This technology is designed to conduct B2C online communication automatically and the uses can vary from sales to marketing, or automated responses using script sequencing. One of the most impactful 2020 and 2021 marketing trends had to offer was Chatbots because of the impact the pandemic has had on the online ecommerce space.
Chatbot software has curved a need for increased customer service and online help agents by automating and streamlining services such as general order queries, FAQs and status updates.
With a wide variety of chatbot software providers to choose from and the timeliness of its emergence, there’s no reason why you can’t stay ahead of the game and get on board with this invaluable marketing trend.
Personalised marketing aims to create ads, messaging and product offers tailored specifically to an individual based on collected data.
You see it all the time on social media, one minute you’re browsing the web, looking up something about a product or brand, and the next time you open up Instagram or Twitter you’re greeted with an ad relating to that very same thing. There is a 4-step process that goes into personalised marketing:
Identify: This is the process of understanding at a base level who the customer is.
Differentiate: Recognise the difference between what makes this customer different from others based on their values and priorities.
Interact: Learning the channels this customer is most likely to use and enjoys the most.
Customise: This is the part where all data collected is then used to personalise the product/service to the customer.
The sheer quantity of services and products available to consumers is gigantic, and personalised marketing narrows the scope down to what they are likely to engage with.. Netflix, Instagram and Twitter all have it down to a science, so there’s no need to reinvent the wheel when it comes to your own adaptation in your own business.
We don’t always plan days, weeks or even months in advance for every single purchase. Sometimes we’re caught off guard by moments of realisation that prompt immediate action.
Micro-moments are the instances when we instinctively turn to a device to make a decision or form an opinion on something. More often than not, this is the beginning of the modern consumer’s customer journey and with smartphones being ever-present, it’s not surprising why.
We can leverage this trend by using location services and predictive analytics to make sure we’re in the right place at the right time to inspire impulse buying.y placing relevant products in relevant places, we can manufacture these micro-moments for our target markets.
It’s a marketing trend that plays on impulse, so by no means is this a simplistic strategy, but the power of impulse satisfaction is amazingly strong and one to be on top of if you’re trying to be across 2022’s most impactful marketing trends.
7. Omnichannel Marketing
Today, more than ever there is an overwhelming number of platforms to participate on when it comes to marketing a product. It can be overwhelming for consumers to see 10 different ways to purchase an item, so what omnichannel marketing aims to achieve is a smoother experience than galvanises and ties together all channels (mobile apps, websites, in-person stores etc.) to work cooperatively for each other.
Multichannel marketing has been the norm for a long time, having all channels available to the consumer, but working independently of each other. Omnichannel marketing integrates and interconnects to bring a collaborative effort across all platforms and bolsters the effectiveness of each channel.
Ultimately, it’s still about the user experience, but by reorganising and adjusting your business to allow a seamless path for consumers to navigate each of your engagement channels, the ease of access allows for a wealth of success.
8. Augmented Reality
As technology evolves, we see the demands of consumers also evolve with it. Augmented reality (AR) delivers a truly unique experience to customers that can also be beneficial for businesses, and as something mutually beneficial to both sides, it’s hard to see a world where AR doesn’t grow into something we see more and more of.
Things like clothes, furnishings, artwork and other cosmetic items can profit greatly from AR technology as their functionality isn’t as important as their appearance and being able to physically model a product without wasting inventory or risking damage to products is both highly desirable and previously impossible.
Topshop, Timberland, L’Oréal and Facebook are some of the brands leading the charge in the AR marketing realm, and with cameras being a staple on phones and other devices, the technology is far more accessible now than it ever has been.
9. Blockchain technology
The evolution of blockchain technology has come a long way, and now we’re seeing a much wider integration of it from businesses. Acceptance by a few niches is one thing, but as the popularity grows, the marketing possibilities do too. Blockchains are essentially a format of transaction validation without the need for a reputable organisation like Amazon orGoogle to act as a middleman.
A few of the growing blockchain trends on the horizon are:
- Universal Identity systems. These are globally recognised identification systems that maintain a person’s privacy and can be accessed and shown from the convenience of our own devices to anyone at any time.
- Blockchain-as-a-Service (BaaS). A third party using blockchain systems to manage online networks and transactions for companies centred around blockchain products.
- Non-Fungible Tokens (NFTs). Whilst divisive in some communities still, the ways NFTs can identify and validate a unique and inimitable asset will have many applications in future marketing schemes.
10. Data Analysis
It’s easy to get distracted by the complex innovations in technology, but what has and will always work is the simple strategy of data analysis. Whether it is intricate data collected online, through sales, or manually collected data from surveys, being able to see the results of the strategies you’ve already applied, can guide you towards stronger, and more effective marketing tactics in the future.
It’s about achieving goals, and with so many data analysis tools available, you’re only hurting yourself by not partaking in this universally embraced marketing trend.