12 Marketing Trends to Watch For 2022 | Brandmark Studios - Ridgefield, CT

Hitting The Mark

Each and every year, new and emerging trends take hold of the marketing world. Although the pandemic has certainly changed priorities and created some uncertainties, experts are predicting what the future has in store. In many ways, marketing is a “game of trends”. The marketer who is best at spotting and implementing them, grows brand recognition and engagement, earns their business, and ultimately increases market share and revenue. For brands that are consumer-facing, B2B, or are in the healthcare space, here are a dozen core areas that demand your attention in 2022.

12 Marketing Trends to Watch For 2022

1. Communicate For The Win

As we turn the page on a new year, having an eye on these trends can aid C-suite executives to focus attention and resources on what will be most effective in the short term and help them in strategic planning for the long haul. The marketing team that is best at identifying, adapting, and activating the current trends is positioned to be successful in this dynamic, rapidly evolving arena.

2. Move Digital Marketing to The Head of The Class

Did you know that Google owns more than 92% of the global search engine market? Even more astounding, is the fact that 80% of major purchases also start with research online. To put it mildly, the statistics are staggering. Every business must dedicate resources to making sure their digital footprint is sound, vibrant, and that their UX is top notch. Digital consumerism is here to stay and will continue to evolve. Digital media and the vast array of platforms that can be used as marketing tools continue to grow rapidly. To get a seat in the front row, you’ll need to invest in your digital marketing infrastructure.

3. Direct-to-Consumer (D2C) Marketing Takes Center Stage

Direct-to-consumer (D2C) marketing is becoming increasingly important as the digital landscape continues to explode and provide businesses with more opportunities to connect directly with customers. Marketing campaigns that are informed by real data will outperform and improve your ability to tighten messaging, amplify your brand, accelerate the customer journey, enhance user experience, and boost understanding and trust. Putting the customer at the forefront of your marketing plans will be critical to success.

4. The Death of the Cookie

Cookies have been an extremely helpful tool for businesses to track and collect online visitors’ behavior. This data helped analysts understand their target audiences better. “The Death of the Cookie” means that Google will no longer provide this behavior data to third parties. With third-party cookies disappearing, brands have a chance to move away from questionable data from unknown sources, and focus on their own authentic first-party data to fuel superior customer experiences. This translates into a heavier workload for businesses, but the data will be more accurate and there will be less cookie fatigue for consumers. 2022 will be the year of creating alternate pathways to understanding consumer behavior.

5. Invest in Online Events

Online and virtual meetings and events have become the way of the world — especially since the pandemic hit. The breakneck growth of Zoom, Google Meet, Microsoft Teams and GoToMeeting, to name a few, have changed the way we do business forever. It’s predicted that a hybrid model of in-person and online events will become the norm in the post-pandemic world. That’s why businesses that institute a strong online event infrastructure now will be ahead of the game. They will benefit from having a well-branded and consistent method of engaging with consumers both online and in person. Create a format, graphics, messaging style and delivery system that suits your audience and budget. Add entertaining features and personal touches. Investing in digital events is an absolute MUST to be prepared, stay relevant and grow connections with your audiences.

6. Own Your Audiences

Knowing your audience is critical for success. An in-depth market research initiative will help you build a set of customer personas that uniquely describe your consumer profiles. This is imperative in a world where digital customization is a key component of a sound marketing strategy. Well-crafted personas help you understand customer behaviors and motivations, and inform the type of media you should use to reach them. They also help in tailoring content that speaks clearly to your prospects and help you to build long-lasting brand relationships with customers.

7. Invest in a Strong Brand Image

Investing time and money into building an impactful brand image is crucial to ensuring positive relationships with customers and to drive growth. Strong brands benefit from wide recognition and strong word of mouth, high customer loyalty, higher ROAS (Return of Advertising Spend), more engaged employees and attractiveness to candidates, and generally lower price sensitivity. Businesses that fail to create and nurture a solid brand simply won’t stand out in our rapidly paced, highly demanding, and super connected world. Safeguard your brand by using all its elements consistently and with care. Make sure your voice is as dependable as your design, and that your CX (customer experience) aligns with your brand vision. Dedicating resources to brand development will be a critical investment in 2022.

8. Elevate Through Education

From shopping online and scrolling through social media to watching your favorite TV series or listening to the latest podcasts, advertising is ubiquitous in our everyday experiences. So it’s imperative that businesses find new and innovative ways to break through the noisy media landscape and to appeal to consumers. A sure way to interact with customers on a deeper level is to educate them rather than employing a hard-selling approach. Delivering content that informs and keeps prospects coming back for more, builds trust over time. This thought leadership approach can establish you as an authority in your field and help set you apart from your competitors in the long run.

9. Adopt Marketing Automation

They say “Consistency is Key” but in business, keeping the ball moving can be tough. That’s why adopting marketing automation is one of the best tools in your shed. Not only does automation keep you delivering steady content to your audience, but it frees up your team’s time to focus on other business initiatives. Marketing automation platforms also provide timely performance data so you can test your messaging, analyze your communications and utilize your winning content. Automation tools can be life-savers, but they still require a dedicated team to dot the i’s, cross the t’s, and ensure all content moves along the funnel at the desired pace and on schedule. Marketing departments that invest in the tools and a team to manage automation will rise to the top in 2022.

10. Get Personal

Digital transformation has changed the way people respond to marketing, and correspondingly, to how marketers implement it. With an overload of messages coming across our radar via multiple channels and devices, marketing personalization is one of the core digital tools that is evolving quickly and will be increasingly important in the coming year. Marketing personalization means interacting with your audience and customers in a way that feels personal and even human, including incorporating their name and interests. Talking to your prospects or customers with precise focus on what they appreciate and gravitate toward is the best tactic to capture their attention and convert them. A personalization strategy can include customized email marketing campaigns, personalized ads, targeted product recommendations, and customized content. Done right, implementing personalization techniques will not only be a competitive advantage, but it will aid in improved CX as you meet growing customer expectations for individualization.

11. Brand Citizenship

In an evolving digital world where people are connected 24/7, building a strong brand and cultivating loyalty is all about managing engagement. Engagement is derived by fostering meaningful connections that pull people towards products and services by offering significant value. And this value is no longer just measurable by the merits of the product or service itself, but on the brand’s ability to be a “good citizen” and approach the marketplace with a holistic view. Businesses need to build trust with their customers, solve problems, behave ethically, inspire connection, and in many cases, actively pursue social good. Brands that actively seek to align and be supportive of their customers in this way are poised to succeed. This dynamic, which sees the customer as empowered from the start, represents an important shift away from the old paradigm of marketing. Businesses that become engagement champions will create loyal customers and brand ambassadors, which in turn will help drive growth.

12. Transforming at a Digital Pace

As digital transformation continues to increase at rapid speeds, it’s difficult for many companies to keep up on the latest trends, implement new tools, and understand the analytics and their implications. Slow movers are falling behind their competition as they fail to attract the same consumers. Marketing agencies who specialize in and study the ever changing digital marketing landscape will continue to become even more important for businesses to partner with and utilize as a resource in 2022. With broad expertise across platforms and verticals, Brandmark Studios is well positioned to help clients thrive as the digital landscape continues to advance at warp speed.

Welcome 2022

As we turn the page on a new year, having an eye on these trends can aid C-suite executives to focus attention and resources on what will be most effective in the short term and help them in strategic planning for the long haul. The marketing team that is best at identifying, adapting, and activating the current trends is positioned to be successful in this dynamic, rapidly evolving arena.

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