Pandemic has changed a lot of things, including customers' online behavior. People are spending more time online these days. According to an Adroll survey, consumers spend an average of 13+ hours online daily, which is incredibly high compared to the previous decade.
People prefer to shop online rather than visiting stores or in-person shopping. On Instagram, 90%+ users follow at least one business account, making it a hub of several newly launched companies, startups, and solopreneurs.
Marketers are investing a huge amount of money to deal with this significant shift. Still, many are unable to get satisfactory results. Even after spending money, you need innovation and leadership to deal with the shifting behavior of customers. Riding on the latest digital marketing trends will give you an added advantage over the competition.
8 Digital Marketing Trends in 2022 That Agencies Should Ride On
Here are the eight digital marketing trends you need to understand and leverage for the growth of your agency business.
1. Shifting Online Buying Behavior & Global Uncertainty
There is a marked shift in people's buying behavior as more and more people buy stuff online. Still, uncertainty characterizes every aspect of a business. However, uncertainty has also opened the gateways to many new opportunities.
So, our marketing strategies should have a system to reduce uncertainty.
According to a Gartner report, unpredictable events such as COVID-19 or the Russian invasion of Ukraine have an unforeseen and rapid impact on businesses globally and require massive shifts in strategic planning.
Marketers should be quick to respond to such events and exhibit agility. Say 'no' to time-intensive approaches. However, a proscriptive approach will help.
A change in a situation also warrants a change in the strategic plan. Traditional plans have static short-term planning models running over one to three years, but agile strategies involve continuous evaluation, improvement, and planning while responding to change.
Since the world is constantly changing, digital marketers should be prepared and plan for uncertainty. The planet is still struggling with COVID-19, the Ukraine-Russia war, the food crisis, inflation, and rapid changes in technology.
Here is a six-step formula to manage uncertainty in the digital marketing industry –
- Update your marketing planning on an annual and quarterly basis.
- Conduct the right team meetings, track success metrics, and monitor progress.
- Do impact assessments, conduct training programs, and stakeholder analysis
- Establish robust communication among cross-functional teams and with the audiences
- Lead the change management, write a stump speech and deliver it at every meeting
- Drive strategic transformation initiatives and be ready to get your hands dirty if needed to get the job done.
2. The Dawn of the Metaverse
Mark Zuckerberg's Metaverse is among the major digital marketing trends to watch out for in 2022 and beyond. It's about an immersive experience, virtual reality (VR), blockchain technology, and VR advertising.
The Metaverse will connect both online and physical worlds through a network of 3D virtual worlds powered by virtual reality. You won't need any VR gears to put on, as you can access the virtual world using your favorite device such as a mobile or laptop.
Let's look at one such 3D events platform, "Nowhere," where you can view events, virtually participate in those live events, and meet others online over the net.
The Horizons Workrooms Beta is a virtual meeting space where coworkers can join a meeting.
Users can create their digital profiles or avatars and join a live meeting in the virtual world. So, people can perform a wide array of activities in the Metaverse. They can communicate, interact, buy, and trade.
For a better understanding, here's a concert by Ariana Grande. Fortnite created these concerts for its users that are part of a game.
Marketing evolves along with the up-gradation in technology. If we look at the marketing mediums on a timeline, they evolved with contemporary technologies such as printed press, radio, and television, and now the Internet has taken over everything. The next phase is the Metaverse, which will revolutionize marketing.
It's going to happen very soon!
Facebook changed its name to Meta, a strong indicator of where things were heading.
Some luxury fashion brands such as Nike and Gucci have already started working with NFT developers to step into Metaverse. There has been a 400% increase in Metaverse-related jobs this year.
Here are a few Metaverse trends every marketer should follow -
A. Immersive Marketing
The immersive experience is an exotic feature of Metaverse that brings endless possibilities for marketers. Conversion depends on your customer interaction, and Metaverse's engaging, immersive experience can be a boon for you.
On Internet browsers, customers can only see the products, whereas, in the Metaverse, they can also "try on" the clothes. It's going to be a highly engaging customer experience (CX).
B. Impact on Growth Marketing
The Metaverse will also boost growth marketing. It will bring plenty of valuable data you can use in growth marketing. All it needs is the standard "internet cookie," and it will collect data about every move the visitors make. This way, marketers will have loads of data about consumer behavior. So, even businesses that don't have a heavy Metaverse presence can access Metaverse data to improve their marketing strategies.
C. Virtual Worlds
The tech giants such as Google, Facebook, and Instagram offer numerous marketing tools to target their audiences. However, you might be restricted by the tools' limitations. Metaverse provides a whole new virtual world where you can invite customers to join.
D. New Opportunities
The Metaverse empowers marketers to leverage the technology, so you can employ strategies such as advertising through immersive games or hosting global online events.
3. Rise of TikTok-Like Short Videos
TikTok started this trend that swept the entire world. With decreasing attention span of the users, short videos are gaining momentum globally. Short videos are entertaining, informative, and refreshing, and above all, they are quite prevalent, so people go on binge-watching them.
TikTok made them so popular that everyone from YouTube to Instagram started imitating TikTok like short videos. YouTube Shorts and Instagram Reels are also highly popular among users.
With an average attention span of just eight seconds for Gen Z, short videos are a long-term trend.
How to Succeed at TikTok Marketing?
TikTok is one of the most effective ways to reach your audience. It's a social media platform thriving on short videos that are fun and easy to consume.
Here are some tips to succeed at TikTok marketing –
- Create attention-grabbing, engaging, entertaining, and high-quality videos
- Use relevant keywords and hashtags and optimize your videos for the TikTok algorithm.
- Promote your TikTok account incessantly
- Use graphics and visuals to attract the masses
- Learn the art of keeping your videos short and sweet and keep them under 60 seconds.
- Use creativity to cut the noise
- Use pleasant music. You can add popular music using TikTok’s built-in Lip Sync feature.
- Collaborate with other content creators with similar target audiences and users
- Run a contest
- Leverage TikTok ads in the awareness stage
- Leverage influencers
- Follow trends
- Don’t forget to add a CTA
- Use analytics to increase engagement
- Be consistent and post videos regularly
4. The Unstoppable Rise of Podcasting
During the lockdowns, people were craving human connection inside their apartments. According to Forbes magazine, listeners consumed around 15 billion hours of podcasts in 2021, roughly 125% of its 2020 volume.
In this Tweet, King Digi mentions starting a podcast as his third marketing goal. Most marketers are switching to podcasts to reach out to their audiences and make a more profound impact.
Podcasts are one of the most effective marketing tactics with the highest conversion rates, even higher than videos and webinars. 20% of people decided to buy a product or service after listening to its recommendation on a podcast. Podcasts have a tremendous impact, and they can amplify word-of-mouth recommendations to a great extent.
Podcasts are more effective than outbound marketing tactics such as email marketing, cold calling, or text advertising. Outbound tactics are losing effectiveness and are termed annoying by most customers.
In podcasts, specialists discuss real-life problems and evaluate analytical data. Furthermore, you can search for your favorite topic and listen to your favorite podcast at will, unlike radio broadcasts where unrelated issues are combined.
Tips to Create Professional Podcasts:
Here are three tips for creating professional podcasts:
- Identify your target audience.
- Hire scriptwriters, collaborate with experienced speakers, and buy professional equipment.
- Your text script should attract your target audience. It should effectively promote your products or services while adding value to the content.
- Avoid intrusive advertising in podcasts.
- Promote your podcast.
Podcasts are considered the best place to stay abreast with the latest trends. The following Tweet recommends a few podcasts to keep in touch with the latest marketing and advertising trends in 2022 in digital marketing.
Here is the DashClicks podcast Marketers Mindset with Chad Kodary on iTunes. Our Marketers Mindset podcast aims to help entrepreneurs start and grow a wildly profitable marketing agency business.
5. Evolution of First-Party Data Marketing
Google will soon phase out its third-party cookies from Chrome, likely in 2023. Some new tracking technology will replace it. Third-party data was designed to help marketers and small company owners. But, agencies should prepare for first-party data, which is more relevant to their needs, especially conversions and lead generation.
More prominent companies have vast buckets of first-party data, which is vital for targeted marketing campaigns.
So, serving personalized ads in a post-cookie world will be less difficult. As an alternative, businesses can invest in market research while exploring new ad measurement practices.
Here are a few tips for surviving in a cookieless world –
- Prepare for sustained disruption by redirecting cookie-related media spending.
- You can try different measures such as identity solutions, Publisher Provided Identifiers (PPIDs), first-party data, and Contextual advertising.
6. Emphasis on Core Values
Companies are returning to their core values to build trust and cut the marketing noise. Hulu, the well-known streaming service, emphasizes its five core values ā€” one such core value is its "viewer-first" philosophy.
Every step they take starts with the viewer, and everyone in the company knows this. Hulu employees work as one team with aligned goals and a sense of responsibility, ultimately resulting in excellent Cx. They boast a great work culture, where employees feel free to be creative, grow, and learn.
GAP is also a well-known fashion brand and believes in its core values, such as equality & belonging.
They also claim that they are "inclusive, by design," and hence GAP offers clothes that fit every individual regardless of age, race, body type, or gender.
They insist on color palettes for different skin tones and sizes for more human dimensions. The same follows in their work culture, where you are free to raise your voice.
They firmly believe that "inclusion is going to change the world."
It connects GAP with younger audiences such as Gen Z, who buy from companies they believe are investing in the causes they care about. They also pay attention to equality. GAP is the first Fortune 500 company to announce equal pay for equal work.
They also work for sustainability and create opportunities and a healthy environment for their customers and employees.
7. Prevalence of Shoppable Links
Marketers often go on a spree to present exotic shopping options to their preferred customers, which improves the entire shopping experience. Dishing out shoppable content is one such tactic. Shoppable content includes links or visuals where customers can directly shop from the content. It also allows them to add products to the cart without taking the usual route, i.e., scrolling through each product page.
Brands usually share shoppable content through social media posts that feature products. You can provide other details such as price, features, checkout link, etc., enabling users to buy those products directly from the posts.
The stunning product images and videos ignite their purchase decision and prompt them to buy the products as shoppable content, minimizing their buying efforts.
The idea is to inspire the users and minimize the buyer's inconvenient journey that begins from the product description page and takes them through various long-drawn zig zag steps. It delays conversion.
Shoppable content accelerates the sales process and makes it result-driven.
Shoppable links are a popular digital trend, and you'll see them growing further in 2022. Here is an example of shoppable ink. Soft vegan butter is an ingredient mentioned in the Pumpkin Doughnuts recipe. They have added the link to Salted butter sticks below to enhance the visitor's experience.
This Tweet includes a Walmart shoppable link that takes us to the Walmart page where you can buy Alaffia SkinCare products.
The shift from physical stores to online and social shopping has been growing steadily for the past decade. But the pandemic accelerated it by almost five years.
A. Shorter Sales Funnel
Shoppable content such as videos, social posts, and ads enables customers to get what they want when they want it. In this age of instant gratification, people don't want to see delays or an extended sales funnel.
B. Better Customer Experience
Millennials and Gen Z love to see minimum disruptions. You won't find any abandoned shopping carts here. In other words, they get a fantastic customer experience.
C. Increased Brand Loyalty
You can instantly build trust through storytelling. Through shoppable content, you can post real stories. You can also feature your verified customers in your stories, making them more powerful and memorable.
D. Improved Conversion Rates
The ultimate goal of all marketing and advertising is to be present at the right place and at the right time. You can boost conversion beyond expectations with laser-sharp targeting through targeted and personalized shoppable ads.
8. Emphasis on Quality Content
In the stone age of SEO marketing, pumping out content in higher volumes made you the victorious king nobody could beat. There were no advanced SEO reporting tools that could provide you with deeper insights into your content's performance on search engines.
To run a successful campaign, you should regularly measure the performance of your content and keyword rankings. Agencies need robust SEO reporting and analytics tool. You can go to the DashClicks dashboard, which will act as a unified client dashboard software for you. It will allow you to run analytics and view detailed SEO reports to determine your areas of improvement.
The year 2022 offers an excellent opportunity for brands to capitalize on emerging trends such as Metaverse, AI, podcasts, short videos, brand stories, and shoppable links. But be careful: Millennials and Gen Z prefer only those brands that are authentic, friendly, and transparent.
Furthermore, you need to understand these trends before leveraging them for your marketing. For example, before creating podcasts, arrange the equipment and hire scriptwriters. Collaborate with experienced speakers and send them an invite to join your podcast. Consider hosting interviews with experts in your field.
These are the trends that have changed the way digital marketing is being conducted so far. So, ride on these trends carefully and transform your digital marketing.