The last few years have been monumental in shaping and increasing our dependence on digital mediums, devices, and the internet. Businesses and users have shifted to the internet for meeting a lot of their needs. These range from continuing work to education.
The newest trends in the digital marketing industry come with increased competition, and you must be prepared to take it head-on. Your business will need to be resilient and quick to respond to the opportunities and challenges brought forth by the pandemic. But first, you need to learn about and understand the latest trends in digital marketing.
If you would like your business to thrive, keep reading!
In this article, we will attempt to educate you on the latest trends in the digital marketing industry. We aim to equip you with the much-required knowledge around these trends that are set to shape the trajectory of your business’s online visibility and popularity among your target audience. If you pay close attention and attempt to learn with us, you are sure to set yourself up for success. Let’s begin!
Why is Digital Marketing All the Rage?
Given the increasing relevance of digital mediums in the lives of people, a pressing need for effective digital marketing has only strengthened. Techniques such as Search Engine Optimization(SEO), keyword research, social media and content marketing, etc., are becoming a necessity for businesses to keep their brand alive in the market.
Therefore, taking the help of digital marketing services is a must to drive relevant traffic towards your business and increase overall conversion rates. When your business is amply visible, it has a better chance at becoming the first choice of the prospects.
Latest Trends in Digital Marketing to Prepare You for 2022
There were many digital trends that became popular in the aftermath of the pandemic. Going forward, as we enter the year 2022, many of these trends have stood out and promise to stay relevant for a long time to come. Here, we are going to discuss how things will change in digital marketing in 2022 and what new trends will dominate the others.
1. Enhance the Interactivity of Your Content: Age of Mixed Reality
Out of the latest cutting-edge technologies that have gained an unprecedented prominence in the last few years, Virtual Reality(VR) and Augmented Reality(AR) stand out because of their revolutionary impact on how we perceive a given piece of content — they take interactivity and immersion to another level.
Virtual reality immerses you in the content by creating a new reality and taking you to a place far different than your actual surroundings. For example, you can be present at a live conference or a concert just by using a standard VR headset. Thus, VR can be a perfect vehicle for allowing your prospects to experience the products and services offered by your brand without having to physically interact with them.
Augmented reality, on the other hand, combines real-world elements with virtual ones to create a superimposed environment. It enhances the perceived reality by augmenting auditory, visual, or any other sensory information on top of it. The most basic example that comes to mind is Pokemon Go — the game was all the rage a few years ago and leveraged AR technology for an interactive experience.
2. Increasing Popularity of the Metaverse
Riding on the wave of AR and VR(as discussed above), many companies including Facebook(now META), are focusing on creating a virtual world. What gained prominence in the initial years of the pandemic is all set to become a regular part of our lives in 2022 and the years to come.
The idea is to create a virtual world for users where they can socialize, work, spend their leisure time playing games or taking a walk in a virtual park, etc. Essentially, the opportunity presented by the growth of the digital mediums since 2020 is now ripe to be exploited for profits.
Undoubtedly, digital marketing will also become a crucial part of the metaverse, and a new set of performance metrics will emerge. In such a scenario, brands should include this hot virtual space in the mix of their marketing strategies in 2022.
The businesses that move in this direction now will get a first-mover advantage. It might take some time for this concept to become fully mainstream, but starting today will provide exponential benefits in the coming years.
3. Creating a Sense of Urgency: Social Media Stories (Short-Form Content)
News Feeds on social media platforms had become a little tedious for the audiences, and features such as snaps on Snapchat and stories on Instagram & Facebook have sought to fill in the gaps. These are nothing but disappearing posts on a person’s social media account that lasts for 24 hours.
Stories can help you make your marketing strategy more interactive with the help of options of creating real-time polls. Polls capture a prospect’s attention as they are generally inclined towards sharing their opinion on a given question or topic.
Other interactive elements such as stickers, gifs, location tags, highlighted text, website links, etc., capture the attention of a user and propagate the message of your marketing campaigns more effectively. Short-form content, including stories, creates a sense of urgency.
The bottom line of using short form content on social media platforms is moving in the right direction towards majorly boosting the user engagement of your brand. The marketing landscape will depend more on the short-form content in 2022 going by the recent trends. Therefore, you should pay more attention towards this medium.
4. Growth of Influencer Marketing
We witnessed a monumental shift towards influencer marketing in the last two years. Some top brands also started relying on niche influencers to push their brand image and products.
According to a recent survey of top marketing professionals all over the globe by Hubspot, more than one-third of participants admitted to investing a big chunk of their marketing budget towards influencer marketing in the year 2022. This trend puts influencer marketing above short-form content marketing and other standard digital marketing practices from recent years.
Therefore, it is advisable to carefully study the influencer marketing success stories from the last couple of years and move towards leveraging this method in 2022.
5. Increase in the Popularity of Social Commerce
Many top retailers tried their hands at social commerce in the last year and a half. Social commerce is the practice of using social media platforms such as Facebook, Instagram, TikTok to shorten the gap between brand/product discovery and conversion.
Having tasted some success initially, small and big retailers alike will likely take a deep dive into the world of social commerce in 2022. The benefit of social commerce is minimal advertising costs and significantly hefty returns against the smaller budget.
Therefore, going forward, social commerce is set to become a crucial digital marketing method.
6. Artificial Intelligence Will be Ingrained in Marketing Strategies
We have already discussed some of the crucial applications of artificial intelligence-based models in the digital marketing landscape, including the changes in Google’s search algorithms to adapt AI-powered machine learning elements in its regular working. The idea is to reduce the time spent on repetitive tasks and reduce the scope of errors by learning from each iteration.
Companies can use various AI-powered tools to improve and foolproof their marketing strategies by analyzing and compiling data more efficiently. With the availability of a plethora of data analysis online tools, the process of targeting customers based on their particular behaviors and past choices is made easier than before.
Moving on from easing the repetitive tasks through automation, artificial intelligence now aims to take over some of the work done by humans to make it error-free and increase a company’s overall efficiency. Marketing campaigns are increasingly becoming dependent on other AI tools like keyword research software. A keyword research software recommends the most relevant keywords to be used in your content to make it more palatable for the search engine crawlers.
The bottom line is that AI will surely make deeper inroads in the digital marketing landscape in 2022 and that you, as a business owner, need to stay in the know.
7. There’s a Need to Understand User’s Intent for Excelling at Conversational Marketing
Today search engine optimization is more focused on user intent than ever before. Search engines are more interested in finding out the reason behind a user’s search query to provide them with the most accurate and relevant results. The idea is to make search algorithms learn more about user behavior patterns by understanding the conversational nature of search queries.
Digital marketers also need to understand the importance of the conversational nature of communication, one that works on a feedback model. Customers are inclined to do their business with a brand that values their input and tries to have open communication lines through marketing techniques such as email marketing, content marketing, and more.
Some of the methods that you can use to ensure that your marketing techniques are conversational are virtual sales assistants, personalized content(including emails), chatbots, and review mechanisms.
8. There Will be Focus on Personalized Marketing
In a competitive digital marketing landscape, users expect businesses to build unique experiences for them to make them feel that they stand apart from the crowd, even if, in reality, they may not. Personalization is nothing but meeting the individual expectations of customers from their preferred brands in any given industry.
Personalization paves the way for creating content that resonates more easily with prospects. For example, Cadbury recently started a marketing campaign in its Indian market where a user could use their website to create a custom package for their Dairy Milk chocolate, with their names or any other desired text printed before the product name. The campaign gained a lot of traction, and it contributed to an increase in sales.
Another important aspect of personalization is its capability of establishing a human connection in the digital realm. User feedback can be a great way of learning about the demands and expectations of the customers and allows you to take the required action. A customer feels heard and is more likely to return to your business if their feedback is positively taken into consideration. You can learn more through this comprehensive Inbound Marketing Guide.
9. It’s High Time That You Optimize for Voice and Visual Search
Voice search has slowly become a prominent part of our digital lives, and the increasing dependence on voice assistants like Apple’s Siri, Amazon’s Alexa, and Google Assistant, etc., has only increased the need of optimizing your online content for it.
The addition of AI-powered tools such as LaMDA(Language Model for Dialogue Applications) in Google’s search algorithms has only made it more crucial for you to create content that is conversational and more human-sounding.
Natural Language Processing(NLP) has enabled Google search crawlers to read and interpret the content on your website to make it more palatable for voice search. Therefore, you need to work on optimizing all your content to match these developments.
Similarly, visual search has also gained traction and will slowly become mainstream in the years to come. Platforms such as Google Lens, Pinterest, etc., give users the option of searching for queries using images.
Be it barcodes, business cards, flyers, landmarks, products, books, or anything else, the search algorithms have now been programmed to leverage machine-learning capabilities to provide relevant search results in response to a given image.
It’s high time that you optimize your marketing efforts in 2022 keeping in mind these aspects.
10. Quality Content Will Stay Relevant and Reign Supreme
The core motive of all digital marketing endeavors is to bring your business into the top results of the search engine results pages(SERP), ideally the first page and the first few results. Content of your website plays a vital role in ensuring whether this happens or not. The quality of the content that you produce and publish on your website is a deciding factor in attracting the target audience to click on the link to your website.
When the content published by you is relevant to the target audience, they interact with it more, and the chances of them complying with one of your calls-to-action(CTAs) increase. If you create content that adds some value to the target audience against their search queries, the chances of them sharing it with their peers also increase considerably.
When Google(and other search engines) recognizes that your content is receiving more traction from users in terms of website traffic and decreased bounce rates, its algorithms automatically place your website higher in rankings on the SERPs. Therefore, you must focus on enriching your website’s content with the most up-to-date information and make it interactive enough with the use of videos, images, and infographics to capture and hold a visitor’s attention span.
Another benefit of creating quality content is its ability to stand the test of time. A well-written blog post may stay relevant and keep commanding regular traffic over the years if you don’t compromise on the pursuit of adding value to the user.
11. Increased Application of Blockchain Tech
The most rampant and visible application of blockchain technology is the mushrooming of several cryptocurrencies over the last few years. As cryptocurrency trading has become mainstream, the focus on blockchain technology has reached the public eye.
A blockchain is a fixed set of data records that are time-stamped and are managed by a vast network of computers that are owned by various people and entities. Each block of such data is linked to each other through cryptographic chains.
Some other crucial applications of blockchain technology include DeFi(Decentralized Finance), NFT(Non-Fungible Tokens), CBDC(Central Bank Digital Currency), etc. NFTs are becoming increasingly popular of late, and many companies are now selling their immaterial services/products such as video clips, images, digital artworks, collectibles, etc., in the form of these tokens, for hefty sums of money.
Blockchain technologies are set to play a vital role in the digital marketing industry in the years to come, and therefore, you must be aware of all of its relevant applications.
12. Optimize Your Business for Zero-Click Results
Zero-click results are the pieces of information that appear on the top of a SERP and more or less answer the user’s search query. Their name comes from the fact that, more often than not, the user doesn’t even need to click on any of the links to find the answer to their search query.
Digital marketing campaigns need to focus on optimizing the website content of a business for zero-click results. The prerequisite for doing so is including bullet points, questions & answers, and being systematic & conversational in tone. Generally, the queries that warrant a process to be described have more chances of fetching zero-click results.
Zero-click results are indicative of the fact that your website and business are gaining popularity and improving their ranking in search results. Therefore, aim for featuring your business website in as many zero-click results as possible.
13. Extract Business Opportunities Through Sincere Dedication to Non-profit Causes
People have become more sensitive towards the issues of concern for the broader population, such as sustainability, climate change, gender-related wage disparities, unfair employment practices, etc., to name a few. They want companies to take a clear stand on these issues, and therefore, you need to be actively supportive of these causes.
You should take advantage of this and sincerely commit to these causes by joining the efforts of non-profit organizations working actively in these fields. Your dedication to these causes will earn you good word-of-mouth among the prospective audience and strengthen the image of your brand in their eyes.
It might sound opportunistic but, the idea is to do some much-needed good and incorporate the results in promoting your business by indirectly making it a part of your digital marketing strategy. You will earn rich dividends by working for a legitimate issue, and at the same time, cementing the position of your brand as one of the progressive ones.
We have taken a look at the ten most vital trends in digital marketing that you cannot afford to miss for the upcoming year and near future. If you pay close attention to everything that we have discussed and apply it to your digital marketing strategy, the chances of finding marketing success in the form of increased traffic and conversions will increase drastically.
Vaibhav Kakkar is the Founder and CEO of Digital Web Solutions, a globally trusted agency with a full suite of digital marketing services and development solutions. Vaibhav believes in building systems over services, and has helped scale up agencies from scratch to niche-leaders with million dollar turnovers.
SHARE THIS POST
Thank you so much for reading Tracking The Latest In Digital Marketing For 2022 . We really appreciate it! If you have any questions about our article, or can suggest any other topics you think we should explore, feel free to let us know.
Be sure to sign-up for our newsletter to receive monthly emails on all of the latest trends and happenings in the digital marketing space. You will also receive our FREE E-Book with the Amazing Marketing Tools for Powerful Business Growth. Sign-up below!
Also, if you received some value out of this article, please share with your friends or colleagues, or leave a comment/question below. We really appreciate you reading our blog and every share/comment means the world to us and allows us to continue producing valuable tools to help you grow your business!