One of the best ways to stay ahead of the curve is by adopting a forward-thinking approach. It's hard to predict what will happen five years from now, but there are some digital marketing trends that we can already see on the horizon.
As we enter 2022, you may be wondering what your competitors are up to, and what you can do to stay ahead of them going forward.
From SEO to digital advertising, here are five digital marketing trends that you need to be aware of in 2022.
Digital Marketing Trend #01: SEO Will Continue To Be Important
SEO is not a new trend, but it is still an extremely important one.
In 2021, we saw Google shift its focus from keywords to entities, meaning that it is now looking for answers to user pain points rather than just keywords.
This means that your content needs to be helpful, accurate, and truthful in order to rank well within Google's search results.
Content marketing is still your best bet to improving organic search results, but remember that content doesn’t just mean blogs. Casse studies, white papers, and even general web copy all attribute to your rank and position.
When diving into your copywriting in 2022, focus on writing for user intent and being clear about what you’re selling.
As well, write more content about specific topics and go into more detail about them.
For example, a digital marketing agency might build content clusters around specific services, such as Facebook Advertising, Blog Content, or Branding Packages.
Similarly, a Slack integration app might write a series of blogs on the rise and importance of remote work.
Don’t write one blog and then move onto a new topic. Tell your users everything you know about your expertise and keep them coming back for more.
Digital Marketing Trend #02: VR And AR Will Take Centre Stage
Augmented Reality (AR) and Virtual Reality (VR) are already popular trends, and they are only going to become more widespread in the next few years.
As Facebook takes us full-tilt into the metaverse, we can expect to see new opportunities for VR/AR advertising alongside new, immersive experiences for brands and customers alike.
Brands can use AR to create interactive experiences for their customers. For example, you could use it to create an "augmented" version of your store that allows customers to try on clothes or products remotely.
Here’s an example from Amazon’s 2018 Prime Day experience:
You can also create AR experiences that show how a product will look in a customer’s home.
VR can be leveraged to create immersive experiences such as virtual tours of a building or the unveiling of new products.
You can also hold virtual reality events, such as conferences or concerts, that allow global audiences to participate in your event.
Or, provide a guided tour of how to use the product. This is useful for household items such as furniture and art, as well as items that require setup or installation such as a kitchen appliance.
Both VR and AR could also be great tools for creating brand awareness, by giving customers an inside look at how your product will change their lives and what goes on behind the scenes.
This can help build trust between you and your customers, improving brand recognition and loyalty.
Digital Marketing Trend #03: Artificial Intelligence Is Everywhere
Artificial Intelligence (AI) is already being used by many brands for tasks such as chatbots, personalization, and customer service.
In 2022, expect to see even more applications of AI for internal efficiencies as it becomes more sophisticated.
For example, many tedious marketing tasks such as copywriting and graphic design can now be bolstered with the help of AI.
Copywriting tools such as copy.ai and jarvis.ai aren't quite ready to take over your content marketing team, but they can certainly bump up your content production capacity.
Similarly, AI-assisted graphic design tools such as Vectr and Canva are becoming more commonplace. Now, it’s easier than ever to draft up your own social media posts or add a little flair to your monthly e-blast.
In short, if you're not using AI in your marketing yet, you will be soon. So get ahead of the curve and start experimenting!
Digital Marketing Trend #04: Email Marketing Is On The Rise
With tech and data brands facing increasing scrutiny, we will continue to see the decline of third-party data-driven marketing.
This may mean channels such as social media and digital advertising will become more expensive for certain industries.
In these cases, email will become more important as a way to gain and nurture referrals.
Email marketing boasts more users than some of the world's most popular social media sites and offers first-party data through sign-ups, purchase history, and NPS scores.
We may also see increased use of SMS marketing alongside email marketing to reach customers across more channels.
Digital Marketing Trend #05: Chatbots Will Take Over Customer Service
By 2022, chatbots are expected to be handling 75-90% of all customer service interactions.
This is because they are cheaper than human customer service reps, can handle more inquiries at once, and provide a better overall customer experience.
Chatbots can be a great way to keep customers happy while freeing up resources to focus on other parts of the business.
That said, it's important to make sure your chatbot is up to par, as a bad chatbot experience can do more harm than good.
Similarly, don't take human-centred customer service out of the equation entirely.
Keep a contact number or email on hand that can connect your customers to a (bot-free) representative and allow them to opt-out of chatbots.
Digital Marketing Tips For Your Brand In 2022
When considering how to improve your brand's digital presence in the next year, here are our biggest takeaways:
- SEO isn't dead, it's just reformed.
- AI is a crucial efficiency tool for many of your daily marketing tasks.
- Finding ways to integrate your brand into the virtual "metaverse" will help you stand out against competitors.
- Without third-party data, your customer relationships are more important than ever.
- Chatbots can improve efficiencies, but don't neglect a human touch.
Curious about more digital marketing trends for 2022? We'd love to chat. Get in touch with our team with any questions or thoughts.