Surviving a halting global pandemic, companies are reemerging in the consumer world, and many more are stepping up to bat for the first time. As we take our first steps into 2022, the world we find ourselves in today offers the ability to be more connected and more informed than any generation we’ve seen yet. With drastic advancements in how much and how fast the world consumes content, companies are rethinking their marketing strategies to be both relevant and cutting edge.
If you find yourself in those shoes today, we believe it would be wise of you to take note of all that is different and evolving in the field of marketing; new trends, hot topics, and crucial marketing strategies. So, by way of observation and our own trial runs, here are the marketing strategies we see making the biggest waves in the new year.
Making the Customer Your First Priority
Now, we know what you’re all thinking…This is the most fundamental concept in marketing, so why would you lead with this? What are you even doing if the buyer isn’t the seller’s main focus? Well, all of that is still true. Putting the customer first is still the most basic concept, or at least it should be. As a business, you won’t have much of a game plan if you don’t first start with catering to and knowing who you are selling to. A focus on how you greet your client both in the store and in your digital media is essential in a world where every interaction is critical. Shifting to client-centric marketing versus brand-centric marketing is the differentiator you need to rise above the noise. Any other view on your client communication is, well, “A big mistake…Huge.”
Stand Up For What You Believe In
Many companies have shifted their messaging and branding styles to be politically and socially resonant with their customers. In doing this, companies have maintained relevance and relate to their customers on a personal level. Jennifer Veenstra identifies several marketing trends of 2022 in the Wall Street Journal, including the importance of keeping the customer the main focus. Veenstra noted, “for example, more than half (57%) of U.S. consumers surveyed say they are more loyal to brands that commit to addressing social inequities.” Many companies are pausing to reevaluate their existence and pinpoint their most profound driving forces. This has brought about new mission statements that greet customers on company websites, reassuring them that the business they are considering buying from aims to make an impact beyond profit.
Stay Ahead Of Your Audience(Metaverse Is Not In Our Universe)
Staying ahead of your audience in 2022 (i.e., anyone you would be selling to) will require you to know a whole lot about one word: Metaverse.
Now, while Metaverse is not in our Heyday Web Media universe, we would be remiss if we didn’t include this rapidly growing platform in the marketing trends of 2022. The metaverse platform has increased the personal aspect of direct-to-consumer marketing and continues to build on the virtual world that came alive during the pandemic. Many big-name companies, like Verizon and Vans, have already joined in and created metaverse-like platforms; brands like these can build trust with consumers by being transparent with their products and demonstrating the value their products hold with personal interaction. For companies that sell physical products, playing in the Metaverse sandbox makes sense. But for small businesses and others without physical products, the jury is still out on whether there will be a significant ROI to be had.
Well, Facebook may be able to have a platform for just about anyone. In a recent edition of CMO Today, Nat Ives writes about the peaking interest of brands who no longer look at the metaverse as some abstract shtick and are responding to Mark Zukerberg’s nudge toward this emerging platform. Ives writes, “Facebook’s announcement that it would develop a metaverse environment, including investing $10 billion on the effort this year and changing its name to Meta Platforms, is expected to accelerate the trend.” Ives goes on to write about how companies will have spaces to advertise goods and services inside the metaverse through Meta Platforms.
Reaching New Audiences Through Short-Form Social Media
From the very beginning of social media taking root in our society, there has always been a certain level of exclusivity within each respective platform. Facebook started within the Ivy League schools, then branched out to all colleges. Soon after, it roped in the high school age group too. But as most remember, as soon as Instagram hit the market with a fast and compact way to share photos, it was considered “lame” to be on Facebook if you weren’t a parent or grandparent. This morphed Instagram into the new exclusive platform for teenagers and young adults. For the most part, Twitter has been doing the same since its inception as they cater to a Millenial/ Gen Z audience who want their information simplified and they want it fast.
But when TikTok entered the chat in 2016, it started with something that other social media platforms had not; TikTok provided a space for all age groups and demographics to interact. On TikTok, kids are giving trendy dance routines to pop music; tech geniuses are offering crash courses in computer software; cooks and homemakers alike are sharing tips and tricks on meal prepping, cleaning, and child-rearing all in 60-second, bit-sized, binge-able chunks.
And for these very reasons, many analyses point to TikTok dominating the social media space in 2022. In a Hubspot article by Caroline Forsey called “10 Social Media Trends Marketers Should Watch in 2022,” she identifies social media marketing tactics that have not worked in 2021 and which ones will be gaining traction as we roll into 2022. Forsey notes, “Other social media businesses have used TikTok’s popularity as inspiration to alter their own platform’s features. For instance, Instagram employed TikTok look-alike features in its own version of short-form video content called “Reels,” and Reddit just announced a similar short-form video feature on its platform.” While the other platforms aren’t totally out of the running, TikTok will undoubtedly lead the way in offering a platform for companies to reach new audiences of all ages on a variety of topics.