Make way: There’s a new year coming through! Whether you already have a marketing plan for 2022 or are just getting it off the ground, it’s still important to know which trends are on the horizon for this year.
After all, marketing is a practice where you need to try new, innovative approaches to get more eyes on your brand. A global pandemic, switch to remote work, and eCommerce boom also led to significant changes that brands are accounting for.
So, what trends are worth your time this year? Start by ditching five outdated trends so you can try our six favorite marketing trends for 2022.
5 Trends to Kiss Goodbye in 2022
These trends can still get you results, but they certainly aren’t on the cutting edge. Here are our hot takes on trends that you might want to leave behind with 2021.
1. Paid Ads
You don’t have to ditch paid ads entirely, but they certainly shouldn’t take up as much room in your marketing budget.
With 27% of people using ad blockers, experts say that number will only increase. More privacy changes are coming into effect this year; it just isn’t possible to get the reach and ROI that you need to make paid ads worthwhile.
2. Mindless Automation
Let’s be clear: automation is a great way to streamline your business. But you need to kiss mindless automation goodbye. Things like generic email blasts don’t foster a relationship with your consumers.
If you’re going to use automation, use it thoughtfully.
Affiliate marketing can work, but it’s tricky. In 2022, consumers know when someone isn’t being genuine. When affiliate content sounds too spammy, people are turned off.
It’s better to try more authentic options, like influencer marketing, to get results in 2022.
4. Facebook Groups
Sure, a community can have a significant impact on purchasing decisions. But let’s be honest: Facebook is aging out. The average Facebook user is 40 years old. Instead of relying on Facebook, try making your own community (like Sephora), so you control the experience and own the data.
5. White Papers and eBooks
White papers and eBooks were cool lead magnets back in 2015. But today, fewer people will fork over their data for dry, branded content. Leave this trend back in 2021.
6 Must-Try Trends This Year
OK, so hopefully, at this point, you’ve dropped old trends and are looking for something new. Try these six trends in 2022 to stand out in the new year.
1. Hybrid Events
In-person events were a great way to connect with people, but they aren’t as doable with fewer people ready to travel. Hybrid events are a safe, effective option that allows you to connect with locals as well as digital attendees.
With so many hybrid event apps out there, it’s really easy to create and develop events that everyone can attend. It opens your event up to a global audience, spreads the word, and keeps people safe. It’s a win-win!
Just make sure you give in-person and digital attendees a similar experience. For example, if you want to pass out promotional products, give them out to attendees in person and mail them to digital attendees, too.
2. Video Storytelling
54% of consumers want to see more video content. If you’re trying to boost engagement in 2022, you’ve got to go all-in on organic video. It’s shareable, quick to create (yes, really), and captures people’s attention.
When in doubt, take a storytelling approach with your videos. Create a script using the hero’s journey, making your customer the star of the show.
You don’t need a million-dollar setup to create video marketing, either. Start by outlining a few points, then film a short video on your phone, edit it, and post it on Instagram. You can do it!
3. Influencer Partnerships
Our social media feeds might be saturated with influencers, but that doesn’t mean they’ll stop having influence any time soon.
Because there are so many influencers out there, it means brands need to be careful about who they work with. Be sure to do your homework to find a reliable partner who exudes your brand qualities.
4. AI Tools
Artificial intelligence sounds like a sci-fi dream, but it’s a reality. While the robots aren’t great at everything, they can help you:
- Compile research
- Personalize emails
- Answer customer chats
AI saves time and money and gives customers a better experience. Try a few AI-powered marketing tools to see how they streamline your workflow.
5. First-Party Data
Well, cookies are going away. That means marketers won’t have a complete picture of customer data. While everyone is collectively freaking out, the best way to combat this problem is to collect your own data.
In 2022, first-party data (data that you collect yourself instead of through a third party like Google) will reign supreme. If you aren’t already, start collecting customer data through surveys, Instagram polls, and other interactive media to stay ahead.
6. Promotional Products
Promotional products are surging ahead. And thanks to:
- The death of cookies
- Ad blockers
- Canceled in-person events
- General consumer fatigue
… brands are looking for other ways to reach consumers.
With promotional products, you can send consumers a physical object they see in their everyday lives. There are no ad blockers or competing content—it’s just your customer and the adorable succulent you sent them.
In 2022, brands will have a lot more options for promotional products. You’re free to get creative, blending promo products with strategies like influencer marketing and hybrid events to build buzz.
Hop on These Marketing Trends for 2022
Whether we like it or not, brand marketing is all about following trends. This keeps you competitive and helps you deliver exactly what consumers expect.
So much has changed over the last two years that it can feel overwhelming, but brands need to adjust to the “next normal” to come out ahead. Ditch outdated trends like paid ads, bad automation, and eBooks. It’s time to go all-in on promo products, AI, and other innovative approaches.
Ready to try something new in 2022? Boundless is here to help you take advantage of these trends. We’re more than a promotional products provider: we’re a team of brand strategists that creates Brand Love moments between you and your audience. Get in touch to start 2022 with a bang.