5 Marketing Trends That Will Help You Prosper In 2022

Jump on these trends before your competitors do.

Photo by Possessed Photography on Unsplash

Keeping an eye out for new marketing trends can help you stay ahead of your competition and sell more.

The thing is, our marketing tactics become less effective the more we use them.

That’s why you should always look for novelties that could spice up your marketing strategy.

To help you out, I’ll walk you through the five biggest marketing trends you should implement in 2022. Let’s dive in.

(Psst — if you own a startup, I’ve got a special guide to 2022 marketing trends for you.)

Trend #1: Representation

Representation — i.e., diversity and inclusivity — will become even more important for marketing in 2022.

Besides helping you improve your brand image, research shows that representation helps boost sales, too.

A 2019 customer survey found that as many as 64% of respondents took some action after seeing an ad they considered diverse or inclusive.

But what does representation really mean?

Representation is about including people that have been traditionally left out from promotional materials.

Think people of color and plus-size models.

As an example, consider the recent Adidas ad campaign that has caused a stir in marketing circles:

Source: @adidas_es

Adidas’ goal was to promote its new collection of 40 sports bras meant to fit breasts of all shapes and sizes.

Not only did the brand do a good job at catering to a diverse audience, but it also celebrated diversity through the ads.

But you should keep in mind that this trend isn’t just about representation in ad campaigns.

It’s also about brand accountability, which means consumers expect brands to practice what they preach.

They want brands to solve real social issues — or at least not worsen them — instead of just promoting positive values for marketing purposes.

Otherwise, consumers may judge representation in marketing as corporate virtue signaling and, worse, a sly attempt at making sales.

Discover other examples of brand activism here.

Trend #2: AR and VR

As I’ve explained in a previous article, the difference between AR and VR is subtle but important.

AR is based on the real, physical world but lets users place digitally-produced objects in it. On the other hand, VR is based on an entirely manufactured world.

Both AR and VR will impact marketing in 2022.

The technology will be used for two main purposes:

  • User-product interactions — AR and VR will allow consumers to interact with products from their homes in real time. The consumers will be able to touch, hold, move, and place objects in their physical environment. For example, IKEA’s Place app lets users add IKEA furniture to their homes by using AR.
  • Consumer data gathering — AR and VR will help brands get to know their customers on a new level. For example, they’ll be able to see where users are looking while experiencing their ads.

Trend #3: Social Commerce

Social commerce refers to selling on social media.

In 2022, we’ll see more and more brands allowing consumers to discover, research, and buy products directly on social platforms.

That’s beneficial to both consumers and brands for three reasons:

  • It’s easier — Consumers can buy desired products without ever leaving the platform. So, they’re more likely to make that final step.
  • It’s more interactive — Social media makes shopping a social experience, which is way more enjoyable than the traditional process.
  • It’s laser-focused — Thanks to its wealth of consumer data, social media allows brands to easily target their ideal audiences.

Most platforms allow brands to choose between several methods of promoting their products:

  • Shoppable ads
  • Shoppable organic posts
  • Shoppable videos and media
  • Shoppable influencer posts

Here’s an example of an organic shoppable post:

Source: Hubspot
Original source: @thelittlemarket

Currently, the leading platforms in social commerce are Instagram, Facebook, and Pinterest.

If you’re thinking of adopting this trend, consider where your audience hangs out before choosing any one platform.

Trend #4: O2O Commerce

Some brands have already started investing in O2O commerce, but we can expect even more to jump on the bandwagon in 2022.

Let’s start by defining what O2O commerce is.

“O2O” stands for online to offline.

Online marketing is used to persuade consumers into visiting physical stores.

In some cases, the vice versa is true. Offline marketing — for example, marketing through in-store flyers — can also be used to persuade consumers into visiting a store’s webshop.

Either way, brands will continue to invest in online and offline marketing and make them as similar as possible.

On top of that, consumers themselves will expect brands to give them an integrated online-offline experience.

That’s why brands need to continue investing in physical stores, where most customers still prefer to shop anyway.

Trend #5: Short Content

One survey found that 84% of respondents are watching short-form videos more now than they did before the pandemic.

That’s partly connected with new apps like TikTok and features like Instagram Reels and YouTube Shorts.

But the social media trends didn’t just impact video content. They impacted content in general.

More and more brands are creating short- instead of long-form blog and social posts, too.

But maybe you’re wondering what type of content could be considered short-form. Here are some rules of thumb you could follow:

Try following these estimates the next time you’re creating content.

Keep your blog posts under 1000 words and your videos under 2:30 minutes and see what happens.

Keep an eye out on metrics like user engagement, dwell time, and social shares. I think you’ll be surprised by the positive results.

(Feel free to share your results in the comments. I’d love to know if any of these tips helped you.)

Outlining Your Next Steps

Now’s the time to think about your own needs and wants.

For example, if you’re a small business or a startup, investing in AR and VR may be out of your reach for now.

But even small shifts can make a big difference.

Things like including people of color in your ad campaigns or making shorter content are easy and affordable to do. And they could significantly increase your bottom line.

Start with one thing that’s viable for you at the moment and work your way from there.

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