Trends. Its fun to look back at where we’ve been and to see a new year as the hope of what’s to come. Trends come and go, colors shift, expectations change, and new emerging technologies pop onto the scene with exciting possibilities. All of this can influence our marketing to drive fresh new perspectives and ideas. As we end this year, it’s time to discuss what to expect going into the next one.

Upcoming Marketing Trends

Business owners should be aware that Google will end third-party cookie tracking by 2023, which will significantly impact marketing initiatives. Many businesses will shift strategies throughout 2022 to prepare. Tracking user activity has been essential to gathering valuable consumer insights for many years; however, protecting our privacy demands new perspectives and solutions. Have your marketing team evaluate the best way to gather data that boosts online engagement and sales without cookie tracking insights. It may be a combination of the following:

  • Increasing digital marketing
  • Focusing more on content marketing
  • Finding Direct-to-Consumer (D2C) marketing channels
  • Ending reliance on third-party data to learn about consumers

Business owners are able to gather data organically through surveys, gamification, or consumer/brand interactions online using data that comes directly from their audience. Marketing consultants can collect more data using CRM tools to track consumer behavior, site visitors, and potential leads. Blue Zenith has a few suggestions that include tweaking social media profiles, increasing quality content, adding automation tools, and efficient web design.

To start with, online and hybrid events, such as webinars, seminars, or product launches, will become essential to spread the word about your brand to new and existing clients. As more virtual events engage customers and generate leads, more spending will be needed for social media and other online campaigns. But it’s worth the cost to gain consumer information directly from your audience to build unique profiles and engage with products and services to enhance relationships that will grow your business over time.

The biggest goals in 2022 for any business include increasing brand awareness (58%) and community engagement (41%).

Trending Social Strategy

Businesses will slowly stop relying on social media metrics provided by individual platforms and increase direct messaging that is more personalized and relevant to specific groups. Social media network algorithms (e.g., Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram) are always changing, but contacting your audience directly with highly customized content ensures they receive your message, regardless of the constant marketing noise.

Over 500 million tweets are sent out each day
Over 6 million businesses are using Facebook ads

Remember that each segment of your audience is extremely selective and has higher expectations than ever. Be sure you use the right social channels for your audience and communicate specific interests and outcomes through links to videos, articles, and podcasts. Become a better storyteller to stand out from others in your industry and demonstrate how you help to solve problems. Don’t over explain, but detail the advantages you offer.

Monitor content for specific keywords, phrases, or hashtags that expand your audience and reach related audiences faster. Keep customers informed about new products and promos, integrate product catalogs into your social profiles and run exclusive deals for followers.

Any growing business will need to invest time and money to create a stronger brand image and messaging on social media that uses the right words and marketing tools. Focus on generating word-of-mouth referrals that talk about your quality service and quick communication. As competition to advertise online increases, so does pricing. Relying less on PPC ads and more on an organic SEO content strategy can save on costs.

Growing Content Trends

The content you and your business offer should be convenient and include educational information that positions you as a thought leader. Show consumers you can help by telling stories about people using your product or service to understand or visualize what you offer. Let them draw their own conclusions without being bombarded with ads that make them feel defensive.

Going forward, understand that the content you provide is important, but simplicity offers clarity. It’s hard to deliver high-quality content and remain unique, so think about how you can add personal experiences and recommendations that clearly make your point.

Longer educational content, like blog articles, should have strong SEO and add interactive quizzes, games, and relevant and engaging questions. Quality is the primary focus, not quantity, so try and find the right balance for your audience and budget.

Don’t shy away from Business-to-Business content. Offer valuable information that helps business owners make better decisions rather than approaching them with cold-calling and emailing. They may read a blog post on specific solutions, check if your brand is trustworthy, and reach out to talk with you directly when actively searching.

Checking Marketing Automation and AI Trends

Data-driven marketing campaigns will use more automation for greater efficiency. More effective workflows reduce repetitive tasks, and time saved will be spent building custom consumer profiles and strategies. Businesses must track what they see online: article titles, links shared from other websites, or social media posts about their brand to make better marketing decisions. Dashboard data can track:

  • Clicks
  • Engagement
  • Hashtag results
  • Paid versus organic likes
  • Reach
  • Reaction or sentiment

The data results help align your business and marketing goals. Remember to explore continuously because environments and habits change. Use data to determine when to reach out to partners or affiliates that compliment your products and help you sell them, explore new avenues for advertising, and look deeper into consumer behavior. Experimenting and measuring prepare you for new business models, technology, and regulatory changes.

AI will make influencer marketing easier, so it’s a good idea to invest in influencer content. Technology watches and assesses millions of influencer videos to identify them according to performance. Predictive AI lets you pay only for the conversions and sales influencers produce.

Influencer marketing is estimated to reach $15 billion by 2022

Keeping up with Web Design Trends

When it comes to creating or updating websites, embrace a sense of playfulness. Web designers are taking visual cues from the 90s when web design was new and moving away from photographic layouts to find creative ways to use typography, lines, and simple navigation. Muted color choices with textures and serif fonts keep sites from feeling too retro.

Newer techniques like advanced interactions, animations, and visual effects are done much more easily. And site functions can include puzzles and scavenger hunts with hidden clickable elements to let visitors unlock features and pages. This can make product launches, video releases, and educational information more interactive with app-like experiences.

Here are a few 2022 website design ideas:

  • A sense of place: Focuses on the cities, towns, and areas your business calls home. It uses the imagery of your favorite locations so visitors can picture what you are creating in your space.
  • Abstract illustrations: Designs integrate various textures in the form of watercolor, ink, paint, silkscreen, or paper.
  • Art Deco motif: Geometric designs continue to trend and make beautiful minimalist pages with clean, curving lines and repetitive graphic shapes for logos, fonts, borders, and illustrations.
  • Collage illustration: Collages are more tactile, open up white space, and allow you to add images without being photography-centric. It mixes shapes, patterns, and colors to add different effects.
  • Gender-neutral: Web design is being used to offer multiple gender options and pronouns in forms and drop-down menus.
  • Glassmorphism: Combinations of transparency, blur, and movement make pages behave visually like glass. Diffusion, reflection, and shadow create an optical illusion for subtle movement and 3D effects.
  • Gradients and grain: Added aspects that mimic film, photography, or print mediums are used across the whole page, in the background, or within specific objects.
  • Inclusive copy: Inclusive content and language in website design help to make a permanent shift toward more welcoming and accessible sites, regardless of language or ability.
  • Interactive fonts: Creative ways to subtly move text and play with the user’s mouse make the design more engaging.
  • Linework: Websites integrate lines to separate sections, paragraphs, headers, and galleries and use line weight for the biggest impact.
  • One-page sites: Without menus and navigation, this look has simple scroll navigation for narrower subject matter.
  • Oversized typography: Fresh, bold words become more of a graphic element than simply part of the copy and suits many design styles.
  • Page speed: Optimizing page-loading speed in design and SEO for better Google ranking by ensuring they take less than three seconds to load.
  • Split screen website layouts: Splitting the screen breaks up a design layout to give contrast, visual interest, and play with color.

At Blue Zenith, our marketing consultants and web designers use the latest design trends to blend the right aesthetics, navigation, and user experience that works best for your business. Tools like Google PageSpeed Insights or GTMetrix Page Speed Tool are used to assess your page speed. Information is pulled from Google and email analytics, CRM, and customer service platforms to ensure marketing strategies are targeted and data-driven. Reach out to us if you want to own your audience through direct contact as third-party cookies and algorithms change. You can count on us!