A Guide to Successful Marketing in 2022
In the words of Bob Dylan, “The Times They are A-changin’.”
While it has certainly been a challenging year for so many of us, there hopefully have been some moments of pleasure for you during the recent holidays.
The pandemic has accelerated the importance of digital communication and delivery for goods and services.
I have had the privilege of working with numerous business owners, entrepreneurs and non-profit leaders over the past year to help them allocate scarce marketing resources to achieve their personal and professional goals.
The question I am asked most often is, “ What is working in digital and social marketing today?”
Does this resonate with you?
The answer is…… there are certain channels and content forms that you need to implement to drive growth this coming year. Whether it’s experimenting with TikTok, increasing your use of video or revamping email marketing, the key to success lies in staying current with all of the changes, improvements and updates that each platform introduces.
Did you know that the social media platforms introduced dozens of new features, functions and updates this year? Here is what I expect will happen in the social marketing realm this year.
2022 Marketing Trends
Facebook or rather Meta will continue to dominate the social media advertising ecosystem but to a diminishing degree. Yes, we will continue to read about the virtual Metaverse which may distract the public from the major impact that privacy and tracking restrictions have on the targeting advantages that have been a key component of Facebook’s business model. Facebook is working hard to develop a workaround which will help it keep those lucrative ad dollars. In the meantime, current, clean customer email lists offer the best advantage to businesses both large and small.
ProTip for SMBs: Find ways to collect first party data on your customers. This will help you lower the customer acquisition cost associated with digital advertising.
Instagram tested and rolled out numerous new features this past year. Most of them are designed to copy the video features offered by TikTok and to attract and retain the influential social media creators to the site.
Instagram’s main focus is e-commerce and shopping. Merchants should create an Instagram shop, increase their exposure on the separate Shop Tab, include price tags and links to product pages in photos and experiment with live-streaming and in-app shopping.
Instagram is focused on providing more ways for popular creators to make money and for businesses to sell products through the platform and through influencers.
The days of IG being just a digital photo diary are over.
One of the best Instagram improvements is the ability for all accounts to include a link sticker in an Instagram story. This is very valuable for conversion as it was previously accessible only to accounts with over 10,000 followers.
ProTip: The organic reach for content from Business Accounts on Instagram continues to decline. An effective Instagram strategy should include paid advertising and the use of Micro and Nano influencers to improve visibility. These are influencers with small but loyal followings that can often produce a better ROI for companies.
TikTok is still capturing the attention and share of screen time of an increasing number of people. The site recently surpassed Google in total number of visits. Why?
People want to be entertained and learn from short-form video. TikTok succeeded where Quibi failed as users can interact with the content and its creators. The site is adding new features every week with an emphasis on facilitating live-stream shopping. Incidentally, TikTok videos can now be up to 3 minutes long. TikTok produced a set of marketing guides for small to medium-sized businesses as there have been numerous success stories relating to small businesses that gained national visibility using TikTok.
I will also be offering a number of TikTok workshops this coming year.
ProTip: Remember to create short-form videos on the hard-drive of a device first, and then upload them to TikTok and Instagram Reels. Please do not post TikTok videos directly on Instagram. I am sure you have seen this, but IG will clamp down and possibly shadowban your account (hide your content). The sites are arch competitors and don’t appreciate seeing the watermark from a competitor on a video. Also, Reels can now be shared to Facebook.
LinkedIn never wants to be left behind. It’s the premier site for establishing a personal brand persona as an expert thought-leader in a professional field. It is also an important part of the Business-to-Business sales process. This past year, LinkedIn tried to copy a number of the features of other social platforms. LinkedIn rolled out stories which were shuttered before the end of the year.
The good news is that most LinkedIn members can finally get access to create a live-stream video show and to produce a newsletter which can attract subscribers within the platform. These coveted features were only available to VIP users until recently. LinkedIn is also expanding its services marketplace to connect freelancers with clients through the platform. I look forward to seeing more of these improvements to support the gig economy.
ProTip: Repurpose written content into a LinkedIn newsletter and a live video. This content will get greater exposure and reach on the site. Add a Services Section to your profile which can feature project work and client reviews.
Snapchat will continue to expand its e-commerce credentials by creating more virtual shopping experiences created in partnership with brands using their evolving Augmented Reality tools.
YouTube will focus on ways to keep creators from leaving its platform and of course its short-form video feature, Shorts.
Pinterest is eager to attract video creators and expand its role in facilitating e-commerce. It will continue its broad push into video content especially through Pinterest TV, which is a series of live, original shoppable videos focused on its popular categories including fashion, food, fitness, home and beauty. Be sure to check out the Pinterest TV tab.
Twitter has a new CEO so I expect more features to be introduced this year to attract – you guessed it – in-app shopping. Twitter is also spending resources on its social audio feature, Spaces, hoping to steal the limelight from Clubhouse.
Key Marketing Recommendations
- Identify ways to partner and collaborate with influencers that can create the type of inspirational, entertaining, informative content that resonates with your ideal target customer.
- Experiment with creating exciting shopping experiences using digital storefronts on Instagram and Facebook, immersive environments on Snapchat and live-stream shopping functions on all the platforms including TikTok. Expect to see affiliate programs expand so influencers can create their own shops that generate commissions.
Successful e-commerce merchants will integrate AI software to improve their recommendation engines and personalize the overall shopping experience.
- Practice using the various apps designed to make TikToks, Reels and YouTube Shorts more impactful with effects, music and text as video, especially short-form video will continue to be the most popular and effective content form.
- Prepare to eventually meet in the Metaverse where we can dress our avatars in designer digs purchased using cryptocurrency, shop for NFTs, play games and attend meetings in a virtual world. I will hopefully be transformed into a tall, thin and blonde celebrity when we connect.
Until this becomes a reality, I wish you successful marketing in the coming year.
To my loyal clients, followers, fans and students please feel free to share my articles, posts and newsletters with others that can benefit from my tips and keep sharing your comments and questions with me. Stay well and in touch this year.