Marketers have had a hard time keeping up with the rollercoaster that was 2021. Parts of the world had to pause and lockdown, which meant demand for some products and services went through the roof, while others were left out in the cold.
We’re optimistic that 2022 will be a clean slate, and a chance to take the learnings from a turbulent year and apply them to a new world and way of thinking for many.
We asked some of our team to share the key thing they took away from this year and how this can be used for your brand’s success in 2022.
“Privacy, transparency and trust”
With Google set to depreciate 3rd party cookies by 2023 (though this date could still change), many brands will be putting plans in place to ensure they can effectively target customer groups in the absence of these cookies. Some brands are investing in a Consent Management Platform (CMP) to ensure they can comply with regulations, and capture consent for non-3rd-party and tracking cookies.
Brands should be focusing on obtaining first-party data directly from customers about their behaviours, interests and intentions to allow you to build your own personalised data sets. This is something that’s going to take a lot of trial-and-error and time investment, so if you don’t start in 2022, you’ll definitely be left behind when the third-party cookie crumbles from existence.
While there will be alternative methods that emerge after Google’s decimation of third-party cookies, I’d strongly advise that a more transparent first-party data collection strategy is put in place. We don’t know just how far data privacy laws will go, so your best bet is being as upfront and transparent with your customers as possible. Building trust is the priority long term.
“Don’t just survive, thrive”
If marketing budgets were cut and staff let go during the pandemic, your department may have had to get by with minimal resources. Many teams we’ve spoken to were starting to feel burnt out trying to work with a reduced staff while the demand for output remained heavy.
People are so important, but when there’s reluctance in senior management to replace them or fill the skills you feel you need, sometimes we’re left to ‘make do’ with what we have.
This is where we feel technology is going to play a huge role in 2022. So many incredible pieces of software have emerged and adapted throughout the pandemic to cater to the needs of a changing world.
Brands have been talking about “having conversations” with customers for years. But it was only when the pandemic hit that these conversations became truly authentic. They had to be. We were facing some of the biggest unknowns of our time.
Questions needed to be answered. People needed to feel informed. Online communities became even more important. Not only forums, but social media channels too.
They were places people could gather safely. People weren’t afraid to share their opinions. They had more time to leave detailed reviews and re-evaluate whether a product or service added real value to their lives.
A great example of a community that took off was Huel. Their followers on their Reddit sub skyrocketed to nearly 20,000 ‘Hueligans’. For a relatively new brand, that’s quite the achievement.
While the majority of contributions are user-generated, they do have dedicated Huel-employed moderators. The content they produce and cross-share isn’t just about educating new customers on their product, it’s helping existing ones make the most of it, with tips, feedback and recipes regularly posted.
Outside of using communities to help retain existing customers, many brands are being more vocal in topical events, a habit that was formed during the height of COVID-19 and that’s staying as the pandemic news eases.
“Content for data”
When it comes to building customer profiles and obtaining personal data, there are a lot of challenges about to hit brands. So why not use your content strategy as a chance to offer something substantial to your audience in exchange for their data?
No, it’s not a new idea. But a new way of thinking is needed to approach it in the right way.
Does your prospective customer want a 10-page report on why they should buy your product? Probably not.
What about a bespoke mini-report of recommendations tailored to them in exchange for their email address? That’s more like it.
Does your customer want a 60-minute documentary that goes behind the scenes of your manufacturing processes? Some might, but most likely not.
Do they want exclusive early access to sales and discounts? You see where this is going.
Data in exchange for content is an effective marketing strategy, but over and above content, you need to be providing tangible value to your customers. Now more than ever. Save them money, save them time, save them from having to research or do the hard work. Give them thought-out, genuine value and the email addresses will start filtering in.
2022 is here and brands are bracing themselves
Our team has shared their thoughts, and the reality is that there is so much to be done over the next year – beyond what’s been listed. Ensuring you can manage and thrive amid uncertainty and deliver what you need without barriers should be among your priorities.
Grasping onto multiple pieces of software or relying too heavily on external agencies can leave you vulnerable to gaps in your production. If your brand needs a dedicated portal where anyone in your team can create digital, print, video, social and email content then BAM by Papirfly™ should be on your research list.
In addition to creating and editing an infinite amount of assets each month, teams can store, share and save them anywhere in the world, manage campaigns and educate employees on brand guidelines along the way.
To make this a reality, get in touch today to book your demo.