Pivot. That's the best word to describe marketing in 2021. With so much uncertainty around the pandemic, it was hard to plan anything in advance and even when you were able to plan something, you needed to have a backup plan or two just in case things changed. It seems like going into 2022, we're still not sure what the next 6 months will look like from a marketing perspective. Yes, we will still have our usual marketing channels like social media and website content, but what about events and digital advertising? In person events are still in the air because of the pandemic and digital advertising is going to see a shift due to 3rd party cookies going away. So what other marketing shifts are happening in the industry? Read on to find out what areas of marketing you should keep on your radar as we go into 2022.
Goodbye 3rd Party Cookies
You may have heard that third-party tracking cookies are going away, so what does that mean for advertising? Instead of cookies that monitor your activity on the internet through third parties/websites, it would be monitored at the browser level. While many propose this change is a step closer to more privacy and less tracking, from an advertising prospective, organizations that rely on third-party cookies will have to find another way to target users. Google is currently testing Federated Learning of Cohorts (FLoC), which would keep track of a user and their behavior but rather than advertising to them at an individual level, it will target them in groups based on their habits. You can read more about it here.
More Interactive Content
With so much content available at your fingertips, marketers are now trying to come up ways to stand out above the noise. Interactive content is a great way to accomplish that. Rather than having a one dimensional piece of content, they are turning it into something that is more interactive and requires the users to actively engage in it. For in person events think, interactive games and virtual reality, for web based content, think calculators and assessments, that have an output that is custom to their specific inputs. While cost of ownership calculators and cloud assessments aren't anything new, you'll see more and more of this kind of content pop up.
Because of Covid-19 we are seeing more and more hybrid events. With so much uncertainty around in-person events, hybrid events are great because it has a virtual element to it so if you need to cancel the in-person portion, the virtual element is already in motion. This format also allows you to interact with those that live locally but also reach into markets you might not have been able to reach otherwise because they are further away geographically. Hybrid events can be tricky as it usually requires several people behind the scenes executing the event online and several people executing the event in person. During the event we recommend having one person take ownership of the event on site and other person take ownership of the virtual event.
Featured Snippets for SEO
SEO will continue to be an important aspect of your digital marketing strategy but in the last several years we have seen a major shift in the SEO industry. You may have noticed featured snippets on Google when you are searching for information. This means that instead of having to click the link in the search results to find the information you’re looking for, its featured on Google as a snippet, which means in some cases users don’t have to go to your website to find the information they need. Having your information in the featured snippet requires different SEO techniques but if you’re able to be the first one on there, you have a huge advantage over your competitors.
While engaging in the community and giving back to nonprofits isn’t anything new, more and more we are seeing consumers wanting to work with organizations that have a mission or give back to the community. Consumers want to make sure the organizations they are working with align with their values and it can play a big role in the decision making process. From a marketing standpoint, its important to make sure that the nonprofits and local community organizations align with your corporate philanthropic missions and you'll also want to share that involvement across your digital touchpoints.