Ok Doctor Digital, HMU with your digital predictions for 2022, what do I NEED to get across?
Doctor Digital Says
It is hard to believe we are already at the time of year when we are turning our minds to 2022. If 2020 and 2021 taught us anything it is that being agile is key to survival and thrival in any type of business, as is self-care, humour and finding meaning and motivation in what you are doing.
One thing that has remained steady state in all the chaos of the last couple of years is the need for a strong digital strategy for your business. Digital Coach Taihlaura Denman-Francis from Kingthing Marketing gave her crystal ball a polish and revealed the following trends to get on so you can stay ahead of the curve and right where your customers are:
Every year when we are making future predictions, video has been a growth feature, and that shows no sign of slowing down. Clearly we humans love to watch, and all that watching directly translates into brand loyalty and converts to sales. Video is going to be bigger than ever as a marketing tool, especially on mobile devices. 52% of people use video as a key factor in decision making when purchasing and having a video makes your marketing 50 times more likely to convert.
Use it on all your channels including socials, blogs and email marketing – just having a video mentioned in the subject line will significantly increase open rates. Having video embedded in your website also supercharges your SEO, yet another reason to factor it into your strategy. Content doesn’t have to be slick – but it does need to be authentic – think behind the scenes of your business, product previews, customer endorsements, how-tos and spontaneous moments to share and connect.
All you need is a decent smartphone, clear sound, good lighting and your in camera editing can do the rest. Key point it to integrate your video voice and narrative into your strategy, think smart about how video can add to your marketing mix, and plan out how you are going to use it to achieve your goals. Measure the impacts and see where you are getting traction so you can tweak your content to be more of what people love to consume.
Another area that is growing exponentially is shopping on socials or Instream shopping as it is known. You may have noticed more and more marketing appearing in your social media feed, and if you’ve been tempted to click through, you are able to seamlessly transact. Social selling is getting plenty of traction, and it makes sense to have products at the fingertips of your customers when they are primed and ready to purchase.
Facebook (and therefore Instagram) is leading the charge with this, making sure there is a streamlined process of payment to purchase that keeps people inside the platform and feeding the algorithms. If socials are already a key part of your conversion strategy, and you have a product or service that will suit this type of sales channel, it is definitely worth exploring, but keep in mind the dangers of having all of your transactions linked to a third party that you have no control over, and make sure you are managing your risk.
Live shopping is another area online that is going to be one to watch in 2022. It is being trialled in China and some big things are forecast. Live shopping fuses established shopping models like the Home Shopping Network with live video, content marketing, influencer marketing and entertainment value to create compelling shopping events where products are tagged in the live broadcast and can be bought directly from your mobile device.
Live broadcasts have become the number one source of revenue per hour in China, ahead of mobile games, television, radio, videos and music. You can be absolutely sure that this trend is going to take off in all other jurisdictions, again with Facebook leading the charge. It’s a $423 billion dollar market already, and capitalises on the popularity and FOMO of livestream and shopping.
SEO + Web
For the last couple of years, we have been forshadowing the rise and rise of voice as more people use mobile devices for everything, and voice assistants like Alexa and Siri are embedded into our phones and even airpods. Voice is however beginning to have an impact on SEO, as rather than keywords, it is key phrases that are driving search engine optimisation. Using voice, people ask questions in short sentences, think about how you use voice for information, and what questions might people be asking about your products and services. How do they phrase them, and how can you start to factor that language into your website.
While we are on websites, they are still as relevant and powerful as ever for your business and brand. Simplicity is the key, with short sentences, dot points, very clear navigation, using images that are aligned to the content and properly sized. Customers need to land on your site and find what they want straight away. Make it easy for everyone to get what they need, or you will have them bounce off before they can discover the genius of what you have to offer. Use your insight tools and analysis via Google or your web host to drill down on your data and work out what parts are working and whether you are hitting your desired targets, tweak, rinse, repeat.
Bite Size Content
The customer journey is more and more about capturing attention quickly, building trust and moving them along the marketing funnel. Consumers now have an 8 second attention span, so your content needs to pack a punch, make an impact, and do all that in 3 lines of text and a few seconds of vision. It's content, bite sized! You can do a surprising amount in a short time, you need to be clever and know what your customers want, and always make it easy for them to purchase and endorse you when they have transacted.
Consumer endorsement is a great way to create content and utilise raving fans as part of your marketing strategy. We trust brands, products and services more when they come recommended, and are 81% more likely to convert with word of mouth by other users. Where can you build your relationships with your biggest fans, work to collaborate and have your brand in their content and vice versa? Think of creative ways to not only get direct endorsement, but to have a sneaky hashtag or business name in a particularly ‘grammable spot in your business or cute merch that will find its way into people’s feeds as they share their experiences.
Place, Pronouns and Program
Finally as the crystal ball grows cloudy, don’t forget the power of a name. Incorporate dual place names across marketing communications to acknowledge the traditional owners and the Aboriginal names of the land your business operates on. Think about pronouns and inclusivity to make sure you are welcoming the whole spectrum of customers into your business and making them feel seen, heard and welcome.
Use your digital channels strategically, and diversify your offerings across different marking channels including traditional ones and quirky, guerrilla tactics to delight and surprise your customers. Don’t forget as the new year tick over, you will be eligible for another 4 hours of completely FREE digital coaching through the Digital Ready Program, sign up here and get your business off to a strategic and focussed 2022.