2021 saw many marketing trends come and go. There was the introduction of new short-form video tools, like YouTube Shorts, an increase in user-generated content and integration between AI and marketing (hello chatbots) and so much more. 

But have these fads cemented themselves as the new digital marketing standard or will 2022 be bigger and better? Well, we think it's a mix of both. 

Trends like customer-centricity and AI integration seem to be here to stay while some fads didn't pan out quite how we planned. Think of the many brands that took the email marketing craze a little too far (our inbox will never recover!).

With that in mind, let’s peer into what the future of digital marketing looks like, and why it should matter to you. 

Let’s get into it:

Increased customer centricity

Ever heard the saying 'the customer is always right'? Well, that will ring particularly true in 2022 as customer-centricity continues to be a focal point in the digital marketing sphere. 

'What is customer-centricity', you ask? As the term suggests this is when brands put the customer first and at the forefront of everything that it does. This is not simply targeting the consumer in your marketing outputs, but truly understanding what their interests and needs are and tailoring your efforts accordingly. 

As the consumer trust in marketers is at an all-time low, adopting this approach may help brands build more authentic and trusting relationships with their audience.
Want to know more about how your brand can benefit from a customer-centric approach? Then be sure to check out these Three benefits of customer-centric marketing
Brands can become more customer-centric by ensuring that it's every employee's goal, not just the marketer's, to please the customer. This should be an integral aspect of company culture.  

Businesses could keep the customer at the centre of its operations by incentivising or rewarding its employees that give excellent customer service or meet the needs of the client. Listening to consumer feedback and altering your marketing efforts accordingly wouldn't hurt either! 

More Meta madness

Since Facebook rebranded as Meta, and has shown a significant interest in the metaverse, many believe this is an indicator of what the future of digital spaces could look like.

But before we get ahead of ourselves, what is the metaverse in the first place? This is essentially a virtual environment that breathes new life into the way internet users engage with one another online. 

What this means for digital marketers is that there could be a whole new arena for them to play on. As augmented reality and virtual experiences grow more popular, marketers should be on the lookout for any opportunities that may come their way in these virtual spaces. 

SEO isn't the be all end all of content marketing 

We've lost count of all the times we’ve read that to succeed in the content marketing game, you need to nail SEO. But what if we told you, this wasn't true

Yes, you heard that right! According to Forbes, search algorithms are becoming "smarter and more contextual." This means that marketers need not worry about how they can hack SEO with rich keywords or backlinks — but rather on creating exceptional, valuable content. 

If you're producing meaningful, creative and visual content, you are bound to grab your audience's attention. Why? Because you're providing a top-notch customer experience, of course

Further AI and digital marketing integration 

Chances are if you're an avid internet user, you've encountered chatbots. And these little (virtual) helpers are only the tip of the iceberg of AI and marketing integration. 

Whether it's AI influencer reshaping influencer marketing tactics or chatbots being able to predict what a customer's next purchase may be, the opportunities are endless! This is because AI enables us to analyse data faster

In a marketing context, this will be beneficial as AI technology can help us sift through a consumer's purchasing behaviour and history, and use this data to make more informed product recommendations or advertisements. 

More effective targeting will not only lead to higher conversion rates, but will keep the buyer happy as well. This, in a sense, circles back to customer centricity and tailoring your brand to fit into what the consumer wants and needs. 

What is your favourite emerging digital marketing trend? Be sure to let us know in the comments section below.

Well, you've made it this far. Why not sign up for our newsletter while you're here?

Want to learn more about how to dominate the marketing scene? Then be sure to check out our article, Marketers, keep an eye on these five e-commerce trends.
*Image courtesy of Unsplash.