If you’re still working off of an old marketing plan, it’s time to shake things up. Take a look at our seven tips for planning an effective marketing strategy in 2022, and get ready to maximize your success! 1. Stop thinking that print doesn’t matter Today’s consumers get their information largely from digital sources, but print isn’t dead. It will continue to be used by savvy digital marketers as an important part of their digital strategy. If you want to stay ahead of the curve in 2022, then you’ll need to seek out trends both digital and print-related. However, digital doesn’t have a monopoly on conversions. Print can help drive digital conversions as well – sometimes even more effectively than digital itself! According to research cited by Jumio, 74% of shoppers who received direct mail converted online within 90 days, compared with just 39% of those exposed to digital ads alone. Compared with digital, the numbers are even more impressive if your product USPs are “local” or “applied immediately.” For example, instead of getting an email about something you may be interested in, getting a coupon or other digital mailer can be even more effective. Digital marketing is still the dominant force in communication, so most efforts should begin with digital marketing. Even if you plan to supplement print later, it’s important to establish your presence digitally first and foremost so that your digital advertising won’t turn into wasted dollars. After all, no one likes wasting money! 2. Your email open rate doesn’t matter With iOS 14 changes, it is more important than ever to dig deeper into your email marketing metrics. As email is such a reliable and trackable form of marketing, we can use email data to make more informed decisions about our digital marketing strategy as the year goes on. We used to be able to determine email success from open rates and click-through rates, but this is no longer the case. According to email service provider Mailchimp, email open rates are down 4% since iOS 14 was released and will keep dropping as the year goes on. The good news is that email click-through rates have seen a slight increase after iOS 14’s release of 11%. This means email marketers need to move away from measuring success simply from open or click-through rates. Instead, email metrics must be tracked for more accurate measurements based on revenue, return on investment, and conversions based on email sends. A new metric email marketers should consider using instead of simple open and click-through rate calculations is return on investment – essentially how much income an email marketing campaign brings divided by its cost. To make the most out of email in your 2022 marketing plan, it’s best to start with email tracking and email analytics. With these two metrics, you’ll be able to gather insights into what content resonates with your audience. It also helps you understand where in the email people are engaging so you can optimize the layout for better usability. Make sure every link is trackable and that you have proper conversion tracking on your website that is properly attributing sales and leads. 3. Chatbots are the past, present, and future In 1956, a New York ad agency had a brilliant idea. It was the height of the Cold War and both superpowers were scrambling to get their hands on any sort of advanced technology they could find. So, Dancer-Fitzgerald-Sample flipped this dynamic on its head by inserting a robot into their advertising campaign for a telephone company. Fast forward almost sixty years from that famous robotic ad and many people are just catching up with what marketers have known forever – that bots are here to stay. Chatbots aren’t just another shiny tool, they should be considered an evergreen piece of your business. Unfamiliar with chatbots? Chatbots are automated online programs that mimic human-like conversations to serve users in an engaging way by responding to their queries and generally helping visitors get through everyday tasks with less effort. There are different types of chatbots to suit every budget. You can set up the simplest form of chatbot right from your Facebook business profile for free or go a little further with the bot functionality from Sprout Social. A chatbot doesn’t have to mean months of development! From simple bots to advanced bots that use AI when communicating with customers, there are very few hurdles to overcome these days. But it’s important to understand the principles of a good bot before splurging on a chatbot that doesn’t meet your needs. If you aren’t already thinking about a chatbot, get it on your radar for 2022, you’ll be pleasantly surprised by how helpful it can be. 4. Focus on mobile-first SEO In January 2018, Google announced their plan to incorporate mobile-first indexing as the search engine default for all websites and it has taken until 2021 for this to roll out completely. While this change has a lot of implications for search marketers there’s no reason to panic because if wedü built your website, we considered this already. For those of you reading who are not wedü clients, if you have a responsive website, you should be fine. If you still have separate mobile and desktop sites, you will have some work to do. If your website is not mobile-optimized in any way, it’s in your best interest to go ahead and optimize for mobile search engine results pages (SERP), or else you may see a drop in search rankings. Also, if your mobile search results are showing up in Google search results, you may want to look into using AMP or Accelerated Mobile Pages. These are new open-source ways of speeding up the mobile search result pages. If you do need to make some changes, your next SEO plan is closer than you think. We can provide you with a free SEO audit to help get you started. 5. Radio has come a long way, embrace it! On November 2, 1920, station KDKA made the nation’s first commercial broadcast! The radio advertising industry has certainly come a long way in the last 102 years. However, according to eMarketer.com, radio now only captures ~11 percent of total US ad spending; that’s down from 17 percent five years ago. But fear not radio advertising enthusiasts — all hope isn’t lost! In fact, a report from New Media Express predicts radio revenue will grow by ~3 percent annually over the next five years. Of course, these days radio isn’t just about your car’s FM dial – it’s also available on everything from satellite radio to streaming services and is ideal for all sorts of other environments too! Think sports arenas, retail stores, restaurants, gyms … the list goes on! If you take advantage of this still burgeoning marketing channel now, you’ll be sure to stand out in your industry when radio revenue starts to surge again in the latter part of the decade. If you wait too long to invest in radio advertising though, it could definitely be too little too late. Spotify and Pandora have opened their advertising up to the masses and these two services allow you to run a more targeted type of radio ad. The self-serve platforms that Spotify and Pandora offer allow users to target their listeners in several ways. You can pick your audience by age, gender, geographic location, and musical preferences just to name a few options. Once you’ve picked out who listens to your ad, it will run for as long as you set it up. Their self-serve platforms are best for reaching people higher in the sales funnel. The future of streaming radio advertising looks bright and the key to making radio work for your business will be thinking out of the box. 6. Take advantage of Facebook and Instagram ads Marketing has become increasingly reliant on social media over the past 10 years, but not enough marketers take advantage of all these platforms have to offer. Facebook ads are an important tool in any digital marketing playbook! Marketers advertise on Facebook to show ads to a very specific group of people, which makes it easier than ever to get your brand in front of your target audience. The best part about digital marketing has always been that digital ads are scalable—unlike print advertisements, digital ads can be seen by more people if you pay for them. You don’t have the same type of control over digital ads as you do with print ads, but digital allows you to reach out to an unlimited number of people who may or may not be interested in what you’re selling. Facebook advertisements also allow you to ensure that a consumer is engaged before they get to see your product, through the setup of digital metrics around conversions and sales numbers. Don’t be fooled by Facebook ads though. Some people hear the low cost per click averages and assume it’s going to be the silver bullet in their marketing plan, but like most mediums, it takes frequency and testing to get it right. 7. From macro to micro – give influencers a chance Creating influencer marketing campaigns is one of the most difficult things you can take on as a marketer. There’s so much potential upside, but so many pitfalls along the way. The influencers don’t always follow through, influencer fulfillment rates are frustratingly low, and influencers aren’t always easy to manage. We’ve gone into this subject at length in Influencer Marketing Part 1 and Part 2 so check out our posts and let 2022 be the year that your brand dabbles in influencer marketing. Part 1: https://wedu.com/blog/influencer-marketing/ Part 2: https://wedu.com/blog/influencer-marketing-part-2/ 8. Bonus tip! Don’t forget to connect your marketing efforts. What digital can do is take a lead and turn them into a customer, track the customer’s habits through remarketing ads and then send that information to a CRM software. If you just collect a lead and don’t do anything with it, you’ve lost valuable opportunities.
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