by Shannon Correia - Website Content Writer at Digital Nexa
Jun 2, 2022
With 2022 in full swing, marketers over the world are working to ensure that they are keeping up with the latest marketing technology and trends while meeting budgets at the same time. Marketing budgets have taken a significant dip since the pandemic and According to the 2021 Gartner State of marketing budget report, marketing budgets have taken a dip, hitting their lowest record level of a 6.4% dip in 2021 and an 11% low in 2020. The same report by Gartner shows that CMOs have shifted their spending across channels, with marketing technology making up 26.6% of the total marketing budget.
Based on the state of marketing in 2022, marketers have had to readjust their spending and shift the focus of their marketing endeavors towards tools and techniques to yield results and returns on investment. So, how can this be done pragmatically and within budget?
In this article, we are going to cover 4 important marketing tools and trends that your marketing team needs to focus on for the year. These include:
- 1. Customer Relationship Management Software
- 2. Inbound Marketing
- 3. Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning
- 4. Video Marketing
Let's dive right in.
Invest in these 4 Marketing Tools and Trends in 2022
- Customer Relationship Management Software
Customer Relationship Management (CRM) technology is said to be the biggest expense in terms of enterprise software in 2022. CRMs are the go-to marketing technology, designed to streamline operations and maximize profits. It is vital that businesses select the best match CRM software to suit their marketing, sales, and service requirements.
So, how can CRM software benefit your business and marketing efforts?
CRM software helps businesses attract, engage, delight, and convert leads into customers with streamlined marketing efforts and data analysis to better processes, increase sales, and nurture relationships.
The Benefits of CRMs include:
- Extensive and intensive reporting capabilities
- Comprehensive, streamlined data management
- Workflows for marketing messaging and automation
- Personalized lead strategies
- Proactive marketing, sales, and service solutions
With a powerful CRM at the core of your marketing activities, your team is able to gather data and insights in a collaborative manner, allowing for the delivery of exceptional service and customer experiences.
- Inbound Marketing
Inbound marketing has revolutionized the marketing industry, radically shifting the way businesses generate, nurture, and convert leads into customers.
Ten years ago, cold-calling was the norm and it was done in the hope that this would result in sales. Back then, the options for engaging with potential customers were limited to traditional mediums like print media and radio marketing. But things have changed.
Today’s customers loathe being called unannounced by salespeople and there are laws that have come into place to limit the ability to do so and protect their privacy. Modern-day customers want to have control and consent to the buyer’s journey. With unfettered access to information, customers conduct their own research before reaching out to businesses and service providers about taking the next step. According to Google, customers are more than 70% through the purchasing and decision process before they reach out to a potential supplier. This is when inbound marketing comes into play - a technique designed to attract, engage and delight potential customers as they move through the buyer's journey.
The buyer’s journey is made up of 4 significant stages:
- Attraction: With inbound marketing, you create optimized content to draw the attention of your target audience. This stage is all about providing value to potential customers and simultaneously increasing your brand's visibility online.
- Conversion: This stage is all about, engaging the audience that has shown interest in your content. It is a critical stage in the inbound marketing journey. With a well-defined strategy and powerful CRM in place, your business will be able to generate marketing- and sales- qualified leads with ease.
- Nurture: Inbound marketing strengthens the initial bond with potential customers and customers by providing them with more relevant and timely interactions. Maintaining consistency and value is an integral part of the inbound philosophy.
- Closing deals: This is the final step when leads are ready to make the purchase and become a customer. When incorporating an inbound marketing approach, the goal is to then repeat the process, creating loyal fans and customers.
By implementing the stages above, a business is able to drive customers through the sales process on their own terms and in a personalized manner. Another important element to note is that inbound marketing has the ability to draw a straight line between marketing efforts and revenue generation, essentially measuring precise ROI on each marketing endeavor - and who doesn't want that?
As such, investing time in creating a strong inbound marketing strategy is vital. This methodology goes hand in hand with high-quality CRM software and content to match.
- Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning
The common thread throughout this article is the importance of CRMs for marketing. CRMs are ahead of the game and leading the way in marketing innovation in 2022, with the inclusion of AI in the software. According to a report by HubSpot, 14% of global CIOs have deployed AI and according to Gartner’s 2019 CIO Agenda Survey, it is estimated that AI-linked CRM activities are projected to increase business revenue by an astounding $1.1 trillion worldwide.
With these stats in mind, the marketing industry needs to understand the requirements of tech-savvy consumers who expect instant communication and personalized brand engagement. Marketers, therefore, need to invest in the best AI and machine learning technology to future-proof business. This technology also helps in effectively guiding the buyer's journey. One of the most prominent players in this arena is the chatbot, or programmed interface on a website that allows visitors to interact in real-time and in a helpful, conversational tone.
Thanks to ever-advancing technology, chatbots have been expertly programmed to be more personalized and answer specific questions - not just generic FAQs. Chatbots are just one example of technologically driven software that drives the customer journey quickly and smoothly.
In 2022, it’s time to take full advantage of new-age AI in a move that will ultimately increase the bottom line.
- Video Marketing
Think about how many times you have watched a video today. Social media platforms are increasingly promoting this type of content, a move that marketing professionals have had to take notice of. Thanks to enhanced developments in technology and social media accessibility, video marketing is about engagement, social "shareability" and virality. And if you want to stay ahead in your industry, you need to invest in video marketing ahead of your competitors.
The reason that video content is so powerful is that it is easy to consume and more engaging than a static image or text. We live in the digital age with shrinking attention spans. That is why making dynamic and strategic video content allows marketers to grab the audience’s attention effectively.
Video content is not one and the same, with varying levels of quality and budgetary requirements to consider. Either way, it is an element that requires great attention in 2022.
Thanks to new-age technology and social platforms, video is becoming less expensive to produce and social media platforms make it easier for anyone to edit a video to their liking. It is possible to succeed with video marketing and there is no excuse to not get on board with video marketing in 2022.
The Wrap Up
The above outlines 4 pragmatic techniques that you can use to better your marketing efforts in 2022. All of the above work together to ensure your marketing is effective by reaching the right audience, at the right time, on the right platform, and in the right way.
With a powerful CRM at the helm of all your marketing efforts and your focus firmly placed on automation, inbound marketing, AI, and video content - you are sure to have a stellar year, with more leads, customers, and revenue to show for it.
Speak with the team at DXG, an independent international marketing agency, for all your digital marketing needs.
Shannon Correia - Website Content Writer at Digital Nexa
Shannon is a writer with degrees in journalism and media. She is dedicated to cultivating her craft with a diverse portfolio of meaningful content. Her passion and idealism inspire her to approach and explore topics creatively. When she isn't writing, she enjoys cooking, fashion, and travel.