Top Dominant Digital Marketing and Advertising Technology (Martech/ Adtech) Themes for 2022
Web3.0, Cookie-less tracking, Metaverse, Gaming, and the Future of Digital Advertising
Web3.0, Metaverse, VR, and NFT’s, and hyper-gaming advertising — all clearly the top marketing and advertising words that made the biggest splash in the digital ecosystem. As part of our ongoing Predictions Series 2022, key industry leaders spoke to us on the future of digital marketing and advertising technologies and how these would bear a new generation of Marketers and Advertisers.
According to Genesys, Personalization will become the #1 priority for CX leaders – In 2021, 80% of consumers said they’re more likely to purchase additional items, make recommendations, and devote a greater share of wallet to companies that consistently personalize their experiences — an increase of 10% from 2017. In 2022, ROI will only continue to grow for companies that devote time, effort, and resources into creating meaningful and customized experiences, reinforcing personalization as a powerful driver of wallet share and customer advocacy.
From hyper-personalization to hyper-metaverse, we have an exciting line-up of top dominant themes in the world of Digital Marketing and Advertising [Martech and Adtech] that you should be prepared to take on in the New Year 2022. Let’s roll…
The themes include:
- Metaverse Interoperability Will Be Key In 2022, by Jack Smith (CPO)- DoubleVerify
- The Metaverse Shows the Potential of Virtual Reality, by Nadia Ozeri, Director of Buy-Side, Total Media Solutions
- Focus On the Modern VR Applications Because the Metaverse Is Long Way Off, by Emre Atalay, Co-Founder and CEO, BCNMonetize
- Embracing Audio-Enabled Experiences, by Ron Jaworski (Co-founder and CEO), Trinity Audio
- OOH Growth Despite Challenges in Data Privacy, Attribution and Brand Safety, by Accretive Media CEO Craig Benner
- Role of Social Intelligence and Consumer Behavior Analytics in Marketing Campaigns, by Christine Maguire, GGM/VP, Global Media Business, Tripadvisor
- Brand and Customer Experience Will Rise to the Very Top of the CMO and Sales Agenda, by Dorian Stone, GM, Grammarly
- Focus Shifts to Omnichannel Verification, by Dan Slivjanovski, CMO at DoubleVerify
- Metaverse for Content Development and Marketing, by Erin Madorsky, MD- programmatic leader, MiQ
- Zero-Party Data Will Become a Focal Point of Marketing Efforts, by Jake Weatherly, CEO of SheerID
- Build Living Experiments: New Types of Analytics Required to Measure “In-The-Moment” Sentiments, by Laura Manning, Sr. Director of Strategic Partnerships at Lucid
- Boom in Linear TV Adtech with Focus Shifting to Creating Awareness using Real-time Audience Data, by Lindsay Fordham, VP Product, Lucid
- Explosive CTV Adoption in the UK, by Will Keggin, Head of TV at LiveRamp
- Programmatic Arrives at DOOH Doorsteps, by Nigel Clarkson, Global CRO, Hivestack
- Expect to Hear more on Privacy Conversations featuring FLOC and FLEDGE Technologies, by Jürgen Galler, CEO and Co-Founder of 1plusX
- Can’t think of a Marketing Campaign in 2022 without Involving the CDPs, by Filippo Gramigna, CEO, Audiencerate
- First-Party Databases Come to the Front in 2022, by Lucy Hinton, Head of Client Operations, Flashtalking by Mediaocean
- 2022 Would See More of AI, 5G and Video Marketing, by Dmitri Kazanski, Head of Product at MGID
- The Wave of Great Consolidation in Digital Advertising, by Ross Nicol, VP EMEA, Zefr
- Consent Management Systems to Be Integrated Into Post-cookie Identity Protocols, by Alexander Azarov, CEO and Founder, Clickio
- SaaS Growth in Value-based Payment Structure, by Pascal Lannoo, Chief Strategy Officer, SKEEPERS
- New Ways to Encourage Brand Storytelling, by Megan Cunningham, CEO and Founder, Magnet Media
- DI Is the Most Important B2B Movement of a Generation, by Richard Potter, Co-Founder and CEO at Peak
- Connected TV as a Mainstream Method of ‘Watching TV, by Fred Godfrey, CEO and Co-Founder at Origin
- Welcome F.A.S.T. (Free, Ad-Supported Streaming TV), by Navdeep Saini, Co-Founder and CEO of DistroScale
- More Immersive Curated Ad Break Experiences, by Omer Latif, CEO at ElementalTV
- Stay Aware of the Big Players in Post-cookie Alternatives, by Alicia Arnold, Managing Director, fifty-five
- VIDEOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO Marketing!, by Daniel Street, CEO of Scorpion
- Yes! 2020 Holiday Shopping Patterns Will Persist, by Kristen Gall, president of Rakuten Rewards
- Get Hold of the Influencer Marketing Campaigns in 2022, by impact.com‘s Enterprise Account Executive, Ross Negus
- Personalized Email, by Jeff Kupietzky, CEO at Jeeng
- Virtual Versus In-Person Interactions — Where’s the World Headed to in 2022?, by Coco Carson, Insights Manager at ShareThis
- Establish the Real-time Customer Rewards Systems, by Brandon Logsdon- PDI Software
- Data-Driven Metrics and Analytics, by Michelle Tilton, VP of Marketing at Gryphon.ai
- The Share of the Wallet Is Shifting, by Zohar Gilad, CEO of Fast Simon
Metaverse Interoperability Will Be Key In 2022
Jack Smith, Chief Product Officer at DoubleVerify predicts that the Metaverse interoperability will be key in 2022.
According to Jack, “The metaverse will continue to have a moment with Facebook — now Meta — leading the charge. The metaverse allows you to share fully immersive online experiences and is powered by extended reality technology. Mark Zuckerberg has staked his company’s future on this new ecosystem, calling it a “Northstar” and his mission “to bring the metaverse to life.” Still, the metaverse remains mostly conceptual. It’s early days for both the technology — hardware and software — and the content required to meet the meta-opportunity. Interoperability is also key. For the metaverse to function like the physical world, virtual environments must be interconnected. It can’t be a series of individual walled gardens. While the metaverse will take years to be realized, it’s not as far away as we might think given rapid advancements in VR and AR amid the pandemic. Expect continued progress in 2022. As that occurs, like with any new channel, advertisers will demand better measurement in order to invest with confidence.”
The Metaverse Shows the Potential of Virtual Reality
Nadia Ozeri, Director of Buy-Side, Total Media Solutions predicts Metaverse would create more opportunities in the Immersive Content space.
Nadia said, “Audiences respond positively to imaginative and interactive digital experiences, which makes augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR) exciting technologies for marketers to tap into. We have already seen brands such as IKEA successfully use AR to help customers design their own space, and its application in other verticals holds high potential: from virtual real estate tours to getting a ‘feel’ for that hotel you might book for your holiday, or trying out how lipstick colors and clothes look before you buy. And while the Metaverse is still very much in its nascent stages, there will increasingly be tools available that give marketers the power to connect with consumers in these digital spaces. As a result, we should expect to see AR and VR play a larger role in marketing strategies in 2022.”
Focus On the Modern VR Applications Because the Metaverse Is Long Way Off
Emre Atalay, Co-Founder and CEO, BCNMonetize said, “Marketers who want to thrive in the coming year should familiarise themselves with the potential of augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR). Right now, it’s only the big companies that are making the most out of these despite the fact smaller businesses could also benefit from bringing them into their social media and advertising campaigns. Adopting these technologies will show customers they are future-facing and will give these companies a knowledge boost and advantages gained by being early adopters.”
Emre added, “The conversation around VR this year has focused heavily on the metaverse. Although growing in its significance, it will be a long time before we can really enjoy the benefits of a single, fully interactive, digital space. Before that, we will need to have developed numerous individual ‘metaverses’ tied together through a global infrastructure of devices. Only then will we begin to see if the metaverse can revolutionize how we work and communicate. In the meantime, businesses of all sizes should focus on how they can draw on the benefits of already-available AR and VR technologies.”
Marketers should Embrace AI Audio-Enabled Experiences
Ron Jaworski is co-founder and CEO of Trinity Audio, a company determined to “audio-fy” the online world. He is a highly-regarded thought leader on the impact of artificial intelligence on audio. Ron has been quoted in top B2B tech publications including MarTech Series, and a number of other media outlets about how best to implement strategic audio experiences. Ron predicts another booming year for AI audio technology industry.
According to Ron, “AI audio technology will raise the bar for the type and amount of content being offered to audiences. Along with changes in listening habits, and a noticeable increase in podcasts consumption, users’ expectations for AI audio-enabled experiences will push content creators to be quicker and more thoughtful about how they meet their growing interests. More publications and content creators will realize how AI audio can benefit them, and their engagement with their audience. Creating a podcast has become much easier, affordable”, and faster than ever, increasing the accessibility of content to more users than ever.
Ron added, “AI will enable content owners of all sizes and industries to instantly convert their assets into much more accessible audio, that can be edited and shared, without worrying about the quality of sound, listeners’ sensitivity to different accents and pronunciations, switching languages, or even listening to a robotic narrator. AI will enable owners of content to more finely-tune audio preferences, to create a smarter listening experience.”
OOH Growth Despite Challenges in Data Privacy, Attribution and Brand Safety
Accretive Media CEO Craig Benner predicts that 2022 will be the year that we find out whether Facebook or Meta, is on its way to Myspace City.
Craig said, “ I say this respectfully, having worked for the company that bought Myspace with JT that there is too much smoke with their data practices, too much ineffectiveness now that they can’t rig attribution/control all message cadence, and too much uncertainty around their go-forward strategy. I’m not sure that hiding in a Metaverse will make all these problems go away. They are too big to fail for now, but next year will tell us A LOT.”
Craig continued, “Out-of-home is the only traditional medium that is poised for continued growth, and that trend will accelerate in 2022 due to advancements in measurement, accessibility, and ease of execution. As data privacy, brand safety, attribution, cookie/MAID deprecation, antitrust, fraud, declining viewership, and other issues continue to plague every other channel, out-of-home and its increased engagement in a post-pandemic consumer environment will thrive. No bias here (?), but out-of-home will become a must buy.”
Social Intelligence and Consumer Behavior Analytics Shall Remain Key in Creating Effective Marketing Campaigns
Christine Maguire, GGM/VP, Global Media Business, Tripadvisor bets on changing trends in consumer behavior and social intelligence analytics.
Consumers are expecting their favorite brands to acknowledge ongoing social movements and support their causes. Brands that have managed to understand the influential impact of social movements are seen in a more positive light by their consumers and fans. In 2020, we witnessed a rise in ads demonstrating the brand positioning of many top companies. Ad themes such as “Black Lives Matter” played a very important role in 2020 in driving consumer sentiments toward their favorite brands. Nike, YouTube, NBA, Papa John’s, and others amplified their understanding of social intelligence using highly impactful use of consumer behavior analytics.
According to Christine, “Consumer behavior isn’t what it used to be as needs, priorities, and expectations have shifted. In 2022, we anticipate travelers will want to expand on their travel options and we are seeing that most are leaning toward a mix of domestic and international travel destinations across the Americas, APAC and EMEA. This will lead to higher expectations regarding safety precautions and protocols, which could increase the cost of business. This is why it’s important that marketers take time to understand their consumers and how their behaviors have changed post-COVID to ensure they’re reaching them with the right message.”
Christine added, “As the pandemic and other social movements (Black Lives Matter, Stop Asian Hate, etc.) have forever changed the way consumers think about travel, brands have a responsibility to take part in the social conversation. In fact, consumers have identified that it’s important to them that brands support social causes. For example, 45% of US travelers have said “when I travel I value being able to support Black-owned businesses.” With this shift, we can expect to see more brands supporting social causes & integrating them into marketing campaigns.”
In addition to incorporating purpose-driven marketing, brands looking to have the biggest impact should incorporate multiple marketing strategies that will achieve different goals, such as attracting new travelers, welcoming back former travel enthusiasts, and those focused on wellbeing/self-care.
Brand and Customer Experience Will Rise to the Very Top of the CMO and Sales Agenda
Grammarly Business General Manager Dorian Stone predicts that CX and brand experience trends will play a significant role in the new year and beyond.
Dorian said, “Brand and customer experience will rise to the very top of the CMO and sales agenda. The continued emergence of market disruptors and rising prices will make exceptional CX a critical driver of growth. Empathy will be a business imperative to meet customer and employee needs. Overcoming the business impact of poor communication will be pivotal to adapt and grow in the hybrid work era. Creating an empowered work environment that promotes employee confidence will be critical for attracting and retaining a diverse workforce.”
Focus Shifts to Omnichannel Verification
Dan Slivjanovski, CMO at DoubleVerify asked Marketers to be very careful. He asks marketing teams to “verify everywhere!”
According to Dan, “The world is becoming more and more connected – and along with that connection comes shifts in the consumption of digital media. We’ve seen this take place as CTV booms with consumers, driving a subsequent shift in advertising spending. We’ll continue to see momentum build as more new players and platforms enter the media landscape – the possibilities are endless. From TikTok to cars, to homes. These new platforms will invite new players, further fragmenting the ecosystem – while providing a multitude of opportunities to reach consumers wherever they are. As this occurs, it will be critical for advertisers to verify on every channel in order to protect their campaigns and investments. Consistent measurement data across channels, formats, platforms, and geographies will be inherently necessary.”
Dan also adds that performance is a natural extension of verification.
As per Dan, “Disruption In the marketplace is more apparent than ever – content consumption is shifting, privacy regulations are evolving – and with the shift to an increasingly connected world, it will only become more disjointed. The world’s largest brands are struggling to confidently invest their ad dollars, demanding transparency to ensure their dollars are spent wisely. In order to give marketers confidence, verification will extend beyond quality into performance. Verifying quality has always created fertile ground for performance. Now, considering the impact of cookie deprecation, quality will need to be married with attention – and ultimately performance signals — to offer clear insights into where media investment should be made to drive outcomes.”
Metaverse for Content Development and Marketing
Erin points to the rapid development of metaverse for content.
Erin said, “As the currency, culture, and consumer experiences continue to push further into virtual realms, both marketers and the businesses who support them will innovate in areas of building and maintaining relationships, such as those within the Metaverse. We have to re-evaluate hard dichotomies. In a digital-first world, the distinction between branding and performance will continue to become less relevant for resource and budget allocation. Instead, a full-funnel blend of formats, screens, and success metrics will be reimagined to drive new marketing metrics that better reflect business health.”
Erin continued, “Creative and digital activations will come closer together where they can positively inform each other – data-driven decisions into creative and creative as a critical component to programmatic strategies. Against the backdrop of the Great Resignation, teams that can continue to deliver top-notch service will rise in the minds of buy-side decision-makers while new opportunities will open for more contract work, consultants, managed service firms, and emerging agency models. In 2022, Professional and personal lines will blur. More investment in aligning work with individual purpose will grow.”
Zero-Party Data Will Become a Focal Point of Marketing Efforts
Jake Weatherly, CEO of SheerID predicts a totally new horizon in the online audience tracking and analytics business.
Jake said, “With growing privacy restrictions on third-party cookies, I think we’ll see significantly greater use of zero-party data by marketers in 2022. Zero-party data is information that consumers voluntarily provide brands in exchange for some type of incentive or reward, like a better offer or service. Zero-party data also offers a more precise depiction of a consumer because, compared to other types of data, it does not require the brand to do analysis to understand the consumer’s intent. With zero-party data, there’s no need to infer. Rather, you just ask consumers questions to which they provide answers.”
Build Living Experiments: New Types of Analytics Required to Measure “In-The-Moment” Sentiments
Laura Manning, Sr. Director of Strategic Partnerships at Lucid feels consumer sentiment is changing at a faster rate than ever before, and marketers must take notice of how this can impact their brand’s reputation and communication.
Laura said, “Running advertising campaigns for months, quarters, or even years without analyzing what’s working (or not), needs to finally become a practice of the past. It can be difficult for marketers to stay on top of what’s happening ‘in the moment’ but those who aren’t leveraging real-time data to analyze performance and adjust campaigns in-flight may lose ground to those who are actively iterating on actionable data.”
“As measurement becomes more sophisticated, it needs to be incorporated throughout the full customer journey, not just as something that happens at a point in time, or as data featured in a wrap-up report when the campaign ends. Brands should treat every campaign as a living experiment — using the real-time data to go through an iterative process and making inflight decisions to help hit their desired outcomes. Tapping into measurement data throughout the campaign is where advertising can become really scientific, and that’s a good thing,” continued Laura.
Boom in Linear TV Adtech with Focus Shifting to Creating Awareness using Real-time Audience Data
Laura’s colleague at Lucid, Lindsay Fordham, said, “Aligning around measurement standards for every media channel is important. All forms of digital — mobile, display, programmatic, CTV, etc. — should be found in one place and measured against the same standards. And next year, linear TV, should be added to that, too.”
Lindsay continued, “TV has a long history of how it’s bought and sold, and the measurement tactics used for it, but there’s an opportunity to treat linear like the rest of the channels marketers use. The industry must align around a new way of defining and measuring TV outcomes, and make linear accountable alongside digital. Marketers need to be monitoring the real-time viewing behaviors of consumers across linear TV, connecting those to digital exposures, and then measuring incremental lift. Brands who do so can execute seamlessly across channels and incorporate learnings about what audiences are resonating, which networks, placements, and creatives are performing best, and use that to make better decisions — whether that’s defining the right creative rotation strategy, planning for the next campaign or adjusting budgets appropriately.”
Lindsay Fordham also said that heading into 2022, brands must renew their focus on the quality of data while also measuring incrementality when it comes to planning and measuring their media buys.
She added, “There’s a lot of baseline awareness and consideration for a brand that exists after decades of advertising, so brands have to be evaluating success based on the actual incremental impact that their media is having. Data plays a role in that in order to provide a relevant experience, but where a lot of marketers fall short, is failing to measure the quality of that data before they put it into activation. By not verifying the accuracy of the data being used or continuously measuring how it’s performing within the context of a given campaign, brands may not get the right results even if all other elements of the campaign are spot on.”
Explosive CTV Adoption in the UK
Will Keggin, Head of TV at LiveRamp, has predictions for the Connected TV or CTV ecosystem.
Will predicts, “Make no mistake – CTV will explode in the UK in 2022. Recent research says that over 77% of brands would like to invest more in CTV advertising in the next 12 months. With the perfect storm of people spending more time on their sofas watching TV, and the impending end of third-party cookies – the CTV turf is ripe for growth…
… But collaboration will be the key to unlocking the potential of omnichannel advertising. We are already seeing broadcaster collaboration with CFlight, and this UK…-based collaboration model will proliferate into other markets in Europe, particularly the likes of Germany who are starting to see greater investment in addressable capabilities under broadcaster control. On the sell-side, TV players will look to use collaboration to obtain access to data and inventory while retaining control of their own (e.g. CFlight).”
Will added, “As we near ever close to the end of the third-party cookie, marketers are looking towards cookie-free channels of growth such as connected TV that prioritize privacy and addressability. The opportunity for broadcasters, marketers and consumers alike to benefit from this is immense as we head into the new year. We’ve already seen this growth trajectory in the US and France – and the UK will not be far behind.”
Programmatic Arrives at DOOH Doorsteps
Nigel Clarkson, Global CRO, Hivestack said, “If 2021 was the year that OOH weathered the storm of the pandemic, it was also a year in which OOH operators began to make serious moves to prepare for a programmatic future, and 2022 will see very big gains in this area of DOOH…
…In a world still forecast to be beset by on/off lockdowns, the need for marketers to be agile and real-time in their audience planning and delivery has never been greater. There will be a move towards more always-on DOOH activations, rather than intensive two-week bursts once a year, and using real-time data triggers to advertise around ‘moments’. These triggers can include changes in weather, traffic, pollen levels, and the outcomes of live sporting events.”
Nigel added, “There will be more trust in the data and software in programmatic DOOH, and a much better understanding of audiences, rather than screens, to ensure that OOH talks the same language as all other media channels. There will be a continued evolution of the DOOH eco-system to adopt more “online” products and services, such as header bidding, supply-path optimization, and the rise of ad servers. Screens will all be capable of carrying hundreds of different advertisers; not just six ads scrolling in a constant loop.”
Expect to Hear more on Privacy Conversations featuring FLOC and FLEDGE Technologies
Jürgen Galler, CEO and Co-Founder of 1plusX also shared his Martech predictions with us. Jürgen Galler said, “In the coming year, the industry focus will be around how to market at the intersection between privacy and effective targeting. While Google will introduce new Sandbox proposals, most likely derivatives of FLoC and FLEDGE, advertisers will turn to cohort targeting only once the more precise methods have been exhausted.
“In the US, privacy conversations will revolve around state vs. federal privacy regulations. As soon as California, New York, and Massachusetts reach an agreement, it will become the de-facto standard for the whole ecosystem, as it’s not feasible to operate in the US without those markets.
“Meanwhile, we will see more media companies, such as publishers, broadcasters and independent digital media, seeking alliances, in the form of M&As and technology partnerships, to strengthen their metrics and counterbalance the dominance of walled gardens. This will fuel a massive shake-up of the advertising players and their relative positioning in the market.
“Finally, brands will look to leverage opportunities offered by fast-growing channels like CTV, and emerging ones such as the much-anticipated metaverse. Discussions will be around what the latter will entail and how it will work. Critically, it will be important to ensure this new virtual environment remains fair and accessible to provide opportunities for players to rise to the occasion.”
Can’t think of a Marketing Campaign in 2022 without Involving the CDPs
Filippo Gramigna, CEO, Audiencerate thinks very highly of Customer Data Platforms (CDPs). CDPs role in 2022 would break all previous notions, especially when it comes to driving Digital Transformation goals within an organization.
Filippo said, “2022 will be the year of marketing at scale and the rise of CDPs. While the pandemic has undeniably been a challenging time for businesses, it has also been incredibly enlightening. As technology helped customers access the goods and services they needed, and vice versa, supported companies in providing them, it highlighted how essential digital transformation is to drive recovery and growth. Going forward, too, this will be key to continue keeping pace with consumers’ evolving habits and needs, with a focus on how brands can maintain and strengthen the relationship they have with their audiences, especially as third-party cookies are phased out. We have already seen a shift towards extending independent technological solutions, and this will doubtlessly continue. Current tools will have to keep up with changes around data and privacy so that companies can stay customer-centric in their offerings. This means there will be continued optimization around data collection, management, and activation, as well as finding solutions that can be integrated into CRM systems, websites, and other applications. Everything will be built to truly drive comprehensive consumer profiles. Customer data platforms will play an important role in this respect, considering their advanced capabilities from customer segmentation and analytics to execution layers and identity management.”
First-Party Databases Come to the Front in 2022
Lucy Hinton, Head of Client Operations, Flashtalking by Mediaocean said, “After a period of uncertainty, we are now seeing sustained economic growth and renewed confidence, which has led to an increase in marketing budgets. But the demand for clear ROI and understandable campaign results is also stronger.
“A wider selection of sophisticated digital marketing channels are becoming available to advertisers, including DOOH, CTV, social commerce, and soon the metaverse. It will therefore be crucial for brands to prioritize suitable content creation to successfully advertise across multiple channels. As a result of this increased variety of platforms, consistent, the cross-media measurement will be required. We are likely to see a move away from traditional metrics towards attention metrics, to gauge audience engagement more thoroughly.
“In addition, as competition increases between established walled gardens and new suppliers utilizing their first-party databases, advertisers will receive increased audience insights. These new data aggregators will require support from additional technologies and interfaces to comprehensively manage their data.”
2022 Would See More of AI, 5G, and Video Marketing
Dmitri Kazanski, Head of Product at MGID thinks Artificial Intelligence, Data Intelligence and 5G capabilities would transform the way marketers utilize Video Marketing and Analytics tools for creating contextual content.
Dmitri said, “We have seen that content consumption is rapidly pivoting towards short-form video. Unsurprisingly, this medium is most popular among Gen Z, who make up over half of TikTok users, the platform where shorter video content first established its mass following. The delivery of short-form video is becoming faster and more accessible, thanks to the swift rise of 5G. Advertisers can maximize the growing popularity of this medium via contextual targeting, which will only get easier with advancements in AI technology. AI is already able to analyze video content, whereby ads and product placements can be built into video content based on their subject matter. Importantly, all this can be achieved without violating privacy regulations – a win-win for both brands and audiences, who will be accessing relevant content tailored to them.”
The Wave of Great Consolidation in Digital Advertising
Ross Nicol, VP EMEA, Zefr said, “With the demise of third-party cookies, walled gardens are well-positioned to offer what brands and audiences want. For consumers, sharper awareness around data privacy is fuelling even greater flow towards environments where they understand how the information will be used. Among brands, there is also the incentive to follow the audience tide and harness platforms that will put them in a better position to achieve meaningful engagement; as recently shown with players such as Facebook making revenue gains of 50%.”
Ross added, “Brands aiming to future-proof their advertising efforts should fine-tune their strategies as media and users consolidate within a complex yet rich black-box environments. In addition to keeping options as open as possible by basing placements on suitability, they’ll need help in forging their way to success; and much of that comes down to choosing the right tools and partners familiar with walled garden navigation.”
Consent Management Systems to Be Integrated Into Post-cookie Identity Protocols
Alexander Azarov, CEO and Founder, Clickio, said “Across the globe, data regulation is being handled differently. In the UK, we’re seeing a move towards adopting the GDPR to be more “pro-growth and pro-innovation” oriented. Other countries such as Italy or the US, meanwhile, are looking at potentially tightening guidelines, and of course, Brazil introduced sanctions in August 2021. We need to remember that, as systems and laws are always interconnected and as the tools evolve, so do the directives around them.”
Alexander added, “In that regard, we can expect consent management systems to be integrated into post-cookie identity protocols. This means developers and publishers need to be aware of current data trends – and more importantly, able to predict future trends – so that the methodologies they build are in sync with the changes that occur. Analytics and metrics currently focus on either UX, monetization, data, or Core Web Vitals, so can we create tools that allow these to inform strategy together, all the while protecting users? There are a lot of factors to consider and publishers need to be prepared on all fronts.”
Done with Subscription-based Models? SaaS Economy to Embrace Value-based Payment Structure
Pascal Lannoo, Chief Strategy Officer, SKEEPERS said, “As we look to 2022, we’ll see the SaaS business continue to experience drastic growth as well as eventually shift from a subscription-based model to a value-based payment structure. The industry’s focus will be on developing more interoperability with client solutions. Artificial Intelligence will continue to be at the forefront as an industry-wide “must-have.” And in order to compete with larger corporations, SaaS solutions will begin offering “Insight as a Service” (IaaS) – providing clients with predictive analytics. Overall, in 2022, it will become ever so crucial for SaaS platforms to offer extraordinary user journeys.”
New Ways to Encourage Brand Storytelling
Megan Cunningham, CEO and Founder, Magnet Media Films predicts a new challenging ecosystem for brand marketers which involves looking at the competitive world with humane lenses.
Megan said, “I think the key question facing all business and brand leaders right now is very clear: will we be able to recover from the pandemic in a way that is more green, more diverse, and more inclusive? When you look at timeless brand leaders like Apple, Nike, Google and Tesla …or when you follow fast-moving brands that have enjoyed accelerated growth — like Peloton, Roblox, Shopify or Warby Parker… they all put brand storytelling at the center of their strategy. Think about it: they are not any better than their competition at buying ads. They are all world-class storytellers. What are the top brand storytellers focused on at this moment? Creativity, representation, and incorporating more actionable insights into their storytelling strategy. These are clear competitive advantages in how they’re operating.”
Megan added, “I may be an outlier here but I do not believe the future of brand storytelling is in increasing the use of technology. We’ve enjoyed a tremendous renaissance over the past 10 years of emerging technology –from affordable high-quality production tools to social/mobile distribution platforms– and the mastery of those tools by creative leaders is what’s required at this stage. But what the world is yearning for right now is not more tech –it’s more humanity. The most effective storytelling, in our view, has always come from a balance of data and creativity. Great storytelling has the power to humanize products and services, and are distributed in smart ways through the genuine passion of your audience. Distribution technologies can amplify that — but it has to start from telling a story that is true, well-crafted, and comes from the heart.”
DI Is the Most Important B2B Movement of a Generation
Richard Potter, Co-Founder and CEO at Peak, shared his predictions on Digital Intelligence (DI) and how emerging trends in AI and machine learning influence decision-making at an organizational level. This exciting technology is helping companies in sectors outside of the tech layer in AI-informed decision-making through every vertical of the business. With Gartner predicting that over a third of large organizations will be using DI within the next two years, Peak’s CEO believes DI will be the most important B2B movement of a generation.
Richard said, “We’re at the stage of ‘narrow AI’, where machine learning and AI can make predictions and categorizations for specific purposes. But to solve businesses’ biggest challenges, AI needs to be focused on an outcome, on delivering against business objectives and driving tangible results. Businesses that make great decisions consistently win. This is why Decision Intelligence, the commercial application of AI to the decision-making process, is how the vast majority of businesses will adopt AI.
Successful businesses will be the ones who think cross-functionally. Data silos exist in the vast majority of organizations. Most are department-specific, some might be on the cloud, others in the server, and some essential data might even live in poorly formatted spreadsheets.”
Richard added, “We’ve seen huge volatility this year that will persist into 2022, and the businesses that will succeed and thrive will be those that are capable of uniting data from across the organization so they can see and act on a full picture.
A new standard of data science is emerging. As commercial investment in AI increases and the field of data science matures, there will be an increased focus on end-to-outcome. Data science teams will need to shift from a bottom-up approach and instead prioritize getting an end-to-end solution live and generating value as quickly as possible, then focus on iterating and improving it. This will decrease time to value and increase the number of AI models that are production-ized (currently only a minority are).”
Connected TV as a Mainstream Method of ‘Watching TV’
Fred Godfrey, CEO and Co-Founder at Origin said, “Over the last few years, numerous improvements and innovations have been taking place in the world of Connected TV advertising. The emergence of Connected TV as a mainstream method of ‘watching TV’ combined with the technology that underpins it has enabled us to imagine, test and bring to market new ad formats which, while requiring brands who want more to take the occasional leap of faith, is about to change the game forever. Technology, along with measurement and data collection are advancing, budgets are increasing and brands are now more than ever realizing that a “one size fits all” approach to advertising simply doesn’t cut it.”
Welcome F.A.S.T. (Free, Ad-Supported Streaming TV)
Navdeep Saini, Co-Founder and CEO of DistroScale, the parent company of DistroTV at DistroTV said, “In 2022, FAST (free, ad-supported streaming TV) continues its march to become the mainstream form of entertainment & TV viewing. In fact, in a few years, using a satellite dish to view television will go the way of rotary phones (read: obsolete). The connected TV (CTV) market continues to become more crowded, and with that will come some necessary consolidation – in terms of both devices (smart TVs, set-top boxes, and streaming devices) and services offered. The biggest ones to lose out will be those that operate as individual channel apps, as platforms continue to increase the variety of content offered. Viewers will gravitate toward the options that offer the most in terms of choice. This is why we will see the future of CTV be… independent. FAST services have in front of them the opportunity to pioneer a movement toward bringing the idea of diversifying content to the center stage. To feature content from a variety of independent voices, to offer a viewing experience sure to enrapture every type of viewer, and to fuel all of their unique passions and interests.”
More Immersive Curated Ad Break Experiences
Omer Latif, CEO at ElementalTV, said, “In 2022, video ad creatives will become smart and fully dynamic. In 2021, we witnessed the early stages of CTV ads utilizing advanced technologies to move beyond the standard :30 ad spot. This trend will accelerate and gain wider adoption in 2022, as advertisers seek to leverage the addressability of digital to create dynamically tailored CTV ad experiences for its various target segments. This will be enabled by the rise in vertically integrated CTV ad technology which allows for unified, ad decisioning, assembly, and delivery. For advertisers, this means the power to incorporate real time data signals to refresh video ad creative on the fly. For viewers, this will result in more immersive curated ad break experiences with contextually relevant and interactive ads.”
Stay Aware of the Big Players in Post-cookie Alternatives
Alicia Arnold, Managing Director, fifty-five said, “In 2022, marketers will need to figure out a way to thrive in an environment that is continuing to change quickly and where there are still many unknowns. Increased privacy regulations will still very much be at the forefront of conversations and marketers will need to continue their balancing act to protect consumers’ privacy online. Hopefully, in 2022, there will be more clarity from the big players in post-cookie alternatives. Until that clarity comes, marketers and the brands they work with will need to clearly articulate objectives and how they relate to strategy and budget.”
Daniel Street, CEO of Scorpion, mentioned how even small businesses can turn to video marketing platforms to showcase their products.
Daniel said, “More small businesses in 2022 will turn to short-form video, flocking to social sites like TikTok, Instagram and YouTube to drive traffic, build an online brand and even make a little extra money participating in the creator economy by showcasing their expertise. TikTok will become particularly popular among local businesses as word continues to spread on the new geo tagging features that allow creators to market to local users. TikTok’s audience is also tremendously hungry for DIY content. While it might seem counter-intuitive for a plumber to show people how to switch out a garbage disposal rather than call a professional, we’ve found customers are more likely to call on the service providers they’ve seen on TikTok for help with more complicated fixes and installations down the road.”
Daniel continued, “Marketing AI will finally beat humans in advertising, SEO and targeting to redefine what it means to compete as a business. With the ability to quickly serve up market intelligence and other data-driven insights for more personalized user experiences and smarter decision making—all while automating time-consuming tasks—AI-enabled marketers will run circles around any non-digitized competitors who let themselves fall behind.”
He added, “Some local service providers will find they’re not just competing with each other, but increasingly with customers themselves. We all know home improvement stores enjoyed massive growth through the pandemic, but with rising costs, all the extra time spent at home and, increasingly, an unwillingness to wait out service delays, many people, particularly millennials and members of Generation Z, are taking the time to learn how to solve plumbing and other household issues and maintenance on their own. This is a good time for local service providers to get in on the DIY game. There’s a large demand for videos that walk people through various home projects plus the opportunity to pick up those customers when they’re unable to finish a job or do it right.”
Yes! 2020 Holiday Shopping Patterns Will Persist
Kristen Gall, president of Rakuten Rewards, shared the following predictions for the upcoming New Year 2022.
Kristen said, “After skipping a wardrobe refresh in fall 2020, shoppers are eager to spend on fall/winter apparel: As the pandemic continued into fall and winter of last year, many skipped shopping for new clothes altogether, knowing they’d be spending the most time at home. This year, consumers are looking to refresh their wardrobes with new pieces based on the latest trends (like skinny- to straight- and wide-leg jeans) and new sizes. Outside of apparel, shopping categories will be hard to predict: There was a lot of out-of-season inventory that moved over the summer, like snow apparel or gear for winter activities, due to off-cycle sales. For inventory that didn’t sell last year, companies will incentivize customers to buy those products this year. 2020 holiday shopping patterns will persist: Just like last year, we expect to see consumers relying on e-commerce and delivery to order and get gifts to loved ones. For retailers, this means learning from last year and using the digital channel to reach customers. 2020 shopping challenges will also last: During COVID, we’re seeing persistent inventory issues, shipping delays, increased shipping costs and hiring shortages. Consumers will need to shop early to ensure they get the products they want on time, and retailers will need to use new tactics to incentivize earlier shopping.”
Get Hold of the Influencer Marketing Campaigns in 2022
We asked impact.com‘s Enterprise Account Executive, Ross Negus how B2B Marketers leverage Influencer marketing strategies for their overall integrated marketing campaigns.
Ross said, “On the whole, the B2B marketers that are leveraging influencer marketing are doing a good job. But it’s in its infancy. There is a huge opportunity in this space and definitely scope for more to be done. I see some B2B marketers leveraging social channels and influencers; not so much for conversions, but definitely for branding and awareness. Some are doing this well but there is still lots of runways ahead. It’s all relatively new in B2B, and I’m seeing brands starting out and testing. It’s in early stages, with enormous headway to be made.”
Ross continued, “If we look at the advances of AI over the past 18 months, the collection and storage of data and the generation of insights is only growing. We’re seeing insights turning into actions and a big focus, globally, on how to leverage AI. The pace of innovation is rapid. In 2022, it’s going to continue and I’m seeing AI focused on how to grow relevance to partners and customers. It’s all about the customer, and improving ROAS. There are always efficiencies to be found. AI can outperform humans and remove inefficiencies. Look at the changes within privacy; AI is similar. It’s always about the customer. We get bombarded with ads but AI can ensure hyper-relevance and make you feel less like you’re being sold to. In our interactions with brands, AI can be about making everything better for the end consumer.”
Personalized Email for Every Marketer
Jeff Kupietzky, Jeeng CEO thinks that Personalized email is key for marketing teams in 2022. Jeff said, “The average person has over 1,600 unread emails competing for their attention right now, and cutting through that clutter gets harder and harder every year. Delivering personalized, relevant content to subscribers has proven to help publishers break through the scroll and delete cycle, increase engagement and open rates, and drive up to 5x higher revenue. In 2022, publishers should prioritize the engagement aspects of their reader experience to drive revenue and increase retention.”
Jeff added, “It’s time to move away from social media. Skepticism on social media and hesitations receiving news on these platforms will certainly continue into the new year. It will be up to publishers to focus more on other channels – like email newsletters – to reach engage their audience. Also, when publishers put content on Facebook, for example, they are essentially “renting” the audience because they know nothing about them. When they send an email newsletter, they have the first-party data of that audience and all of the insights that come along with it.”
And, what about data privacy challenges?
Well, Jeff predicts that more privacy concerns and the growing preference for opt-in marketing strategies like email newsletters.
Jeff added, “Consumers want control over where and when their personal information is used, and these worries are going to continue to rise in the new year. Also, as the California Privacy Rights Act (CPRA) effective date draws nearer, advertisers will need to spend 2022 buttoning up their customer data strategies, and implementing an opt-in newsletter approach that allows publishers to gain incredibly valuable first-party data.”
Virtual Versus In-Person Interactions — Where’s the World Headed to in 2022?
Coco Carson, Insights Manager, ShareThis, shared more predictions for the tech industry.
Coco thinks that the world won’t go virtual – despite rising COVID cases once again, there is a clear trajectory of growth for in-person events that we won’t be able to backtrack. As of August, 77% of advertised events were in-person.
Coco said, “When it comes to threats to retail as we know it, consumers are most worried about supply chain issues including shortages and out of stock items (51%), followed by costs including inflation and rising prices (28%), as well as staffing issues including worker shortages and strikes (14%) and shipping delays (7%).
Among the industries affected by supply chain disruptions and shortages, consumers are most worried about Technology (microchips, copper, etc), which we also predict will take the 2nd longest to bounce back after Auto.”
Coco added, “We observed a pattern emerging in finance, whereas COVID cases climb, so does engagement with saving money. We expect that as COVID worsens again this winter, spending behaviors will decline as people prepare for an uncertain future.
The star of retail this year is shoppable influencer content. Channels, where influencers are most active, are seeing the most YoY growth in advertising engagement, and we’ve observed a YoY jump of +8052% engagement with shoppable content. Other retail strategies of in-store and curbside pickup (+2716% YoY) and “contactless” shopping experiences (+242% YoY) have also been exceedingly successful in 2021 and continue to be in 2022.
Local communities have come together during the pandemic to nurture businesses close to home. Positive sentiment for shopping locally increased 7% YoY.
Currently, we’re watching trending terms “recession” and “economy/market bubble” as searches about these topics have grown 233% YoY – the world is very worried that we could be headed for a major recession soon.”
Establish the Real-time Customer Rewards Systems
Brandon Logsdon, President and GM, Marketing Cloud Solutions at PDI Software said, “In 2022, we’re going to see growing consumer demand for personalized experiences across the convenience retail sector. Savvy consumers are increasingly aware of how valuable their data is—so when they share it with retailers, they expect good value in return. Those expectations include better rewards and loyalty programs with meaningful, personalized offers. Although personalization isn’t new, few companies are doing it really well. But with digital transformation, more retailers now have the tools to collect vast amounts of consumer data and turn it into actionable insights that translate directly to real-time offers and rewards.”
Brandon added, “If you can deliver the right reward to the right person at the right time, you’ll be a step ahead of your competition. And if you can truly differentiate the consumer experience with relevant, personalized offers, you’ll have a much stronger foundation for building longer-lasting relationships with shoppers.”
Accretive Media CEO Craig Benner says, “Apple will continue their ‘privacy’ mission, which is their way to fortify their own advertising business and weaken their principal competitors under the guise of consumer advocacy. Unironically, Apple’s changes have shown that Apple’s advertising and devices are now responsible for a bulk of brand mobile conversion and sales activity – who would have thunk it (insert sarcasm emoji)? The fight between Google, Facebook, and Apple will get uglier, with all of them firing shots across the bow that each other’s approaches, numbers, technology, and consumer data are compromised.”
Craig continued, “Last year I predicted that Google would kick the proverbial can down the road on 3rd party cookie deprecation/elimination. I was unfortunately right. In June, they delayed the cookie culling on Chrome from March 2022 to ‘late 2023.’ Not surprising, given how FLOC testing was going and how their mobile results were trending among Apple users (see above). In 2022, advertisers will continue the trend of trusting their own numbers above all else and to no-rational-person’s-surprise, their businesses will grow.”
Data-Driven Metrics and Analytics
Michelle Tilton, VP of Marketing at Gryphon.ai predicts a new role for marketers in the data intelligence domain.
Michelle said, “Data-driven metrics and analytics will be a requirement for companies that are looking to compete in their respective industries. Accurate data must drive business decisions. The days of ‘hunches’ and ‘educated guesses’ are disappearing as the volume of collected data continues to grow. With numerous options for deriving insights from this data, the companies who adopt a data-driven organization will thrive.”
The Share of the Wallet Is Shifting.
Zohar Gilad, CEO of Fast Simon, which offers AI-based shopping optimization, shares his insights for the e-commerce industry 2022.
Traditionally retailers do 40% of their sales for the year during the holiday season. Will this still be the case? Do people have the money to spend? Or given the fact that the pandemic is easing, will people spend more money on travel? We could see a wild swing. But there are two main questions to consider. The first is ‘do consumers have enough dollars to realize the eCommerce expectations?’ My answer is yes. And the second question is ‘where is the money going to flow – durable goods or other venues?’ My answer is that it will take time but we will see a shift away from retail spend. As vacation destinations reopen, expect peoples’ spending to move away from durable goods. [It could be both, as consumers have a lot of pent up cash]
Zohar also feels there is an urgent need to boost skills for headless commerce.
Funding into headless commerce platform companies has been roaring in from venture capitalists. At the simplest level, headless commerce separates front end from back end platforms and promises platform independence, UX flexibility and speed. While it is a great value prop, the bottleneck is the lack of skilled developers. It will take time to gain more skilled developers or a new no-code/low-code headless commerce solution to be made available for merchants.