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The Digital Marketing Trends Shaping New Customer Experiences

By Brand Engagement, Content Marketing, Insights & News, Social Commerce, Uncategorized No Comments

It can be increasingly challenging to keep up with digital marketing trends as they change so quickly.

To help marketers and digital leaders navigate this new landscape, we’ve identified the key trends to help you improve engagement and drive conversions this year.


TikTok Will Continue to Grow & Brands Need to Take it Seriously

The rapid rise of TikTok has seen the app reach 1 billion users and counting. The platform has enormous engagement (U.S. users spend up to 850 hours a month on the platform) and enables brands to create hyper-personalized content that truly connects with customers.

In terms of the platform’s revenue, TikTok was the top-earning non-game app in 2021 with more than $110 million spent by users. This just shows the earning potential of the app for marketers looking to drive sales amongst young consumers. 

The Next Big Digital Marketing Trends in 2022

Influencers have also played a role in TikTok’s rise with many earning huge amounts through sponsorship deals. Battisby believes that brands are now taking notice of influencer marketing on the platform.

In the platform’s early days, it seemed to be a place for kids and teens and the influencer who want to reach them. But, today, we are seeing influencers like Gordon Ramsey and financial influencers like @johnefinance and @breakyourbudget who help GenZers learn about planning for their financial futures.

Social Commerce Will Become Seamless

During the pandemic, social commerce took off and is expected to reach $1.2 trillion globally by 2025 according to an Accenture study – a growth that’s three times faster than traditional ecommerce, aided by hashtags like #TikTokMadeMeBuyIt.

2022 is set to see the experience of social shopping evolve as platforms work behind the scenes to enable customer payments without leaving social media apps, creating a seamless customer experience. Gen Z and Millennials are predicted to be the biggest spenders as they will account for 62 percent of global social ecommerce revenue by 2025.

The Next Big Digital Marketing Trends in 2022

The key to driving engagement is for brands to create compelling shop windows on Instagram. It’s no longer enough to rely on one great image, companies need to have multiple images per product and add keyword-rich descriptions. Video is also crucial as the popularity of the format  – as witnessed by TikTok’s growth and Instagram’s recent transition – is exploding across all audiences. 

YouTube Advertising Will Explode

YouTube is going to explode in terms of investment from advertising in 2022. As more people move away from linear TV, fragmentation with subscriptions, and streaming services all means that more advertising spend is going to move to YouTube.

Last year YouTube’s global revenue (through its parent company Alphabet) grew to nearly $29 billion, up almost 46 percent from 2020. This level of revenue puts the social media platform on par with Netflix and is a result of the rise in more traditional TV advertisers on the channel, direct response ads, and brand advertising.

The Next Big Digital Marketing Trends in 2022


Marketers Need to Upskill in Digital

As brands clamor to engage, promote, and convert successfully online, the need for digital talent across industries is intense.

A recent whitepaper, ‘Perpetual Evolution’, from The Economist Group, revealed that securing talent with the right skill set is the number one challenge that the digital marketing industry faces, while the lack of training to upskill marketers ranks seventh.

The Next Big Digital Marketing Trends in 2022

This demand is great news for marketers but poses a challenge for many in the industry who lack digital know-how or experience in digital marketing. So what digital marketing skills will be in demand in 2022? Social media skills remain in high demand, along with SEO and SEM.

The Next Big Digital Marketing Trends in 2022

The Digital Gig Economy is on the Rise

Over the past decade, many workers are pursuing a more flexible ‘gig’ lifestyle for their professional lives. The emergence and rise of online services and apps such as Airbnb and Deliveroo have offered new ways of working for people rather than a 9 to 5 traditional job.

In fact, according to a recent Mastercard study, half of the U.S. population will do gig work by 2028.

This gig economy opens up the door for marketers with in-demand skills. We are seeing more creative or digital marketing professionals choosing the digital nomad route as this enables them to dictate their own working hours and have flexibility.


The Metaverse Will Become a Marketer’s Playground

While it has existed and evolved for years, the metaverse saw a boost in interest after Facebook changed its parent company’s name to Meta in October 2021.

This move, according to Facebook’s CEO, Mark Zuckerberg is because “the metaverse is the next frontier in connecting people, just like social networking was when we got started. Over time, I hope we are seen as a metaverse company, and I want to anchor our work and our identity on what we’re building towards.”

So what is the metaverse? Basically, it’s virtual worlds in 3D that people can connect through Augmented Reality (AR) and Virtual Reality (VR). Imagine having an avatar that looks exactly like yourself with you exact measurements shopping in a virtual store. You would be able to try on clothes and see what they look like on your body from the comfort of your own sofa.

While we are still a few years away from reaching critical mass with the metaverse, brands are beginning to embrace it now to build on their customer experiences.

According to eMarketer research, there will be 65 million people that use VR and 110 million using AR every month in 2023. That’s a lot of potential young customers to have in one space.

The Next Big Digital Marketing Trends in 2022

Artificial Intelligence Will Hinder & Help Data Privacy

Privacy issues continue to plague brands as more customers demand transparency and control over their own data and we are seeing increasing concerns as AI continues to evolve the customer experience.

According to a Gartner study, 40% of privacy compliance technology will use AI by 2023 while global spending on privacy is expected to reach $8 billion by 2022.

However, companies can use AI in their data privacy initiatives to classify sensitive data and use it to search data to identify individuals that have asked to be forgotten (a specification covered under privacy regulations like GDPR).

The bottom line is the digital marketing space is changing rapidly and brands need to ensure they are testing new tactics and technologies while building the right presence across these new channels. If you need assistance taking a future-forward look at your brand’s digital presence and engagement, contact us today. Our experts are here to help.

The Six Best Practices that Deliver Programmatic ROI

By Insights & News, Programmatic No Comments

The latest Attitudes to Programmatic Advertising survey reported the percentage of advertisers investing more than 41% of their display inventory via programmatic methods increased to 70% in 2020 from 55% in 2019.

Data-informed programmatic ad targeting optimizes ad campaigns and ensures brands put their budget where it will deliver the greatest results by eliminating irrelevant segments and focusing spend on targets with predefined traits like demographics, age, gender, geolocations, browsing history, and online activities. 

Some other key findings include the use of video as a key driver of programmatic investment amongst agencies; 54% of agencies now buy more than 41% of their video inventory programmatically compared to 50% in 2019. And, with the rise in advertiser investment in programmatic, ads.txt inventory purchasing is increasing, as is awareness. 52% of Publishers meanwhile said they were selling more than 81% of their ads.txt inventory.

Today, the buy-side continues to evolve towards hybrid models. In 2019, 15% of advertisers stated that they had a hybrid model for programmatic trading. This has increased to 30% in 2020.

What Are the Best Practices in Programmatic Ad Targeting?

So, as more brands embrace programmatic, what are the best practices to improve your ROI?

1. Behavioral targeting: This is an important way to connect with customers by delivering relevant ads based on their behavior signals such as search history, browsing habits, social media interactions and purchase behaviors. 

2. Hyper-local targeting: Multi-location brands can leverage programmatic ROI by focusing on specific geographical locations. Google and Facebook, for examples, deliver hyperlocal targeting to serve specific users right down to their street addresses.

3. Ad-spend optimization: Marketers use predictive customer lifetime value (CLTV) to analyze future revenue generation by existing customers. This strategy optimizes downstream behavior like purchase decisions, app downloads and online engagements.

4. Relevant intent signals: Actionable data insights sourced from diverse touch points enable tighter ad targeting as brands can run – and adjust – campaigns based on real-time campaign performance. This is an important way to maximizes ROI and avoid wasteful spends.

5.  Frequency caps: We recommend brands differentiate cross-channel users and prevent them from viewing duplicate ads. Our Analytics teams help ensure you controls each users’ ad impressions on an hourly, weekly or monthly basis. This makes better use of programmatic media budget by avoiding repetitive ad displays to the same users.

6. Attractive brand visuals: As the Attitudes to Programmatic Advertising study showed, video remains the preferred visual media to drive the best ROI. Consistency breeds trust and brand relevancy. To make your ads more recognizable, make sure you follow your own brand guidelines and deliver not only a consistent message, but also a consistent look and feel.

If you’d like assistance in developing the right programmatic campaigns for your brand, contact us today.

Do You Hear What I Hear: The Power of Podcasts in APAC

By Brand Engagement, Insights & News No Comments

Audio programming is making a comeback in the form of its younger, on-demand sibling – Podcasts. 

Podcasting has emerged into a giant industry, exceeding $10B in 2020 and is slated to double within 24 – 36 months. In Asia, the podcast industry is emerging out of its infancy and presents an exciting addition to your digital marketing channel mix.  

According to consumer insight company, GWI, sixty-six percent of those surveyed in the Asia-Pacific region claim to spend an average of one hour a day listening to podcasts.  

  • Ongoing growth of smartphone usage.  
  • Flexibility to listen to episodes while you are on the go. 
  • Multi-tasking potential behind tuning in. 
  • Wealth of content on nearly every imaginable topic or area of interest at your fingertips. 

As podcast audiences grows, we can expect more marketers to start channeling ad dollars into Podcast Advertising (Podvertising).  

Podvertising is a relatively underutilized digital marketing channel. It does not take a huge investment to stand out. In Asia, ad dollars invested into podvertising is currently relatively low, making it an uncluttered medium. In addition, affordable rates make this an inexpensive way of building brand awareness. 

Brands can also hyper-target their campaign to their most captive audiences based on content topics that captivate their key audience segments.  

Podcasts also provide a highly immersive experience, and with attention levels high (no visual distractions), consumers are less inclined to skip ads particularly when the brand airtime is embedded into conversation. Ads in podcasts cannot be blocked by ad blockers, which is a bonus. 

Moreover, listeners tend to be loyal and trust their host and recommendations, like influencer marketing, but much more affordable.  

That said, here is how you can get tuned in:  

  1. Pre-roll, Mid-roll, Out-roll 

Like video advertising podcasts ads are typically played at the start, middle or end of a show. As most listeners would have tuned out by the end of the show, Out-roll ads are generally less popular with advertisers.  Mid-roll ads tend to be most popular because they are a longer segment and listeners tend to be more engaged by this point. Industry standard for podcast advertising is in CPM (Per thousand listens). 

Unfortunately, due to the nature of the medium, metrics beyond listenership cannot be tracked, however many brands have monetized their return on advertising by including a unique and easy to remember discount code or landing page extension. Attribution is then linked to discount codes redeemed or visits to the unique landing page.  

  1. Product placement 

This involves the host talking to their audience about the product or service. They will tend to mention why they recommend it, some examples about how they themselves use it, how they benefit from it, and why the listener would too. In this case, the brand becomes another part of the episode content, as opposed to sounding like a typical ad. 

  1. Sponsored series 

Sponsoring a series takes podcast marketing opportunities to the next level. Sponsors have far more opportunities to reach their audience in more meaningful ways such as a representative that appears on the show, access to the podcast social media channels, audience email lists, website promos and more. 

  1. Branded podcasts 

Producing your own branded podcasts would be taking things to the “Ultimate” level.  This approach requires a dedicated team and would involve a long-term content strategy, like any other social media channel. This approach provides brands with the opportunity to build a relationship with their audience, develop a strong connectivity, create a following and grow your first party database.  

Here are some notable brands who are already harnessing the power of branded podcasting: 

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Like in any other digital advertising medium, success in this medium involves identifying podcasts that have the right audience demographic & interests for your brand as well as the type of ad and messaging that will resonate. Often, this involves research and potentially working with podcast producers to gain a better understanding of their subscribers and how they interact with advertising and sponsored content. 

If you would like to explore podvertising and would like to learn more about how you can integrate this into your digital marketing mix, please contact us. Our subject matter experts will be happy to assist you. 

POV By Farah Sadiq, EVP, GM, International