Marketing has faced countless challenges over the past few years, and consumers now expect brands to provide them with a more personalized, engaging experience across every channel they interact with. With a full recession potentially looming and continued inflation a very real possibility, consumer spending habits will continue to evolve and change, and marketing professionals must adjust with them to keep up with the emerging trends.
Influencer marketing has been hot for years and will continue to grow its high ROI. Many marketers are currently utilizing influencer marketing in their portfolios. Some stats show that influencer marketing now provides the second-highest ROI of any marketing trend. Although many brands may be decreasing their overall marketing budgets, I believe we can expect to see significant growth in influencer marketing platforms this year and into the future. More marketers will be investing their budgets in this medium for the first time and existing users will be increasing their share of influencer marketing. The medium has proven to be a very effective and approachable means of communication with consumers.
Local marketing is another sector that will continue to grow as the number of mobile users that shop for “near me” local experiences and products has been increasing. The increase has been so significant that even larger brands are attempting to get noticed in local searches as they are trying to compete for the local business audience as well. Local brands will continue to have the edge here as their content can be more specific and relevant to local geographies and demographics.
Everyone knows that Social Media usage is going to continue to increase. Currently, over 4 billion people are using social media worldwide. Those numbers alone, make social media channels a very promising opportunity for marketers and advertisers. Many people, especially those in Generation Z, are using social apps to research products and to read reviews and endorsements. They find local businesses and restaurants and even look for jobs through Social Media channels. Social media platforms are where brands can reach customers in the medium of their choice by contributing relevant, informative posts and advertising. Brands of all sizes are also turning to social media as a primary path to e-commerce, giving their customers a direct link to make purchases without navigating away from the app. Many social platforms are now including built-in browsers that act as virtual storefronts for brands. With the recent surge of in-app shopping, social e-commerce is expected to be another huge sales driver this year and beyond. When combined with hyper-targeted ads, this creates a conversion-centric environment right in the consumer’s favorite social networks.
It’s always less costly and much easier to keep the customers you already have rather than to try to attract or convert new customers, and that’s never been truer than it is today. Existing customers are more likely to try new products you offer and will spend more when compared to new customers. Retention rates vary across industries. With a potential recession coming, retaining customers has taken on a new sense of urgency. Customer retention will become a primary focus for retailers as they continue to navigate inflation and fluctuating spending.
As financial concerns grow and consumers tighten their wallets, marketers will need to adjust their methodologies and their focus for the next year or two. Social media, influencers, and content creators will continue to play a large role in how consumers shop and what they buy. Local marketing will become even more important, and customer retention, rather than conversion, will take the lead. Although it may seem unreasonable, I think we’ll be seeing brands making greater investments in marketing with a focus on measurable results and ROI rather than pulling back their budgets.
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