B2B Marketing Trends 2022

Back to the roots on new paths

A critical assessment of the 2022 trends

In recent years, each November, Horst Huber has made it a habit to research which new marketing trends international experts are forecasting for the coming year. Note that the results are not representative, but reflect more opinions rather than the intentions of marketers in companies. It's worth a look, which Horst shares with us here.

Google doesn't like cookies anymore

The cakes are baked... The trend is moving away from the individual, now it's a matter of dividing every googling person into interest groups. Google is getting serious with this, working on building a "more private web" and making third-party cookies obsolete within the next few years. At first glance, it may seem as if Google is distancing itself from playing out personalized advertising with this step. But isn't the exact opposite the case when Google replaces third-party cookies with a system that is controlled exclusively by the corporation itself? Appearances are deceptive - personalization is and remains the dominant theme of the future.

Building your own audience

So it is slowly dawning on the many digital thought leaders: dominance and dependence on the omnipotent services of digital corporations comes at an ever-increasing price. It's "Build your own audience!". But hasn't consistently building a prospect and customer base always been one of the central tasks in marketing? Of course, this has never been an easy task, but the controlled, digital ecosystems don't let us make this task any easier today.

In the past, events were the first choice for informing, meeting and exchanging information with your audience. But the pandemic forced companies to digitize events. This will no longer change. On the contrary: from the experts' point of view, this trend will continue to be driven forward in 2022. Of course, this also makes sense from many points of view. At the same time, the goal must be to increase one's own reach and independence from digital gatekeepers through offers and events. That's why it's still true: The last free and uncontrolled "channels" are the personal conversation and the medium of print.

More social media

Although the ecosystems that are most rigidly controlled are social media, the trend toward more social media in B-to-B communications continues unabated. Completely new role understandings are required: Employees are to become influencers and must dance parquet-safe in the social networks. The trend toward social media is driven by the fact that "good old" lead generation is coming back into focus.

Content is king

The brand as a rock in the digital surf will also reappear in the marketing sky in 2022 and be a significant trend topic. In 2020, the topic of "brand" seemed to have moved out of focus and was barely visible. On this point, too, a return to the core business of marketing seems to be discernible. But how does branding succeed? The answer is clear and unsurprising. Content creation and distribution are key issues for 2022, and this realization is evident after 24 years of Bill Gates' "Content is King" essay. In terms of content, premium content is playing an increasingly strong role, with the trend moving towards short and concise video content.

The possibilities and tools for achieving these goals are more extensive and multifaceted than ever before. Marketing departments, for example, have a higher IT budget than the actual IT department. To put it another way: Marketing is a technology stakeholder.

Artificial Intelligence (AI)

Next to Voice Search, Chat Bots, Artificial Intelligence is the dominating technology topic. This topic is also characterized by naivety. Those who are happy about low-cost easy-to-integrate AI services should ask themselves who benefits from the data. In doing so, the digital corporations create new dependencies and the rude awakening is only a matter of time. Therefore, data autonomy should be pursued as much as possible. And so data analysis and Big Data are completely in vogue as an area of responsibility in marketing.

The trend and the need for improved cooperation between marketing and sales continues unabated, which means that account-based marketing (ABM) remains an important topic. ABM is an attempt to convince dedicated customers of an offer. Personalization, the best possible customer experience, and the orchestration of touchpoints continue to play a key role here.

A gap between the online and offline worlds

In summary, we can speak of a return to the essential tasks in marketing, although these are of course more digitally influenced and more automated in their approaches. Nevertheless, it is noticeable that in the meantime a certain disillusionment has set in with regard to the pure digital hype. In my opinion, this disillusionment reveals the gap between the online and offline worlds. Because it is undisputed that marketers have optimized their digital email campaigns down to the last funnel in recent years, but that they have neglected to link these with printed, personalized direct mails - a concept that has proven to be extremely successful and could close precisely this gap.

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