As we continue to battle our way through a global pandemic to reach a digital marketing panacea, what will 2022 have in store?
Think back to March 2020 and life as we knew it changed indefinitely – the COVID-19 outbreak became a global pandemic and events around the world were cancelled, Sales teams were forced to move to online selling and Marketing teams scrambled in the race to beat the competition to a truly digital first customer experience.
Almost two years on and while the world is starting to recover, we are still navigating through a period of uncertainty for the global economy, all whilst trying to return to ‘normal’, whatever that means now – which makes the usual predictions we all make at this time of year trickier than ever. Nonetheless, here are the combined thoughts of the team at CRMT Digital on what lies ahead for Marketing this year:
The Great Resignation. The Skills Shortage. Whatever you want to call it, the fact of the matter is that finding and keeping talent is going to continue to be one of the biggest challenges for marketing teams this year. As the MarTech ecosystem continues to grow along with the reliance on Marketing Operations to continue to build and enhance digital infrastructure – organisations are going to need more people with these specialised skills, which leads to higher demand, more competition and unfortunately, higher rates of attrition.
Integrating demand gen planning and operational roadmapping - for too long these two disciplines have been treated in isolation in enterprise organisations, whilst putting strain on the same teams. Marketing Ops functions need to bring together demand gen and operational improvement streams into one plan to maximise efficiency and make the most of an often-small pool of skilled resources.
By the end of Q2, the realisation that 3rd party cookies will be leaving us will become apparent and this will mean marketers need to buy technology and setup the infrastructure to utilise 1st party intent in their place. Expect a bit of a last-minute scramble at the end of 2022 to get this right!
This one might be wishful thinking on our part, but please let 2022 be the year Digital teams invite Marketing Ops to the table. For years we have seen Marketing Ops teams struggle to make their requirements heard and ensure 1st party data and insight is usable. If the previous prediction is right, we can’t let this continue. Naturally for smaller companies, this won’t be such an issue because the shorter lines of communication will give them an edge, but for the enterprise – it’s critical.
Accurate data collection will continue to be a challenge for marketers with the introduction of Apple’s ‘hide email’ functionality making it very easy to use a spoof email address on forms, rather than your real one. Ensuring your database governance processes are up to scratch is the key to overcoming this hurdle.
The world of in person only events doesn’t look likely to return any time soon, so it’s no good just to do a recording of your live event. A truly hybrid event should allow for networking, asking questions of presenters, breakout sessions as well as being able to access the content.
The rise of RevOps – are we about to see the death of siloed Sales & Marketing teams and the MQL? With B2B Sales more complicated and elongated than ever, surely the focus is going to be on revenue rather than the number of leads that contributes to the revenue? The most effective acts of marketing have always been difficult to measure, so isn’t it more about attribution to activity and identifying patterns of activity vs revenue over time?
Should even half of these predictions become reality, purpose-built Marketing Operations functions will become more prevalent and continue to gain momentum and respect within the enterprise. Organisations will need to be able to adapt and be agile to align remotely should the need to go back to online-only selling arise. The ability to be agile is going to be key this year, as in reality, who knows what’s around the corner?