Updated: Dec 30, 2021
We’ve survived another year of the Roarin’ 20s Tumultuous 20s, Torturous 20s — hey, the jury is still out. If you’ve coined a pet name for this decade already, we’re all ears. 2021 was a ride worthy of a Six Flags theme park and, by all accounts, you should stay buckled in. 2022 will bring more of the same fast-moving action when it comes to the ever-evolving world of consumer wants, the evolution of the content creator economy, and the evolution of the Web.
The Jumpsuit Dream Team is rounding up the Top 3 trends brands can’t ignore in 2022. If you think these trends are as fleeting as slap bracelets (hello, fellow 90s children) or fidget spinners, think again.
If you represent a company or brand, you need to keep up or you’ll be left wondering what the heck happened when a content creator with a few dozen bitcoins she bought back in 2014 becomes your biggest competition.
1. Give Your Customers an Experience to Remember
When it comes to interacting with your brand, customers will expect world class service and experience across their entire journey. They won’t settle for anything less, and they’ll demand you provide your employees a world class experience too.
Nobody Likes a Jerk
ICYMI: Consumers of the NOW don’t just want to know your brand cares. They NEED to know it because you SHOW it.
In other words, if a consumer is dropping Benjamins on your product, you need to put your money where your mouth is. And no, just being plastered on your website and social media is not enough to show you care. If you don’t substantively stand behind social equity, sustainability, or improving the lives of your employees, 2022’s consumers will have no problem moving on.
Besides, if your brand doesn’t stand for something, how can you expect humans to relate to it?
Need inspiration on how to show the world you mean what you say? Check out these companies. We think they’re doing a stand-up job.
I Want My Brand Experience Tailored Like a Fine Suit
Another thing customers want? That warm and fuzzy feeling that they are your one and only. In other words, they want a personalized experience. It’s something that sticks out when they’re constantly bombarded with ad messaging all day long.
Leaders need to find out how to deliver this experience, one that is often a complicated puzzle of integrating human touch points, clunky legacy systems, and new AI-driven technologies.
To complicate the already messy personalization landscape, one important tactic for gathering customer data companies have used for years— cookies — will be going the way of the dinosaur by 2023 (we have strategies to ease the blow here).
Leaders tackling personalization have an uphill battle, but it’s one customers will demand in 2022.
2. Rise of the Content Creator and the Social Media Economy
Take ‘Em Seriously
Influencers get a bum rap. Let’s face it, they can be the butt of many a social media joke (we admit we’re suckers for @influencersinthewild). But it turns out the joke is on anyone who discounts the seriousness of what influencers and content creators do.
To drive that point home:
A 2019 survey found that 29% of American kids wanted to be YouTubers or vloggers according to CNBC. That 29%, born with iPhone-optimized fingers, is on to something. They ARE the future and that future is now. Content creators are the world’s digital entrepreneurs, transforming social media channels into direct purchasing channels.
All studies show the content creator economy will dominate 2022 and is here to stay. Don’t miss out.
Identify content creators who embody your core values and have measurable credentials proving they drive sales.
Consider them at all parts of the funnel. Some content creators will spread awareness à la an old school billboard, while others will drive long-term engagement and customer retention.
Create long-term contracts with them. We’re not saying propose marriage, but trusted relationships between companies and content creators will be key to structuring strategies and programs built to endure.
TikTok Isn’t Just for Teens
We’re going to keep this one short, because we tackled it just last month, inspired by the one and only Jumpsuiter James Webb (get the down-low here).
If you’ve been relegating TikTok to the “it’s just that thing the kids do,” category, it’s time to get real.
TikTok is democratizing creativity. It doesn’t matter if you’re a content creator or a brand. If you share interesting content, people will notice, and TikTok’s wide open algorithm will deliver it to customers you want to reach.
Even more compelling, the day is coming when TikTok makes in-app D2C sales incredibly easy. Picture this. A prospect sees your clothing brand’s video. She notices the hat your content creator is wearing and wants to purchase it. So, she clicks on it in-app. Boom. The hat your content creator wore on your TikTok channel is on the way into your new customers’ homes.
Ignoring TikTok is akin to leaving storefronts abandoned. Don’t ignore it. You’ll regret it.
3. The Internet is Upgrading to Web 3.0. You Should Too.
Wish you’d purchased Bitcoin for $1 back in 2011? Yeah, so do we. Blockchain has and will continue to revolutionize monetary systems as we know them.
Business leaders need to pay attention to blockchain now. Bitcoin, crypto, and non-fungible tokens (NFTs) are just the start of it. Blockchain is poised to change industries — and the world as we know it.
Research by CB Insights has identified 58 industries and use cases slated to be revolutionized by block chain from crowdfunding, accounting and insurance to travel, real estate, construction, and more.
Blockchain is moving fast. Leaders, take heed and investigate how it will affect your industry and what you should invest in now to succeed in 2022 and beyond .
Reality is Changing - Get With It
The company formerly known as Facebook made waves when it announced it is now Meta and will focus on AR and VR. Immersive AR/VR/MR experiences (artificial reality, virtual reality, mixed reality) are slated to transform way more than your former Facebook feed or your next Snapchat filter.
From education to healthcare, manufacturing to field services training, maintenance to repair — with countless use cases, more and more leaders and companies are moving toward virtual solutions.
If augmented reality can help you fix your busted water heater more efficiently and effectively than Googling DIY repair videos or waiting on the repairman, imagine what it will do for business.
The world of Web 3.0 and alternate realities will only grow in 2022. They’re not trends, but our realities. If you ask us, now is the time to take that red pill, plug into the Matrix, and acclimate now.