Can you believe it? We’ve almost made it through another year. With the holidays coming up, it’s certainly time to relax and slow down a bit. But, if there is one thing that won’t slow down with the rest of us, it’s the digital marketing industry. Things evolve quickly in digital; if you’re not looking ahead, then you’re already behind. So get a jump in the new year and check out these three steps to ensure you and your marketing team are set up for success in 2022.
1. Look back
Set aside some time to look back at the last 12 months and assess. You’ve finally got a full year’s worth of data – dig in. What trends in performance were surprising? What channels worked best? Which have shown improvement and which have struggled? What efforts didn’t perform as well as you thought they would and what might be the reason? Sure, you probably did plenty of evaluation throughout the year, but zooming out a bit may help some important trends emerge. What commonalities are there among things that worked well and things that did not? Celebrate the wins and recognize the losses, but be sure to think through what you were able to learn along the way so you’ll be stronger starting off the New Year.
2. Look forward
As with any big turn on the calendar page, we are seeing tons of predictions about what the New year will bring for Digital Marketing. It can be hard to keep up with the trends or the latest thoughts on the next big thing. But now is a great time to read up all the predictions for the future if you want to maintain success in 2022.
Privacy will continue to be a big topic in 2022. With privacy and data laws changing fairly frequently, and platforms announcing new policies on tracking and data collection, 2022 will require a lot of pivoting. Evaluate your preparedness for increased privacy restrictions and take a look at your current practices and whether they foster trust with those you market to.
AI-based automation is another trend we are already witnessing. Artificial Intelligence allows marketers to analyze more data than any human would ever be able to, making personalization and optimization better than ever before. We are sure to see further advancement in AI technology and greater implications for automation in marketing in 2022.
But those are just two big ideas, there is a whole lot more out there to explore. Use this time before the New Year and read up on what leaders in the industry are saying, read conversations with your team about where they think the industry is headed, and form your own opinions about what will be the BIG topics in 2022. Staying on top of the trends will help you start off right and stay competitive.
3. Begin.. with the end in mind
January has the potential to be a big month for companies, regardless of the industry. Get started! But, not without a plan and some goals in place. Now that you have assessed what worked well in 2021, and read up on what (may be) to come in 2022, put all your knowledge together and take the time to establish some solid goals. Get your whole team involved so everyone is aligned in what should be accomplished in the coming year. Make them specific and measurable, and write them down! These goals should drive the team forward throughout the year. Things might change, but beginning with the end in mind will increase your chances of success heading into 2022.
These three steps are nothing groundbreaking. You probably already go through them on a more frequent cadence, maybe monthly or quarterly. But use this turn of the year to think even bigger— you’ve got to the whole year ahead of you!