Being the critical element behind the survival of many brands, innovation today, however, is taking a hit. To remain competitive in the marketplace, it is vital for brands, especially CMOs, to rethink how they should approach innovation in 2022.
Innovation in the marketing environment has substantially increased since 2020. With marketing teams having to rely on digital space for leads and conversion, they had to take extra efforts and revamp strategies to reach their prospects and customers across every touch point. This has also resulted in a budget increase, with 72% of respondents claiming they increased their investments in marketing innovation over the last year as per Gartner’s “The State of Marketing Budgets in 2021” CMO survey. However, innovation in the marketing environment has increased as predicted.
As per McKinsey’s “Growth and Innovation” report, over 80% of respondents agree that innovation is a critical aspect of their overall growth strategy, but only 6% of respondents are satisfied with their innovation performance. This shows a significant disconnect present in the marketplace.
While the pandemic has left marketers to play safe and operate from the perimeters of previous wins, it is time for them to take risks and execute on innovation instead of just discussing it.
Here are four ways for marketers and CMOs to break the status quo and drive innovation heading in 2022:
Creating a powerful story
As per Calista Corley, CRO, Fuel Cycle, “There is nothing more powerful than a human story.” She adds, “It gives integrity and personality to your brand and breathes purpose into the actions you take as an organization. I believe brands will continue to lean in and prioritize consistent qualitative connection with prospects, customers and product users to uncover their stories – the why behind the data – and to identify signals of change. With the continued need for faster and more prescriptive analysis, technology will advance qualitative reporting and the ability to extract meaning and indicated action from customer stories.”
Addressing communication barriers
As per the previously mentioned Gartner survey, nearly 83% of all CMOs state that innovation has not met the expectations of the management. To address this issue, marketing leaders should closely work with the executive to address the barriers in executive communications related to how organizations define innovation. As they advance their marketing strategies, they should start thinking about how innovation fits within the broader DX framework in 2022, as well as clearly define it to all stakeholders.
Capitalizing on user research
“Traditionally, market research and user research existed as two separate entities,”
says Rick Kelly, CPO, Fuel Cycle. He adds, “Now, user research is the fastest organically growing subset of research due to apps and websites becoming the new storefronts and marketing acquisition channels. For businesses to succeed in today’s world, delivering exceptional digital experiences is critical. In 2022, I anticipate market research will converge with user research to become one continuous function. We will see more maturity come into the UX research space, meaning the tactics typically used for market research will also be used in user research. This convergence will support user research as it gradually emerges as the essential research category over the next few years.”
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