The advertising industry in the country faced its own share of highs and lows in 2022, especially digital marketing as it opened the gates to a combination of both economical and more-engaging creatives for campaigns.
BestMediaInfo.com reached out to various industry players from the digital marketing domain and found out that almost every marketer is betting big on Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Machine Learning (ML) based approaches for ads in 2023.
According to Vivek Kumar Anand, Director- Business and Innovation, DViO Digital, the year 2022 was the year of experiments. “From sustaining the e-commerce growth that was capitalised during the pandemic to shattering of brand loyalty from Generation Z,” he added.
He also pointed out that there was accelerated growth in short-format content and content creators becoming king, along with the rise of AI and ML-driven marketing platforms such as Google's Performance Max campaigns and Meta's Advantage+ shopping campaigns.
“There was a shift from intent-based buying pattern to discovery commerce and an exponential rise of voice searches, Live commerce, gamification, meme marketing, moment marketing, metaverse, inclusivity in the marketing channel in addition to an exclusivity in the content,” he said.
In the views of Shrenik Gandhi, Co-founder and CEO, White Rivers Media, it is important to leverage the latest technology tools in the digital space to offer clients the best services and results.
“Digital advertising is quite dynamic, and almost every other day, there is a new aspect to it. The possibilities for content creation become strong and more engaging. Hence, appropriate strategising can support us in overcoming challenges related to lack of data and unlocking the potential of more personalised targeting,” he said.
Stating the rationale behind why some social media campaigns by brands backfired in 2022, Gandhi stated that a major reason behind this was that they tried to force their uniqueness.
“The compelled need to do 'something new' or 'something quirky' to make a brand stand out without any plausible feature or explanation is likely to receive backlash from the audience, which is why understanding where to draw the line is a subtle art. Innovation speaks for itself, and we should sometimes let it,” he stated.
Moreover, Gandhi also emphasised that brands should only take the route of nostalgia-based advertising if the audiences connect seamlessly to it. “It is advisable that marketing agencies only experiment with nostalgia if they firmly believe that their customers will seamlessly connect to the brand; otherwise, there is no merit in doing it,” he added.
As per Sahil Chopra, Founder and CEO, iCubesWire, while brands danced to the tunes of moment marketing from ‘Kehndi Hundi Si’ to ‘Arranged Marriage is scary’, there were several trends that they absolutely loved because of the engagement and how they captured consumers' attention and created brand relevance.
“The digital advertising landscape in India has been transformed by the emergence of social media platforms, which offer advertisers access to a large and targeted audience and an array of data on their users. This data can help inform ad targeting, ensuring it reaches the right people,” he said.
Furthermore, he also went on to suggest that because tracking performance in real-time allows advertisers to adapt to changes in consumer behaviour, social media platforms offer advertisers an invaluable tool to maximise their advertising success and connect with their customers.
Throwing light on some of the shortcomings in the advertising arena of 2022, iCubeWire’s Chopra stated that video and influencer marketing needs to be leveraged more in the content strategy as he believes that the industry is far from utilising these formats to their full potential.
“Brands should invest heavily in popular video-based social media platforms such as YouTube and Instagram in 2023 as video content is an effective way to engage with consumers interactively. Live streaming is also gaining popularity as a method of connecting with customers,” he mentioned.
Tanvi Bosmia, Associate Account Director, SoCheers, stated that memes were the fan-favourites and brand-favourites in 2022 as the particular element helped brands like Durex, Zomato, Tinder, etc. leverage the multitude of ‘moments’.
“There are approximately 4.14 billion active social media users today. That is a huge captive audience base that brands and advertisers can directly address. Moreover, propelled by the pandemic, digital marketing, in general, witnessed increased popularity, with even the typically traditional brands finding merit in venturing into the space,” she said.
In her views, social media marketing has been instrumental in aiding the smaller, home-grown brands to reach out to their targeted audience feasibly, in real-time and with ease as social media is also the space where brands go to build loyal consumer communities and interact with them in unique ways.
Additionally, DViO’s Anand also stated that he is confident that the adaptability and usability of Web 3.0 will grow in 2023 as Covid hasn’t fully gone away and the world will have to accept the ‘new reality’ and because brands need to be prepared for any such uncertainty, the investment towards the use of Mixed Reality (MR), Augmented Reality (AR), and Virtual Reality (VR) to bridge the gap between the virtual and the actual world will gain not only popularity but also adaptability in the future.
In his opinion, GenZs will also fuel their emergence as they are the largest generation, comprising around 27% of India's population and almost 30% of the world's population. “They will demand Web 3.0, and those who need more preparation for it are likely to be left behind,” he stated.
Anand further said that AI will go mainstream in 2023 and will be deployed to bring efficiency by enabling large-scale production and removing manual intervention from repetitive tasks. “Though it might not contribute to the final output un-assisted, it will surely help get from zero to one and be used as an idea initiation tool,” he said.
“E-commerce will evolve and not only be restricted to the web interface and mobile apps and conversational commerce, such as buying on Social, WhatsApp and other messaging platforms, will go big in 2023,” Anand highlighted.
Furthermore, he also spotlighted that discovery commerce and live commerce will accelerate and the content creators' community and Gen Z will drive this trend in the coming years.
Similarly, SoCheers’ Bosmia also pointed out that integration of technology into standard advertising practices is the way that the space is going to evolve and 2023 is going to be the year where the adland explores the advertising and marketing possibilities of ‘Mixed Reality’.
“Tech like AR and VR is becoming increasingly accessible to the masses, with the likes of Meta and Google continuously working to perfect the associated hardware, a combination of these virtual-based tech integrated into advertising campaigns will deliver an unparalleled immersive and personalised experience to the audience,” she stated.
But hyper-personalised experience will also be delivered by AI-enabled marketing tools, as per Bosmia. She also emphasised that Chatbots have become quite the norm now, and they’ll continue to evolve in the near future to become something akin to personal concierges for consumers.
“Adding AI to the marketing funnel will also optimise the data collection and analysis process and sharpen the entire marketing synergy, in the best possible way, I believe,” she concluded.