Arun Fernandes, Founder-CEO, Hotstuff Medialabs

Arun Fernandes is an entrepreneur, with the heart of an adventurer. Moving to Mumbai, post his honors in Printing Technology from Chennai, He gained experience in the industry and made a bold, yet calculated move to being an entrepreneur with his own Printing Business. After two decades in printing, he introduced Hotstuff Advertising to the industry. The journey took a new turn as they set up Hotstuff Events and Films wings. Today, working with India’s leading financial brands on National and International Campaigns for 30+ years. He credits this success to his motto of ‘working with the best’ and believing in his team, always.


Digital marketing is one of the most dynamic industries in the world; what works today may be passé next year. But a few trends dominate the digital marketing landscape every year, and businesses scramble to stay on top of them and leverage them to their advantage. And that shouldn’t surprise anyone considering how critical digital marketing is for a modern business to survive and thrive.

The market size of the Indian digital advertising industry is projected to go up to around 539 billion rupees by the financial year 2024. Given the exponential increase in digital marketing across sectors and demographics, it would be worthwhile to look at specific trends that will guide the digital marketing strategies of businesses in the coming years. Listed below are some of the digital advertising and marketing trends to watch out for in 2022.

  1. AI-powered optimization

AI-powered optimization enables businesses to adapt their marketing and respond to changing business conditions with more accuracy. Consumers today are more educated and aware and refer to tons of websites online before arriving at a purchase decision. But the good news is that this internet dependency can be capitalized on by deploying AI technologies. Businesses have already started leveraging AI-powered software for content optimization. Such software enables effortless analysis of key metrics like keyword density and readability of content to ensure content is optimized for the target audience. AI facilitates insights into dominant search intent so businesses can create a perfectly optimized piece of content that addresses customer pain points.

  1. Programmatic advertising

Programmatic advertising has taken digital advertising to the next level and it’s here to stay. Machine learning algorithms form the basis of programmatic advertising, helping businesses make data-driven decisions. With the digital space growing saturated by the day, programmatic advertising has emerged as a savior for businesses vying for attention. Programmatic advertising platforms consolidate digital advertising efforts with real time data to make the ad buying, placement and optimization process more efficient. Programmatic advertising is crucial especially for BFSI brands where trust and long-term relationships with customers matter a lot. The BFSI sector, emerged the biggest spender on digital media (57%) in 2020 and this will continue to increase with consumer behavior shifting in favour of digital platforms.

  1. Conversational marketing

Dialogue-driven approach to marketing is gaining momentum as consumers want immediate responses. Going forward, companies are expected to increase their investment in conversational marketing. The global conversational AI market is poised to grow at a CAGR of 21.8% during 2021-2026. Businesses can implement conversational marketing through chatbots, personalized videos and virtual selling assistants. As the pandemic disrupted customer service operations owing to inadequate customer support staff, conversational marketing became all the more important. Consequently, businesses are now focused on creating chatbots capable of human-like conversations so consumer experiences are more personalized and humanized. Ecommerce, insurance, automobile, travel and hospitality are among the top industries that will accelerate the use of conversational marketing.

  1. Visual search

We all know how voice search has become popular these days but visual search is another key trend that you have to watch out for in the coming years. Consumers looking for something specific rely on visual search and ecommerce companies can leverage this opportunity to provide them with incredibly accurate results. Not utilizing visual search can be debilitating for businesses as optimized product images have the ability to drive higher conversions. Visual search marketing is a robust industry within digital marketing and can radically change the way consumers shop in future. Pinterest and Google Lens are already a hit among millenials and businesses stand to gain a first mover advantage by optimizing for visual search.

  1. Augmented reality and immersive technologies

Brands are expected to aggressively invest in AR in the coming years, eyeing higher online conversions. The COVID-induced lockdown compelled brands to shift gears and invest in AR to deliver an uninterrupted, fulfilling shopping experience for customers. Consumers want to make sure that a particular product is a good fit before making the purchase and brands, realizing the modern day demands, will continue to leverage AR to elicit positive customer responses. From furniture brands to apparel brands, businesses with the aid of AR, are competing to become the obvious first choice for customers with tailored, superior experiences.

  1. Omni channel marketing

Businesses across all industries very well understand the importance of omnichannel marketing. But it is important to consider the key trends transforming the omnichannel marketing landscape. Compared to before, many SaaS companies now have made marketing across multiple channels a breeze, enabling brands to conduct omnichannel marketing effortlessly. Omnichannel marketing coupled with hyper-personalization is all set to become a game changer for businesses.

Wrapping up

As the pandemic sent shockwaves across the world, the marketing landscape too witnessed some interesting developments. There is a colossal rise in digital advertising now as brands try to cut through the clutter with hyper-personalization. For businesses that want to make an impact, creating a marketing plan centred around the trends discussed in this article could deliver an above industry par ROI!

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