Retail in Asia


Marketing Forecast 2022 : Pandemic aftermath boosts creativity

The marketing industry is rapidly changing amid new consumer priorities. Immersive storytelling formats, relatable brands with personality and a new commitment to more sustainable media and purpose will define 2022.

SEE ALSO : Korean fragrance market soars on pandemic blues

The marketing paradox

In 2022, we’ll see a mix of big moments of grandeur that make a macro impact as well as quiet micro moments gone in a flash. This marketing paradox will bring us unique and novel ways to experience products and brands, from entertaining brand activations that enable escapism and ignite emotional connection to lo-fi campaigns that capitalise on cultural moments.

Brands should look into experimenting with new mediums, such as drones, 3D DOOH and disruptive traditional mediums. Bottega Veneta introduced OOH stunts sans billboards that encouraged audiences to discuss it on social media. In Lunar New Year in 2022, it outfitted the Great Wall of China in its signature Kelly green branding with some orange which symbolises luck locally.

Brand collaborations

We’ve been tracking collaborative activity across all sectors from design through to sustainability initiatives for a while now. I’ve always loved when powerhouses come together to build something special. With that, I’m not referring to just another branded activation in apparel, but those partnerships that really have meaning, that make a difference and create impact.

Leveraging on the players’ various areas of expertise, companies can support each other during difficult times, sharing costs and customers. It can happen in different forms. Loungewear manufacturer Pangaia, known for its sustainable materials, is giving away product development knowledge hoping that other firms use it to reduce their carbon footprint. Brands shall come together with the aim of creating a brighter future for all. Purpose and generosity are the backbone of future collaborations.

Virtual Spaces

Following the hype of 2021, marketers will focus on experimenting in the metaverse to offer consumers immersive, social and shoppable spaces that generate ROI and further blur the lines between retail and marketing.

The virtual land grab has started and luxury brands are already competing for the most coveted locations. Gucci bought virtual real estate in The Sandbox, to create more immersive experiences for customers via its Gucci Vault Project and the brand is reportedly planning to roll out digital fashion to be used in this virtual experience. In the future, expect to see luxury shopping destinations emerge in these virtual worlds. In fact, we’re already seeing luxury brands launch virtual venues within these platforms. 

Brands will also begin to develop communications exclusive to virtual worlds. During the Super Bowl, beer brand Miller Lite hosted a virtual bar simulation and debuted an ad in Decentraland, skipping real-world activations. 

SEE ALSO : 86 percent of Malaysian businesses ready to live with Covid-19

Communicating degrowth

We finally also need to be aware of a “de-growth” trend that lets part of the society turn away from excessive consumption and an overly materialistic lifestyle. Many young people have developed a fatalist attitude with regards to the climate crisis, with 20 percent thinking that it might already be too late to fix it. Climate change is a top concern among consumers and brands have to act accordingly. This requires sustainable behaviour, transparency, and authenticity along the value chain. There is no alternative for brands to become good citizens.

Author : Helen Sac, Consultant Director APAC at WGSN

*Disclaimer: The views and opinion expressed in the article belong solely to the original author and do not represent the views, opinions and position of Retail in Asia.