News and insights • Posted on 28 January 2022

The Captain's log: Insights from below deck February 2022

The new year has started with a bang in the digital marketing landscape, with many new trends already gaining traction and encouraging brands to get out of their comfort zone. 

From harnessing the recently announced emerging Pinterest trends to understanding the immersive metaverse and how brands can get involved, we highlight what the crew is talking about this month. 

Pinterest predictions 2022

Pinterest Predicts is back and has provided us with heaps of joy, mindfulness and inspiration for a celebration. The pinning platform has shared its 2022 predictions and with an 80% accuracy rate for the 2021 predictions, they’re not to be missed. This year, we’re seeing the impact from 2021 and how pinners are taking more control over their lives than ever, introducing wellbeing and creating the lives they love. Last year was about holding off and this year is about planning – and pinning! Looking for inspiration for your social strategy? We discuss our favourite of the predictions and explain how you can make them work for your brand in our latest blog.

Grace Lenihan, senior account manager and social media strategist

Semrush acquires Backlinko

Recently, SEO tool giant Semrush acquired SEO information and train hub Backlinko. There has been a lot of speculation in the SEO industry as to why this might have taken place. One argument is that Semrush is trying to bolster its offering by pushing harder into the education and training sector. While Semrush already has a respectable blog, by combining both they can acquire an even bigger slice of the market, along with using the talent available at Backlinko to help improve its service offering. However, other SEO industry members have speculated that the company is doing it purely for Backlinko’s backlink profile. By acquiring the site, Semrush can start to tap into what must be a vast authority metric, bolstering its own standing in the SERPs and creating even more awareness and users for its platform.

Ewan Burkinshaw, SEO manager

Standard shopping campaigns phase out

YouTube and Display targeting

Standard Google campaigns will no longer target Gmail and YouTube placements, which will limit the reach of standard shopping campaigns and likely impact the overall performance and ROAS. Switching to Google’s new Smart campaign format will prevent any drop off in campaign reach and performance.

Amy Taylor, junior digital marketing executive

Metaverse and the rise of gamification

Metaverses have long existed online in the form of online gaming. Naturally, the pandemic accelerated the rise of gaming platforms and off the back of this, brands entered the metaverse. Entering the metaverse has proved fruitful for luxury brands such as Louis Vuitton and Balenciaga, as well as brands like Carlsberg. The drinks company used gamification to bridge the gap between brand and technology to engage fans, drive sales and reinforce its brand. Could your brand use gamification to drive support with brand engagement and sales?

Grace Lenihan, senior account manager and social media strategist

Leverage search trend insights for new opportunities

Google’s search trend insights has been around for a while for Google shopping campaigns, helping identify and take advantage of shifts in search demand. Google recently started rolling this feature out to its search campaigns. Search trend insights allows you to spot emerging trends, identify new keyword opportunities and respond to changes in consumer behaviour. The insights are based on Google’s broader search term data – you wouldn’t necessarily be able to spot these within your own campaign data. We’ll be keeping an eye on this as it’s rolled out across the next few weeks – most ad accounts are currently in Beta mode.

Mark Jenkins, paid search manager

If you want to keep up to date with the crew, don't forget to sign up to our newsletter to benefit from digital marketing expertise, as well as exciting opportunities to improve your business' performance.

Back to the news hub

Written by Ewan Burkinshaw

Digital marketing manager Ewan is behind all SEO strategy and works tirelessly to help clients achieve significant organic growth.

News and insights

Insights from below deck: May 2024

Big Google AI news, summer OOH campaigns, and Instagram’s new stickers are some of the topics that have got the team talking this month. Dive in.

Read more
News and insights

How Google’s new SERP layout affects user behaviour

Spotted any changes to the Google Search results layout lately? Here, we explain how they might affect user behaviour, and what you can do about it.

Read more
View more in the hub

Ready to start your next big project?

Let's talk


The Bigger Boat
Suite 7, The Watermill
Wheatley Park
Mirfield, West Yorkshire
WF14 8HE

Talk to us