5 Reasons Why Conversational Marketing Should Be Your Next Strategy
Marketers are being backed into a corner. The ways customers want to interact with brands is changing. The rise of data restrictions is constraining marketers in how they can collect information on their audience. But above all, too much competition has led to the decline of digital channel efficacy — and brands are having trouble standing out.
With their backs against the wall, marketers can either sink more effort and dollars into methods that are no longer working, or they can look to a new approach: conversational marketing.
At Spectrm, we help our clients automate one-to-one conversations with their customers. In 2021 alone we enabled over 30 million customer interactions. If you want to achieve success with your marketing strategy, here are five ways conversational marketing can help you:
1. Find success in social media marketing despite its decline.
Once-effective channels for engaging customers are no longer working. After surveying 400 marketers for our recent State of B2B Conversational Marketing report, we found that 90 percent have seen at least one of their channels in decline. The top channel that's no longer working? Social media.
However, you can't simply just abandon social media, as 83 percent of consumers say it’s where they discover new products and services. You simply have to take a different approach by engaging with customers through one-to-one conversations. “Click to chat” ads invite customers into a personalized exchange right in private messaging, where chatbots ask questions and guide customers to products and services they actually want. They open a direct retargeting channel where you can act on the data you collect to personalize offers and re-engage people in a timely way. Why not have your brand sitting in a customer's inbox next to their friends and family?
2. Collect zero- and first-party data for personalized customer engagement.
Customer preferences are changing around data sharing, which has led to an increase in restrictions in how and when marketers can collect data on their audience. In fact, 59 percent of marketers surveyed say these regulations are making their tactics less effective.
This is why collecting zero- and first-party data is a necessity for marketers today. The great thing is that conversational marketing makes this easy. Engaging with customers in a privacy-first method not only builds customer trust, you can also collect a massive amount of zero-party data from those interactions that you can use to better personalize conversations in the future — especially when 80 percent of customers are more likely to buy from a brand if it offers personalized experiences.
3. Customer acquisition efforts can be easier and more effective.
The top objective of the marketers we surveyed is to acquire new customers. It's also their biggest challenge. Between competition, data restrictions and changing customer preferences, you're often spending budget on campaigns that may or may not result in new customers and sales.
What if you could improve all of your acquisition metrics with one approach? Engaging consumers with automated and assistive experiences significantly improve your metrics across the customer lifecycle. Once you have a conversation with them, you can retarget customers via messaging in the future, and don’t have to be one of the 85 percent of brands that struggle to engage their customers at their preferred time.
4. Further your customer engagement through the right messaging channels.
According to our report, 72 percent of marketers are finding their conversational marketing efforts effective. If you're going to where your customers already are and engaging them in one-to-one conversations, of course you'll see results — even just for the fact that you're doing something different.
However, your success is a result of choosing the right messaging channels to use. Consider the features and entry points on each channel and how they will align more with your goals and use cases. Choosing your best approach means thinking about the customer journey into the channel, or going where your highest valued audience is.
5. Scale your 'always on' conversations across languages and markets.
Automation lets your conversational marketing scale and always be on. Conversational artificial intelligence and great conversation design allows you to create a chatbot with a personality that's fun to interact with and that can be responsive to a customer even if they “go off-script.” Additionally, a robust conversational marketing platform can help you scale across languages and markets by duplicating conversation paths and bot structures. Finally, automation allows you to always be on and available when customers want to interact with you. They won't have to wait for a live agent to respond — by which point they might already be messaging with your competitor.
Finding a Way Forward
If you’re a marketer backed into a corner by declining channels, data restrictions, failing campaigns, and uncertain strategies, will you try doing more of the same to fight your way out? Or will you look to conversational marketing to engage your audience in privacy-first, one-to-one conversations? Doing the latter will not only distinguish you from an oversaturated market, it will be what accelerates and scales your marketing strategy going forward.
Max Koziolek is the co-founder and CEO of Spectrm, the leading conversational marketing automation platform.