Marketing is a force of nature. Just like energy, it can never cease to exist. It only evolves from one form to the other. The earliest version of modern marketing appeared during the industrial revolution, when the trade of goods first became commonplace. Naturally, such goods were at constant competition. And corporations of all sorts needed to stand out through various marketing activities.
Today as we’re experiencing first hand the baby years of what is called 'the fourth industrial revolution,' we’re also witnessing the evolution of marketing in real-time to accommodate the rapidity of technological advancements. The fourth industrial revolution – more commonly referred to as Industry 4.0 – is marked by one main aspect: Automation. As such, marketing, as a major contributor to the revolution, is becoming an automated practice. The days of traditional marketing are soon to be gone. The integration of man and machine has led to the introduction of a new form of marketing; conversational marketing.
What does Conversational Marketing mean?
In simple terms, conversational marketing refers to the personalized methodology businesses use to communicate with their customers. As the name suggests, it is all about having actual conversations with the customers to identify their wants, needs, and hopes. By asking simple and direct questions, companies enable their customers to voice out their opinions and use this data to improve their sales process. In conversational marketing, information is the only asset. Needless to say, those conversations are automated.
The usage of live chat and chatbot solutions in marketing has significantly accelerated response times and hence the entire process of sales. It has also met the needs and expectations of customers in that they are helpful, personal, and empathic. Conversations empower relations. And if you can obtain a customer who trusts you, believes in you, and talks to you, then you are doing it right.
Key elements of Conversational Marketing
- Conversations happen in real time.
- Conversations are scalable.
- Conversations are contextual.
- Conversations are always available.
Facilitating communication with live chat and chatbots
Conversational marketing utilizes chatbots or live chat. Chatbots are artificially intelligent software programs, built specifically to have a conversation with people and guide them. They are a highly popular, budget-friendly way of marketing, whether by deploying them on your website or social media accounts.
Live chat on the other hand lets users directly message a support agent in real time. Both services complement each other, as neither agents nor bots can respond to all levels of queries by themselves. Both methods are used not only to provide help to customers for one time but also to nurture that relationship and turn the customer into a repeat customer.
Conversational marketing is also more than just chatting. It can extend to other forms of business marketing such as:
- Email marketing
- Landing pages
- Survey forms
Whereas live chat and chatbots are the two most popular forms of conversational marketing, their benefits is about the ever-changing landscape of customer communications and customer preferences. To implement an effective conversational marketing strategy in 2021, you should view it as part of an omnichannel organization. Conversational marketing ensures that you meet your customers wherever they are, on all platforms, and at the right stage of their journey.
5 key benefits of Conversational Marketing
Here are five reasons why conversations are needed to capture and qualify leads:
1. Personalized customer experiences
In 2021, customers are seeking conversations that are personal and customizable. It is a well-known fact that companies collect data from their customers, so it’s only logical that they use it to present better options and spare customers the hassle of filling in information.
2. Gathering beneficial data
Collecting contact info can tell you why customers visit your website or use your products and services. It also helps you pinpoint their biggest pain points and what they’re looking for in order for you to improve their experiences using this data.
3. Boosting sales revenue
Conversation qualified leads close faster than others. That’s because they trust the brand more after getting exposed to their conversational marketing efforts.
4. Improving brand loyalty
Any brand that plays an active role in listening to their customers is sure bound to gain those customer’s loyalty. And brand loyalty can have a domino effect on the quantity of customers who convert to that brand.
5. Building better relationships
Conversations are a great way to interact and drive lead generation. Additionally, conversational marketing allows you to reach a wider customer base on new communication channels. Once a relationship is established with a customer it becomes easier to upsell or cross-sell products to them.
How does conversational marketing work?
In order to get started with conversational marketing, you have to put up a strategy first. It is not just about building a chatbot and having it engage with customers, it’s about operating within a systemic marketing framework that yields the required results. Not only do you have to engage your customers, but you also have to understand them. There are several recommended practices for conversational marketing, including:
- Mixing between traditional and modern marketing
- Being customer-centric
- Keeping it simple and straightforward
- Following up with customers
Customers usually tend to ask questions at the most critical stages of their journey (right before taking the decision to purchase). Which is why a good conversation is key to gaining their trust and loyalty. And even though conversational marketing may seem like it is about one-on-one conversations, it is really about growing your business as a whole.
Want to invest in a communication platform that handles conversational marketing?
CEQUENS can help
Digital age customers are bound to experience the personalized, end-to-end experiences they seek, while businesses can experience a new dimension of availability with CEQUENS Chat*.
Whichever method appeals to you to engage your customers is the one you should follow. We recommend taking a multichannel approach and incorporating several ways. To learn more about the product or how we can help, contact our Sales team.
*Get CEQUENS Chat for 3 free months if you register before January 31, 2021. The offer includes unlimited chat agent seats with no setup fees, in addition to free registration for WhatsApp Business and optional chatbot deployment.