The fact of the matter is that buyers are busy. Super busy. That’s why they want to engage with brands when it’s most convenient for them and on the channel of their choice.
With the average consumer interacting with brands on ten or more channels, it can be challenging for businesses to cut through the static and step up to the podium.
With conversational marketing, brands can provide shoppers with valuable, one-on-one interactions that enhance customer experiences, drive purchases, and deepen loyalty.
But what exactly is conversational marketing, and how can you use it to your advantage?
What is conversational marketing?
Conversational marketing is the practice of engaging with customers in real-time across numerous channels. This practice allows businesses to create authentic experiences for individual customers on their preferred platforms – chatbots, chat apps like WhatsApp Business, or social messaging apps like Facebook Messenger.
Much like conversational commerce, conversational marketing makes the customer experience personal again and drives them down the funnel. Brands can leverage conversational marketing to make customized product recommendations or act as tour guides to help shoppers navigate their buying journey.
For example, if a customer can’t find the perfect pair of shoes or a purse on a retail site, a chatbot is triggered by their browsing history. It can immediately assist them in a conversational, engaging manner.
Today, about 71% of consumers expect real-time engagement from brands. If your business isn’t using conversational marketing, you could miss out on massive opportunities for effective customer engagement.
How will conversational marketing help my campaigns?
Conversational marketing can enhance your campaign in several ways. Not only does it deliver actual results, but it can boost your profits. 77% of marketers who used SMS to send promotions or offers reported revenue growth in the last fiscal year, compared to only 23% of marketers who did not use SMS.
Moreover, 78% of consumers said their expectations for how brands engage with them rose during the pandemic. For example, over 90% of shoppers expect immediate responses from customer support. Brands must not only be engaging with consumers across a myriad of platforms, but they must also respond right away to meet customer expectations.
Conversational marketing tools allow your brand to do both, taking the customer experience to the next level.
How to use omnichannel in your conversational marketing campaigns
Taking an omnichannel approach to your conversational marketing campaign is crucial. If you only engage with customers on one channel, you’re limiting your business and results.
Every interaction with a prospective customer is an opportunity. Engaging with consumers on a wide array of channels increases the likelihood of them making a purchase.
So, how can you incorporate omnichannel into your conversational marketing campaigns?
Here are a few practical tips for using an omnichannel conversational marketing approach.
With a 98% open rate, SMS is a cost-effective way to reach your target audience. You can personalize your texts by sending customized discounts, product recommendations, or notifying a customer when their purchase has shipped. As the most widespread messaging tool worldwide, SMS is a highly efficient way to reach and engage with consumers.
Artificial intelligence (AI) is a great way to relieve your customer support team of the dozens of inquiries they receive daily. Conversational chatbots can provide real-time resolutions to simple questions while keeping the human element in the conversation.
Bots can analyze behavioral data and tailor a conversation to a customer’s specific pain points without human intervention.
Be sure that your chatbot has a personality that embodies your brand. Have it greet a visitor as soon as they land on your website. It can also make buying suggestions and help customers with the check-out process.
Social & chat apps
Brands can now engage opted-in consumers with full-funnel conversations on WhatsApp and other chat and social media platforms. Social media messaging tools allow your business to have 1:1 interactions with shoppers, fully personalizing their experience. You can also give a customer the ability to pay for their purchase right on the chat using Apple Pay, Google Pay, Paypal, or other digital payment methods. Shoppers will appreciate how convenient it is to make a purchase.
Developing an effective strategy
Your campaign success starts with the right strategy. An effective conversational marketing strategy includes:
Acute segmentation: Segment your audience based on any data available to your brand. You can use this information to create rich buyer personas for your audience based on their demographics, tastes, and shopping behavior. Create campaigns that cater to these unique journeys.
Capture conversions with chats: Develop conversations based on segmentation that effectively capture your target audience. When a potential customer sends your bot a message, you can determine how it will appropriately respond based on the personas you built.
The chat flow should do its best to get to a solution as efficiently as possible. For instance:
Bot: “Hi there! I noticed you are searching for a designer purse. Is there a specific style or color you’re looking for?”
Customer: “I’m looking for something large enough that could double as an overnight bag.”
Bot: “Ok, large designer handbag. Any specific color?”
Customer: “Something natural. Brown or green.”
Bot: “Got it! I’ve sorted through our collection and come up with these three options. Each bag is on the larger side and available in brown or green. Do you like any of these?”
Customer: “Oh nice, the third one is pretty good. What’s your return policy?”
Bot: “90 days, free return shipping. I’ll even throw in a limited-time 10% discount. Should I add the bag to your cart?”
Customer: “Sweet, yeah, I’ll take it.”
And just like that, your automated system has converted a browsing customer to a paying customer.
Real-time chat with customer support associates: Your customer support team can also engage in real-time conversations with shoppers on their preferred channel. Human associates can take the lead for questions that are too complex for a chatbot.
In the scenario above, if the customer had specified a qualifier that wasn’t in the automated system, you could program the bot to escalate to a live representative. The customer support agent could easily review the prior conversation and swiftly take over the interaction.
Or potentially, a customer has already placed an order, and there is a shipping delay. Their account portal just says “delayed,” and they want to find out more information. Live support via Facebook Messenger could provide them with more details on their package status. This flexible, asynchronous support benefits the customer and will also help your brand. When businesses deliver ongoing support to customers, their brand loyalty remains strong, even if their order arrives late.
Use Mitto Conversations to power your conversational marketing campaigns
Mitto Conversations allows you to effortlessly keep track of all of your conversations in one place. Talk to dozens of customers across numerous channels from one easy-to-use dashboard.
To learn more, contact us today.