Have you joined the thousands of brands that are using conversational marketing on social media to their advantage? Conversations happen all day long, all around us over social networks. A significant majority of these conversations are about brands; their products and services.
There is a universal truth behind the increasing surge and popularity of social media conversational marketing. People enjoy talking to other people, which was clearly evident during the COVID-19 pandemic when everyone was locked in their homes and missed personal interactions. This is where the concept of conversational marketing on social media starts.
It may come as a surprise to you but people still want a real person to answer their questions and solve issues in real time. In fact, approximately 70 percent of people expect conversational experiences from brands.
Gone are the days when organizations could rely solely on 1-800 numbers with long wait times or one-way communication channels such as contact forms. Today, 50 percent of consumers prefer switching to a competitor if they experience lackluster customer service experiences.
This is one of the primary reasons why more and more organizations across the world are counting on conversational marketing on social media to make a difference.
What's covered in this article:
- Let's explore how combining conversation with social media marketing works.
- The benefits of a conversational marketing strategy
- How to get started with conversational marketing
- Examples of businesses and conversational marketers using conversational marketing effectively
- What the future of conversational marketing looks like in 2022 and beyond
What is conversation marketing and how does it work?
Conversational marketing is an ongoing dialogue between your business and clients using the most convenient channels. In other words, it is a one-to-one approach to proactive marketing wherein brands interact directly with existing and potential customers to learn about their needs and create more personalized experiences.
With this form of relationship marketing, customer data can be collected and used to transform how customer relationships evolve and are supported.
In-depth conversations can motivate users to reveal their pain points, help the brand understand the customer's problem, and collect first-party data straight from the customer. With social listening, it is possible to answer vital questions for consumers.
Platforms become conduits for relationship building by engaging the audience across channels. Meaningful conversation leads to a more engaging audience willing to share information that helps the business.
The data collected can be used to support other forms of marketing like email and paid advertising. Knowledge gained through user interactions allows companies to improve their products and services.
Conversational marketing can be integrated into the digital marketing fabric of your business in the following areas.
- Landing Pages
- Email Marketing
- Voice Applications (Alexa, Google Smart Assistant, etc.)
- And more…
(Image Source: Wati.io)
Let's take a closer look at statistics showing the benefit of employing conversational marketing.
- 71% of customers expect organizations to communicate with them in real time. (Salesforce)
- 47% of customers are open to making a purchase entirely from a conversational marketing chatbot. (HubSpot)
- Connecting with a lead within 5 minutes after the initial contact can make it 9x more likely to convert them. (InsideSales.com)
- 73% of B2B buyers expect a personalized, B2C-like customer experience. (Accenture)
- 62% of customers expect brands to adapt based on their behaviors and actions. (Salesforce)
- A study revealed that 9 out of 10 consumers prefer messaging to contact a business. (Twilio)
- 80% of frequently asked questions can be answered via conversational marketing bots. (IBM)
- 52% of customers are more likely to repeat purchases if the business provides support via live chat. (Kayako)
The primary purpose of conversational marketing on social media is to improve the customer journey. Whether prospects or clients (existing and potential) have a frequently asked question, an issue with their order, or need help to complete a purchase, conversational marketing makes it easy for them to find a quick solution.
The Benefits of Conversational Marketing
There are a number of key benefits to be realized by an organization when employing conversational marketing programs in their customer relationship strategies.
If you've ever been placed on hold for an extended period of time after calling customer support, you know how frustrating it can be. The last thing you want to run into is a chatbot that doesn't understand when to redirect you to a live agent or can't do so.
Conversational marketing can solve this. The hybrid approach allows your brand to connect with clients with the assistance of chatbots for accuracy and efficiency, but with the human touch and personality.
Insightful Customer Feedback
Conversational marketing on social media platforms allows your clients to easily and quickly communicate with you; what they want, how they want, and when they want to. This feedback can help you:
- Improve the quality of your products and services
- Create tailored customer experiences
- Overcome barriers to purchase
- Collect key data to improve overall operational efficiency
- Engineer a more productive and aware sales force
Boosts Brand Confidence
Conversational marketing on social media channels can act as a type of peer support, thus making your customers feel as though they are talking to a friend. This experience encourages customers to recommend a brand to friends, family, colleagues, peers, and followers.
Create Personalized Experiences
In today's digital age, we usually think of top social media platforms such as Facebook and Google as conduits for sending promotional messages at scale. While such a tactic can be effective, conversational marketing aims to do the opposite.
Conversational marketing on social media platforms helps your brand create personalized experiences one-on-one with customers instead of focusing on campaigns that revolve around more significant audience types.
Combining Multiple Channels
One of the most significant advantages of conversational marketing on social channels is that it allows organizations to harness their existing offline assets and seamlessly integrate them into the online channel.
In other words, it helps you combine the knowledgeable call center staff and the benefits of an in-store experience. Moreover, conversational marketing on social media can help you easily and quickly capture, qualify, and connect with leads without requiring lead capture forms.
Collect Information Through Customer Interaction
Conversational marketing on social channels allows you to learn about the person you are talking to, enabling you to collect information openly and honestly. For instance, conversation tools like chatbots monitor user behavior and find out what types of social media questions they engage in and what time of the day they prefer to ask questions on social media.
Shorten Sales Cycles
Another prominent advantage of conversational marketing on social media channels is that it helps you shorten the sales cycle. Past methods to shorten this cycle can be abandoned if conversational marketing proves successful, thus saving companies time and money.
Thanks to conversational marketing, you can ensure that conversations are instant, and you can respond to customer queries, complaints, or a call for help in real time. Additionally, conversational marketing channels can be made available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, and 365 days a year.
How to Get Started with Conversational Marketing?
Before selecting a channel, platform, or communication guidelines, the first step is finding answers to the following questions.
- What are your customers' motivations, requirements, expectations, and preferences?
- What social media platforms and other channels do your customers best respond to? Where is your best engagement with a customer?
- What are the most common pain points from past interactions? Is there value in having answered the ready for these?
- How can I make the information they need more accessible to improve the relationship?
Here's how you can get started with conversational marketing.
Add Live Chat to Your Website
If you want to start conversations with existing and potential clients on your website, there is nothing better than adding live chat to your site. Live chat tools spare your customers from filling out forms and waiting for responses. Using live chat, they can quickly connect with your business at a time convenient to them.
Adding live chat to your website can go a long way to enhance customer satisfaction and their overall buying experience.
Change Your Email Copy
A study conducted by Campaign Monitor revealed that people receive and send roughly 126 emails per day on average. Now comes the big question – how to avoid getting lost in the scuffle? The answer is simple – change your tone.
Before you start creating an email copy for your business, you need to ask yourself about the types of emails you always open. Have a word with your friends, family, and colleagues about what prompted them to open emails.
Follow a friendly, conversational, and personal tone in your sales and marketing emails. The point is that you should talk to your email recipient instead of talking at them.
Helpful Related Content
- What is GDPR Email Marketing? (GDPR Made Simple)
- The 21 Most Effective Email Marketing Best Practices in 2022
Engage In Social Selling
The goal of any marketing strategy is to provide value to the consumer, thus giving them a reason to purchase, not a reason to abandon. But how can you sell without being pushy?
A conversational marketing strategy helps you leverage your social networks to identify prospects and build relationships that can help reach sales goals. Remember, the key should always be to start a conversation, not sell.
Employing a robust conversational marketing strategy, a prospect is more likely to buy from you if you have already established trust or built a relationship before the sale.
Examples of Businesses Using Conversational Marketing Effectively
Let's review examples of brands and conversational marketers using conversational marketing smartly.
eBay's Google Assistant App is one of the best examples of companies using conversational marketing effectively. It helps customers browse through the extensive shopping inventory of eBay and initiate their search by saying, “Ok, Google, ask eBay to find me…” and the app will ask some questions to narrow down the options before offering the most relevant results.
Once the best deal is identified, the chatbot will ask the customers whether they want to send the results to their smartphone to complete the purchase.
In 2015, Domino helped its customers text or tweet a pizza emoji to get a pizza sent their way. It then introduced AnyWare to allow customers to order their favorite items from Domino's menu via various channels such as Alexa, Slack, Facebook Messenger, Google Home, Twitter, or even a Smart TV.
Casper, a US-based company specializing in sleep products, launched Insomnobot-3000 a few years ago. It provides an interactive experience with a chatbot that keeps insomniacs company during late-night hours. Anyone with sleep-related issues can send a text to initiate a chat. Insomnobot-3000 was also advertised as “chattier” from 11 pm to 5 am.
1-800-Flowers sells its products via Facebook messenger, and the brand utilizes bots to help customers walk through the sales cycle from start to finish.
Sephora, the upscale beauty retailer, introduced the Sephora Virtual Artist feature in its Facebook Messenger bot a while ago.
This out-of-the-box augmented reality (AR) functionality allows Sephora customers to “try on” makeup by uploading their selfies and applying different eyeshadows, false lashes, and lipstick shades. Customers can even share their makeover photos with family and friends to get feedback.
This try-before-you-buy experience without visiting a physical store was an instant hit. The brand also reported that a similar Messenger bot (Sephora Assistant) to book makeovers accounted for an 11 percent conversion rate increase.
The Future of Conversational Marketing
Automation that is robotic, vague, complicated, and lifeless is of no use. Brands must employ technology and tactics to create memorable experiences for their customers. Employing technology and strategies around conversational marketing can provide meaningful, customer-centric, and deeper experiences your customers will remember, share and evangelize.
Technology has made things easier for humans to have conversations with brands on the channels they use every day. Brands need to be available on these same channels daily to improve their customer interactions.
Conversational Marketing on Social Media Wrap-up
By using conversational marketing on social media, you are making a conscious decision to invest in building relationships with customers. This is an opportunity for your brand to reach out to customers on their preferred channels and create opportunities for future sales.
Social media provides the perfect opportunity for businesses to have one-on-one conversations with customers in order to learn about their needs and wants. Additionally, this strategy allows you to collect valuable data about your customers that can be used to improve your marketing efforts and products. What platforms will you use for conversational marketing? Let us know in the comments.