Conversational Marketing Definition
Conversational marketing or conversation marketing is a feedback-oriented approach to marketing used by companies to drive engagement, develop customer loyalty, grow the customer base, and, ultimately, grow revenue. Conversational marketing is based on the common sense idea of listening to your customer and potential customer’s needs. Being willing to incorporate feedback into your marketing strategy and communicating with the customer on a one-to-one basis, can help to distinguish your company’s brand and also encourage potential customers to engage with your product or service.
The rise of social media and other automated chat tools or bots has opened up new lines of communication with customers. As a result, conversational marketing has taken on a whole new level of importance. More and more companies are leveraging social media to drive their conversational marketing program and develop their brand voice.
Examples of Conversational Marketing
When people think about conversational marketing, they tend to focus on social media networks and automated chat tools. However, conversational marketing is not so limited. There are many examples of conversational marketing, some you may already be implementing and others that are worth considering.
- Email Marketing: Email marketing, while not the most obvious example of conversational marketing, should not be overlooked. Simply bombarding your database with an email marketing campaign where you explain how great your product is or boast about new features would certainly not be considered conversational marketing. However, there are ways you can incorporate email into your conversational marketing strategy. For instance, you might email a segment of your database (opt-ins only) a survey asking them to identify their biggest business pain points or top priorities for the next year. This information can be used to inform your next marketing campaign.
- Live Customer Support: You might think that customer support is a separate department to marketing, but in reality, all customer facing roles are essentially marketers and brand advocates for your company. If your customer support is less than satisfactory, your company is going to suffer. Being able to offer a high level of customer support is one of the most fundamental aspects of any conversational marketing strategy. Leading companies who really value their customers offer support across multiple channels with things like 24-hour helplines, designated twitter support accounts, and in-app chat or live help functionality.
- Customer Loyalty Programs: By introducing programs that reward loyal customers or customers who renew their contract with your company, you can help to build your relationships with your customers.
Conversational Marketing Best Practices
As you out together your conversational marketing strategy, there are a number of best practices you should consider following:
- Time is of the essence: Good conversational marketing requires swift and timely communications. Customers and prospects today expect everything in real time, so keep that twitter support regularly updated and make it your business to get to the bottom of customer issues as quickly as possible.
- Personalization: Customers today expect highly relevant and personalized experiences every time they interact with your brand. The era of the cookie cutter marketing message is over. The only way customers want to know about your product is in relation to their own business needs. You need to leverage all the internal and external data sources you have available to you to generate the relevant insights your customer is actually going to care for.
- Analytics: With so much customer data available to customers today, you should look towards analytics tools that can help you collect and interpret this customer data. The leading analytics tools are those that sit on top of your technology stack and analyze all internal data sources as well as external data streams like social media. These tools provide you with the complete picture of your customer you need in order to deliver meaningful and relevant customer communications.
Further Reading on Conversational Marketing
There are a number of useful resources around the web you should check out to grow your understanding of conversational marketing. Here are three we think are worth your time: