For many years, the sales and marketing industry has been engaging in a battle between automation and personal touch.
There’s a fine line between the two, and until recently, it hasn’t been easy to tread.
No matter what primary method your company uses to sell your products/services, you’ve likely been missing a key ingredient that turns that battle into a dance.
That ingredient is conversational marketing.
What Is Conversational Marketing?
Conversational marketing is an automated way to begin a real-time conversation with potential buyers across multiple channels.
Essentially, it involves engaging the buyer, gaining an understanding of what they are looking for, and recommending the right solution. And the kicker is that this is all done right when they land on your website.
Through chat-type marketing options such as chatbots, live chat, Facebook Messenger, and the like, conversational marketing can work for multiple parts of your business, including support, sales, and marketing.
With the development of conversational marketing, one thing’s for certain: It trumps the more traditional sales and marketing methods, both online and off. Its power lies in its ability to communicate with customers and prospects at the time and place they want and in a personalized way.
It bridges the gap between “colder” digital marketing approaches that have no face and the personal touch of a traditional salesperson. It gives potential customers a piece of each world, and it does it beautifully because it’s completely on their terms.
Improve upon the “Old Way”
Make no mistake—traditional tactics still have value. However, it’s in your best interest to implement something more modern if you want to see an increase in conversions…
Further, even if a prospect shows interest in a product online, following up with a phone call from a salesperson is still an intrusion that makes most people cringe. After all, not every person who visits your site is a qualified lead. And according to Harvard Business Review, cold calling is ineffective about 90% of the time.
Make Real-Time Conversions with the “New Way”
Now, through conversational marketing and the benefits of chatbots, you can engage people right when they are looking at your products and services.
The old way would mean having them email you or fill out a lead-capture form and getting back to them in 24-48 hours. At that point, you could have lost a sale to another company that responded faster, or the buyer might have put it out of their mind and not be in a shopping mode once they do receive your response.
Facebook’s numbers will show you what we mean: “Conversations between users and companies inside Messenger have a 30% better return on investment than retargeting ads on the web.” That’s a big difference!
Listen, some people just won’t fill out a form or don’t want whatever it is that you are giving away to get them on your list. (Yes, they’re on to you.) By having a chat feature, you give them another option, so you capture more leads and make more sales.
Why Should I Use Conversational Marketing?
We realize you might be on the fence about adding yet another marketing tactic into the mix, but there really aren’t any drawbacks to this one. Here’s why…
1) It’s Easy to Integrate & Complements Your Current Marketing Tactics
While conversational marketing can be implemented across many different channels, the easiest solution is to add a chatbot to your website. One of the main benefits of chatbots is that they are easy and inexpensive to implement.
Conversational marketing and chatbots aren’t something you need to switch over to. They won’t take away from anything you are already doing. They simply complement your current marketing tactics and make them all that much more effective.
2) It Moves Buyers through Your Funnels Quickly
When you add conversational marketing to your arsenal, you’ll be able to expedite your whole sales process. Reduce the number of times you nurture a prospect through a long email marketing campaign or have your salespeople chase after leads who might not even be qualified.
With conversational marketing, the visitor can engage with your company right when they land on your site and be well on their way to making a purchase.
3) It’s Personal & Customer Centric
Conversational marketing puts the personal back in marketing because it makes instant connections between buyers and businesses and it builds the relationship right away instead of months down the line.
Whereas traditional marketing tends to be impersonal, conversational marketing is customer centric. It treats visitors as individuals and lets them buy when and how they want instead of forcing them to do it your way.
It gives them a personal experience that is specific to what they are looking for instead of a generic experience that disrupts them in the middle of dinner. They’ll be able to get the info they need now or whenever they want, and it allows them to start, stop, and pick up conversations at a pace that works for them.
4) It’s Convenient, Easy, & Empowering for the Customer
Conversational marketing and the benefits of chatbots make it convenient and easy for people to have a conversation with you. Most people would rather converse with a company through messaging because it’s fast and easy.
According to a 2016 Twilio survey, 90% of consumers like to communicate with businesses through messaging. This is true even if they know they are talking to a chatbot.
In fact, it even serves to empower the customer. For example, an Aspect Software survey found that 65% of consumers like handling issues without talking to a live person because it makes them feel good about themselves.
The 2019 State of Conversational Marketing report by Drift and Survey Monkey found that the number one thing that frustrates online consumers is not being able to get answers to simple questions. These are things that can certainly be answered by chatbots.
5) It Improves Your Understanding of Your Customer
Conversational marketing allows you to gain a lot of predictive analytics about your leads that you can use to improve your marketing. For example, you can:
- Learn about cross-sell and upsell opportunities
- See what issues people are having on your site
- Better understand what your customers are looking for and why
Conversational marketing is more insightful than many other marketing tactics because your leads tell you what they want in their own words. Your email marketing software doesn’t have to guess what list to put them on, and you learn new things about them that you wouldn’t otherwise know.
What Are the Benefits of Chatbots?
While chatbots aren’t all there is to conversational marketing, they certainly form the basis of it, and it’s what makes it feasible for most companies because it is automated. So, let’s look at some of the more specific benefits of chatbots…
Chatbots Allow You to Provide 24/7 Support
Chatbots are what makes having round-the-clock support possible. You can set up your bot to provide the answers to common questions based on the data you already have.
Chatbots Can Streamline Your Business
Chatbots can take care of the following processes in your company:
- Answering frequently asked questions
- Recommending certain articles, products, etc.
- Qualifying leads
- Booking meetings with sales reps
- Gathering feedback
Chatbots allow for immediate engagement that opens the door for follow-up with those who are most interested in what you offer instead of nurturing a lead for days, weeks, or months.
Just keep in mind that 86% of consumers want to be able to transfer to a representative if their issue goes beyond what the bot can handle. So, make sure you provide that option.
Conversational marketing deserves a big “Woot woot!” because it has put an end to that battle between automation and personal touch. You simply won’t go wrong by putting it into practice in your business.
Let us help you get it up and running! Schedule your free consultation here!