We are living in a technological golden age. It seems that every day there is some new software or machine that is making our lives a little bit easier, and with these adaptations, many industries are rushing to keep up. Digital marketing is by far the most affected by new technology as it is quickly making old methods of advertising obsolete.
Customer relationships are becoming a large part of the scene, and with it, surprisingly, is a rise of automation. Let’s look and see what disruptions are rippling through the marketing world, and what businesses can do to adapt.
In the mantra of marketing, there is a certain flow to things. Buy, Own, and Advocate are the three processes by which to promote your product, service, or brand, and the second part of that equation is fast becoming the most important.
Old school advertising worked really well on the “buy” portion, to the point where that was all that mattered. As long as you could get some people to purchase your product, you were a success. However, since information travels instantly these days, the quality of service and the experience that your brand provides are overtaking the impulse to purchase.
So what does this mean for companies? Well, it means that they need to focus on creating things that connect with the consumer on a more personal level. It’s no longer enough to get people to buy something if they wind up trashing it immediately.
When you look at the top companies in the world such as Amazon, Apple, and Google, you can see that they put a lot of value on providing more than just a product or a service. Take Amazon for example, even if people don’t like what they purchased through the site, they love Amazon’s customer service and attention to detail, which is why they are number one in online shopping.
Humans + Technology = Success
One of the other major trends happening right now is that businesses have to provide speed and efficiency along with an improved experience. Thus, to ensure that each point is handled well, people are turning more and more to automation to fill in the detail gaps and allow the human element to flourish. To better understand how this works, let’s look at a particular example.
The Lounging Dutchman is a robot that is connected to a home brewery. Voice commands activate it and allow you to browse the selections of beers on tap, all without touching a screen. Bots like this work through home automation devices like Amazon’s Alexa or Apple’s Siri.
These days, having a digital personal assistant is becoming more of a trend than ever. In fact, voice commands are slowly creeping up as a go-to method for search and discovery of new products and services. According to the experts, 30% of web browsing in 2020 will be done this way.
This shows the incredible potential of using customer service oriented bots to handle user experience, and it shows a dramatic shift. Now, you have machines placing orders to other machines on behalf of a human user. If you ask Alexa to order a table from Amazon, everything is handled on the back end, while you, the consumer, experience better convenience, and satisfaction.
Just like voice technology, this level of machine interaction is expected to grow quickly as well. It’s estimated that by year 2020, 25% of transactions will be conducted from a bot or other similar device, which can have stunning implications for the digital marketing world. The speed and convenience of this system could give rise to an even greater demand for instant gratification.
Imagine a future where you see an advertisement for a product, you tell your phone to order it for you, and then it’s at your house by the time you get home. This could soon become a reality, and it will be a game changer for those who can make it happen on a consistent basis.
Social Media Strategy and Customer Data
Getting back to creating an enhanced user experience, the reason that certain companies can excel at this is because they have so much information about their customers that they can anticipate their needs before they happen. Social media is a huge reason for this, as sites like Facebook have a massive database of consumer details that can be utilised for marketing purposes.
So, with that kind of possibility, the end goal these days is to develop brand loyalty. Think about how people “love” companies like Apple and Amazon, and are so hyped up whenever there is something new that they have to offer. To achieve that kind of loyalty, it’s imperative that your marketing strategy utilises all of these different factors to deliver impeccable customer service.
Bringing it All Together
The main takeaways here are that consumers are more interested in experiences than things, technology can make it easier to connect with your audience, and engagement on a personal level will help develop stronger ties to your brand. As a business, if you can make all three work in seamless harmony, then you are going to strike gold.