Staff Leverage

Conversational Marketing, The New Standard in Business

December 19, 2018

Estimated time of reading: 8 min.
What I’ll learn from this article: What is this strategy exactly about and how it has become an effective sales generator.

Conversational marketing illustration by Staff Leverage

Times are changing and so are the marketing methods at your disposal. In the past, businesses held a steadfast detachment when it comes to contacting future clients; cold calls, e-mail offers, and forms were all common interaction routes, but these practices are suffering a constant drop in effectiveness and they’re falling behind on use too as a result.

As a contrast, is expected that in the near future a large majority of customer-business relationships will take place digitally, with a focus on social apps where companies can provide faster and better-targeted service, accelerating the conversion process for any potential customer.

We’ve all been on the other side of the deal, forced to run through the endless process of contacting a business we are interested in. What happens when you spend hours or even days trying to get in touch with a supplier but they don’t answer? You most likely give it a rest – permanently if you can find better alternatives.

Why would a customer make such an effort to give his money to a company that doesn’t seem to want it? They would not. That’s why you need to give your leads the utmost attention and engage with them, quickly, if you expect to make a sale. The secret here is to actually make businesses feel personal again

“Listen with curiosity. Speak with honesty.

Act with integrity.”

― Roy  T. Bennett, The Light in the Heart

 

Enter Conversational Marketing

As the name suggests, this marketing strategy is built around the logical idea of listening to your customers, having a conversation with them, in order to tailor your product and the way it’s presented so it fits your audience’s needs.

Now, this implies becoming adept in the art of conversation. There are several traits inherent to a good listener, but we can boil it down to a few effective practices:

  • Ask questions: Foster alternative thinking, challenge assumptions, get to the bottom of your client’s problem and pose solutions.
  • Provide support: Create an environment of safety that makes people feel confident and relevant when expressing their thoughts.
  • Collaborate: Don’t compete. Work with your client to achieve the best results.
  • Show commitment: Put away all distractions, lock your cell phone, maintain eye contact, let your speaker know your care about what they are saying.
  • Use positive body language: Crossed arms and haughty poses discourage the speaker, while an open posture encourages engagement.
  • Display empathy: Above all, make an active effort to relate to both your prospects and their struggles, keep an open mind and answer from a human perspective.

Why Conversational Marketing?

Feedback-oriented, the goal of this approach is making your services more appealing to as many potential consumers as possible, creating irresistible offers for your clientele that will nurture a big, loyal customer base.

Granting your public the opportunity to react and review your proposals allows you to refine them while encouraging people to act and invest themselves in your business. This is how you distinguish your brand and develop a voice enticing enough to overthrow any competition.

People commonly think of social media and chat tools when discussing conversational marketing. Direct messaging and voice chat are the most obvious CRM (Customer Relationship Management) channels your brand can employ, however, they’re not the only weapons available in your interactive marketing arsenal.

Anything that can collect opinion from your leads and help with their conversion, driving engagement and ultimately leading to a growth in revenue, can be considered as conversational marketing. There may be some areas you’re already covering and others worth trying, it’s all about personalization here..

For example, while e-mail offers are usually pretty unremarkable, you can transform the medium into a conversational marketing chance with optional surveys asking your customers about the strong and weak points of your business, then use such information to construct a better advertising campaign.

Since leads are the fundamental interest here, you need to view your customer support as an integral piece of any conversational marketing effort -it actually pays off.

You should strive to bring the maximum satisfaction to your clients so they will become advocates for the quality of your brand; this is achieved through attention to social media, call-lines, loyalty rewards, and any other expression of care towards your audience. 

Facebook Messenger for Business

Effective conversational marketing implies meeting the expectations of your clients, swiftly and accurately. Prospects want you to answer their questions immediately, so you better keep an eye to the platforms you use to sponsor your business.

On that note, Facebook Messenger Marketing is rising to become a gigantic force in the digital market. Used by millions on a regular basis, platforms like Messenger are ideal to spread your influence and capture as many leads as possible. What’s more, the very system is optimized for commercial interaction.

This is a low-budget high-profit Conversational Marketing alternative; you can set it up in a number of ways to streamline and personalize customer service with a wide array of opportunities for growth.

As you would suspect, a majority of the customers prefer to contact representatives directly instead of waiting their turn on a call center, which makes all the sense given they can solve their issues in a timely manner. Not only will your clients be pleased with your attention but you’ll also save valuable time.

According to a research conducted by Facebook over different countries, most people state that “being able to message a company directly makes them feel more confident in the brand”. Let your inquirers know what time you can be online to answer them -they want to talk.

“We have two ears and one mouth, so we should listen more than we say.”

― Zeno of Citium, as quoted by Diogenes Laërtius

 

Facebook Messenger can also push the effectiveness of your ads by creating friendly conversations where you can mention the benefits of your offers, giving your prospects reasons to continue communication with your business. Just be careful to avoid intrusive advertising, make your client feel like they would benefit from your service rather than telling them.

To top it off, the Facebook network is filled to the brim with important information about potential clients, all conveniently sorted out for you in the shape of Customer Cards so you can craft the perfect response for any individual who contacts your business through this channel.

The Nurture of Sales

For all intents and purposes, the people who contact your business are your leads, this includes social networks and similar channels where conversational marketing can take place. Knowing this, you must apply a nurturing strategy to achieve sales conversion – good thing is, you’ll have the upper hand here.

As previously mentioned, the basic principle of Conversational Marketing is gathering information about your leads and using it to strengthen your offer. There are simple yet effective guidelines you can follow to maximize your potential revenue regardless of the platform you use to conduct your marketing endeavour.

First, you must create an online presence and structure your ads to appeal the expected audience of your given network, this will drive potential clients to initiate conversation with you. Through these conversations, you’ll gather data and re-contact your leads via text or voice messaging, which can lead to two branching outcomes.

If the contact is successful, you’ll start nurturing those leads through active segmentation of your data and retargeting, seeking to expand the presence of your business among prospect of similar characteristics, then you proceed to make the irresistible offer that will certainly convert your subjects into fans.

Otherwise, your initial endeavour didn’t attract enough prospects so you need to give it a twist. In this scenario, you should point at a different audience better suited to your offer, engage them with personalized proposals and nurture their interest through highly-targeted advertising. Following this, you will resume conversations and narrow down your ads until you find exactly what the irresistible offer is for that given lead.

In either case, reaching the anticipated conversion into sales is no easy task, but the information you collect from the public is a great advantage in this process.

By listening to your prospects and holding meaningful dialogues with them you can increase your chances of a deal exponentially; applying conversational and psychological techniques, you’ll spur the growth of both your business as an income source and yourself as owner.

 By John Mackenzie – Founder & CEO of Staff Leverage, NT Digital and JohnMac Digital

Do you want to be successful? We know how you can be. For more information on the previous topics and deeper insight into the intricacies of efficient business, see the following articles.

References:

  1. CRM Strategies and Technologies to Understand, Grow and Manage Customer Experiences. Gartner Customer 360 Summit 2011. Retrieved December 2018.
  2. Galetto, Molly (February 2017). What is Conversational Marketing? Definition, Examples and Best Practices For Developing A Winning Conversational Marketing Strategy. Retrieved December 2018.
  3. Mérineau, Etienne (August 2018). Conversational Marketing: Why Brands Must Become More Effective Listeners. Retrieved December 2018.
  4. What Is Conversational Marketing?. Drift. Retrieved December 2018.
  5. Jenblat, Omar ( August 2018). Messenger Marketing: The New Way To Do Business. Retrieved December 2018.
  6. Gartner Says CRM Became the Largest Software Market in 2017 and Will Be the Fastest Growing Software Market in 2018. Gartner. Retrieved December 2018.
  7. Orlob, Chris (February 2018). 9 Secret Elements Of Highly Effective Sales Conversations. Gong Labs. Retrieved December 2018.
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Hello There, I’m John Mackenzie! CEO at Staff Leverage. An Australian visionary committed to change businesses all over the world.

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