Businesses die in many ways. The saddest way is obsolescence.
Why? Because it is completely avoidable if only the organization is ready to adapt. The stubborn horseman in the age of the steam engine is a poignant example. While this may sound like a rebellion against the pollution-spitting engine, it’s an unwinnable rebellion against inevitable technological progress. In the field of marketing, companies are facing such a transformation. It requires us to step out of our comfort zone, adapt and become digitally savvy at a breakneck pace.
The key difference between analog and digital media is the inability of traditional media to provide accurate audience/readership/listening statistics compared to the accurate data streams of digital media. So, the root of digital transformation is the ability of marketers to know precisely where the potential customer is in the sales funnel. This knowledge translates into an ability to intervene and guide the prospect towards a purchase.
Few trends are working to disrupt the work of traditional media:
Digital capability personalizes messaging:
Knowing the prospect’s preferences in terms of colors, cuts, and styles, for example, will allow a fashion website to customize product presentations to suit their tastes. It will also help the marketer nudge the prospect down the sales funnel with special offers and timely interventions.
Data Feeds Dramatically Improve Prospect Targeting Accuracy
Mailing a sales letter with special offers to a “relatively unknown” database always involves estimating the results. Yet when you get opt-ins into your database and know their preferences, your targeting is more accurate and can deliver predictable results.
Digital interactivity reveals what traditional media can only dream of
Interactivity transforms reading/viewing/listening into an active revelation of preferences and choices.
Reading an ad or offer on traditional media is a passive activity that leaves no trace. Yet, on the internet, when a prospect clicks on a CTA, it creates a data trail that allows the marketer to take precise, individualized action.
Automation enables proactive outreach
With data streams identifying uncertain prospects, marketers can take timely action to nudge them into making a buying decision. Additionally, automated CRM and chatbots enable customer communication without human intervention and help push the prospect through the sales funnel and eventual purchase.
With YouTube unboxing videos and reviews, the seller is redundant. Most prospects do research online before buying. Marketers can reach these leads through “unboxing reviews”, influencer communication, and brand comparison videos. Consumers now have a say in your marketing, whether you like it or not. Understanding and using this trend is vital for the growth of your brands.
Customer self-service has transformed travel booking and insurance purchasing. It used to be that you needed people to serve customers. Today the rules of automation. The trend of customer self-service for purchasing insurance and travel tickets is here to stay. These digital trends imply automation. Online digital portals like Flipkart and Amazon are successfully using data and proactive marketing to increase sales.
One important thing to understand is that when the medium and method of communication changes, the message also changes dramatically. Apart from digital adaptation, this has been a huge problem for businesses. According to a study by Boston Digital, only 9% of companies surveyed said they had no difficulty pivoting their messaging in the aftermath of the pandemic.
Notice the absence of traditional channels?
Here is a list of things you need in your digital communication:
1. Website SEO with the 3Vs – Voice, Video and Vernacular
2. SEM with 3V
3. Data-driven automation platforms like CRM
4. KYC Data and Analytics
5. Content intelligence to assess the effectiveness of your marketing messages
6. A/B Testing to Improve Your Effectiveness in Online Messaging
7. Intelligence-Based Dynamic Pricing
8. Positive customer experience with chatbots and augmented reality
9. Build your brand community to foster customer connection and loyalty
In conclusion – in the words of Alvin Toffler – “The illiterates of the 21st century will not be those who cannot read or write, but those who cannot learn, unlearn and relearn.”