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“To pay or not to pay?” That is the Shakespearean question businesses are asking themselves when it comes to building an audience. It’s no secret that paid advertising can get any message across to a mass of potential customers. The real question is, “Will those users continue to follow us if we stop paying for social media promotion?” Usually the answer is no.
Which is why it’s critical to rely on your own channels to engage with consumers. However, things are not that simple. For any start-up company, it can be difficult to make your brand visible towards millions of social media users. It’s even more difficult to make them care about it. Today’s consumers are looking for a personal connection and any business that fails to accommodate are left in the dust. But how can businesses be expected to engage with users on 1:1 level without creating a generic impression?
The answer is mobile marketing automation. By utilizing the stats provided from your users and the environment around them, you can anticipate the content they’ll be interested in — giving you the opportunity to build a personal relationship with that user. Michael Becker, Managing Partner and Co-Founder at mCordis, has a lot to say about the subject. VentureBeat spoke with Becker about his thoughts on marketers using automation to establish an audience.
“We’re moving in a world from personalized to individualized marketing,” Becker said. “While we had that from the earliest days of commerce where the butcher knew you — they were your best friend, they knew your kids’ names, they knew your favorite cut of meat, they knew your birthday, they took care of you — but that had no scale. Then the Walmarts of the world and the big box retail model of the world came into play and the marketer got scale — but lost personalization.”
Becker explained mobile marketing automation allows marketers to bring back the 1:1 interaction with consumers like the good ol’ days, but at scale. It also allows marketers to move from a segmented approach to targeting to an individualized approach — where you actually know the person you’re communicating with, not just a group of people. He called the strategy a game changer that “every single marketer needs to recognize and adopt.”
What are the ways companies are using mobile marketing automation to move the needle? Becker cited Macy’s — which interacts and engages with its consumers on all media channels — and 1-800 Flowers for marketing towards people’s past and future behavior to significantly increase sales. One fascinating example Becker provided was a Chinese company who recognized that Pizza Hut customers there were strong users of WeChat. “They integrated a local beacon network with WeChat,” explains Becker, “and when consumers walked through the door, the automated system was able to take over and start offering personalized offers and alerts to that individual.”
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However, one aspect Becker advises marketers to pay attention to is the weather.
“There are studies that show if the weather around you changes by a couple of degrees, that will affect your interest in a particular product — like ice cream — and if you consider that context, you can materially change the course of your business and drive commerce by leveraging that context,” Becker says.
“But in order to really drive it in the most amplified and efficient way, you can either use that and then go drive advertising which has a limited reach, and not going to get exposure, or use an owned channel where you can be assured a significant and much larger portion of your audience will see the message and has greater potential of engaging.”
For more valuable tips on utilizing mobile marketing automation to its fullest, join this webinar featuring Becker and Doug Roberge, Strategic Services Consultant at Kahuna. Stop musing on how to find your audience and start engaging them effectively through your own channels.
In this webinar, you’ll:
- Balance the advertising (paid) and direct (owned) marketing in your overall marketing mix
- Enhance your paid and owned media and connect with individuals
- Learn how communication automation reduces engagement friction and opens the door for a rich dialog
- Anticipate the consumer demand for individualized messages and how that impacts engagement and commerce
Michael Becker, Managing Partner and Co-Founder, mCordis
Doug Roberge, Strategic Services Consultant, Kahuna
Wendy Schuchart, Moderator, VentureBeat
This webinar is sponsored by Kahuna.