It seemed like it was just yesterday when average brands engage with their customers by passing out flyers and broadcasting their message via television ad, newspaper or magazine when in fact today, the way businesses market their products have transformed to a whole new level. With the birth of a digital era, technologies and new channels of communication have also appeared along with the growing number of modern advertising that made many customers turned their backs on traditional marketing. Because of this, brands are now starting to realize the potential of true customer engagement.
What really are the trends that are presently shaping the way businesses engage with their customers? What are the innovative ways to keep customers engaged in the future? To find out more, read on the three emerging trends that will potentially define the future of customer engagement in the digital marketing space.
- Story-driven and inspirational content marketing
As consumers are rapidly growing apart from direct advertising, content marketing, on the other hand, has transformed into a more penetrable and more convincing approach of attracting consumers’ attention. Consequently, brands too, have shifted their ways. Rather than directing consumers to their products, they have to offer an inspiring and informative message—something that customers can gain—aside from buying their products.
Marketing that focuses on story-driven content is now one of the largest trends to resurface from this admission, with brands and marketers using any means necessary to create a content that lures the readers in and engages them in an experience. The latest types of technology like virtual and augmented reality will pave way for even greater opportunities on this particular trend as they provide marketers more advanced tools to relay even more impactful and engrossing stories.
- Providing innovative product and brand experiences
More and more customers are drawn to brands where they can buy not just products, but also experiences. This kind of customer engagement trend comes from the similar place of story-driven content. Customers expect marketing to offer more than selling to them as much as they expect more from brands than just their products. While there are those large companies that are looking into providing AR and VR technologies to their customers for a more comprehensive digital experience, a good product experience can also be very simple. For instance, a website that has a good design and is visually attractive, or a loyalty and rewards program that allow for online and offline touchpoints with personalized messaging and some discounts can be two great ways of product experience.
Besides, providing a great brand experience cannot completely replace a poor-quality product. However, these experiences can help brands separate themselves from competitors, especially in a competitive marketplace. Personalization is the main factor in this trend, as customers prefer brands that will lead them towards content that suit their needs.
- Shifting to the ‘many-to-many’ type of marketing
The shift to traditional marketing towards a more direct form of marketing can also be considered as a move from one-to-many to many-to-many marketing wherein businesses intend to incite conversations among their customers about their products rather than simply broadcasting them. The concept of many-to-many is when people take to other people about a certain brand or product instead of when companies talk to people. And this is the direction that the future marketing is heading towards to.
It is the era where companies are noticing that if they want their products to be sold, then they have to follow the many-to-many approach, which is an enormous shift in the way we communicate. As we all know, it is natural for people to desire human connection and to belong in a community, and this is partly the reason we will continue to witness the increasing quantity of customers socializing their buying experiences.