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BizReport : Advertising : December 22, 2017


Chatbots, shoppable media key to engagement

Last year, much of the marketing talk was about virtual/augmented reality, and consumers' ability to 'touch' or 'see' products in their homes thanks to digital content. This year, it became clear that while VR is a fun product, most consumers still associate it with gaming. That, says one expert, is why marketers need to pull away from VR as a marketing channel. So, what's next? Here are two suggestions.

by Kristina Knight

First, chatbots. According to our expert, chatbots will see huge growth thanks to consumers' growing use of mobile shopping channels. With many chatbots being created and used with social networks like Kik or Facebook Messenger, marketers can piggyback those options with their own content.

"Since chatbots are most commonly created for platforms like Facebook Messenger and Kik, they're already mobile-optimized and primed for user engagement on smartphones and tablets. They can be used to analyze user behavior to provide real-time updates, tailor customers' buying experiences, and drive in-store traffic through experiential shopping initiatives," said Doug Baldasare, CEO & Founder, ChargeItSpot. "In addition, we'll begin seeing luxury brands become more open to adopting chatbots. Luxury is generally apprehensive to adopt emerging technologies, but the value of chatbots is too hard to ignore. Saks, Nordstrom, and DFS Duty Free are a few examples of luxury retailers diving into chatbots. Automaker Daimler has also just released its own chatbot for Mercedes-Benz vehicles, which will be accessible through in-unit computer systems."

Shoppable media is another trend marketers should grab onto in the new year. Instagram has rolled out Shoppable Posts, and Facebook has opened Messenger to advertising, and experts foresee more social platforms opening their doors to this trend. Marketers using AR, video, and other rich content can easily integrate shoppable content into their feeds, too.

"Amazon is already taking notice of the potential for shoppable video with the development of its Amazon Live venture, which will build interactive streaming experiences to create new shopping opportunities for customers," said Baldasare. "Marketers will also start leveraging AR for shoppable content on mobile. Apple's new ARkit development platform will allow more and more brands to do things like IKEA's "Place" app, which uses AR to help shoppers see what furniture will look like in their homes. Finally, marketers will merge the streamlined buying process of shoppable ads with the finite time frame of ephemeral content (e.g. Snapchat, Instagram Stories) to take advantage of consumer FOMO and elicit faster buying responses."

Tags: advertising, ChargeItSpot, chatbots, ecommerce, shoppable media, social commerce, social marketing










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