You may have heard of Messenger Marketing, Conversational Commerce, and Unified Messaging. That is what the technical terms mean.
What is Messenger Marketing?
The term is almost self-explanatory: In Messenger Marketing, you use Messenger for various marketing measures. The application can be roughly divided into two categories: push and pull marketing. That means:
You proactively send messages to your customers via WhatsApp, Telegram and the like to inform them about innovations such as newly arrived products. Or you can encourage them to take part in a competition.
Your customers will contact you via a messenger. For example, because they need information about a product or want to make an appointment.
What does conversational marketing mean?
Messenger marketing is part of conversational marketing. In conversational marketing, the focus is on the exchange – the conversation – between companies and customers. Messenger is one way in which customers and companies can communicate with one another very quickly and easily.
A customer contacts you via Facebook Messenger because they have a question about a new service. You, a colleague or a chatbot will provide the right answer. The information increases the customer’s interest in your offer.
What is conversational commerce?
Before a customer becomes a real customer, they go through a “journey” – the customer journey. This means that your marketing measures arouse interest first, followed by the purchase request. Ultimately, there is an action, the purchase of a product.
Conversational marketing is, so to speak, the vanguard of the customer journey: You build a bond with (potential) customers through direct and personal exchange. Conversational commerce is about “triggering” the purchase decision.
As the term implies, conversational commerce is often used in e-commerce. Because there is hardly any media discontinuity here: for example, if you integrate a live chat into your online shop, customers can buy your products with just a few clicks.
Messenger Marketing and Conversational Commerce: Examples
This is how German companies use the possibilities of messenger communication to offer added value:
- The ZDF relies on Telegram, among other things, to offer its viewers further information on its own programs. Probably the best known channel is that of the “ZDF Magazin Royal” by Jan Böhmermann.
- Do you have a question about ADAC membership or ADAC insurance? The automobile association uses a chatbot as a “virtual assistant” on its website.
- TravelHomie is a digital travel advisor that works purely via Facebook Messenger. The recommendations do not come from a chatbot algorithm, but from a real startup team.
The advantages of conversational / messenger marketing and conversational commerce
That is why communication via messenger is booming:
- There are worldwide over 3.5 billion smartphones (As of: 2020), most German teenagers and adults have such a mobile phone. Trend: increasing.
- At least one messenger is installed on almost every smartphone. WhatsApp alone is used by 80% of Germans . That means: Smartphones and messengers are an extremely important access channel to your customers.
- Big companies like Facebook, Google and Apple are pushing their own messenger solutions. This gives conversational marketing an additional boost.
- Modern man doesn’t want to wait long. He wants fast, smooth communication – preferably in real time.
- Today’s consumer mainly uses online channels such as Google, Amazon and social networks to get information or to get inspiration.
- If the shopping process is integrated directly into the messenger, the media discontinuity disappears. The customer gets everything from a single source.
- The quick exchange increases customer satisfaction and customer loyalty. And companies find out more easily what their customers want.
What are unified messaging and unified communication?
A term that is often lumped together with Messenger Marketing and Conversational Marketing is Unified Messaging (UM for short). The English word “unify” means “to unite”. This is exactly what Unified Messaging is all about: The consolidation of various communication options on one platform.
Strictly speaking, Unified Messaging only stands for the combination of different asynchronous (= time-shifted) channels in one system. Asynchronous technologies include fax, e-mail and answering machines.
If a system also integrates synchronous channels such as telephone, video conferencing and messenger, this is called Unified Communications (UC) or Real Time Communication (RTC).
The latest word creation in this area is called UCC: Unified Communication & Collaboration. Collaboration tools such as digital whiteboards complement a UC system.
Many technical terms, one idea: modern communication
It is difficult to draw a line between messenger marketing, conversational commerce and unified communication. The concepts overlap a lot, and the terms are often used synonymously in linguistic usage.
Regardless of which technical term you use, it is always about one essential thing: communication. To the exchange between companies and customers. Nowadays this is mostly a conversation between two or more people. But chatbots, voice assistants and other intelligent systems are increasingly being added.
What does this mean for your company?
Follow the trends and the changing times. Deal with the new forms of customer communication . If you use Messenger correctly in marketing, sales and customer support, it increases your efficiency: Your communication channels become faster and leaner, which reduces costs. And you will probably increase your sales, as you can better respond to the wishes of your customers.
In summary, this means: Behind Messenger Marketing and Conversational Commerce there is a lot of potential for your company!