The future & beyond
By leveraging tools and technologies that fuel digital channels, stores can employ advanced search optimization and display product information in seconds to the customer.
While traditional marketing has the potential to become the influence factor thereby increasing the sales, reducing overheads such as warehouse costs, and enabling analytical control on inventory.
Two different customers engaging in two different ways for the same product, the chances are there that the one who engages via social media would buy it much sooner than the one via traditional since there is ample amount of personalisation. With such concepts around customer engagement, the war between the marketing aspects is a war lost by both the parties.
Erasing the line of difference
The advent of disruptive technology, new breakthroughs in neuroscience and nanotechnology will dramatically change the way people shop. Already, there are devices available to read brain waves and synthesize them, which may lead to customers shopping in a store being offered the price they had in mind. This is similar to intuitive bargains or being provided with just the right amount of service expected. Although this appears surreal, it may become a reality in the not-so-distant future.
Thus, both the techniques would be employed in a much-measured way than today, eliminating the chances of failure.
Making extreme personalization possible
Marketers are turning to Big Data analytics to power their extreme personalization initiatives. However, instead of systems delivering customized messages and content to customers, personalization can be better delivered when put in the hands of an in-store associate. For instance, consider a scenario where an in-store salesperson can view product recommendations for a customer, based on past purchases. When these recommendations are clubbed with the store associate’s intellect, and verbal and non-verbal cues from customers, recommendations become truly meaningful.
For stores, personalization will mean thinking beyond instant gratification, converting monologue to dialogue, transactions to interactions and customer sales to customer value. By being customer-centric, it can help build a symbiotic relationship between companies and the new age digital customer.
Empowering through IOT
The Internet of Things (IoT) is set to radically transform the way today's world operates. IoT can be used for an overall marketing. For instance, Starbucks recently deployed ‘smart’ coffee machines, which connect to the cloud, enabling tracking of customer preferences down to the individual level. IoT can also be used to constantly monitor and track customer behavior to advertisements. It can help push the relevant information to the customer. For instance, intelligent store shelves displaying a special promotion to privileged customers will revolutionize in-store shopping.
It is inevitable for marketers to capitalize on emerging technology to create an empowered business, build stronger relationships with customers, and create techniques and strategies that are future-ready
The future of marketing is already here, with the emergence of digital technologies such as mobile, social, location services, augmented reality, Big Data, and gamification. If one were to evaluate which among the traditional or content marketing is going to be the ultimate winner, I would say there can never be an answer because they together make each other a winner. In a futuristic idea of how the world would look like, imagine having sophisticated digital displays streaming rich information across the places you travel, completely personalized? Where else can you envision a perfect synergy of digital interactions and the human connect? It is no longer a matter of choice.
“If you do not change direction, you may end up where you are heading” – Lao Tzu
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