The Digital Hive: Martech Trends in a COVID World.

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COVID-19 has left the world stumped in many aspects, medically and economically, trying to find a cure not just for the virus itself but also its impact on global and local markets. While you may be thinking this is simply a health crisis, the financial crisis is being felt by thousands of unemployed Americans and small to medium businesses alike. The effects of which will be felt for generations to come.

For the past decade, we have had fears that AI and technology would take jobs, never dreaming 2020 would out stage predictions. Instead, we are seeing that technology is helping in a race to treat and cure the virus as well as keep once-thriving businesses afloat.

Here are some martech trends that might just save us all:

Market Research

We were quite literally left in the dark as we saw markets fall in the first quarter of 2020 across most industries. What was even more worrying was that we had little to no research on changing consumer behaviors. Now, we are beginning to see the light and getting new insights into trends and shifts in customer priorities. However, this isn’t over and as we see a second COVID wave taking shape the need to dive into research and data is extremely important. Using data responsibly and effectively will prove to be one of your most valuable assets. This isn’t a time for growth, it is a time for deeper research to enjoy growth post COVID. So take the time to invest in getting to know your customers again and rebuild relationships that will be stronger than ever before with leading-edge market research tools. Thanks, technology!

Hyper-personalization

Even before COVID, hyper-personalized marketing strategies were emerging as the ultimate way to increase loyalty. And in a market that is as unpredictable as the breeze, keeping high-touch customers around should be a priority. By meeting the exact needs of your most loyal customers, you can increase revenue even during these trying times. People want security and stability right now, so they will stick to brands that know them best and adapt to their evolving expectations. The good news is the technology is out there and AI and automation are here to help.

Intent-matching

Hey keywords, look out! There is a new trend in town. Intent-matching will become your most powerful SEO tool. With voice search on the rise, relevancy is critical to dominating search. Whether it’s your website, a mobile app, Amazon Alexa, or social media, your customers want to be able to find exactly what they need immediately. Moreover, intent-matching is all part of delivering a powerful omnichannel experience throughout the customer journey.

Get in the algorithm and take a look at powerful tools, such as Dialogue Flow, powered by Google’s Machine Learning platform (of course):

Self-service touchpoints

As it turns out a Nuance Enterprise study revealed that “67% of customers prefer to use self-service options instead of speaking with a company representative.”

Beyond that, people want to avoid having to go through hoops to get what they want. Its why business models like Expedia have proven to work. Rather than a back and forth with a travel agency or being hours on the phone, people prefer to handle things on their own seamlessly with a direct line to purchase. 

The same goes for the unsatisfied customer post-purchase. If I have to return a product, I want to be able to go to my account and just click a button that says, “return item” or “refund.” I don’t want to be hours on a call to figure out how to return or why I can’t. 

Again, we see an approach that closes the gap on obstacles to deliver with omnichannel in mind. The good news as you have guessed is that there are customer service strategies and tech tools for you to get it right.

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