Welcome to 2023! Has it been kind to you so far, are you on track with your marketing strategy?
For us marketers, the world of AI, machine learning, the metaverse and the seemingly endless possibilities of technological advancement are fascinating topics that keep us excited – and nervous. Let’s not forget that, above all, we are human – and so are our consumers.
Regardless of the ever-expanding number of chatbots and AI-generated content, it turns out the human-to-human approach is not just some new trend but a definitive game-changer. It’s not so easy to apply correctly as a strategy though. Intrigued? Check out our selection of key insights on the subject of empathetic marketing and how to embrace it in 2023:
- P2P = Person-to-person marketing. According to Harvard Business Review, empathy is the foundation of an effective marketing strategy. But it’s not always channelled tactfully. Raja Rajamannar, CMO of Mastercard, thinks brands must abandon the ivory towers of B2B and B2C marketing if they wish to truly connect with consumers on a human level. They can do this by embracing P2P or person-to-person marketing. He points to Mastercard research indicating that brands make a lasting impact when they are able to connect with people on a deeper level and adds that at the core of all consumer data lies the human element – their wants, needs, and behaviours.
- Empathy is more important than data. According to this analysis of Marketing Insider Group, while data has certainly revolutionized the world of marketing and it’s an indispensable tool in company decision-making, it doesn’t necessarily lead to authentic connections. Understanding your customer does that. Empathy-based marketing involves seeing through the eyes of your customers. To be truly customer-centric, marketers must gain a deep understanding of who their customers are, the challenges they’re facing, and what motivates them to act. And then – provide them with content, advice, educational resources, and tools to directly address their situation and give them clarity.
- Give consumers the power of choice. As per HBR reports, allowing customers to choose how they interact with you is the ultimate act of empathetic marketing. Plus, marketing technology has advanced enough that it is easy to segment your audiences to send or withhold specific messaging. Marketing Insider Group also offers a piece of strategic advice: Don’t guess. Get to know your potential and current customers so well that you know without a doubt that they crave the content you create and offer. If your content isn’t helpful, it will be useless.
- Approach real humans, not data points. According to this article, a study conducted by PwC found that 64% of U.S. consumers and 59% of all consumers feel companies have lost touch with the human element of customer experience. It’s one reason almost half of brands (42%) are prioritizing creating a more “human” experience as a matter of priority in their chatbot strategies. On the same subject, Noah Fenn, head of video sales and strategy at AOL, points out that being overly data-centric can create a disconnect. It’s easy for marketers to start seeing their audience as numbers – or data points – instead of individuals with real names and needs. Fenn dubs this concept “collective amnesia.” In other words, marketers often lose the proper perspective, which hinders their ability to empathize and build connections.
- Build emotional connections across channels. According to another HBR report, the more a customer engages with you across platforms, the more they feel emotionally invested and the more they spend – generally speaking. “On a lifetime value basis, emotionally connected customers are more than twice as valuable as highly satisfied customers,” authors Alan Zorfas and Daniel Leemon explain. “These emotionally connected customers buy more of your products and services, visit you more often, exhibit less price sensitivity, pay more attention to your communications, follow your advice, and recommend you more.”
- Show your humanity, tap into emotions. As neuroscientist Antonio Damasio put it, “We are not thinking machines that feel, we are feeling machines that think.” Damasio made this groundbreaking discovery: when emotions are impaired, so is decision-making. What does this mean? We need to go beyond logic to understand how our customers feel. 31% of advertisements are emotion-based, not rational, as per thisresearch of the University of Southern California. As it finds, “likeability” is linked with increased sales – one more reason to make sure your content, your storytelling and your brand personalities are inspiring a likeable emotional response throughout your marketing journey instead of relying on data alone to create a connection.
Novelty Media, via SmartAdd, is an innovative media channel endorsed by Mobile Operators. We put the concept of empathy-based marketing into action by delivering snack-size video content and ads only to real humans – mobile subscribers. We are a 100% opt-in, attention-based and human-focused channel, therefore our consumers are guaranteed to notice and deeply engage with your company’s message every time they are exposed to it. Keep following our Marketing Bites and get in touch with us to learn more about the unique benefits of our solution.