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Brands are competing on emotional connection, and using AI to get there



30-second summary:

  • HBR finds that emotionally connected customers are more than twice as valuable as “highly satisfied” customers.
  • While a lot of digital channels might provide decent “customer satisfaction” scores in terms of speed of service, they provide nothing in terms of emotional connection.
  • Digital disruption has ripped the human experience from customer service, and that trend is only set to continue.
  • To this day, nothing can replace the warmth of human-to-human interaction when it comes to emotional connection – but AI is getting us closer.

Forget customer satisfaction. Forget CSAT and other metrics that measure customer satisfaction. Emotional connection, we now know, is the most valuable way to measure how your customers feel about you brand – and the most important driver business leaders are focusing on to improve customer loyalty, retention and lifetime value.

Harvard Business Review finds that emotionally connected customers are more than twice as valuable as “highly satisfied” customers.

Meanwhile, Capgemini’s research shows when a brand has built and nurtured that emotional connection, 70% of customers will double the amount they spend with the company.

And yet, something feels off.

Can you remember the last time a brand created an emotional connection with you, and what they did to leave that lasting impression?

It probably wasn’t when you last bought your groceries through self-checkout; it’s unlikely to be when you found and filled out a loan application online; and it surely wasn’t when you tried desperately to find the path of least resistance/typing effort when “talking” to a chatbot.

The noise has been turned up, and brands are struggling to stand out.

So while all of these digital channels might provide decent “customer satisfaction” scores in terms of speed of service, they provide nothing in terms of emotional connection.

The human touch

In truth, it’s likely to be a human interaction that last caused an emotional connection between you and a brand.

But digital disruption has ripped the human experience from customer service, and that trend is only set to continue.

The use of chatbots alone is expected to increase 136% by the end of 2021.

People, meanwhile, are natural experts at building emotional connection with each other (well, most people); their only downside is they aren’t cheap and scalable to a business.

To this day, nothing can replace the warmth of human-to-human interaction when it comes to emotional connection – but AI is getting us closer.

Just look at AI-powered digital humans, who are powering up the natural language processing (NLP) that drives chatbots but giving them a realistic human face and voice through which they can communicate more naturally, and at scale.

As 2020 begins, it’ll be illuminating which business leaders will build real, valuable emotional connection with customers – who will get ahead by doing so and how they’ll go about it.

But it’ll be obvious to anyone who’s ever had “service with a smile” that more speedy tech, more “satisfaction” metrics, and more chatbots simply won’t be the answer.

Danny Tomsett is the Founder and CEO of UneeQ, a global creator of enterprise-grade digital humans.

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Marketing Strategies

45 Emerging Technology Stats to Know in 2020



As a writer who loves covering emerging technology and human being, I’m surrounded by technology.

Each morning, I wake up to my Amazon Echo’s alarm and ask Alexa about the weather. On my train ride home from work, I’m taking Snapchat selfies using AR filters. When I get to my house, I ask Alexa to turn the lights to a specific hue. Then I ask my smart TV to launch Netflix or play a basic VR game on my Google Cardboard. Before bed, I might check my fitness levels with a smart scale or use my toothbrush’s app to figure out what areas of my mouth I’m missing.

It’s safe to say that I’m a big fan of emerging media, technology, and innovation. As an individual, this technology is already impacting my life. As a marketer, I’m curious to see how brands could leverage smart technology.

I’m not the only one who recognizes emerging technology as something that could completely change today’s marketing world. In fact, a Deloitte study found that a growing number of private companies are more heavily prioritizing emerging technology and hiring talent in their annual budgets.

At the moment, a few buzzy topics include augmented and virtual reality, general and voice-based artificial intelligence, and smart home devices. And, with the dawn of 5G — a cloud-based high-speed wireless network — tech innovation won’t be slowing down anytime soon. In fact, a Deloitte study notes that many marketing firms are ramping up their information technology processes because of it.

With all the technologies out there, it’s hard to cut through online chatter and determine which innovations are mostly just hype and which might actually change the way we market.

While many of the major emerging technologies are getting more accessible, you could also still be wondering, “Which might be worth investing in for my industry specifically?” For example, if you run a B2B firm, you might realize augmented reality isn’t a practical technology to research. But, at the same time, you might look into AI software or services that can help your team work more efficiently or learn more about customers.

To give you a bird’s eye view of some of the most buzzed-about innovations that could impact marketers in the near or distant future, I’ve collected 45 stats related to four types of emerging technology.

Augmented and Virtual Reality

For years, researchers have hypothesized that virtual reality, which provides viewers a completely immersive and interactive 360-degree visual experience, will hold the best opportunities in gaming, entertainment, and academic industries.

Meanwhile, experts have also thought that augmented reality, a partially immersive but still interactive experience, will thrive in the world of branding and marketing.

We have already seen these AR and VR predictions come to fruition as the gaming industry continues to announce games for VR headsets and brands have used AR to allow customers to preview products — such as furniture — in their own homes.

Here are 14 stats that demonstrate the growth and opportunities of AR and VR.

  • The AR/VR market is currently estimated at $1.6 billion (IDC)
  • In 2019, 42.9 million people in the US used a VR product, and 68.7 million people used an AR once monthly. (eMarketer)
  • Seven in ten media planners want to add AR to their strategies in the future. (Vibrant Media)
  • In a 2018 study based in the U.K. and U.S., 90% of participants knew what VR was while only 65% were aware of what AR was. (GlobalWebIndex)
  • 42% of people who use a VR headset at least monthly say they used a mid-range device such as the Google Daydream or Samsung Gear VR. (GlobalWebIndex)
  • In 2018, 88% of companies with budgets between $100 million and $1 billion were already experimenting with different forms of AR. (Deloitte)
  • A quarter of VR users believe it has a strong potential for brands and marketers. (GlobalWebIndex)
  • While 43% of people who report using VR headsets once monthly say they own their own device, 35% of once-monthly VR users say they use a family or friend’s device. (GlobalWebIndex)
  • 71% of consumers would prefer to shop at stores with an AR experience (Lumus Vision)
  • 64% of consumers say VR has the most potential in gaming, while 52% recognize its potential in Film and TV. (GlobalWebIndex)

Image Source: GlobalWebIndex

  • In 2018 mobile VR made $3 billion globally, in part due to purchases related to the mobile app Pokemon Go. (Digi-Capital)
  • It’s estimated that AR platforms such as mobile and AR glasses-related apps will hit 2.5 billion installs in 2023. (Digi-Capital)
  • Meanwhile, VR platforms are expected to see 30 million installs across devices by 2023 (Digi-Capital)
  • Snapchat’s Q3 2019 Earnings Report notes that over 600,000 AR Lenses have been created through the company’s Lens Studio, This increased from 500,000 at the end of Q2. (Snap Inc.)

Artificial Intelligence

Artificial intelligence is so prevalent in 2019 that many of us don’t even notice all the ways we interact with it on a given day. In fact, all of the other technologies on this list require some type of AI algorithm to work smoothly. If you’re less familiar with AI, here are 12 stats to keep in mind:

  • Over 37% of organizations have implemented artificial intelligence in some form. The number of industries that have implemented it has grown by 270% since 2015 (Gartner)
  • In a 2019 ranking of the top 10 emerging technologies, the World Economic Forum noted, “social robots” as number two. (World Economic Forum)
  • It’s estimated that 80% of emerging technologies will involve AI by 2021 (Gartner)
  • 40% of marketing and sales teams say that machine learning and data science-based AI will be a crucial part of their future strategies (2019 Data Science and Machine Learning Market Study)
  • It’s estimated that AI-based analytics and marketing software will give the average data analyst back one-third of their time, which could then be used for bigger projects or other tasks. (Gartner)
  • At 2018’s F8 summit, covered by VentureBeat, Facebook said there were more than 300,000 chatbots on Facebook Messenger. (VentureBeat)
  • The percentage of businesses that offer chatbots could grow to 80% in 2020. (HubSpot)
  • 63% of businesses say they will consider AI in the near future due to pressures related to reducing costs. (BCG and MIT Sloan School of Business)
  • The facial recognition market is estimated to grow by 20% in 2020. (VisionGain)
  • There’s only a 1.4% chance that a marketing manager’s role will be taken over by artificial intelligence. (HubSpot)
  • It’s estimated that this year, customers will be able to manage 85% of their enterprise relationships without working with humans. (Gartner)
  • Online mentions of automation have increased by 70% year over year. (Adobe)

Voice Assistants and Smart Speakers

While voice assistants are technically a segment of AI, they’ve become so prominent in the emerging media world that they deserve their own section of stats.

  • Over 46% of people use voice assistants. (Pew Research Center)
  • More than 36% of consumers own a smart speaker. (Adobe)
  • Of those who own a smart speaker, 54% say their voice assistant can easily understand them when they speak. (Adobe)
  • Nearly 112 million people in the U.S. use a voice assistant once monthly across devices. (eMarketer)
  • Roughly 34% of people who don’t own a smart speaker are interested in purchasing one. (GlobalWebIndex)
  • According to a 2018 poll conducted by HubSpot via Lucid Software, 52% of consumers say they’ve used a voice assistant solely on their phone. (HubSpot)
Do you use a voice assistant like Alexa, Google Assistant, and Siti

Data Source: Lucid Software

  • Millennials are the heaviest users of voice assistants, but usage is growing across age groups. (eMarketer)
  • In a late-2018 test where the Amazon, Google, and Apple voice assistants were asked 800 questions each, all understood over 99% to 100% of the questions. (Loup Ventures)
  • In the study noted in the above bullet, Google was named the “smartest” voice assistant because it answered more than 86% of the questions correctly. (Loup Ventures)
Voice Assistant Query Accuracy Results

Image Source: Loup Ventures

  • In Q2 of 2019, Amazon shipped 6.6 million of its smart speakers, maintaining the lead over competitors like Google. (Canalys)
  • Amazon Alexa, the voice assistant associated with Amazon Echo smart speakers, now has over 100,000 Skills globally. (
  • By 2023, digital voice ecommerce is expected to triple to an $80 billion industry. (Juniper Research)
  • Between August 2018 and February 2019, smart speaker ownership increased by 4% (Adobe)

Source: Adobe

Smart Devices and Appliances

While you may not realize the significance that smart appliances and devices could have on marketing, this is something that I and my colleagues have been paying close attention to. Although this space is still young, it’s already seemingly providing interesting opportunities to bigger brands.

As you can imagine, devices like smart TVs could provide great potential for content marketing and branded media, However, a more unique example of an appliance that could provide brand potential is the smart refrigerator.

“I’m excited to see how a smart fridge that can tell me when my avocados are about to spoil can be leveraged by a brand to give me information that might serve me in that particular information, says Amanda Zantal-Wiener, a senior content strategist who creates content for HubSpot that covers news and trends.

But, Zantal-Weiner’s excitement doesn’t end at smart-home appliances. She’s also fascinated by the world of smart cars

“Until we start to see self-driving cars on the road, the idea of connected cars can also be used to help me do more than mindlessly scroll through my phone when I’m using a ride-hailing service, by serving as a distribution channel for real-time, relevant information during that trip. Everything is connected, and I’m excited to see which brands are able to adapt to that earlier on in a way that actually helps customers,” Zantal-Wiener explains.

While the smart appliance space is still fairly nascent and harder to report on statistically at the moment, here are a few interesting stats that highlight why you should keep these technologies on your radar.

  • According to a Fluent Survey, 55% of internet users already own some type of smart device. (Fluent)
  • The same survey found that the most common device was a smart television, which 38% of participants owned. The next most commonly owned devices were lighting (17%), thermostats (16%) and security systems (14%), and kitchen appliances (7%). (Fluent)
  • 31% of people ages 18 to 34 and 38% of people over 35 say that their main purchasing concern related to smart appliances is cost. (Fluent)
  • Consumers over the age of 35 are more worried about hacking and data security on smart appliances than 18 to 34-year-olds. (Fluent)
US internet user concerns about smart home technology

Image Source: eMarketer

  • The average cost of a smart-home device is expected to drop by 52% by 2023 (Juniper Research)
  • In 2018, 70% of TVs sold globally were smart TVs. (Statista)

Navigating the Future of Marketing

Yes, creating voice assistant skills, leveraging AI, and building branded AR/VR experiences might be pretty inaccessible and costly to your company right now and in the near future.

But, if you want to continue to innovate your brand, or be a competitive marketer in the far future, you’ll want to keep up with how technology and marketing possibilities are evolving. By keeping up with marketing innovation news, you’ll be more prepared to adopt new technologies when they are accessible in the future.

For some detailed guides on emerging technologies that could or are already impacting brands, check out blog posts on artificial intelligence, voice technology, Snapchat, smart devices, and chatbots, and video game marketing — which can leverage of few of the technologies noted above.

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Marketing Strategies

Top 15 Denver Broncos Podcasts You Must Follow in 2020



Top 15 Denver Broncos Podcasts
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1. The Broncos Audio Zone

Denver, Colorado, United States About Podcast Browse and listen to an official podcast produced by and about the Denver Broncos. Content includes player interviews, press conferences, Broncos TV updates and game highlights throughout the season. Frequency 4 episodes / month Since Jan 2015 Podcast
Facebook fans 4.2M ⋅ Twitter followers 2.7M ⋅ Instagram Followers 1.2M ⋅ Domain Authority 69

2. DNVR Denver Broncos Podcast

DNVR Denver Broncos Podcast Lakewood, Colorado, United States About Podcast The best Denver Broncos podcast in the world, recorded every day and hosted by traveling journalists Ryan Koenigsberg and Zac Stevens. Frequency 6 episodes / week Since Dec 2015 Podcast
Facebook fans 11.3K ⋅ Twitter followers 6.5K ⋅ Instagram Followers 2.3K ⋅ Domain Authority 57

3. Mile High Report | For Denver Broncos Fans

Mile High Report | For Denver Broncos Fans About Podcast The official home for Broncos podcast and audio programming from Mile High Report, SB Nation’s community for fans of the Denver Broncos. This podcast is the best source for quality Denver Broncos news, rumors, analysis, stats and scores from the fan perspective. Frequency 4 episodes / week Since Sep 2018 Podcast
Facebook fans 121.2K ⋅ Twitter followers 65.3K ⋅ Domain Authority 67

4. Mile High Magic | A Show About The Denver Broncos

Mile High Magic | A Show About The Denver Broncos About Podcast Mile High Magic is a one-stop-shop for all things Broncos. Twice a week, The Athletic’s Nicki Jhabvala and CBS 4’s Michael Spencer provide an in-depth look at the latest with the Denver Broncos. The podcast includes post-game commentary, practice updates, player interviews and insight into what is happening away from the field. Frequency 2 episodes / month Since Aug 2019 Podcast mile-high-magic.simplecast.c..
Domain Authority 66

5. Locked On Broncos | Daily Podcast On The Denver Broncos

Locked On Broncos | Daily Podcast On The Denver Broncos About Podcast The Locked On Broncos podcast is brought to you by NFL Analyst, Broncos Insider Cody Roark who covers the National Football League and the Denver Broncos. This is your go-to podcast because we provide you daily with the best news, insight, analysis, and coverage of all things Denver Broncos. Frequency 5 episodes / week Since Aug 2016 Podcast
Facebook fans 115 ⋅ Twitter followers 1.7K ⋅ Domain Authority 67

6. Huddle Up Podcast | Denver Broncos

Huddle Up Podcast | Denver Broncos About Podcast Huddle Up Podcast, hosted by Mile High Huddle’s Chad Jensen and Zack Kelberman, breaks down everything Denver Broncos on a daily basis. Twice per week, Nick Kendell and Carl Dumler break down X’s and O’s and the Broncos roster via The Broncos Show. Frequency 1 episode / day Since Oct 2016 Podcast
Twitter followers 1.5K ⋅ Domain Authority 22

7. Orange Weekly Podcast

Orange Weekly Podcast Denver, Colorado, United States About Podcast Orange Weekly is a Denver Broncos fan-based community that brings listeners a further look into the Denver Broncos. Our podcast is geared towards everything you want to hear about the Broncos. You won’t want to miss how we break down the Broncos season! Frequency 2 episodes / month Since Sep 2017 Podcast
Domain Authority 94

8. First And Orange Podcast

First And Orange Podcast Denver, Colorado, United States About Podcast The most comprehensive coverage of the Denver Broncos from the team of reporters at The Denver Post Frequency 1 episode / week Since Aug 2016 Podcast
Facebook fans 26.5K ⋅ Twitter followers 71.4K ⋅ Domain Authority 94

9. Broncos Country BLITZ!!!

Broncos Country BLITZ!!! About Podcast This is a podcast for die-hard Denver Broncos Fans. It’ll be a Blitz discussion the next day following the draft, post-game, along with a week in review segments during active weeks in the offseason. Frequency 2 episodes / month Since May 2018 Podcast
Social Engagement 3 ⋅ Domain Authority 74

10. Broncos Blitz

Broncos Blitz Denver, Colorado, United States About Podcast Ronnie Kohrt of Mile High Sports brings you the ‘Broncos Blitz’ podcast. Covering everything on the field and off for the Denver Broncos, Ronnie and his guests have the inside information, analysis, and latest information on the Broncos, the AFC West, and the NFL. Frequency 1 episode / day Since Oct 2016 Podcast
Facebook fans 10K ⋅ Twitter followers 2.5K ⋅ Domain Authority 86

11. Broncos Country Tonight

Broncos Country Tonight About Podcast Ryan Edwards and Benjamin Allbright take the ‘Inside’ look on a nightly basis of your Denver Broncos. Broncos Country Tonight will get Broncos Fans the absolute best coverage as Ryan & Benjamin broadcast nightly from the UC Health Training Center at the Pat Bowlen Field House. Frequency 30 episodes / week Since Jul 2019 Podcast
Domain Authority 86

12. Broncos Daily Podcast

Broncos Daily Podcast About Podcast KOA’s Broncos Insider Brandon Krisztal gets your day started with the latest news and insight from inside the Broncos locker room. He’ll be joined every week by Dave Logan, Alfred Williams, Rick Lewis, Susie Wargin, Ryan Edwards & Benjamin Allbright. Frequency 5 episodes / week Podcast
Domain Authority 86

13. The Crush Report | A Denver Broncos Fancast

The Crush Report | A Denver Broncos Fancast About Podcast Join three diehard Bronco fans as they discuss the Denver Broncos every week. Listen to the postgame recaps, upcoming predictions, and uncensored opinions. Frequency 3 episodes / quarter Since Sep 2015 Podcast
Facebook fans 36 ⋅ Twitter followers 465 ⋅ Domain Authority 66

14. Denver Broncos UK podcast

Denver Broncos UK podcast United Kingdom About Podcast The UK and European home of the Denver Broncos fans. Listen to our podcast featuring game review, news, interviews with experts and in-depth player discussions. Frequency 1 episode / month Since Jan 2017 Podcast
Facebook fans 761 ⋅ Twitter followers 4.6K ⋅ Instagram Followers 89 ⋅ Social Engagement 7 ⋅ Domain Authority 17

15. The Dave Logan Podcast | Voice of the Denver Broncos

The Dave Logan Podcast | Voice of the Denver Broncos Denver, Colorado, United States About Podcast As the 30-year voice of the Denver Broncos, Dave brings you the ins and out of the Broncos as no one else can do. Along with co-host Julie Browman, they hope to bring you an honest, fun, critical, and entertaining Denver sports podcast like no other. Frequency 1 episode / week Since Sep 2019 Podcast
Twitter followers 239 ⋅ Domain Authority 1

The post Top 15 Denver Broncos Podcasts You Must Follow in 2020 appeared first on Feedspot Blog.

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Marketing Strategies

Why this year’s Data Privacy Day matters



30-second summary:

  • 2020 brings more transparency and active participation than consumers had a month ago when it comes to their privacy.
  • This year will see consumers become more accustomed to making privacy choices and actively participating in data exchanges. Companies will be better at presenting these choices with the information consumers need to make educated data decisions.
  • Businesses should be more proactive in helping consumers understand the benefits of engaging in data privacy experiences.
  • Consumer participation will put pressure on brands and publishers to improve content, experiences, products and services, eventually leading to better consumer experiences across the board.

Every year, Data Privacy Day is on January 28th. It represents “the importance of respecting privacy, safeguarding data, and enabling trust,” and has helped build awareness for the many ongoing international efforts to realize a more responsible data-driven world. 2020 marks a turning-point for citizens in the U.S., but not only for the reasons you may think.

Change can be confusing

Two years ago, when the European Union rolled out the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), confusion and uncertainty resulted among the very EU citizens the law was created to protect. Social media sites were riddled with questions and comments from annoyed internet users who were experiencing a “tyranny of GDPR popups” when trying to access their preferred news, videos, and social sites which are paid for by advertising. Some even questioned if the repetition of so many privacy-update notices actually had the unintended effect of numbing people to the new choices available.

Research statistics could also be interpreted as dire. In a recent survey conducted among 287,000 consumers around the world, more than three-quarters of people said they don’t read consent notices in their entirety, and more than half said that after reading these notices, they still didn’t understand how their data is used.

And now, the California Consumer Protection Act (CCPA) is law as of January 1st, bringing similar measures to enhance privacy rights and consumer protection. Will we experience the same initial reaction on this continent? What will a lack of engagement mean for the future of data privacy legislation?

Data privacy ushers a move in the right direction

First, let’s acknowledge a few facts. While pop ups and privacy notices can be overwhelming, they are succeeding in pushing the industry to be more transparent. Companies covered under the CCPA are now required, among other things, to disclose the kinds of data they collect from California consumers and how they will use it clearly.

Although a California law, CCPA’s effects will likely be felt by many more Americans either directly or indirectly, providing them with greater transparency and choice. Moreover, industry collaboration to address challenges is at an all-time high—working groups at the Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB), the Network Advertising Initiative (NAI), Privacy for America, chambers of commerce, and elsewhere are actively driving the debate over how legal frameworks should evolve to better serve and safeguard data.

The industry is moving in the right direction. This year’s Data Privacy Day highlights the beginning of a period of productive exploration of privacy options. Naturally, with more choice comes more decisions, which will inevitably cause some friction, but early adopters who engage with new available features will begin to shape the evolution of the data privacy experience.

Over the next few years, two outcomes seem inevitable—people will become more accustomed to making decisions and actively participating in transactions, and companies will become better at dynamically presenting those choices as they learn how much and what type of information people need and when in order to critically evaluate their data decisions. This should ultimately help make those choices more transparent.

A new frontier for customer experience

That’s precisely why businesses would be wise to be more proactive in helping consumers understand the benefits of engaging with these new data privacy experiences now.

Marketers and UX designers would be well-served to start learning how to integrate data privacy into products and experiences, encouraging interaction with the choices available and optimizing based on feedback received.

Because consumers may potentially be paying for some content or services out of pocket, there will also be pressure on publishers and brands to redefine the value exchange and improve what they deliver to consumers. Such competition will eventually lead to better service and experiences overall.

New data privacy tools to strengthen trust and engagement

To get started, brands and publishers can start to take advantage of some of the many consent and preference management tools available today that enable businesses to comply with data protection, privacy laws and regulations — such as the ePrivacy Directive, GDPR, and CCPA — by capturing consumer preferences and maintaining proof of compliance.

Many of these solutions have the flexibility to allow organizations full control over the look and feel of the platform, even building a customized front-end UI.

These tools can not only help brands and publishers keep an audit trail, but they also help build first-party authentication strategies that positively connect brands and publishers to their own audiences. A powerful side effect of this investment is that by continuing to develop and seamlessly integrate data privacy into branded experiences, companies also position themselves to thrive in a cookie-less ecosystem.

A focus on data privacy, with transparent notice to and choice for the consumer is the new normal. Moving forward, brands and publishers will need flexible and modern solutions to reach the point where they can begin to test different methods of value exchange including dynamic subscription or payment models. Whether and what order will come out of any resulting chaos and confusion remains to be seen. Only time will tell.

Lisa Rapp is VP Data Ethics at LiveRamp, which delivers privacy-conscious identity resolution services to brands and their partners. Previously she was Head of Product Marketing at LiveRamp and Sr. Director Product Management, Identity at Neustar.

The post Why this year’s Data Privacy Day matters appeared first on ClickZ.

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