Conversational Marketing: Ads with Instant Results

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Lamb’s company is seeing interest from a wide spectrum of clients, but traction has been strongest in the retail, e-commerce, real estate, insurance, and technology sectors.


Early adopters have turned to conversational marketing to improve the quality of sales leads and to improve sales conversion rates.

“We often hear from our customers that there is a core challenge, and that this is the cost-per-sales lead, which is on the rise,” says Kate Adams, senior director of demand generation at Drift. “Companies want to know how they can derive more benefits out of lead generation and how they can improve their customer sales conversion rates. One way is to add more content into the customer experience based on what you know about the customer. What you want to deliver is a highly personalized experience to that customer. This is where interactive conversational advertising can add value.”

“Sales can get frustrated when leads from marketing come to them but the leads turn out to be of low quality or present little information about the customers or prospects,” Lamb says. “With conversational advertising and marketing, sales reps know more about their customers and prospects and are in a better position to interact with them.”

Adams agrees, noting that among many of Drift’s current clients, conversational marketing is allowing them “to get answers to customers’ questions out sooner, and this is shortening their sales cycles.

“Now with conversational service and advertising, in combination with a CRM-generated customer history, we can provide sales with a context for the customer, and it enables a salesperson to more succinctly address the customer and his or her known needs. The customer intelligence that the salesperson receives is further fine-tuned with the various questions that a customer answers during a marketing or service conversation,” she continues.

Conversational advertising and marketing is also helping companies to better manage their sales funnels.

Many raw sales leads come in at the top of the funnel. Based on the conversations that these customers are having with the company, it is possible to categorize leads and to split them into segments so they can gain visibility into who is most likely to buy and where sales efforts should be directed.

“What happens from here is that companies can identify those customers who are close to buying and then fast-track these customers into more advanced stages of the sales cycle where sales can be consummated,” Adams says.

In other words, companies can use the intelligence gained from the conversational marketing/advertising and analytics to isolate the upper echelons of their sales traffic and then target those customers for sales.

“For those customers who aren’t moving as quickly toward a sale, you can direct them to product and service demos and other self-service options so you can avoid spending your expensive sales rep time until the customers are ready,” Adams adds. “Being able to classify and channel these customers is especially important for smaller organizations, such as mom-and-pop companies that don’t have the bandwidth to handle every customer, especially the customers who aren’t yet ready to buy.”

Adams says that by using conversational techniques, companies can learn more about their customers and use the intelligence gained to add context and depth to conversations at all points of the marketing and sales process. She illustrates this with an example in retail.

“You want to know about a particular customer and what brought him to your website,” she says. “Did the customer get in touch with you through an email ad? Did the customer recently visit your website and purchase a pair of jeans? What about trying to upsell an article of clothing that will go with the jeans? The end goal with that customer is, how can we help you to style yourself?”

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