13 Aug 2021 Business Insights

Everything Travel Brands Need to Know About Conversational Marketing

Many marketers suggest that conversational marketing is the fastest way to move customers through the sales funnel. And the stats back up the arguments: around 79% of consumers are willing to use messaging apps to get customer support.

The art of conversation is truly alive, and savvy travel marketers are using it as a bona fide method for increasing sales of holidays. If you’re new to conversational marketing or haven’t yet gotten around to implementing it in your action plans, you’ve come to the right place.

In this guide, we’re bringing you the lowdown on conversational marketing and how to create a robust strategy that puts one of the most popular marketing methods to the front and centre of your travel marketing plan. So read on and learn all about conversational marketing.

What is conversational marketing? 💬

Conversational marketing is real-time conversations with your audience, whether through social media or a messaging app like Whatsapp. As you might have guessed, the tone is conversational—a two-way chat between consumer and brand.

For a long time now, customers have demanded more than faceless brand interactions. Simply making a purchase isn’t good enough; they want an experience. Conversational marketing creates authentic encounters.

Through the use of intelligent chatbots and targeted human messaging, conversational marketing skips the traditional lead capture forms and the need to wait days for a response. Instead, it provides on-the-spot solutions that increase the chance of quick transactions.

Setting up a chatbot and how they can help 🤖

There are plenty of companies out there who create chatbots that you can implement on your site, and they’re relatively inexpensive. Chatbot builders can be crafted to answer the type of questions your audience asks, adding another layer to your conversation marketing.

Using a chatbot can save time and money by automating certain parts of conversations to get your customers where they need to be faster. They’ll help generate more leads and revenue, giving your travel brand a better chance of being successful in conversational marketing.

You can also use chatbots to educate on promotional offers or methods that help entice customers to book a holiday, such as alternative payment methods that allow them to spread the cost. A chatbot can come in handy for everything from conversational marketing to providing important information to customers.

Conversational market statistics

If you want proof of the strength of conversational marketing, look no further. These are the stats you need to know about the popular marketing method’s power.

  • 82% of consumers believe an immediate response is important when they have a question
  • 36% of companies use live chat for marketing purposes
  • 79% of consumers enjoy engaging with businesses over messaging apps
  • Online chat is now the fourth most common interaction type
  • Consumers of all ages engage with chatbots, with an even spread between 18-54-year-olds
  • 52% of customers are more likely to make a repeat online purchase if a brand has a live chat
  • Chatbots can answer 80% of routine questions
  • 47% of customers are open to making a purchase straight from a chatbot

How to create a conversational marketing strategy 🚀

Now that you’ve seen the stats behind conversational marketing, it’s time to create a strategy that helps drive your travel brand forward with conversational marketing.

Here’s how you do it!

1) Understand your buyer’s journey 🗺️

First, you’ll need to understand your potential buyer’s journey from interest to transaction to create a fully functioning conversational marketing strategy. Generate user stories that look at different ways a customer might arrive at a decision.

Put together stories in the form of short, simple, and snappy descriptions of a feature from the user’s perspective. Explore getting previous customers on board for their feedback and going through the buying journey, whether it’s for a current or new product or service.

2) Role-play conversations 🗨️

Outline questions and potential answers that customers and employees will discuss. Map out conversations that you expect to take place around your travel products and services, always emphasising providing a wealth of answers to common – and not so common – questions. Writing a few scripts that can determine outcomes helps with both creating chatbot text and preparing your real-life employees.

3) Cover every basis of the conversation 👥

Whether it’s a chatbot or live team member, you’ll want to have every base covered in conversations that can head in different directions. Not every person using your conversational chat features will buy a holiday on the spot, and you want to ensure you’re prepared for different scenarios.

Decide if you wish to encourage advanced chats with multiple options to choose from. Or, if it’s with a live team member, get them practising the different scenarios you envisage happening. This way you’re prepared for the majority of outcomes from customer interaction.

4) Practice makes perfect 💪

Put your chat features to the test after you have set them up. It’s one thing predicting customer behaviour, but you won’t ever fully know how consumers will react in real-time until it happens. Implement your live chats and chatbots and study the data to make more informed decisions and improve your output.

5) Implement the data 💾

The more you do live chats and use chatbots, the better your improvements. Look where customers drop off in the chat cycle, see where they engage most and refine and reshape. The result of doing this will provide a watertight strategy that keeps customers engaged and boosts revenue.

It’s good to talk

Conversational marketing has become a fundamental component in customer interaction. As technology improves further, its importance will only grow. And, as a brand, you want to be at the heart of communication with your audience. Conversational marketing will help you do just that, whether it’s on social media, messenger apps, or your website.