It is often said that the devil is in the detail. A quick peek at your estate agency website statistics can be quite revealing.
In this first image we see how much traffic is coming onto the website from mobile devices.
This might vary from city to city depending on the customer lifestyle, but nevertheless it clearly shows, in this case study, 36% of traffic using mobile. So just over a third. We have seen instances of 60% for other websites but that’s irrelevant for now.
In this second image, we can see what happens to traffic coming over from Facebook using mobile compared to desktop and what it does when it gets there.
6.24% of the traffic came onto the website from Facebook and stayed on average 42 seconds only looking at 2.96 pages!
Compare that with traffic coming on from an ipad or desktop and the figure goes up to 2min 8 seconds and looked at 5.25 pages.
If you compare traffic coming on from Google or Bing with high intent for property searches, their average session duration is around 7 minutes and they looked at 17 pages.
This tells us that Facebook users might not like leaving Facebook to look for properties on your website. It might be to do with their intent → they are simply browsing or it might be to do with the technology → they don’t like navigating to a website on mobile and prefer to stay in the Facebook app.
It would seem to suggest that a full 7 % of the website traffic in this example is burnt by sending them to a website.
Bearing in mind we need just one of them to initiate a contact which could lead to a sale, it becomes unfathomable that there isn’t another strategy in place to push the 7 % into Facebook Messenger and convert them into subscribers.
If this was done, we would know who they are and we can start to engage with them and build your brand in their minds in preparation for the day when they are ready to transact.
It wasn’t too long ago that businesses came around to accept that digital marketing > social media management including community management was probably not part of their core competency and that they should probably employ someone to do it or outsource the role to an agency.
“The role of a community manager is to act as the bridge between a brand and the community it is aiming to create (i.e. a loyal audience or group of core consumers connected by a similar interest). They should be the brand’s ambassador, engaging with potential customers and building relationships with existing ones.” (Ecoconsultancy)
“Social Media Managers are responsible for planning, implementing, managing and monitoring company’s Social Media strategy in order to increase brand awareness, improve marketing efforts and increase sales.”(TalentLyft)
It shouldn’t come as a surprise then that a Messenger automation (ChatBot if you wish) is somehow a part of that role. An automation stands in as an extension of the Community Manager to some degree with its own identity, engaging with potential customers and building relationships with existing ones AUTOMATICALLY.
Building a string of messages based on yes or no answers is pretty basic and there are many tools and platforms out there to help you do this today. Where it starts to get a little more complicated is when the automation needs to change its behaviour based on a set of conditions, make calculations based on variable values, trigger actions with third-party applications, interrogate a database, and so on to produce results. At this point the role of a community manager becomes a bit fuzzier for the role has morphed into one with a slightly more technical nature.
At the same time, developers are technical in nature, producing website and apps and all the wizardry we have come to learn about. They often have no marketing background and prefer not to venture into the domain.
In the world of digital marketing (email marketing, search marketing, social media paid marketing, etc) you find a new role is being defined, that of a Messaging Marketer. The job description includes being responsible for the journey a customer takes in a chat automation from the moment they start the discussion to the moment they have reached their desired result and then to follow up for feedback and further engagement.
It would also include a healthy knowledge of working with AI platforms to train the automation to pick up on intents and to reply accordingly.
The Messaging Marketer is making an entirely new way to engage with your brand a reality for consumers and their ultimate objectives can be quite different from the traditional objectives of Community Managers.
To illustrate this, I am working with a digital agency who have a team of back end developers and a team of Community Managers. They recently completed a lovely website for an estate agent and now animate their client’s Facebook page to ultimately drive traffic from Facebook back to the website using a url.
In some ways, this is non-sensical. If a user is already on the Facebook platform, why not keep them there and engage with them there. Also, over 50% of the clients traffic visits the website from a mobile. So what is better, looking at a website on a phone or using an app such as Messenger to access the information required?
From our role as a Messaging Marketer, we deployed our ChatImmo solution for the same client which runs in Facebook Messenger. ChatImmo is a PropertyBot we developed which runs in Messenger and draws in properties from the agency website using an xml feed.
Our objective is to drive the most amount of traffic into the automation so that they become:
→ Subscribers – with a simple click on a button they can subscribe to your brand in Messenger
→ Engaged – ask some simple questions to lead them to the information they require quickly; sign them up to a newsletter and send a message or sms when it has been sent to ensure it gets read
→ Segmented – divide your list into different groups to ensure that they only receive messages which are relevant to them
→ Contacts – a simple push of a button and your team will be sent their contact details
And so there it is. A conflict of interest. The agency wants more traffic on the website to drive more contacts. We want more subscribers, to engage with and to facilitate their conversion into contacts effortlessly.
Of course, the answer is to give the customer a choice of which medium they prefer to visit for more information. But if they do choose Messenger, the agency stands to lose website traffic and the website will lose value as a means to deliver leads.
Martin Swanson is the owner of PeppaWeb Marketing, a boutique digital marketing agency in France. PeppaWeb creates a range of Marketing Automations including digital loyalty cards and ChatImmo a PropertyBot for estate agents. www.peppawebmarketing.com
After meeting with restaurant owners, managers and marketing staff, it has quickly become apparent to me there is a general lack of knowledge regarding the current use of artificial intelligence and how to leverage the power of social media to drive new client acquisition, retention and loyalty.
Why build loyalty?
Simply put, it costs more money in marketing to acquire a customer than to retain a customer.
I have observed a range of acquisition strategies such as offering 50% off your main course if you visit a restaurant at a certain time.
If you cannot convert people taking you up on your offer onto some sort of loyalty program, so that you can bring them back to your establishment, again and again and again – you need to reconsider your acquisition strategy.
Customer Loyalty programs maximise the Long-Term Value of each customer visiting your establishment.
If your average spend per head is €25 and your customer returns 4 times a year for the next 3 years, then your Average Life Time Value (for a 3-year period) is €300 per customer. Bringing in 100 new customers per month (25 per week) is the equivalent of adding € 30 000 per month to your above the line earnings over the next 3 years.
1. Typical Loyalty Programs
The typical program I come across when visiting restaurants today is passive.
It works like this:-
1. Visit restaurant,
2. Sign up for a loyalty card by giving up your name, birthday, mobile number, address, email address,
3. Download an App so that you don’t have to keep the card on you,
4. Earn rewards based on your consumption.
There are many restaurants who have adopted this kind of solution, so what are the pain points this solves for them?
The restaurant has a loyalty card (as opposed to not having one) and it has an App which let’s face it, once downloaded, has put your brand onto the phone of your customer. The customers can now earn rewards for their consumption.
Sounds like a simple straightforward solution right? So what are the issues with this system?
Here are a few:
• There is no engagement
How is your brand communicating with your loyalty members? A push notification, an sms, an email? These forms of communication are very old school, move only in one direction and do very little to engage with your members.
Using SMS, email and push notifications have got their own issues. SMS is renowned for using very direct messages such as this:-
Soldes: jusqu’à – 40% des demain dans tous nos points de vente et sur monsiteinternet.com. (Stop au 36105)
Sales: up to – 40% of tomorrow in all our outlets and on mywebsite.com. (Stop → 36105)
Email is slightly better, but the chances are your email will end up in your customers’ spam folder, or if delivered, never opened. Email delivery rates are 35% if you are lucky and open rates about 5%. To put that in perspective, if you are sending out 10 000 emails, only 500 are being, opened! Not very efficient.
App push notifications are a good solution for delivering notifications, but to do what? Tell people you are open? Engage with your App?
My last word on the typical loyalty programs I have come across must refer to the restaurant servers’ role. At no time, has any server proposed that I join their restaurant loyalty program or indeed explained how to do it. I have been left on my own to discover the program when paying at the till or by discovering an application form on my table placemat or otherwise at the table.
In terms of TripAdvisor, Facebook reviews, Google reviews, Yelp and more – I have never been prompted to leave a review anywhere by any establishment.
It would seem to me that restaurants are in denial that sites such as TripAdvisor or Facebook are THE FIRST PLACE PEOPLE GO before booking a place at your restaurant.
I would go further to suggest that you save your hard-earned money on a fancy new website and instead invest it by improving your reputation in the community.
New customers want to be reassured that if they visit your establishment, you generally have a good reputation, for them to warrant spending their time and money with you.
Putting out fires is great if you want to be a fireman – not so great if you want to be a restaurateur.
2. Social Loyalty Programs using AI
People who go to restaurants are able to find each other on review websites and social media and quickly form a social community that is extremely relevant to your business.
Your business is part of an online social community whether you like it or not, the question is what steps are you doing to leverage this, to acquire, retain and generate a loyal following?
First, we have to accept that there are some people who don’t use social media and are not the type of people who would leave reviews or indeed read up on reviews. But they are very much in the minority.
Today, more than ever, your customers are walking around with mini computers disguised as smartphones in their pockets, connected at broadband speeds permanently to the internet.
I can take my iPhone 8plus as an example which has all the computer capability that I need to record, edit and upload a flattering (or scathing) video review of your business to the internet, within a couple of minutes.
Go where your customers are hanging out
It is important to understand some stats first, especially after the recent announcement that Facebook is considering joining together the underlying platforms of Instagram, Facebook Messenger and WhatsApp within the next 24 months.
If that doesn’t mean anything to you, you really do need to sit up and take notice.
Facebook + Facebook Messenger + WhatsApp + Instagram = 1 platform with a range of products to access ALL their users.
Facebook has 2.27 billion monthly active users, Instagram 1 billion, WhatsApp 1.5 Billion and Messenger 1.3 billion → that’s 6.07 billion people who will be reachable on 1 platform.
To make this more relevant to you, send me an email to ask me how many people are on Facebook, Instagram or Messenger and located within 15km of your restaurant? You will be surprised.
Setting up an intelligent automation in social media to interact with your customers is quickly becoming commonplace and is benefiting business owners and customers alike.
Today, instead of visiting a website or calling a business, customers are “chatting” with businesses to access the information they require and to perform actions such as reserving a table or booking an appointment.
WeChat is a Chinese chat app and one of the biggest in the world. It allows its users to do multiple actions such as payments, chat, bookings, photos → you don’t have to look far to see in which direction Facebook is going. One mobile platform that allows you to do everything.
Most businesses have a Facebook page which allows you to send business enquiries on it using the Messenger platform.
And this is where PeppaWeb Marketing comes in.
The Facebook Messenger Platform
By replacing your default Facebook Messenger Enquiry function on your Facebook page with a Facebook Messenger Automation, you immediately open the doors to an entirely different relationship with your customers and you have opened the doors to your business 24/7/365.
Facebook Messenger allows you to reach any person who has a Facebook account, at scale, and engage with them individually.
“Hi Michael, I understand it is your birthday this week. Would you like a gift voucher to redeem at our restaurant to celebrate your birthday? “
Then deliver a graphic rich coupon in Messenger or by email to be redeemed with automatic reminders being sent on days prior to Michael’s birthday.
This is artificial intelligence. Leveraging data to interact at scale and to bring new customers into your business.
The PeppaWeb Acquisition, Loyalty and Reputation Management solution
At PeppaWeb Marketing we propose an automated marketing solution on the Facebook Messenger platform which is attached to your Facebook Page.
• We use the Facebook platform to find and acquire new customers and convert them into Facebook Messenger subscribers. Your subscribers with whom you can build a relationship and do recurring business.
• We use Mobile Wallet technology integrated into Facebook Messenger to deliver loyalty cards, set up and deliver bespoke offers which your business wishes to push to your loyalty card holders and reward members with points for their consumption.
• Reward existing loyalty club members for sharing offers and acquiring new members.
• We use the Aegis e-Reputation platform integrated into Facebook Messenger to acquire reviews automatically, broadcast good reviews and contain negative reviews.
Our solution has not been created by a web site designer, or a graphic designer, or a database developer – it has been created by digital marketers for digital marketers.
We use the full range of digital marketing tools to enhance and improve the returns for our clients such as:
Google Campaigns, Facebook Campaigns, Website development, Landing Pages, Click Funnels, Content strategy and more.
A typical setup cost for a complete Messenger Marketing Automation with the full feature pack loyalty system of Acquiring new customers, Converting and Retaining Members using a digital loyalty programs and a full e-reputation management following behind – ranges from €1000 – €2500 and takes about 10 days to deploy.
A small initial investment which is quickly recuperated by the return business it generates.
Monthly retainers to manage campaigns and offers are charged out on an hourly basis.
PeppaWeb Marketing is a digital marketing agency based in France and helps English and French-speaking businesses to grow their businesses using a range of digital marketing techniques and technologies.
Contact Martin Swanson on firstname.lastname@example.org or +33 6 71 93 38 77 for a confidential, no obligation chat about the next 12 months in your business.