Over the past decade, marketers started adopting inbound marketing to lead conversions and have a better ROI on each dollar spent from their budgets. Inbound has definitely ruled the roost by being the “Better” side of the coin and trumping outbound marketing’s inefficient ways. The biggest problem with outbound marketing that led towards this paradigm shift was the vagueness of the methods employed.
Running cold calling campaigns, email blasts or any other form of marketing that was intended to target and bring the business “To the consumer”, was a highly unsuccessful option as opposed to inbound, where people who were looking to buy a certain product were being funneled “towards the business”. The stark difference in efficiency of employing either method can be gauged by the fact that outbound marketing costs 61% more per lead as compared to inbound marketing. This all led towards the increasing abandonment of outbound methods to target the consumer and an ever growing amount was being dedicated to bolstering inbound efforts.
But one thing is certain to bring in a big shift in this scenario in 2017 – Data led artificial intelligence.
The next big disruption in the tech industry, artificial intelligence, is bound to shake things up in the online marketing sphere as well. In the past decade, Outbound efforts always lagged behind as back then, it was more like throwing an arrow to nowhere with slim chances of getting a return that was beneficial towards conversions in a big quantity. But now in 2017, with a way to make sense of data, through AI, businesses can have a more powerful outbound campaign than ever before. Here’s how:
Data makes it easier to predict more accurately
The most flawed thing about outbound marketing efforts was that it was based entirely on assumptions and not on “certainly identifying” trends and triggers that could lead towards more conversions. For e.g. an email blast contained a great message and was crafted to make people interested in it, but what if those people wouldn’t want to read it at that point in time? That’s what made outbound so unsuccessful and inefficient.
But with data, we can predict more accurately as when a certain person has a higher chance of becoming a lead and then converting than otherwise. Data tells us multiple things that we didn’t know of previously, like a person’s promotion to a more senior level where he or she could be in a better position to buy a certain service for its business, remained unknown and the outbound marketing campaigns continued to target those that served in the same cadre but were not in a position to “Engage” with the brand at that particular point in time, resulting in the inefficiency of outbound campaigns outright.
Businesses can get a Better knowledge of target markets:
Imagine for a moment that your company sells Logistic services which include inter-country trucking and transportation services and you want an email campaign to target your prospective customers. There are two cities X and Z. X is an industrial hub where lots of companies transport their goods day in and day out, however, Z is not on the same level but does still have some industries. Through data, you learn that a significant portion of your sales has historically come from Z and not X, and X is a secondary market for you. Having this knowledge liberates you into creating a strategy that suits your current needs. If you want to build a new market entirely, then your campaign would be directed towards X, but if you want to get more out of the current stronghold in Z you have, you can direct your campaign there.
Big data analysis allows you to understand your target markets better and in a much more comprehensive manner than previously imagined possible which can definitely lead towards making outbound marketing a more effective strategy than inbound efforts.
Provides a more efficient way to target the mobile audience:
The world is shifting invariably towards becoming more and more mobile-centric as desktop continues to recede in the background. Big data analysis and Artificial intelligence has allowed businesses to create more specified buyer profiles than ever before. Instead of the hit and miss scenario of previously employed outbound campaigns, outbound efforts could become more targeted which would increasingly provide them with a bigger window of opportunity into the mobile world than any other form of marketing.
Data led outbound campaigns would allow companies to identify and target prospective customers while mobiles provide the perfect platform to optimize this scenario as more and more users look for opportunities that come their way instead of going out and researching for a latent need to be fulfilled. Improvements in data crunching have led to predictive analytics that provide with more qualified leads to settling with for marketer, making the user see much more relevant targeting. The recent advances in app development has led people to adopt mobile as the primary form of online utility, which adds up in the favor of outbound campaigns for 2017.