AI, VR, and Video Marketing: The Future of Ecommerce Marketing
Remember pop-up ads? They used to be a part of a complete marketing strategy the way that a bowl of sugary cereal is part of a complete breakfast. They were fast, interesting, and effective even while being a bit underhanded. Ecommerce marketing has changed over the years just like web design and internet branding. To give your brand staying power over the evolution of the internet, you’ll need to have your eyes on the right trends.
AI, VR, and video marketing are a few of those trends that might be critical to optimizing your conversion trends by finding the right audience. Let’s take a look at some of the pros and cons of making each of them a part of your marketing strategy.
Video marketing has been around longer than the other two types of marketing trends, even if the avenues for sourcing your content have expanded. You don’t need to buy a 30-second commercial spot to get eyeballs anymore--you can make your way onto YouTube, Snapchat, Instagram, Facebook, and Twitch.
Around 80% of millenials will use video marketing in their purchasing decisions, much higher than the numbers for other groups. If younger generations are in your target audience and essential to the life of your business, you may need to be using video marketing. Videos are critical to building a brand on Instagram, and any other social media site. Social media itself is currently competing to be the place that you host your videos. Video marketing in 2019 will generally be a larger part of a social media marketing and engagement strategy.
While you may not have an in-house team ready to write, produce, edit, and polish a video, social media marketing solutions can help you take advantage of videos.
Why Video Marketing is So Effective
Video marketing can engage younger audiences and send more complete messages about your brand and who you are. Videos are more memorable than random ads on the sides of screens, and they can also generate engagement with new customers. While video is helpful for generating brand awareness, it can also continue to engage existing customers by providing great service and product updates. YouTube videos can give people advice on how to use your product creatively, and Instagram can show your product as part of a complete lifestyle.
Disadvantages of Video Marketing
Don’t use video marketing if it doesn’t make sense for your business. When you look at companies that are making waves in E-marketing, like these eight companies, you’ll see brands that have organic approaches to their audience. Doing one type of marketing generally means diverting resources from another. Really, this advice is that you shouldn’t sell out your brand to use something that you think is hip. Tossing emojis all over your product doesn’t mean younger generations will automatically like it. Do video marketing, but stay true to your brand.
AI and Machine Learning
AI and machine learning can help identify the marketing solutions that work and zero in on those. In a world where personalization moves money about as much as any other attribute, especially in retail spaces, the ability to show your customers the next product they didn’t know they wanted is worth a lot of money.
Companies can use chatbots to not only engage with customers who visit their website but to gather information about what those customers are looking for. Setting up a chatbot on your website that will return the kind of data that makes machine learning work.
The key to harnessing AI for ecommerce is to understand the psychology of e-commerce, delivering personalized experiences that turn viewers into buyers. The difference between a bounce and a sale is the position of the mouse when it’s clicked. AI can help you figure out what is going on with your website so you can figure out how to funnel that mouse toward the buy now buttons.
AI Marketing Benefits
While AI and machine learning aren’t themselves a “marketing medium,” they are tools that you can implement to create more holistic marketing strategies. AI will be ideal for on-site marketing, converting people who have shown up to your site into paying customers. While video and VR marketing are great at collecting potential customers, machine learning can boost the success rate of those marketing programs.
Disadvantages of Using AI in Marketing
If you have a lot of data or are a data-driven company, then AI and machine learning might make a lot of sense. Then again, every company relies on data these days. The big downside is that data can be expensive, and making AI and machine learning effective will require massive amounts of data to make it work well.
Market in the right order. If you’re trying to implement AI and machine learning before building a great website, you’re marketing in the wrong order.
VR marketing would certainly be an e-commerce practice that can differentiate your brand.
The United States has about 83% of the global VR market, which is estimated at around 16 billion dollars. Still, this doesn’t mean that millions of consumers are strapping into VR headsets today and hungry for your e-commerce comment. A lot of that VR market is coming from the tech industry and workplace utilization, far from the millions of teenagers. There are predictions of 80 million VR headsets being sold by 2020, but even this doesn’t mean that those headsets translate to daily or even weekly users.
If VR catches on, you’ll be ahead of the e-commerce marketing game. Then again, we’ve heard for years about how VR is just about to heat up. Analysts have been continually baffled by the general lack of interest in virtual reality systems. VR has a place in futuristic literature, and yet its arrival hasn’t brought a new tech age or global excitement. It’s like if flying cars showed up and no one really cared. So if VR does catch on and become the thing that everyone’s doing, your company won’t have to spend a year spinning its wheels to create content to catch up.
While B2C marketing might not be the best VR use, VR can be a great way of doing B2B marketing or winning different clients. Imagine showing up to a meeting with a VR headset that can show investors your factory layout and let them interact with virtual versions of new products. VR has a ton of potential in this area. Walmart has already used VR to train employees for the high-intensity moments of black Friday shopping rushes. It can be a way of getting clients who are already interested to engage with your brand.
VR may not catch on in its current form. While virtual reality and augmented reality as concepts are probably here to stay, we don’t know what the VR that sweeps the world will actually look like. Unless you think that you can immediately reach your target audience as an e-commerce business, or need to convince investors of a product that isn’t built yet, it may not be the best way to spend your marketing budget.
It can be tempting to hop on the next marketing trend just because it is a marketing trend. But remember that great companies are forward-thinking, and only utilize marketing mediums that already make sense for their brand. Video can bring color to your e-commerce marketing plan, AI can do some heavy lifting, and VR can give you a futuristic edge.