IoT is already making a significant impact on marketing. When used together with big data coming from real-time transactions, IoT has the potential to change the customer experience.
As IoT listens to customer concerns and responds immediately, it helps your business add value to products/services. Here are a few of the key ways IoT affects marketing:
1. Enhanced Customer Experience
IoT helps your customers to understand better your products, services, and operations. A demo for customers may not satisfy you, and thus, you are likely to use IoT to promote customer engagement.
IoT is bound to get even more advanced in the future. Besides taking your customers to the right place in your online store according to their historical buying behavior, IoT can also track data to structure more effective product displays.
Amazon meets customers where they are via an IoT platform known as “Dash Buttons.” Customers with Prime membership use these buttons on the eCommerce platform to reorder their favorite products quickly when availability is limited. This facility saves time for customers and benefits businesses as they get repeat orders and increase customer loyalty.
2. Creating Customized Experiences Through Data
IoT permits you to gather near-endless data about your customers and is now transforming the digital marketing world. In fact, a significant majority of retailers that use IoT say that it positively impacts the customer experience and gives them a significant advantage over their non-IoT competitors.
McDonald’s partnered with Piper (a Bluetooth beacon solution) to welcome customers through their smartphones as soon as they enter a McDonald’s restaurant. The company offers coupons to customers using Piper in exchange for answering a survey. The survey answers then get routed to the relevant manager, who responds before customers leave the restaurant. A truly real-time experience!
3. Lightning Speed Transactions
As customers are extremely busy these days, they want a quick, smooth, and flawless checkout experience. It is expected that customer experience (CX) may leave behind price and product as key marketing determinants.
To keep up with the demand for better CX, your business should look into deploying an IoT-activated mobile app to deliver the desired output at the right moment. IoT makes it possible to do all of these in real-time!
For instance, Walgreens partnered with Google Tango and Aisle411 to develop an IoT-powered platform that offers more responsive CX. The project features a mobile shopping podium that permits customers to search and locate products in the online store.
When customers use this app, they don’t need to ask a staff member about the exact location of the product they’re looking for. The app displays personalized and relevant offers, which opens doors for marketers who want to introduce their products to interested customers.
On the other end of the spectrum, Hilton Hotels uses IoT to offer high-end CX to its clientele. Hilton’s quick check-in facility allows customers to enter their hotel rooms and receive their keys through their smartphones. In return, the hotel captures little bits of customer information, such as the number of pillows they used during their stay.
4. Product Integration
IoT offers businesses more opportunities for growth and higher customer value through the smooth platform and product integration.
For instance, if you have a premium Spotify account, your playlist will automatically load whenever you get into an Uber car. You don’t need to open Spotify on your phone or ask your driver to look for your playlist to listen to your favorite music. This gives you more time to relax or focus on other things on your way to work.
Coherent product integration like the one developed by Spotify and Uber helps businesses in building a more personalized CX. It also helps you know more about your customers’ needs, preferences, and behavior, which adds authenticity and depth to your customer engagement.
5. Shake Up Pricing
Besides transforming CX, IoT can change your strategies at the pricing and product development level.
For instance, Rolls-Royce uses integrated sensors in the airplane engines it manufactures to transmit engine status data in real-time. This allows the company to keep an eye on every engine and charge customers for replacement parts, repairs, and other services as needed.
The company now offers an “engine-as-a-service” monthly subscription model that bundles an engine’s cost and repairs with data analytics implementation, mainly for fuel consumption that constitutes approximately 40% of airplane operating costs.
With its emphasis on real-time data, control, and monitoring, IoT can allow you to create different products and pricing models in the future. You may be able to sell products with varying features that can be activated or deactivated remotely as your customers subscribe to them.
With ever-increasing internet connectivity, bandwidth, data storage space, and cloud storage, IoT is set to find applications in every business type. You can use it to track customer data, predict purchase patterns, and promote products based on customer behavior, all in real-time. You may also use it to allow your brand and partners to offer far better CX than before.
IoT has the potential to change the marketing game, and the sooner you look into how you can use IoT to transform your brand’s marketing strategy, the greater your competitive advantage will be in the future.