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Conversational Marketing 101

Updated: Sep 28, 2022 is reader-supported. We occasionally use affiliate links from trusted partners when they fit naturally with our content. Find out more here.

What is Conversational Marketing?

The concept of conversational marketing is pretty easy to understand and does pretty much what it says on the tin. It is all about having conversations with your customers, helping them to find the right solution to their problem.

So far, so simple right?

But when you consider the resource that would be required to have individual conversations with each and every potential and current customer, especially for large businesses, then you understand why this isn't a common practice.

Instead, most businesses opt for a 'transmission' style of marketing. This style includes anything where you transmit a message but don't necessarily then engage in a conversation. This may include publishing blog posts, publishing on social media and running social/search engine ads.

This transmission style relies on mass marketing to a mass audience, with a low rate of success. Conversational marketing flips this on its head, looking to engage with fewer people, but aiming to convert a much higher percentage of them through tailored communication.

Conversational marketing is much like a market trader talking to a potential customer, asking them questions about their needs and helping them find the right solution. A transmission style is more like a town crier, standing in the market square and shouting his message as loudly as he can, hoping that people listen.

So conversational marketing can be a great way to make more sales...but is it really practical without a vast amount of resources?

Yes, with the right tools...

How do I Apply Conversational Marketing?

There are countless ways that you can apply the concept of conversational marketing to your business. For example, having a live chat on your website or a social media team that replies to comments could both be considered a form of conversational marketing.

You can also use smart, conversational marketing platforms...

Conversational Marketing Platform

Those who want to benefit from conversational marketing without having to invest a huge amount of time, effort and resource into 1-on-1 conversations can explore using tools like Drift.

Drift is a conversational marketing tool that can be plugged into your website or other digital platforms. It uses AI to create intelligent conversations with visitors, helping them answer their questions and helping you qualify them as a quality lead for your business.

The Drift platform can completely replace forms and follow-ups on your website. This means that conversation flows naturally, with little friction, drastically decreasing the chances of the potential customer to lose interest.

Bonus Tips for Practically Applying Conversational Marketing

  1. Always write conversational marketing content with a conversational tone.

  2. Speed is everything in conversational marketing. Spend time ensuring that there is a clear flow for your audience from the first contact all the way through to the sale. For example, you may use a conversational marketing tool like Drift, which qualifies a prospect to talk to an actual sales rep, who will make the actual sale.

  3. When using conversational marketing, start with the goal in mind. It is easy to get lost in conversational marketing, focusing on the process rather than the outcome. All aspects of the process should have a clear and defined purpose.

  4. Replace slow communication systems with conversational marketing. Once the right tools are in place, remove things like contact forms from your website to encourage people to enter into conversational marketing.

  5. You shouldn't stop using transmission methods of marketing, instead, try and find the right mix of tools to drive engagement into your conversational marketing funnel.


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