Sowmya has 21+ years of technology marketing and strategy experience with B2B product & services companies and has held several diverse roles and leadership positions at both start-ups and Fortune 500 companies.
• How would you define the go-to-market strategy of the future?
The overall theme to GTM strategy should be: KEEP GOING! The two strategic goals to bear in mind: protect and strengthen customer base during the crisis, and set the stage to emerge post-crisis ready to capitalize on opportunities. Moving the brand digital will keep companies connected to their customers and enable a unified customer experience. The spotlight should be on the challenges customers are facing, as well as on the help they need. The future is about community and connections.
• Do you see the role of marketing professionals transforming post COVID-19? How would you explain these changes?
Yes, absolutely. COVID-19 has created unprecedented disruption and uncertainty of when things will improve, meaning marketers must pivot their strategy in three crucial ways. Marketers should refresh their customer experience and look at their end-to-end sales processes to ensure they’re able to respond with agility, engage across different sales channels and lead with digital. Marketers, now more than ever, need to ensure they are leading empathy in their marketing communications and using posture of support with a clear intent to help, not overtly sell. They must implement an agile strategic pricing strategy by offering products or services at the most profitable price for short-term profitability. Invest more in educating your customers and developing a learning center on your website, endowed with guides, whitepapers, webinars, and courses.
• How will technologies like AI, ML, VR, analytics and robotics change the marketing dynamics?
By 2020, it is predicted that 85 percent of consumer interactions will be handled without a human agent. RPA, self-service chatbots have taken a front seat in the technology roadmap due to shifting customer expectations.
Consider this, beauty brand Sephora was an early adopter of AI. They began using a chatbot to dispense beauty advice on Kik in 2017. Sephora’s chatbot helped consumers narrow down choices, beginning with a quiz about their product preferences. This was especially helpful in the cosmetics industry, where the options can be overwhelming and difficult to purchase without testing a product in person. Sephora gained valuable insights from their chatbot and saw enough engagement from that experiment that it’s since launched more chatbots on Messenger. Here are some of the examples of how AI, ML, VR, analytics and robotics are changing marketing dynamics by delivering superior customer experience:
From valuable insights to personalized product recommendations and technology-enabled assistance, AI/ML/VR/Analytics in marketing is already driving some of the biggest advances in overall customer experience.
• Is the engagement with consumers changed forever? If so, what will be the new face of marketing?
Consumers across countries are intensifying time spent on a wide variety of digital activities from online grocery shopping to videoconferencing to telemedicine. So, digital and low touch strategies are going to shape the future. Companies therefore, will need to start building Customer Data Platform (CDP) that makes it possible for marketers to scale data-driven customer interactions in real-time. The new face of marketing is the promise of data-activated, one-to-one (personalized) marketing that is increasingly expected by today’s customers. It is now the key to transforming simple customer transactions into enduring relationships.