Interactive technologies and relationship marketing strategies

interactive technologies and relationship marketing strategies

Impact of interactive technology on retailing strategy: a competitiveness enhancement .. improve a marketing relationship capability. Keywords—component; Marketing Strategy; Technology Impact on Market strategy relationship marketing to retain and attract consumers by meeting consumer especially interactive technology like the internet enables consumers to. relationship marketing strategies, including an audit of the organisation's . “ manage from the future” using new interactive technologies and those that wish “ to.

interactive technologies and relationship marketing strategies

It is equally certain that in this sense relationship marketing emerged as a long-sought solution. Still, it is wrong to think that traditional marketing, in an operational perspective, as a paradigm, is entirely inadequate or has been entirely re- placed. The combination of the four inter-relational factors of the marketing-mix promotion, placement, price, and product continues to make sense today.

Moreover, the study by Pels discovered that firms employ a marketing approach that involves the joining of traditional marketing practices with the relational. This means that relationship marketing, up to now, has not became a paradigm.

What could be said instead is that marketing is going through a paradigm shift and relationship marketing is a driver of that shift, but not the only one. Therefore, relationship marketing should be viewed as a marketing strategy that proposes the transfer of a self-centered management to a systemic view that places the organization as a network of relation- ships within which interactions are established as a society.

With relationship marketing the customer is no longer seen as part of an anonymous homogeneous mass but rather ascends to the position of an individual seen as a collaborator and a co-producer. But focus is also on groups of like-minded people, affinity groups. This unique relationship between brands and individuals is inimitable by the competition, providing an added value to the product or service and a competitive advantage to the organization. That is, the fac- tors that contribute to engagement with the brand, specifically, trust, loyalty, and satisfaction.

In fact, studies show that in general the longer the relationship the greater the profit. This is due to two effects resulting from loyalty: To support this idea, Gummesson introduced the concept of Return on Relationship RORa net financial result obtained in long-term relationships with the network of the company.

In order to accomplish the defined goals, companies need to understand that they should listen to and know the target audience, as well as monitor and learn to adapt to social change.

interactive technologies and relationship marketing strategies

In doing so marketers will be able to get economic advantages Reichheld, ; Blackston, ; Winer, ; Dowling,retain their customers, and convert them into brand ambassadors who will support the organiza- tion in obtaining new clients.

Thus, brands should no longer be seen only as properties of companies Pino, a. Rather it be- comes necessary to have strategies which may not necessarily generate more immediate sales, but that may cause an attitude of approach between the public and the brands Pino, b. This way, there will be increased customer retention and long-term relationships that can lead to higher revenues and reduced costs Gummesson,p. The application of this relational approach should not be uniform but flexible to each case; it should be an approach, which can be deployed at different levels of the relationship and adapted to the audience in form and in message and to the new times.

The modification of the tra- ditional roles of sender and receiver in the context of the Internet has changed the tone used to talk to customers. McWilliam adds that communication managers need to understand the foundations of dialogue that could lead to a strong relationship and redefine their own messages in the online context.

The communication should no longer come from above, but from the same level. Companies should talk to their customers as friends do. Even though it is a strategy that aims at the growth or consolidation of an organization, it is wrong to think that relationship marketing is a foolproof recipe that can be applied blindly in any context or with any recipient.

This has made considerable impact on the applicability and feasibility of a theoretical framework of relationship marketing from the standpoint of the consumer. As regards Fournier et al. It is also necessary to understand that the results of relationship marketing require time to determine. Fi- nally, relationship marketing, to be effective, needs to take into account the relational mood of consumers.

New softwares with odd features like blogs, wikis, podcasting, social network sites, etc. Consequently, and more or less at the same time, appeared the concept of Web 1.

Relationship Marketing Overview

These new softwares are commonly defined as Social Media. As illustrated by Table 1, social media are numerous and varied.

From a commercial standpoint, social media is attractive to marketers and communication managers for the fact that consumers are at the center of discussions and talk about their consumption habits on Table 1. World of Warcraft Source: Social media has also disadvantages that should be considered in any marketing communication plan. Schragefor instance, stresses the difference between traditional markets and high-tech markets: Social media has only been embraced by enterprises within the last few years and for that reason the effectiveness perception of this type of websites from the business point of view is still little studied in the academic literature, thus causing the need to directly contact companies to gather information.

For this reason, this chapter combines the information collected in books and scientific journals on the subject of SNS with information obtained from companies, particularly from agents directly involved in the management of SNS.

An online survey was sent to the heads of marketing and communication departments of the selected com- panies. Since the disclosure of the requested information could compromise the success of their strategic plans and consequently their interest to participate, anonymity was guaranteed through the absence of any identifier that could correspond the answers with the entity represented by the participant. In the questionnaire distributed to the Portuguese companies, they were asked, by way of an open question, which are the main disadvantages when using SNS?

As indicated in Table 2, Followed by the lack of con- trol of the content posted by consumers, the need for an immediate response, and the need for relevant content Other cited concerns regarding the use of SNS were: As one of the respondents commented: These answers reflect a shift in the communication process between organizations and users.

On SNS, for instance, consumers will be open to interact with brands as long as they are given the freedom to express themselves and the power to control the relationship and influence the brand.

If a brand is not interested in evolving in response to consumer feedback it is not recommended to engage on these websites Jameson, When questioned why they decided to use SNS, participants replied that it is a reality with an important role in a well-conceived communication plan, specifically to spread a message.

Others mentioned the fact that SNS are a trend with low costs. As noted previously, participants also stress the fact that SNS favors the establishment of a relationship with their target especially the younger cohorthelps them engage with it, and are a source of information and feedback. Finally, participants reported that they use SNS because they are interested in testing the return generated by these new platforms compared to traditional media.

First of all, human beings like to be informed. On the other hand, social interaction per se is also a human need and an unavoidable occurrence.

The following findings are representative of this biological need and its effects: Loneliness shows up in measurements of stress hormones, immune function, and cardiovascular function Hawkley et. For Abraham Maslowwhen people could not meet this need of belonging, their need for self-esteem would not be satisfied either. SNS not only answer these needs for being informed and for social inclusion, but also facilitates them, by unifying different social networks in which the individual belongs, and by making it easy to catch up with them quickly Silverthorne, This fact is supported by previous research that suggests that most SNS primarily support pre-existing social relations, although exceptions exist.

This is particularly true among adolescents Urberg et al. According to this theory individuals evaluate their own opinions and desires by comparing themselves to others perceived to be reasonably similar to them. The advantage of SNS is that they make this comparison process easy. The principle of homophily can also be applied to explain the adoption of SNS by many users.

Interactive Technologies and Relationship Marketing Strategies

Furthermore, SNS are unique websites that enable users to articulate and make visible their social networks. The type of design of the SNS is also crucial as it influences the level of adoption. Another conclusion drawn from their study is that ease of use has a negative influence on perceived risk, although perceived risk is not a significant determinant of how useful SNS are perceived to be.

A summary of the aforementioned reasons for social network sites popularity can be found in Figure 1. What attracts users to the site is a continually changing digital content e. And even though the mainstream media provides stories of online evidence Figure 1. A multidisciplinary perspective to the popularity of social networks sites The Rise of Relationship Marketing with Social Media that SNS can be used against users in job interviews, users continue to publish personal data suggesting that their desire for identity is worth the calculated risk Kent, What Makes People Connect with Brands?

By knowing why consumers develop and maintain relationships with brands, relationship literature ad- vances by understanding which constructs should be measured, and brands find new ways for improving their performance and consequently strengthen their competitiveness. The major motivations for users to like a brand on Facebook are: Regarding the last reason, it is worth mentioning that the three main categories social media users find most embarrassing are: As for the reasons given for not liking a brand, they are the following: These days there is still a common misunderstanding supporting the idea that to have a site in social media is merely to have a presence on a popular website where a large number of users converge.

Noth- ing could be further from the truth. Social media is not about technology, but about people. It is important not to confuse connection with relationship.

Relationships are not an immediate and spontaneous outcome of brand presence in SNS. Establishing relationships with customers is much more than merely aspiring to a precise number of likes, friends, followers or fans.

The main advantage of a brand having a SNS page is the possibility of interaction between the brand and its followers, which can in turn lead to engagement. Hence, SNS have risen as a solution for com- panies interested in implementing a relationship marketing strategy. Despite all the recognized benefits, some brands have not been exploring the full potential of the SNS Facebook. For instance, even though consumers are willing to engage with brands, the latter fail to promote engagement and use SNS merely as an informative channel.

Perhaps this occurs because brands do not feel ready to engage in a relationship with consumers, or perhaps they do not even know how to begin doing so. Brands win when their consumers are engaged, for they act as brand advocators by recommending the brand products or services to their friends, who in turn also make recommendations to their friends earned advertising.

In other words, engagement is the key word, and for that brands first need to know their audience, how they behave, what they like, and what they expect from brands. Furthermore, companies should bear in mind that it is not enough for consumers to merely like or follow their brand.

Companies should also be customer-focused, that is, they should know their target well, which can be achieved by talking and listening to them, and by acting in accordance with the information gathered. Still concerning the SNS users, it is important to understand that not only consumers can follow the brand activity.

At the moment a brand can achieve engage- ment with its audience, it can then get the desired relationship. But remember that relationships are not static - they evolve and it takes work to maintain them. When do relationships pay off for small retailers?

interactive technologies and relationship marketing strategies

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First and foremost is the cost. Online advertising costs significantly less than television, print, or radio ads and often produces greater rates of return. Companies should always be interested in producing the same results at a reduced cost. Online activities also leave behind tremendous amounts of information about customers.

The rise of relationship marketing with social media. | Ana Margarida Barreto -

Their demographic details and their personal preferences are both revealed through their behavior online, allowing companies to track and store this data to use in future marketing efforts.

The more relevant that marketing is to a customer's immediate wants and needs, the more likely it is to produce a sale. See also Real-time Marketing For customers, interactive marketing allows opportunities for them to help evolve and grow their favorite products and brands.

The more those customers talk about a company in online forums, social networking sites, emails, and videos, the more their hopes and ideas for that company enter into the company's consciousness. Businesses can use this information to develop the products their customers are most excited to buy, increasing a customer's sense of respect -- and potential sales. Forms of Interactive Marketing Search Engine Marketing — This involves everything from optimizing a site so that it shows up higher in search results, to placing targeted ads on the sides of results pages.

Email Marketing — Delivering ads, deals, and notifications through email is an effective and economical way to communicate with customers. Sponsorships — Partnerships with companies that have a more established online presence can be a great way to connect with new customers. Blogging — Fun, short form blog posts keep customers informed about new products, special deals, and the culture behind a brand Widgets — Simple downloadable tools that are branded are a great way to create additional value for that brand.

Social Networking — Sites like Facebook and Twitter have millions of users and are critical spaces for connecting with customers Targeting — Certain ads can be targeted at certain customers.

interactive technologies and relationship marketing strategies

When customers are exposed to advertising that is relevant to their needs, they purchase more. Offline Activation — Companies must actively advertise their URL and Twitter handle in offline environments so that customers can easily find them online. Who Employs Interactive Marketing?

Interactive marketing has quickly become one of the most common forms of marketing. Even the smallest and most localized companies maintain websites or blogs, thanks to simple web design tools make it cheap and easy for companies to develop an online presence. That being said, it is typically larger companies, particularly those with funds invested in e-commerce, that will be most interested in interactive marketing.

Larger companies have the technical resources to build expansive websites, design dynamic ads, film Youtube videos and blanket the web in banner ads See also Technical Marketing. Smaller companies with a lot of ambition can use these same tools, but using them all takes a significant amount of time, money, and expertise. Companies can use interactive marketing in many ways, but the most creative and innovative marketers see the best results. They created a simple online game that involved shooting Cupids floating around bouquets of flowers.

As the game was played, bouquets of flowers would scroll at the bottom of the screen. The marketing strategy used something men loved video games to sell them on something they disliked Valentine's Day flowers.

interactive technologies and relationship marketing strategies

That year the company set records for Valentine's Day orders. Interactive Marketing Best Practices: Multimedia — Use multiple different kinds of media from pictures, to text, to video, to games Personalization — Make the ad experience unique to each user. Opt-In — Respect customer's privacy by only contacting them if they sign up for a program Include A Compelling Offer — Use the targeting abilities of online advertising to offer customers special deals or offers.

Tell A Story — Multimedia tools can be used to tell a story which helps to reinforce the image of the brand in the minds of consumers Make It Immersive — The more deeply a customer engages with advertising the more likely they are to buy a product. Use online tools to make marketing messages as engaging as possible. Usability — Online ads should be intuitive and user friendly.

Effective ROI — Use any tool that has been shown to deliver a high return on investment. Reshaping The Brand — Plan for and facilitate opportunities for users to reshape the image of a brand Viral Sharing — Make marketing messages easy to share and transmit through the web.

Using a multi-pronged, interactive approach, they were able to set sales records for running shoes. It contained sensors and mechanisms that adjusted the cushioning after every stride. An innovative product demands an innovative marketing strategy, and Adidas knew that simply plastering the web with pictures and text would not generate the necessary buzz. They needed to engage customers with the product before they could lay their hands on it.