Since the advent of social media, marketers have witnessed an increased need for real-time strategy. But, as many now realize, responding to customers with highly personalized content as quickly as possible isn't all that easy. In fact, many modern marketers are desperate to better understand how they can use these fleeting moments and events to their advantage.
Wayin's recent "Making Real-Time Moments Matter" report offers marketers a quantitative baseline for current real-time marketing strategy, execution, and trends. Based upon the responses of 200 marketing professionals, the study emphasizes that effective real-time marketing cannot consist of sporadic actions. Instead, marketers must carefully design strategies and allocate resources in an effort to uncover the right audiences so they may target them with the right content at the right time. Researchers also indicate that marketers must tap into social media conversations in order to understand the mind of the consumer.
The following statistics provide insight into the tactics, goals, and strategies that power real-time efforts:
- Forty-nine percent of marketers believe real-time marketing needs to happen within minutes of breaking news or events, while 26 percent feel it must occur in seconds. Conversely, 46 percent of real-time marketers require 30 minutes or more to respond appropriately.
- Though nearly one-third of respondents employ at least five people to manage social conversations, and 78 percent boast three or more dedicated employees, 26 percent still require 16-30 minutes to respond to breaking news and events via social media. Twenty-five percent require 1-15 minutes.
- Overall, 89 percent of those polled believe they have a good or excellent ability to tie real-time efforts to overarching business goals. Marketers say efforts help build customer relationships (56 percent), promote events (55 percent), and complement existing content (51 percent).
- Marketers regularly use marketing automation (62 percent), respond to timely trends, news, and events via social media (58 percent), and engage with consumers via social media (58 percent) as part of their real-time marketing strategies.
- While 52 percent of marketers believe traditional social monitoring tools are the most important element behind real-time social marketing strategies, 50 percent feel social media analytics tools are essential, and 42 percent believe success lies in the hands of skilled managers or teams.
- Limited budget or resources (47 percent), inability to respond promptly (43 percent), and lack of search analytics tools (41 percent) typically prevent marketers from using social data in real time.
- Currently, 64 percent of marketers allocate between 20 to 60 percent of their overall marketing budgets to real-time marketing activities. However, 59 percent of those polled expect to increase their real-time marketing budgets within the next year, while 66 percent will increase social media spend specifically.
Key takeaway: According to survey results, 98 percent of companies report a positive impact on revenue from real-time marketing, with more than one-third claiming 50 percent ROI. Yet, while many are seeing such results, most still lack the resources necessary to execute tactics as effectively as possible. Most have responded to breaking news or planned events at least once within the past year, but few do so regularly, as most have yet to integrate social search and analytics tools, thereby widening the contextual gap that lingers between marketing strategy and consumer-generated content. Marketers require the ability to sort through social conversations, analyze context, and develop response strategies with speed and efficiency. Ultimately, this will require increased investment in the right technologies, for marketers will only be able to shrink this contextual gap if they arm themselves with the ability to search, understand, and act upon real-time moments.