Digital Marketing

Marketer's new choice: Benefits of Real-Time Marketing for your small business in nowadays

Real-time marketing has become more demanding than ever in expanding our business. Real-time marketing is not the traditional way of marketing.

Shahin Shakarli


22 min read

real-time marketing

We live in the 21st century which global technologies, connected devices dominate in this century.  We encounter with mobility, unlimited levels of speed and accessibility in getting information in each moment of daily life. People's demand is everything to be instantly accessible. They don't desire it, they expect it. As a matter of fact, real-time marketing has become more demanding than ever in expanding our business. Real-time marketing is not the traditional way of marketing. However, it is not a complicated method, and you need to be always available for trends and new information. Additionally, a good analyzing of customers will always help you too. The tools are your information gadgets, social media profiles and that's all. RTM aims to create an idea which is not ordinary. Especially, real-time marketing became popular after 2010, when digital platforms had already started to influence society.


Experts called it real-time marketing on purposely because this marketing takes place at the moment. We want to point out the "moment".  It can possess many forms. It could be the moment that the suggestion becomes accessible, the moment that a client wants something, or the moment that an event begins. Real-Time marketing focuses on uniting with your customers during crucial times when engagement will be most productive.

As we mentioned above, RTM is popular today, but it has actually been around since the 90s. In these years, some companies and businesses found out that long term marketing campaigns were not always successful, vice versa they were hamstrung. On the other hand, some shorter campaigns appeared, and they were quite adaptive to customers and served for the brand’s promotion. Actually, some traditional methods of marketing were hinders for real-time marketing 90s. After 2000’s digital marketing started its new challenge with the inventing of social media channels. All of sudden it was accessible to detect what clients were speaking about and reply in a few minutes or hours but not a couple of days or months.

Now the brands find out that they can get clients’ thoughts and ears on social media platforms, there is an increasing trend to pick real-time marketing even further. For example, using big data pulled from social media and consumer analytics, call center services, history of purchase and mobile application activity businesses are maintained to bring particular customer experiences. Many expert reviews emphasize that the datum like customers’ vocation, their accommodation, their engagement with the brand (devices and channels) – all of this datum provides the marketer to catch their client’s available context and update their functions which in turn allows them to contact customers with hyper-personalized communications that suit their demands in the current moment. The real-time marketing history might be young, but increasing relations between technology and marketing make real-time marketing essential for businesses.


The importance of real-time marketing


Today the whole world is struggling with a question, which supposed that real-time marketing could help to find the answer: How does business reach engage and reach the always-connected client? In order to earn a customer, business needs to connect with the right customer at the correct time, in the right place, and with the appropriate message.

RTM allows marketers to modify their messages to a particular context, and the pros go way beyond by improving brand knowledge. There are measurable, real and positive impacts on revenue and some other key metrics. Investigations prove that approximately 85% of businesses understand excellent customer experience as a significant profit in real-time marketing. Additionally, better customer experiences lead to loyalty (an essential benefit of RTM for 48% of businesses) and improved sales (a key advantage of real-time marketing for 75% of businesses). By the way, real-time marketing also offers a broader possibility to rethink customer cooperation, to be more special and appropriate, and to engage clients with highly targeted, timely and relevant messages that transform. Furthermore, RTM influences various parts of your business, like interaction, brand awareness, customer reviews. Let's clarify these comprehensions one by one.

Interaction - One of the aims of real-time marketing is to increase interactions. If you try to make contents based on daily events or trends, it will help you to engage people's attention. Because people usually interest in daily activities. Moreover, you can get your existing audience again. Maybe your approach will influence their loyalty positively. Creating real-time marketing ideas and contents will probably assist you to enhance the interactions with customers.

Brand awareness - If your target is daily events and you use the right tools in the posts (for example, relevant hashtags or posters), then your contents will deliver you to the broad audience. Remember that; more people are always essential for brand awareness.

Customer reviews - Try to provide sharing your creative contents again and again. Why do you need it? Because it will help customers' reviews and talks about your brand. It's an effective way, and if you can increase social prove factors, it will influence interest in the brand.


The Success of real-time marketing


The experimental questionnaires observed that most companies (approximately 70%) try to add some part of real-time marketing in their social media and digital marketing. The rest of the marketers are yet to examine how RTM can work for their businesses.

Here are some questions which will assist you to be successful in RTM:

Trigger - which information, datum or events suggest chances for real-time messages? For example, Weather forecasts, social media trends, product stock updates.

Audience – which customer groups, followers, audience or fans can be engaged with specific contents? For example, your customers in particular regions and locations; your possible customers who are waiting for a product to return into the stock; the clients who are searching for a particular keyword.

Method – which is the best method to deliver the message? For example, you can benefit from email, social media, SMS, PPC, or web.

Outcome – what is your purpose for marketing messages? For example: increase brand awareness, generate engagement, stimulate revenue.

The success of real-time marketing is the modern movement changer.

How do you prove the value of digital marketing in a process that everyone will understand and engage it? The main thing is to focus on how the success of RTM can improve campaign effectiveness and will assist you to achieve your customer engagement, revenue goals, and loyalty.



Digital marketing techniques and technologies increase agility. RTM techniques and technologies will help you be quicker for better results. Additionally, as customer needs for hyper-personalized, in the time interactions, on multiple devices and platforms become the new norm, you need to be agile. Unless, how do you balance the agility of your customer by spotting chances reacting quicker and earlier to reach them where they are to drive better campaign outcomes. This issue is what marketing techniques and technologies allow you to carry out. You can use three ways of RTM for increasing campaign success:

Spot Opportunities more quickly: The target segmentation techniques are getting older and less effective. You need to be competitive. You need to reorient your thinking to a one's segment. You need an entire view of every customer. Each interaction they have with your brand is essential. So you can possess the necessary insight to your communications to specific customer needs.  The unique style you can cost-effectively fulfill one to one is with particular analytics. This analytics must be integrated straight into your execution processes.

React more quickly: Inline, analytics include predictive models and segmentation.  When set in your execution workflow, you are able to automate your replies to customer operations in real time. There are many platforms which include machine learning for their interaction data. It is a system that automatically modifies logic as it learns from other interaction data. Machine learning predicts each customer need, makes better segmentation, and deliver the highest personalized information. In brief, machine learning set in your execution workflow provides automation to your client engagement strategy. It also permits much more individualized interactions based on contextual relevancy and with the cadence which matches with real-time customer needs.

Deliver Better Campaign Outcomes: Usually, customers research, discover and estimate opportunities before making certain types of buying. With observing your customers behaviors, you can determine some purchase intentions. It may help you to make campaigns. Knowing of your customers' interaction before they purchase is a significant chance to engage them with personalized communications, related to their campaign stage. The customer greets the personalized experiences you found with these techniques. That customer is now more apparent to engage further with the brand, improving your campaign outcomes by driving more revenue.

Digital marketing techniques and technologies enable you to grow customer visits. What would another visit from the customer base mean in top-line revenue? Are you raising the medium transaction size?  Are you increasing the customer’s life with the brand? The real value of real-time marketing is that it can drive higher engagement and make quantifiable through actual buying behavior.


How can we create RTM strategies?


Real-time marketing is about including the target audience in on crucial moments, as they are happening. It is better to share photos live from the fact, rather than to post an album after an action. If you have a specific sale in your shop, you could use real-time marketing to showcase fortunate customers and answer their questions and get feedback happening during the sale. RTM works can assist your target audience to feel more linked to your business, as well as encourage more people to participate in or attend your events. There are some cases that digital marketing happens at the moment of the critical event. However, it doesn’t mean that there is no preparation involved. Like all marketing activities, you can plan the suggestions and events of marketing efforts. It is better to prepare real-time marketing actions in advance, and even make a report about it after the event.

Although, with the assistance of digital marketing, you will also be sharing and promoting during the activity. For instance, a live stream is an excellent way of controlling the moment, but you have an opportunity to let people be aware of the live stream beforehand, and to get people excited about it and to get more people tuning in when it occurs. Sometimes, they say that a digital marketing strategy is on-the-fly. However, the experiences prove that that is not true. If you aim to get benefits from marketing activity, you need a good deal of planning that must happen, beginning with a definite strategy and enough dynamic content made and at the ready to perform.

The success of a digital marketing strategy depends on contextually related interactions.

When you search for RTM articles and blogs, it is better to focus on the brands who have successfully produced a related campaign during a cultural event. While these culturally related campaigns are undoubtedly great examples, everyday real-time marketing is not a showy campaign. It is the ability to interact with any person with a proper message or suggest to move them along the campaign to purchase, whenever and wherever the client starts to communicate with your brand. The only technique to deliver RTM, so it appears to be a natural reaction to a client touch point activity, is all needs adjusted and to have everything well planned. For instance, care needs to be taken not to suggest to the wrong customer or wrong value proposition. Additionally, underlining that you have a stock of content waiting in the wings, there are vital technical elements that need to be in place. RTM needs access to complex analytics and data to be able to generate predictive figures to make real-time a reality.


Real-time marketing types


Many big brands follow a digital marketing strategy. However, only some of the brands understand it correct, and others ruin the marketing campaign. Down below, we will introduce you some examples of the most significant brands' practice RTM. You can get some new ideas from these examples.

News events - Brands reacting to a news story can be a great idea to use marketing. It's better to avoid news that is political or upsetting. However, there are entertaining news stories that are great to take benefit from it. One of these cases is KitKat’s funny joke about the iPhone immediately when the news presented that the iPhone (6) was bending.


Crisis times - The easiest method to be offensive in RTM is to try to trade something when people are dying, hurt experiencing pain or something like this. Try to avoid sneaking in a marketing message within a crisis time. If the brand is going to talk during an emergency, do not try to promote or sell your product, just send out a simple, apparent and positive message that indicates your support. American Apparel decided to improve a sale during Hurricane Sandy, and it resulted in marketing failure. They faced a great deal of reaction.




Celebrities -  Another excellent way to pay attention to your business is to interact with celebrities. As an example of this, we can say the 2014 Grammy Awards when Pharrell Williams used a hat that resembled the logo of Arby's. Arby’s tweeted Pharrell that they required the hat back, sparking a popular and funny banter between Arby’s and Pharrell William that collected hundreds of thousands of reactions (retweets).



Holidays - Holiday real-time marketing campaigns are easy to plan for marketers. However, a significant method to carry out RTM within the holiday advertise strategy is to create an interactive and funny campaign. For example, you may use for holiday campaigns some photo competitions on Twitter or Instagram campaigns that give a few fortunate winners a shopping binge. These marketing interactions gain new customers and engage fans while keeping the holiday spirit. For instance, Air New Zealand found an amazing marketing campaign at Christmas 2017. They mentioned the differences between English accents. They are a lot, and sometimes two individual can't understand each other with various accents. Furthermore, idioms and expressions combined with a heavy accent, that's why sometimes one's speech seems funny.

Air New Zealand knew precisely what that’s like and intended to show everyone it’s not a problem, and they know that maybe they speak funny (even Santa can't understand them).




Sports events - Sports are popular among people. Especially, football, basketball, F1 are enjoyable activities for them. Usage of sports elements or the part of its events may be the best RTM. During the world cup 2014, there was an unforgettable semi-final match between Brazil and Germany. Germany beat Brazil with a 7-1 win; and of course, it was one of the fascinating moments of the Football world cup. A German radio channel Radio Bayern 3 used the result of this match to promote their channel. They presented a video of German beer breaking the Brazilian cocktail. And we cannot reject the fact that it was entertaining to see.


german-radio-channel-Radio Bayern-match-results

TV events - TV events, such as award shows, ceremonies or talk shows, are an excellent time for real-time marketing, as millions of people are following on tv and live posting. During Superbowl XLVII Oreo’s tweet was a successful and prominent case. Oreo has not just satisfied customers' taste buds, but the brand has also set a unique RTM example for all the marketers around the planet. During Super Bowl 2013, New Orleans suffered a vast power out. And the marketing group of Oreo grabbed the chance to benefit its brand significantly on the social media post. Oreo posted a photo of the product in the dark which was followed by the famous sentence (You can still dunk in the dark). And Oreo called their photo “Power out? No problem”. It was a quick hit among Twitter users, and this work of the Oreo marketing team was genius.




Values - Great digital marketing content adds value if it is delivering something or just pure entertainment that customers want at the time they need it. Spectators of the Emmy awards ceremony are interested in what people are dressing, and how they can get that looks. On noticing the buzz around Tina Fey’s clothes, Target instantly showed how clients could get a similar look from the range. That was precisely what target customers needed at that moment.



Relevance - The proven marketing activities present that the best RTM campaign and answers stay relevant to their audience, to their marketing strategy, and their products. In July 2014, there were plenty of desperate efforts to cash in on the Royal Baby fever sweeping the globe. However, the image from bakers Warburton’s held out as one of the greatest to capture the mood–and yet keeps relevance to the company’s products and Britishness sense.




User interaction - User interaction is the perfect way to interact with customers as you are promoting your product and describing the personality of the brand at the same time. Businesses accomplish this idea by setting up various keyword searches that relate to their brand and reaching out to customers who are using those keywords. For instance, presume that presume you are an auto company. You should arrange keyword searches for words such as “oil change”, “road trip,”  and “flat tire.” Being fun, amusing, and attractive are critical factors in successfully interacting with customers.




Milestones - Posting amusing or inspirational quotes from famous people may seem like social bottom-feeding, but it can be surprisingly well accepted, especially from brands that are themselves amusing or inspirational. Clocking them to the birthdays of the quotes gives the posts at least a real-time relevance idea as Chobani presented with a Julia Child tribute.




Some advice before deciding your marketing campaign - The best idea for your business is only to use events that resonate for you as a brand. If it doesn’t fit easily in with your products or match into your marketing strategy, then leave it be. When you are matching your service or product to a current event, make sure it is complete strikes the right tone, and it is appropriate, and always do your examination. Always be watchful of your customer service quality and react appropriately. Your response areas (for example, social media profile) can be a very public place. Think deeply about your audience when you are crafting digital marketing visuals or response. Ask yourself: what do they understand from your message and what would be their reason for reacting it?


The relationship between RTM and Social Media


Social media is an excellent platform for RTM, with its easy sharing capabilities, self-updating news feeds and access for a wide range of media. The volume of information, the speed of information, and the ability to categorize and filter for relevancy allow you to connect with potential customers quickly. These people probably want to know about your business and engage with your brands. Usage of social media for RTM can take many forms like videos, photos, illustrations, promotional codes, links; and can be used for a wide range of information related to your business, local community, industry, and other segments of the target audience.


RTM and Facebook

The Facebook Business page is a useful platform for digital marketing. For instance, if you post about a product and users comment with concerns and questions about this product, you can return to them instantly, while informing everybody else who has the same issue. RTM works here by providing potential customers with the information they need and allowing better customer service in order to make a purchasing decision. Another advantage of Facebook for RTM is on Facebook Live. There are many forms to use Facebook live for your small business. For digital marketing, you can broadcast an event, host a live webinar, live stream a Q&A, or choose winners to a competition. Identifying how many spectators are tuning in can assist you to provide your works to the audience size, and seeing what people are asking and saying can support you to give the information that is in need at that moment. Facebook live is particularly suitable for presenting your transparency. Live video broadcasts are helpful to clarify that you do not cover up anything, which promotes trust with the target audience. Moreover, the positive conversational presence will humanize your business, make it more convenient for customers.

RTM and Instagram

Instagram is another system to connect directly with your target audience. You may post photos of happy customers during a sale, or write a hashtag that, if satisfied customers use it in their posts,  they will earn a discount. Furthermore, you might manage a contest or giveaway where users enter by responding to fun or thought-provoking question in the comments part. The entries create a content stream for your customers to see at the moment they are free about confirmation, and the activity encompassing the contest may support onlookers to join.

RTM vs. Instagram and Snapchat Stories

Both Instagram and Snapchat stories are able to help you in your digital marketing activities. With Instagram and Snapchat Stories, you share videos and photos during a day, in a collection that is visible to the users. Please, remember that when you start a group, it disappears after 24 hours. You can use Snapchat Stories or Instagram Stories for after the scenes look at the culture of your business, or to retain people up to date on the all-day events. When it comes to Instagram vs. or Snapchat Stories or Facebook Live vs. Snapchat, or each of these ways of RTM has various method of improving engagement. While Instagram and Snapchat stories are useful for catching the values and culture of your business, Facebook live helps achieve the transparency of your business. Video and photo series stories can help to send a message to the audience that will resonate with them on an individual level. Digital marketing is growing more crucial to business growth. Not only does it develop and increase engagement with your target audience, but it also enables you to contribute relevant information at the relevancy and speed that people are demanding today. Include real-time activities into your marketing plans so you can keep and your capture potential customers' attention. Sometimes they say that a large-scale event or a popular trend is occurring around the world, and a brand connects the conversation and forces it forward, that is known as digital marketing. But does RTM on social media work? The answer is, yes, it is better on social media because you can notice your message across much more swiftly than on any other medium. But before you determine about jumping in on every possible popular trend or event on social media with beliefs of mass behold engagement, those are not how it works. As much as marketers enjoy to add a trending hashtag, over-do and drag it along to every available brand, publishers like to make fun of these sort of marketers for doing so.

Usually, marketers are watchful about doing something that hinders the experience, so that the customer begins to consider about their product or service (advertising, display, commercials,  etc.) However, a real-time marketer, choose quite the opposite. Some experts think that since customers have focused on the trending issue or large scale story, and they identify with it, marketing gets the profit of what is already working to make the engagement.

Active follower base is an essential point

In order to get real-time social media correctly, the crucial thing is to possess an active user base that involves your brand on social media on a stable data. If you do not have an engaging follower base, it means that the RTM attempts will be in useless because no one will know about your posts.  For example, Below the Belt Grooming achieved a great job with the real-time outdoor advertisement at Wimbledon. The motorists and press noticed this ad. However, Below the Belt Grooming's marketing attempts got a weak reaction on social media, because they had a little fan base, which provided to its fall.

Don’t worry about being first

Please, underline that all your efforts, time, and resources are not needed to focus on preparing a battle against other rivals on social media for the first response to a trending topic. The first post on Facebook or the first tweet on Twitter is not the winner, although smaller brands are inspired to attend the party. As long as you remain to a real-time talk with your audience, RTM will act in your favor. But it is essential to bounce in on trending topics all year approximately to learn and test what serves best with your particular audience. Do not forget, that RTM isn’t some magic tablet. The solution is to speak about the event or the trend, and not oneself to add value, utility, and insight. Generally, enter the conversation, sit back and enjoy the outcome.

Always be careful

RTM creates work for some. However, success is not a guarantee if a real-time marketer is not careful enough. Unfortunately, businesses don’t tend always to get social media marketing right. The reason is that digital marketing provides you less time to decide what to organize on social media platforms and this leads to rushing and sometimes failures. For example, Delta Airlines chose to engage in RTM during the World Cup, but they did not have enough time to plan its move. It posted a tweet complimenting team USA on their brilliant (2-1) victory over Ghana.

Along with the final results, the tweet also describes a giraffe representing Ghana and the Statue of Liberty representing the USA. When Twitter followers informed Delta that there were no giraffes in Ghana, its marketing purposes turned into a disaster. The company also had to excuse for their embarrassing later on.




Customers love and real-time personalization


There are many successful examples of RTM all over the world. Not all of them have planned target group, but it brings people attention. That's why a lot of brands try to use trends to link with their products or services.

Some brands make a hash of these activities. However, the rest of the marketers catch the point, and they can win the competition. There is a simple rule - if your digital marketing is not EFFECTIVE, cannot get HIGH INTERACTION and do not have ENGAGEMENT then it is better to do NOTHING. But if you possess these elements, you will be prosperous.




Some businessmen are impatient, and they suppose that all events have a sense of digital marketing. They want to that their brand has to react to all actions and trends.

This notion is dangerous for a brand. Because RTM is a sensitive tool and you can diminish the quality of your brand and in corollary heat yourself. Yes, you should follow the trends, but use RTM if the events are relevant to you. Only, in this case, you can get the right RTM.

On the other hand, your digital marketing campaign must be complete. We mean that if your campaign is real time but not creative, it will not work. The marketing activity must be both real-time and creative for customers.

It seems like there are new ways constantly emerging in the marketing world. Many of them disappear as quickly as they appeared.

RTM, however, some of the businesses leading experts have inclined to stick around. Why is that? First cause may be that engaging customers now is less about selling a service or product and more about growing essential relationships.

Today as a businessman you need to personalize if you want to be successful.

Personalization in current time requires to move one step further. Each marketing activities needs to feel the same across every message and every channel and to be connected.

RTM in combination with connected personalization allows a business to deliver every marketing message for an individual customer. It means that the website products they get recommended or email they accept, or the application message (as well as social media posts) that pings on their devices should be relevant to the customer and their preferences.

With customers now demanding this sort of complex thinking, we are going to see it increasing, as more businesses find ideas to create all their marketing messages homogenized and highly personalized.


You can achieve this is by owning an interconnected system powering all the marketing messages operating in the background. This system will carry out a single marketing sense with each impact point that a customer has with a message of business being highly targeted and personalized. For example, Netflix is doing it very well. The company is a winner of real-time personalization using customers' datum and viewing habits to recommend relevant and highly targeted content to its followers.




Some experts even think that Netflix’s overall video on demand strategy and this personalization level has led to a decrease in illegal downloads. Netflix's users are becoming used to the concept of giving their datum with the company because they suppose a clear advantage to doing so.

The following stages for digital experts are using large amounts of datum. They collect this data by allowing next level digital marketing, connecting all marketing channels and highly targeted in-store guide messages. The data can be used to strengthen prior interactions, buying history, and today's interactions. The aim is to fulfill real-time customized individual communication that will lead to a rise in sales and services. Segments of groups will turn to segments of one. Targets of business will be personalized due to clients with alike profiles. The skills of collecting large datum will improve the value of connection that clients have with businesses and place a greater focus on general marketing with data from customers.

Location-based marketing is going to become more personalized and smarter in the next years. With the ‘always available’ nature of smartphones and the expanded use of apps and digital gadgets, customers are going to be able to get highly targeted messages, and retailers will be able to collect massive amounts of data. As people become more comfortable with their devices automatically and regularly sharing their location and other information with apps and gadgets, the data may help customers to experience more enjoyable quick retail visits. And it also will help retailers fulfill that experience. For instance, last years TechCrunch had an experience about how they feel that ambient vicinity was the next stage of location sharing.

TechCrunch meant it more from a social point of view with people having apps like Nearby Friends (Facebook) and Foursquare’s proximity app Swarm to communicate with friends near them. However, marketers plan to use this experience of a user’s location to the retail space as well.

To sum up, Real-Time Marketing is one of the best styles to promote your brand’s personality and an excellent possibility to get to know the customers. Though businesses must be able to plan out long term campaigns successfully, marketing needs quick thinking as well as an adaptation at all times. Hence, brands must be prepared to engage and know their point of view. We want to emphasize that if marketers do not understand the voice of the business, it triggers digital marketing fiasco.