Customer Engagement in an AI-led World: Insights from Apple’s WWDC

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Apple recently wrapped up its five-day Worldwide Developer Conference (WWDC), during which the tech giant rolled out numerous updates that are set to transform marketers’ connections with their audiences. Let’s dissect these updates and explore their impact on marketing and customer engagement strategies.

Optimizing for Natural Language Searches

A pivotal update for marketers is the need to refine their apps to capitalize on natural-language search capabilities, ensuring that customers receive relevant suggestions and products based on semantic similarity. The reliance on exact search phrases is fading; customers are now turning to conversational language to pinpoint desired products and instruct Siri to respond. Marketers must delve into customer behavior, predicting plausible actions consumers might request via Siri and equipping the assistant to meet these needs.

Enhancing Product Discoverability: Control Center and App Intents

Product discoverability just got a boost with two enhanced functionalities: the Control Center and App Intents. By swiping down from the top-right corner of their screen, customers gain swift access to key app features via the Control Center. Marketers should identify and highlight two primary controls that would benefit customers for quick access, tailoring them to personalized preferences.

App Intents take discoverability further, allowing core functionalities like widgets, Spotlight search suggestions, and Shortcut actions to extend beyond the bounds of the app, thanks to the upgrades from Apple Intelligence. This leap forward prompts marketers to unlock new paths to enhance customer retention.

Apple Watch: Enhanced Engagement with Live Activities

On the Apple Watch, marketers can tap into the new Live Activities feature, which provides customers the convenience of receiving updates—ranging from food deliveries to flight statuses—directly on their watch face. This echoes the analytics capabilities previously seen on the iPhone.

Advertising Innovations: Seamless Integration and Improved Attribution

There’s a fresh take on advertising, with a novel video ad format that blends seamlessly into media and entertainment apps, making ads virtually indistinguishable from the main content stream. Marketers can now attribute ad impressions to specific conversion events with greater precision, such as when an app is installed or launched. This level of detail is applicable across various ad types—custom clickable ads, view-through ads, and in-app banners—allowing marketers to identify customer engagement from mere ad views.

App Store Advertising: Tailored Customer Journeys

The App Store’s advertising landscape has opened up. Marketers can craft custom product pages aimed at distinct customer segments, each with its own set of deep links pointing to a dedicated landing page. Imagine crafting a page designed for Gen Z with enticing features and steering them to a unique landing page, while simultaneously curating a different experience for Millennials or Baby Boomers.

In-App Discovery: Harnessing Onboarding Tips

In-app discovery is enhanced by the capacity to group onboarding Tips and modulate their display frequency, ensuring customers aren’t overwhelmed. These Tip collections can be targeted toward specific customer segments—like those applying for a credit card or planning their next hike—adding to the personalization of the customer experience.

Designing for Spatial Awareness: Vision Pro and VisionOS 2

Vision Pro’s latest device and the newly minted visionOS 2 implore us to consider spatial aspects in our app engagement. There’s also a new Travel Mode feature that refines app functionality for use during commutes. Marketers should fine-tune the Travel Mode experience by analyzing customer journeys to create the optimal app experience for commuters.

Data Privacy at the Forefront

Privacy norms have been revisited, signaling marketers to foster trust through transparent data practices. In a world where customers increasingly hold sway over their data, clarity and respect regarding data usage are paramount. Embracing these privacy standards not only differentiates our brand but can also deepen customer loyalty in a marketplace where data sensitivity is escalating.

Staying Agile: The Marketer’s Mandate

At WWDC 2024, the underlying message for marketers is abundantly clear. We must stay nimble, and ready to adapt our strategies to align with cutting-edge features and technologies to bolster customer engagement. Our goal is to leverage these advancements to forge a seamless, customized, and compelling journey for each and every customer.

Shana Haynie
Shana is the Head of Content and Organic Growth for MoEngage's North America region and has over a decade of marketing experience helping businesses reach and engage their customers through strategic storytelling. When she isn't writing or editing, you can find her playing pickleball, singing karaoke, or walking her dog, Dexter.

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