2023’s Customer Acquisition and Brand Growth Trends: Real-Life Success Stories and Future Forecast

By Mary Hanula, Senior Director of Marketing, Eulerity

This article was previously published in the International Franchise Association’s Franchising World Magazine November Tech & Trends issue

It’s been an astounding year for technological advancements. This year, we’ve seen Artificial Intelligence (AI) and marketing automation become synonymous with a brand’s marketing success. A recent survey concluded that, “61.4 percent of marketers have used AI in their marketing activities,” and, “44 percent have adopted AI for marketing production.” The brands that choose to be progressive and take advantage of new technology are the ones that will stand the test of time. Those that are weary of technology often misinterpret it to be incredibly complicated or lacking transparency. I’m here to highlight all the ways that technology has not only aided, but accelerated, brand growth with a focus on the profound impact AI and automation has had on brands’ customer acquisition efforts.

Marketing technology has transformed the way brands communicate with their customers, giving brands the power to be anywhere and everywhere that their prospects and customers already are online. There is no more wishful thinking for a great marketing tool needed — automation and AI answered and made dreams a reality. Marketing automation is a powerful tool that streamlines repetitive, mundane tasks, allowing brands to concentrate on more significant, strategic initiatives. By automating processes, companies can save time and resources, and supercharge their current team to take on more without constant repetitive work.  Marketing automation takes care of data analysis, customer engagement strategies and innovative campaigns, fostering a more strategic and results-driven approach to marketing efforts. With AI, predictive analytics analyze your customer’s online activity and apply retargeting to make sure that you and your services are staying top of mind. Automation has hands down been one of the biggest allies for increases in customer acquisition for brands.

Ask yourself, have you ever waited impatiently for data, demographics, or results from a vendor partner? Then had to implement an entirely new marketing strategy that took months to concoct? Automation eliminates the middleman while ensuring you’re in charge. Your franchise locations can now have the most hyper-locally targeted marketing campaigns and still be using corporate guidelines which are brand compliant. You can maintain a national ad fund while also encouraging franchisees to invest in automation. The differences they see from these marketing efforts is shocking.

For example, Hand & Stone Massage and Facial Spa, a category leader with over 600 locations, partnered with Eulerity, a marketing automation platform, to simplify their social marketing by integrating posts, paid ads, and Youtube campaigns. John Teza, Hand & Stone’s Chief Executive Officer, cites the hyper-locality that automation provides, saying, “It empowers them to think local while maintaining our brand identity and saves valuable time. With data-driven insights, they ditch guesswork and adapt to evolving consumer trends in real time. Personalization enhances customer acquisition, fostering loyalty and advocacy.” Gone are the notions that you must give up authenticity and personalized outreach in order to make your marketing more efficient. Now, you can have it all, have it instantly, and see the results in real-time.

According to a survey by Gartner, “63 percent of marketing leaders are planning to invest in generative AI in the next 24 months, with slightly more than half of respondents (56%) seeing greater reward than risk in generative AI.”

Let’s talk about the concept of reward being greater than risk. We consistently try to use our better judgment and skills when making our next marketing move. This can sometimes become too subjective. AI and automation help create and confirm marketing strategies based on data drive insights combined with always on marketing optimization. This practice eliminates subjective labor intensive efforts in favor of automatically discovering the highest performing, optimized delivery of your best ad assets and campaigns strategies. Customers are impressed by effective marketing, and they know its effectiveness when they end up hearing about your product, seeing it advertised online, and then taking action.

In regards to customer acquisition, another brand that saw an increase in that area for 2023 is AR Workshop. Franchisees of this brand witnessed incredibly impressive results within a four month period after infusing marketing automation into their marketing strategy. Brand locations using marketing automation saw a staggering average ROI jump of 168% and a remarkable 116% surge in new user traffic to local landing pages. These outcomes underscore the evolving landscape of consumer engagement in the digital age, where precision and efficiency are paramount. Maureen Anders, Chief Executive Officer and Co-Founder of AR Workshop, spoke on automation’s impact on customer acquisition, saying, “The integration of automation and AI has proven to be nothing short of revolutionary for our brand. Not only have we seen a substantial boost in revenue, but it signifies a deeper, more meaningful engagement with our customer base. The influx of new visitors shows actual people interested in our brand, products and services.” Anders is referencing the results their brand has seen due to their partnership with Eulerity, which not only boosts revenue, but fundamentally alters the dynamics of brand-consumer relationships. Anders went on to say, “Technology ceases to be a tool; it becomes a strategic partner, offering profound insights into customer preferences and behaviors. The precision and efficiency brought by Eulerity’s platform have redefined our approach to client acquisition. Automation and AI have given us a profound understanding of our target audience’s preferences and behaviors, enabling us to tailor our marketing efforts with unmatched precision. This type of tech ensures that our brand resonates with the right audience at the right time.”

With technology on your side, an increase in customer acquisition has never been more achievable. In fact, there are so many different types of technology and advancements in AI that will continue to become a tried and true aspect of your brand’s marketing efforts. In 2023 we saw the steady rise of ChatGPT, chatbots, marketing automation, and AI. What can we expect in the future? One thing we’ll start seeing a lot more of is conversational AI, with chatbots powered by AI becoming increasingly sophisticated and useful. Bots will continue to handle mass customer queries, but also assist in personalized product recommendations using Natural Language Processing (NLP) and more. We’re going to see more personalization at scale, with AI algorithms currently enabling the analysis of vast datasets to create highly personalized and targeted marketing campaigns. This personalization will continue to extend to content, product recommendations, the timing of marketing messages and more. Brands are expected to tailor their SEO strategies to accommodate natural language queries and voice search optimization. Augmented Reality (AR) and Virtual Reality (AR) are finding applications in marketing, especially in the retail sector. Virtual try-ons, immersive shopping experiences, and interactive advertisements are becoming increasingly prevalent. One thing is for sure — the options are endless, but the future is here.

Mary Hanula is the Senior Director of Marketing for Eulerity, the world’s leading marketing automation software. The company brings brands AI-optimized digital marketing, optimized ad spend, seamless ad creation, and automated ad deployment — all available on the first ever online advertising app. Eulerity prides itself on partnering with Fortune 500 companies and top franchise brands to revolutionize digital marketing and give business back to business owners.


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