Channel Integration: Your Omnichannel Marketing Strategy
- by Career Moves PR & Marketing
- 17 Oct 2018
Last week we looked at integrating your offline media with your digital campaign to increase your company’s overall brand messaging. This week we are taking the omnichannel marketing strategy, breaking it down, addressing its importance in today’s working world, and seeing how an audience can best be reached in a tech-saturated life.
Businesses that embrace the fact people are switching between devices on a day-to-day basis, position themselves with the opportunity to meet their customer’s needs at any given time of day regardless of the channel being utilised by the user.
First, let’s outline the differences between omnichannel and multichannel marketing.
Simply, multichannel marketing refers to the interaction with the initial customer. As a marketer, you can use multiple channels to spread your brand identity and interact with your consumer. These can be a range of online and offline mediums such as a print ad, a website, a promotional event, packaging, most of which a marketer is familiar with.
Whereas omnichannel marketing refers to utilising the multi-channel approach to provide the customer with a seamless, integrated, experience. From the customer perspective, their experience from a desktop or mobile device, via phone, or in a brick-and-mortar store will run fluidly with the same brand messaging and full functionality across devices.
As we begin to focus more on the customer’s experience with our brand, and their engagement, we are moving away from purely focusing on branding our businesses on the maximum possibility of channels. Now, marketers use an omnichannel approach to link each used channel to create a positive experience with the brand across each channel.
Through taking a holistic approach to marketing, that encourages brand consistency throughout all channels. Although research details that customers will still use both a brick-and-mortar shop, as well as an online platform to make their purchases, consumers have growing expectations that the digital experience will echo that of the physical store, and consistency is key.
As the market is saturated with content and marketing techniques to grab the consumers attention, from direct email marketing, to billboards, magazines, or social media, it is important to ensure that no matter how your customer is engaging with your brand, that they are having a positive experience. Fully integrating strategies and messaging across marketing campaigns, requires multiple touchpoints and experiences that informs the customer of the next engagement.
- Context is key
In the market of the empowered consumers, marketers would do well to ensure their brand is present in the “Moments that Matter”. Marketers need to integrate their company’s relevancy into the consumer world, through offering valuable information in a variety of situations. To know when to approach your consumer with more brand information you will need to know your ideal buyer of course, but your actual buyer as well. Who are they? How are they interacting with your brand? How can you best utilise multiple channels to further develop your relationship with them?
- Your Customer
How are they finding you? Which channels are drawing them to your brand? What do they wish you achieve from you? How can you help?
Benchmark your progress with your customer engagement, see where your customers are drawn to with your brand so that you can further build that relationship and offer the service that they are seeking. Of course, engagement from customers vary from department to department, and again we are met with breaking down the walls between sales, marketing, product development, PR, and customer service to work in conjunction with each other and improve overall workplace agility.
Integrating the departments interaction will aid brand identity, and holistically improve company messaging through increasing communication streams to the customer, presenting a fluid approach that is agile and places the customer at the centre of the experience.
- Using Technology
As the consumer world of technology has increased, so has the tools available to marketers. When used together, these tools are referred to as a ‘marketing technology stack’, they vary from user to user, but to be successful, it is pertinent to identify groupings of tools that can work together to improve the effectiveness of marketing efforts.
An example of a marketing technology stack:
- Customer Relationship Management Software
- Video/Web Conferencing Solution
- Email Service Provider
- Marketing Automation Platform
- Print Materials and Solutions
- Analytics and Data Visualisation Solutions
- Content Management System
Combining your customer relationship management tool with your analytics, will detail each buyer’s journey and the use of analytics will inform a marketer’s overall strategy. From here you can build you stack, and tailor your tools, to ensure that customers are reached relevantly in those ‘Moments that Matter’, increasing conversion, but also offering that positive use experience regardless of channel.
What value can omnichannel marketing bring?
Undertaking an omnichannel approach to marketing strategies, opens your audience to successfully engage with your brand on as many platforms as possible. You are tailoring your approach to your busy customer who one moment may be on their phone, and the next be on their day. Knowing the habits of your customers can allow you to utilise each approach to increased user experience.
A study run by the HBR of 46,000 shoppers found that customers spend:
- 4% more when visiting the store
- 10% more on an online site than those who only use one channel
- 13% more when doing prior research before buying
Investing in the omnichannel approach offers your brand increased consumer trust, and engagement.