With technology moving at a rapid pace, the options of available channels keep growing. Therefore, we look at why omnichannel marketing matters, and why you should be using it.
What Is Omnichannel Marketing?
Omnichannel marketing is the integration of various marketing channels which helps to create a seamless approach when interacting with customers. It helps keep the branding of a business in line. Thus, ensuring a consistent experience is felt by the customers, regardless of the channel they choose to interact on. Overall, reaching the customer on the right platform.
There are a vast number of platforms available when it comes to integrations. These include website, email, social media, applications, and SMS. And with social media the options to choose from are endless. Which one of the social media platforms works best depends on your product/service and your target audience.
Based on the customer’s actions or inactions predetermined steps can be applied on how to next reach the customer, and on which platform. And with marketing automation these actions are taken care of for you. As a result, eliminating manual tasks and saving you time.
The Difference Between Omnichannel and Multichannel Marketing?
Omnichannel and multichannel are often viewed as going hand in hand, although there is a difference between the two.
Omnichannel marketing is about creating the experience for the customer. A seamless experience regardless of the channel the customer chooses to use. It considers the fact that customers move back and forth between channels during their customer journey.
A customer may start researching a product online, then go to a store to see it in person. Or, they may see a product online and then visit the company’s website to view it in more detail. In both cases here the intent is to make a purchase.
The goal of omnichannel marketing is to provide a consistent experience for the customer, no matter how they interact with your brand.
Multichannel marketing is about marketing to customers through multiple channels. These channels can include direct and indirect communication: web, print, mail, email, mobile etc.
The main difference being that multichannel marketing focuses on using multiple channels to reach customers. While omnichannel marketing focuses on providing a seamless customer experience across all channels.
The Omnichannel Approach
An omnichannel approach is the ideal way to connect with customers and provide them with a seamless experience. However, applying this strategy takes time, vision, and implementation. Some companies have even avoided implementing an omnichannel strategy due to the process being time consuming.
But, instead of avoiding this strategy, focus can be applied to a few channels, as opposed to trying to cover every channel available. It is imperative that you know which channels are more relative and effective for your product/service and target audience. Therefore, by narrowing down to the best suited channels, it will help you in implementing an omnichannel strategy.
By having such a marketing strategy in place, you will be able to measure results and forecast future sales. Therefore, providing a greater return on investment.
Why Is Omnichannel Marketing Important?
We have already mentioned what omnichannel marketing is and the role it plays, along with its benefits. Let us now highlight a few key points into why it is important.
- Creates a seamless customer experience: Customers should be able to move freely between channels without experiencing any friction.
- Reach customers wherever they are: Customers are using a variety of channels and you need to be where they are.
- Build trust and credibility with customers: If customers have a positive experience with your brand across all channels, they will be more likely to trust and recommend your brand.
- Increase customer lifetime value: By providing a seamless and positive experience across all channels you can keep customers coming back for more.
- Collect data from multiple touchpoints: Omnichannel marketing gives you the ability to track customer behavior across all channels and use the data to improve your marketing efforts.
- Deliver a consistent message: By delivering a consistent message across all channels, customers are most likely to buy into your message. Hence, resulting in more sales.
Examples of Omnichannel Marketing
Let us now look at a couple of omnichannel marketing examples.
Pet stores have grown in recent times. Nowadays, people treat their pets as their own children, more so than ever. The pet care market was worth $245 billion in 2021. And that figure is set to reach $261 billion (about $800 per person in the US) in 2022.
For most pet stores, it is their goal to create a seamless experience for customers, whether ordering instore, online or via an application. An omnichannel approach here is paramount to the customer experience.
When a customer first makes a purchase (instore or online), details such as name, phone number, email address, pet name, transaction details can be collected. And when collected and stored correctly the omnichannel approach can take place. All data can be stored in a customer data platform and be integrated across all channels.
So, when a customer makes repeat purchases of the same product for its pet, here is what can follow. An email can be sent as a reminder if the customer has not revisited the store, or missed the buying cycle. By offering an incentive, like a 10 percent discount on their next purchase, this can entice the customer to repurchase.
In this example if the customer has made a purchase after receiving the email, an SMS can be sent a few days later offering other incentives, be it instore or online.
If the opposite occurs, where the client has not acted on the email, then another approach can take place. The customer can be retargeted online with a retargeting ad. With the customer’s email address, you can target the customer online. Whereby, enticing them to revisit the store or remind them of a particular product.
A large retail chain would use omnichannel marketing to reach their target audience. This means they use multiple channels to reach their customers. In addition to using traditional channels such as print and TV ads, they would also use social media, email marketing and SMS.
Omnichannel marketing would allow a retail chain to reach their target audience in multiple ways. This ensures that they can reach as many potential customers as possible, across various channels. It also allows them to create a more complete brand experience for their customers.
A print or TV ad would promote special offers and everyday savings for everyone. Email marketing would deliver the same message, but make the experience more personal. If the customer has not opened or clicked through on the email, then social media posts can be used. An SMS can also be sent on the day of a sale event.
A key factor to take into consideration here is that it is not just about using multiple channels. But also ensuring the customer journey flows in a way making the connection between company and customer seamless.
So, whether the marketing is in print, TV, social media, email or SMS, the brand is sure to stay top of mind. And by creating a positive experience for the customer, it creates more opportunities for more sales.
Stay Ahead of The Game
By now you should understand the importance of omnichannel marketing and why it matters. And when it is done right it is sure to give your revenue a boost. Having an omnichannel marketing strategy should be your go to strategy. That is why gathering all your channels in one place is so important. Because of this, you can reach the customer at the right time, on the right platform and with the right message.
This blog post has also appeared in a MarketingPlatform Newsletter.
Author: Alex Trajcevski
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