Creating a solid omnichannel marketing strategy is becoming increasingly essential.
Ecommerce is booming, and marketers are working hard to provide users with smooth experiences across all platforms.
Customers can utilize various devices to purchase at any time without losing the context as they switch from one to the other. People often move between devices to complete tasks, and cross-channel sales are becoming a huge part of ecommerce and need to be managed properly.
What Is Omnichannel Marketing?
Omnichannel marketing is the act of creating a seamless user experience spanning all the channels linked to the buyer's journey to purchase. Users work with multiple devices, offering them connection and control over purchases.
In the past, people would look at one or two options online, but today, they can do in-depth research over time, location, and various media channels.
These channels aren't just online ones—they're newspapers, magazines, billboards, word of mouth, and stores, too.
Every brand’s marketing strategy should plan for the fact that customers interact with brands anytime and anywhere, including on mobile, a company's website or app, in-store, and more.
Building Your Omnichannel Marketing Strategy
If you are starting with a blank slate when creating an omnichannel marketing strategy and are determined to make a coherent multichannel experience, the easiest way is to start small and build.
Try a single-channel campaign to hone in on one particular customer need. Choose the issue and then launch a multichannel marketing plan to present across technological platforms and in-store.
In a small business environment especially, this approach helps you to avoid getting ahead of yourself.
Try using a contest, blogs, or anything else you think works for all areas. You are putting the buyer in the middle of the campaign to solve the issue.
Once this is done, broaden your brand's horizons with an expanded omnichannel marketing strategy, such as including social media and email marketing.
Making Omnichannel Marketing Work For Your Business
Marketing has had to morph as the global ecommerce landscape has evolved in form and content. Moving your brand forward takes innovative thinking, a greater marketing effort, and the application of cross-channel marketing strategies.
You will need to address:
What is old is new. The context was always of paramount importance and is still central to a good marketing campaign; however, the content has to be available at the moment. Access must be immediate.
That’s what digital marketing is all about today: on-demand content helps with everything from customer support (such as live chat) to customer engagement to customer loyalty.
Understanding what your customers are looking for and how they access it is central to the data you offer. Understanding the customer journey allows you to put content in pertinent places optimized for multiple devices.
Offering location finders, suggestions based on browsing history, GPS access, and reminders of cart contents are all things that can be utilized on marketing channels to induce better conversion rate optimization (CRO).
Understand who you are selling to
Collecting customer data that tells you who your target audience is and what they want is useful, to say the least.
Understanding the roadblocks that hinder them is important. Get audience input and capture leads to learning more about them.
Seek to understand how they are accessing your content. Be aware of ecommerce trends that help you understand who your customer is—using targeted advertising through online channels with both in-store and traditional advertising benefits sales.
Change up the structure
One of the biggest hindrances to a brilliant multi-channel marketing strategy is a siloed organization, or each department working independently of others.
Teamwork is essential to making sure that marketing, product development, and IT are all involved in supporting the marketing plan and eliminating sales barriers.
A dedicated and synched team is important for creating a positive customer experience, which starts with the right omnichannel marketing approach. Keeping communication free-flowing between departments means the customer experience is central to the team as a whole.
Integrate marketing technology
There are many marketing products in the business world, and while each company has its own priorities, some tools are more prominently used, as outlined by Aberdeen.
Using software for customer relationship management, solutions for video/web conferencing, print materials, analytics, and obtaining both quality email service providers and content management systems are critical as they help provide a consistent experience.
The core of the stack should be the customer relationship management (CRM) tool that details each individual's journey from a prospective buyer to a customer.
Barriers to an omnichannel strategy
Many companies have hit the ground running with the knowledge that omnichannel marketing helps their retail business; however, many implementing multichannel marketing admit they don't know if they’re doing it right.
So, what is stopping companies from implementing omnichannel marketing? To put it simply, a lack of both knowledge and economic resources. For example:
- Lack of analytical resources to help vet data
- Problems with integrating any data found
- Gaps in communication between marketing groups and sellers
- Lack of high-level buy-in. C-Suite does not often agree on the value of omnichannel marketing.
- The organization is too siloed, creating a lack of bridges between business areas.
These issues should be addressed because an omnichannel experience is critical to business success as technology grows quickly within the ecommerce market.
Omnichannel Marketing: Brand Examples
As you begin to create an omnichannel marketing strategy, it never hurts to take cues from leaders in this space.
Disney, for example, mastered omnichannel marketing early on.
The one thing you can take away from Disney’s strategy is the importance of a consistent brand experience. It doesn’t matter if you’re visiting a Disney theme park, watching a Disney movie, or shopping in a Disney store. The experience remains consistent throughout.
Sephora is another example of a company with a sound approach to omnichannel marketing. By combining online and in-store shopping experiences, consumers can learn more about products and make purchases without any friction.
One of the best examples is Sephora’s technology for virtually trying on beauty products via a mobile app. You can do this when shopping remotely or in-store.
Either way, the result is the same: more confidence in making a purchase.
Popular omnichannel tools
Making sure you have the right tools for omnichannel marketing is important. This helps guarantee a seamless experience for the targeted consumers in your omnichannel campaign.
Here are some suggestions:
- MoEngage - A customer data platform to analyze behavior, engage across multiple channels, and optimize each touchpoint.
- Omnisend - Use all digital channels from one platform.
- Pyze - Analytics and messaging platform.
- Ecrion Engage - Communication software creates one-on-one connections with customers.
- Clevertap - Convert, retain, and grow numbers of mobile users.
- NotifyVisitors - Marketing automation software.
- Zaius - Connecting customer data with marketing campaigns.
- CustomerLabs CDP - Customer analytics.
- Vizury - Acquire, retain (customer loyalty), engage, convert.
- Kibo - Cloud commerce solutions.