Marketers often use terms such as omnichannel, multichannel, and cross-channel interchangeably. After all, they seem to mean the same thing - using multiple channels to acquire, engage and retain your customers. Well, while the essence of all the three is the same.
There is a thin line that differentiates them. Omni-channel marketing isn’t just another marketing buzzword; Omni-channel marketing refers to creating your brands’ presence across multiple online (website, app, social media, email, SMS, WhatsApp) and offline (retail store, events, call-center) channels while ensuring a positive and seamless experience throughout the customer journey.
On the other hand, multichannel marketing works in isolation with no connection between any of the marketing channels, and in cross-channel marketing the scope is slight.
While multichannel marketing distribute content and advertisements across various channels and makes an organization available to consumers online, it’s more reflective of operations and lacks cohesiveness
Omni-channel marketing on the other hand is transparent and more reflective of the overall customer experience as It dives a bit further to ensure an integrated, seamless experience across each channel is maintained. As consumers move across devices and platforms online & offline, omni-channel marketing ensures the channels work cohesively and in harmony with each other. It provides:
- Improved user experience through focusing on the individual experience across devices instead of the channel resulting in better retention and more sales
- Cohesive brand strategy & identity provides an easily identifiable brand image & tone which results in increased loyalty
- Increased revenue through engaging customers across multiple touch points and channels. Research shows multiple touch points engagement proves to be 30 percent more valuable . It also builds loyalty and creates repeat customers.
- Better attribution data through monitoring engagements across channels that provides brands with a better understanding of a customer’s journey for example: where consumers prefer to engage and which campaigns have created the most value. This ends up assisting in optimizing the media spending.
Thus as omnichannel marketing is popularized, several trends have emerged to increase effectiveness that improves consumer satisfaction and maximize marketing ROI. Integration of in-Store and online marketing and shopping and Integrating Devices to improve customer’s Purchase experience is one of them.
Omnichannel marketing is essential because it helps you create a positive experience for the customer at every stage of their lifecycle, reduce churn, and drive and build a positive reputation of your brand.
To create a perfect omnichannel experience understanding the pain points of the customer, closely observing the kind of platforms your customers frequently use to shop, their purchasing behavior, the challenges they face while shopping, how they interact with the brand across each touch point, and the devices they use to shop.
To make a perfect omni channel marketing mix one has to:
- Plan the experience of the customer and understand their behavior across all channels
- Use the CRM data and customer’s online search behavior as a base while strategizing.
- Segment the users and personalize the journey for the targeted audience
- Select the right marketing automation tools to implement your strategy
In a hyper-competitive business scenario of E-commerce or F-commerce, customers are spoiled for choices; so cutting through the noise to acquire, engage, and retain them can be done through a positive customer experience. The best way to achieve that includes using omnichannel marketing to:
- Audit existing marketing strategy to improve existing strategy.
- Analyze how customers interact with specific brands to learn customer behavior online and offline and their purchasing decisions as well.
- Segment customers smartly for retargeting
- Personalize the content for each channel from sending SMSs and emails, to sending push notifications.
- Use marketing automation tools to segment, personalize, schedule campaigns, and measure its effectiveness easily.
- Showcase unique advertisements through SMS, emails, push notifications, and the other mediums that funnel customers.
Why omni-channel marketing is essential can be quantified by the 87% of shoppers who want a “personalized and consistent shopping experience across all shopping channels.” Customers tend to remember their experiences with a brand regardless of time, place, channel, or number of engagements, the entire shopping experience with a brand leaves them with a lasting impression. This feeling differentiates brands and compels customers to choose, purchase or even tell their friends about a brand.
Among the wide array of tools and software like Digital asset management (DAM), Product information management (PIM) and Customer relationship management (CRM) the best tool to properly utilize omnichannel marketing is through (SaaS) Software as a Service marketing management software like: Markopolo.ai or similar software that automates and keeps all the channels and their communications in one place. It lets it’s users not only compile and analyze the customers data and their purchase history but also fine-tunes itself according to the results and creates better contents and manages databases to retarget the specific segments flawlessly. Markopolo.ai also provides reporting dashboards and invoices and generates images and captions. Markopolo.ai also provides opportunities to track emails and conversions, advance targeting, and capture possible customers through its unique integrated marketing solutions.
In essence, omnichannel marketing is quickly becoming the future of marketing and customer management in terms of targeting, managing, and helping customers differentiate between brands.