Multichannel marketing refers to the practice of interacting with customers using a combination of indirect and direct communication channels – websites, social media networks, blogs, email, retail, direct mail, mobile, etc. – and enabling customers to take action in response – preferably to buy your product or service – using the channel of their choice.
In the most simplistic terms, multichannel marketing is all about choice.
The Importance of Multichannel Marketing
Multichannel marketing is important for the simple reason that you must be where your customers are. And they are everywhere. If you need another reason, consider this: Multichannel customers spend three to four times more than single-channel customers do.
There’s no doubt that customers today have much more control over the buying process than marketers do. Thanks to the proliferation of available channels, customers have more choices than ever when it comes to how they want to get information.
Today there are more ways to reach customers – both in terms of number and variety of channels – than we could have imagined not so long ago. And as the number of channels continues to rise – and it will – the need to embrace multichannel marketing will become not only a good idea, but a critical one.
The Multichannel Response to Marketing Challenges
Targeted messaging. Thanks to the plethora of channels and choices facing customers, delivering the right message to the right audience isn’t enough. Not only must your customers receive your message, but they also must be attentive, receptive and willing to act – regardless of the channel.
Highly choreographed campaigns. Expecting customers to change channel or device preferences is unrealistic. As a result, marketers must constantly develop and coordinate highly orchestrated touch points and micro-campaigns that span multiple channels fluidly, in a way that the customer finds meaningful and trustworthy.
Marketing response attribution. It is increasingly difficult to know which channels, campaigns or sequence of touch points contributed to qualified conversions and sales. Knowing what triggered each response would enable marketers to assess whether or not their marketing efforts were getting the best results.
Two steps to getting it right
So what does it take to do multichannel marketing right? Here are three keys to success:
Create and maintain a single view of the customer across all channels.
Create consistent customer experiences across all channels.
Create a Buyer Persona... or a “single view” of the customer
Having a single view of the customer is critical. That’s because today’s customers often interact with your brand in a variety of ways that involve more than one touch point. It is vital that you understand how your customers behave across all channels, at each and every touch point, and that you also understand each customer’s value to you.
To get that single customer view, create a buyer persona and do a deep dive into your target consumer behavior.
When creating and maintaining a single view of the customer, keep these points in mind:
Having a lot of customer data is not the same as having a single view of the customer. It’s not just the data itself that is important; it’s what you do with it.
Your customer view must evolve. Customers change. Businesses change. Your customer view must change along with them. That means bringing in new data, refreshing old data, building new models, updating old ones, etc.
Create Consistent Customer Experiences Across All Channels
Customer experience is one of the most powerful competitive differentiators. And while the quality of the customer experience is important, consistency is equally important. That’s because your customers experience your brand as a whole, whether their interactions with you are online, in a store, over the phone, or some combination of these. What value is there in a positive online experience if a customer’s in-store experience is negative? If you treat each channel as a distinct entity, you run the risk of turning customers against you if you fail to deliver consistency.
More about the Complex Nature of Multichannel Marketing
PHANTOM POWER Marketing integrates multiple communication channels to reach your prospects and customers with clear, consistent and relevant messaging at every possible touchpoint. We do this to put you where your customers are, and they are everywhere.
While technically multichannel marketing, at its most basic understanding, is about simply marketing across different channels, the greatest success comes from creating cohesive multichannel campaigns… because the whole is greater than the sum of its parts.