When it comes to marketing your business, staying ahead of the competition means using as many channels available to you as possible - with the caveat that they need to be relevant to your audience, and manageable from your internal perspective.
The catch-all phrase for this approach is Omnichannel Marketing - the process of using a combination of traditional and digital channels, social media, apps, email, blogs and content marketing, and influencer marketing to reach as many target customers as possible.
But the above approach isn't simply a matter of taking a raft of marketing materials and throwing them out haphazardly into the universe with the hope of hitting the right audience. There needs to be a plan that focuses on a cohesive marketing rollout to enhance the user experience, and tie a brand message together that encourages the audience to take action.
What do we mean by 'Cohesive Approach'?
In essence, planning a cohesive omnichannel and marketing strategy involves:
- Identifying the goal (what do you want customers to do?)
- identifying the customers (who are they, where are they, how do you reach them?)
- Planning a campaign that is creative, innovative and speaks to the identified customer group.
- Setting an appropriate budget and targets to ensure maximum but measurable results.
- Creating visual assets to support this campaign, and are suitable for the identified channels.
- Roling out the assets into the identified channels in a sequence that leads the customers on a path to the identified goal.
- Measuring performance and applying learnings to the next campaign.
With the above, one of the critical aspects is applying as much personalisation as possible so that the target audience feels deeply engaged with the campaign.
There are increasingly sophisticated tools to help you identify consumers with a greater deal of accuracy - big data and Artificial Intelligence are giving brands the chance to personalise end-user experiences (as recipients of direct marketing) in an individualised way, but at scale.
Let's put this into an example
Ultimately, within the above planning and execution, you're aiming to move your customer through the phases of a purchase decision process, as follows:
Awareness - 'The season is changing and with it, I'll need a new coat'
Consideration - 'Shop XYZ is offering great prices on coats that really appeal to me because of their bright colour range, plus I get a 10% discount if I buy online'
Decision - 'I'll buy my new coat from Shop XYZ because they've clearly got the best deal specifically for me'
A campaign to attract the above purchase decision may look something like this:
- We want customers to buy our new range of brightly coloured winter coats primarily through our new online shop (where we make a better margin due to reduced physical store costs). We also want to grow our social media following so that we can market more effectively over time.
- We have a budget of £XXXX and want to achieve sales of £YYYY, XXXX new subscribers on our Instagram page, and XX% increase in online sales.
- We know the brighter colours appeal to the younger audience based on data we've been given. We also know our younger audience prefer buying online and are price-conscious. We also know our younger audience attribute a lot of credibility to campaigns on Instagram and TikTok, but they're also listening to music on Spotify and watch XYZ show at 4pm on Wednesdays.
- We put together a series of short videos showcasing our range of coats, tying them into colours mentioned in songs our audience listens to, and we post these videos to Instagram and TikTok, asking our audience to follow our page to get a 10% discount by unlocking a unique code. We have a TV advert that airs on Wednesdays that drives value and variety as key aspects of the sale and encourages online purchases. We take out audio ads on Spotify tying music to colours, and driving to our online platform to find out more about how to get the discount value.
- We measure performance across all of the used channels and apply those learnings to our next campaign.
The results speak for themselves....
Taking the omnichannel marketing approach may require more planning, thought and care in execution than more linear approaches, but the results suggest the effort is worthwhile:
- Engagement rate: 18.96% on omnichannel vs 5.4% on single-channel.
- Purchase frequency: 250% higher on omnichannel vs single-channel.
- Average order value: 13% more per order on omnichannel vs single-channel.
- Customer retention rates: 90% higher for omnichannel vs single-channel.
For help creating innovative, omnichannel marketing strategies that really deliver value to your target audience and to your business's bottom line, contact our friendly staff today or email firstname.lastname@example.org to find out more.