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Post: Omnichannel Marketing Strategies, Use Cases, and Trends



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Customers use several touchpoints to interact with a brand.

Omnichannel marketing helps brands create a positive and seamless shopping experience at every stage of the customer’s journey.

Omnichannel marketing refers to creating multiple touchpoints across channels – website, app, social media, email, SMS, WhatsApp, retail or offline stores, events, and more. This allows customers to have a cohesive brand experience regardless of where they interact with a business.

On average, companies with solid commitments to the omnichannel customer maintain 89% of their customers. Brands can increase their purchase rates by 287% by using at least three channels in their communication mix.

Multichannel vs. omnichannel marketing

Multichannel and omnichannel marketing are thought about synonymously. However, they are vastly different.

Multichannel marketing refers to a strategy where a business interacts with customers through multiple independent channels.

Each channel – a physical store, an e-commerce website, and a social media page – operates independently and may have its own branding and customer experience. While customers can engage with the brand through different channels, the experience may not be consistent or integrated.

Omnichannel marketing takes a more holistic approach. 

In an omnichannel strategy, the different channels are interconnected and work together to deliver a seamless customer journey. Customers can transition between channels without any disruption. Their preferences and data are shared across touchpoints to provide a tailored and consistent experience.

With channel convergence, which involves merging multiple marketing channels into a unified experience, brands eliminate friction and provide a seamless customer journey.

By breaking down silos and blurring the lines between channels, businesses can increase satisfaction, drive engagement, and foster long-term customer loyalty.

An example of this is Disneyland’s exceptional omnichannel experience which includes its website, app, and a wrist magic band that allows visitors to browse rides, unlock rooms, enter parks, and easily make purchases.

Benefits of implementing omnichannel marketing strategies

Omnichannel is tuned to enhance customer engagement and retention. Nearly 88% of customers say that the experience a company provides is as important as its products or services.

The following are some benefits that both customers and brands unlock with omnichannel marketing:

For customers:

  • More ways to reach a company and solve problems 
  • Personalized services 
  • Incredible in-store experiences
  • Convenient shopping 
  • Exposure to great deals

For brands:

  • Edge over competition 
  • Brand recognition
  • Higher user retention 
  • Increased revenue 
  • Customer loyalty 
  • Improved lifetime value (LTV) 
  • A cohesive customer support

Imagine a user who is about to leave a website without making any purchases. The brand sends an email or displays a quick pop-up of a 20% discount which nudges the customer to proceed with the purchase.

This shows that each touchpoint is an opportunity to listen to customers and form relationships.

Implementing an effective omnichannel marketing strategy

Omnichannel marketing implementation is multifaceted. Marketers must dissect, learn, and understand many elements that feed into the equation to improve conversions at multiple stages.

Understanding customers and creating a persona 

The first step for a brand is to learn about its customers, their problems, and their needs. This removes the guesswork and leaves businesses with facts and data points. An ideal persona will provide a cohort that shares similar purchase patterns, challenges, and resolutions.

For example, Starbucks allowed people to order their drink through the app and pick it up via drive-thru or in person. For customers who visit the shop daily for a cup of coffee, the click-and-collect option saves the time required to wait in queue for the order.

Integrating online and offline channels 

Seventy-six percent of customers expect consistent interactions across departments. 

An omnichannel marketing automation tool can seamlessly integrate with a business system, be it web, app, or retail. The tool provides information about a user’s journey – when they visit a store or purchase online – so the brand managers can craft communication accordingly.

Personalizing customer experience and audience segmentation

It is a crucial step to segment audiences with the same buying tendencies, behavior, or trajectory. For example, users who shop only when they have a discount code and loyal customers fall under two different segments. 

Personalization becomes easier with better segmentation. 

Brands can send promotions to both segments that lead up to a desired result. Ninety-one percent of shoppers say that the ability of retailers to listen to them and understand their challenges is the most crucial element of service. 

For example, Starbucks knows that customers love freebies, so the free coffee rewards on their birthday is a longstanding program.

Leveraging data analytics for customer experience

Customers are now quick to move when brands treat them poorly. Omnichannel is thus a boon in enhancing customer experience across sales, advertising, and marketing through profound insights into the system. 

Data analysis not only helps in gaining these actionable insights but also helps businesses understand and address customer churn and dormant user behavior. 

By carefully examining usage patterns and customer behavior, companies can easily identify at-risk or inactive customers. It can help implement targeted communication strategies, such as personalized emails and re-engagement campaigns, to entice dormant users back to the platform. 

Additionally, user surveys can provide valuable feedback and insights to understand the reasons behind churn and implement improvements to prevent future customer attrition. With effective data analysis, companies can take proactive steps to retain their customers and enhance overall customer satisfaction and loyalty.

It also helps create an ecosystem of solid communication that stays true to the brand identity.

Unifying data with a customer data platform (CDP)

The customer data platform (CDP) takes center stage in omnichannel marketing.

In customer data management, CDP is a powerful tool that collects, organizes, and unifies customer data from various sources. This comprehensive 360-degree view of customer interactions is key to delivering personalized experiences across channels.

CDP provides brands with a wealth of information about customer preferences, behaviors, and past interactions, which helps them understand customer needs, tailor brand messaging, and create targeted campaigns that hit the bullseye.

CDP also enables easy data activation. Brands can use the data stored in the CDP to fuel personalized marketing efforts, such as personalized emails, customized recommendations, and targeted advertisements.

Social media: a new addition to the media mix 

Gen Z  and millennials, who make up the most extensive group of buyers on the internet, are migrating to social media, thus entering the channel into the omnichannel mix.

Social media is now a key touchpoint, with people spending an average of 2 hours and 24 minutes on online social apps.

Marketing on social media starts with identifying a suitable medium.

A consumer brand may flourish on Instagram and TikTok, while a SaaS business will likely perform better on LinkedIn. Understanding the target audience’s demographics and preferences is crucial before diving into the marketing strategy.

Businesses must establish a consistent brand presence across social media channels, maintaining a cohesive visual identity, tone of voice, and messaging. A content strategy tailored to each platform, considering each social media channel’s unique features and audience expectations, will go a long way.

Here is an example of a robust social media omnichannel strategy in action.

An omnichannel retail e-commerce marketplace for furniture, Pepperfry, is a highly underrated omnichannel marvel. The immersive Pepperfry studio lets people go through their selection, and once shortlisted, users can visit the retail store for the final purchase.

Moving past this, the website has two sections dedicated to user-generated content on social media. One that curates all the great furnishing listings, and another one that encourages people to be part of the program and share their version.

Source: Pepperfry

This is a great idea and works well for the brand because:

  • Furniture in real-life settings, in homes that look like theirs, connects with users and provides inspiration. 
  • The dedicated space for user-generated content on the website provides affirmation and social proof and builds a solid use case for the product’s longevity. 
  • The brand gets extended visibility when they share these images on social media, and users in the network can bring in quick references. 
  • Brand availability on channels like Pinterest and Instagram lets users save what they like and ask for the same product.

Incorporating mobile marketing channels

As mobile traffic increases, it’s evident that most purchase journeys are starting on mobile too. How can brands build journeys that capture the audience in this mobile-first world?

Offline and online integration

Integrating online and offline channels can enhance the buying experience in multiple ways. Brands may implement easy strategies like incentivizing mobile app users on the store by offering a quick discount to allow web viewing of products available at the store.

For example, Decathlon
brought in QR codes for seamless payment, eradicating the hassle of carrying cash. These codes are not paper slips taped to the checkout counter, either. Instead, these are unique codes generated by the POS system dynamically for each transaction.

Responsive design and elements

A study by Google found that 61% of users are unlikely to return to a website that’s not mobile-friendly.

Therefore, websites, emails, and other digital assets should be optimized to automatically adjust their layout, font size, and functionality based on the user’s device. 

Mobile optimization involves:

  • Optimizing page load speed
  • Improving mobile navigation
  • Simplifying checkout processes

Device agnostic journeys

Predicting a user’s buying behavior is difficult.

They may first see an ad on social media, then browse the website on a tablet, and eventually, buy the product from their laptop. This demands developing a device-agnostic strategy by using UTMs, one links, cookies, and CRM tools to collect data and map out journeys.

By embracing a mobile-first approach, optimizing for mobile devices, and utilizing channels, such as SMS marketing, push notifications, and mobile apps, businesses can effectively incorporate mobile marketing into their strategies.

This enables them to meet the evolving needs of their mobile-savvy audience and maximize their marketing efforts in the mobile-dominated landscape.

Emerging trends in omnichannel marketing

Much like other marketing automation, omnichannel marketing is ever-evolving. Here are a few emerging trends.

Artificial intelligence (AI)

Majorly used for a personalized experience, brands are going big on using AI/ML technologies to provide a highly personalized shopping experience. AI can produce tailored content, product recommendations, and offers by leveraging data.

Amazon uses AI for dynamic pricing and manages the demand-supply pull. Prices are reduced when more sales are required and are hiked to manage high demand.

Augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR) 

A big hit with fashion e-commerce, AR/VR offers an immersive experience to customers. VR can be utilized for virtual store experiences, product demonstrations, or interactive storytelling.

IKEA built an AR app called IKEA Place that allows users to virtually place furniture and home decor items in their living spaces using their smartphone or tablet.

Source: IKEA

Hyper-personalization and CDPs

With the increasing availability of user data, brands are building CDPs to provide enriched individualist experiences. These CDPs enable customer data collection, unification, and activation across multiple touchpoints.

Netflix has a robust CDP to analyze vast amounts of customer data and often uses it to showcase different thumbnails to different users based on their consumption patterns.

Source: Netflix

The future of omnichannel marketing

A new term, phygital, is taking over the marketing world that combines physical and digital at the same time. The boundaries between mediums to shop are thinning as 67% of shoppers now expect to purchase online and then proceed to pick it up from the store.

Conversely, 46% of brands invested in improving in-store experience via showrooming –  the ability to visit stores to test products before buying them online.

Customers love personalization. They want recommendations, tailored messaging, offers based on past searches, and so on. Omnichannel marketing ties it all together – it meets the customers where they are.

How does the multichannel experience work in retail? Learn about multichannel retail and how it can help engage customers both online and offline.

Lora Helmin

Lora Helmin

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