You’ve created the perfect product or service, but how do you then entice customers to spend money on it? After all, if you don’t attract and retain the right customers, you won’t be very successful.

Today’s customers use a variety of devices for commerce, like smartphones, laptops, and desktops. They also access multiple media sources to find your product or service, such as social media, email, web searches, vlogs, and ad clicks.

Developing a strategy that encompasses everything from customer contact to customer experience in a seamless, pleasant way is the key to successful omni-channel marketing. So, where do you put your focus?

What Is Omni-Channel Marketing?

Omni-channel marketing analyzes customer behaviors and needs to determine the best solutions that lead to success. Step into your customers’ shoes to learn what makes their lives easier or their browsing experience simpler or more pleasant.

Our modern technological world can seem cold and unfeeling, and customers yearn for a more personal approach. Today’s omnichannel marketing automation strategies can provide your customers with this desired level of comfort.

From initial customer contact to billing and follow-up customer service, omni-channel marketing spans all levels of your organization. An effective plan will embrace all departments or channels and unify the message.

How Do You Create an Omni-Channel Strategy?

Consider the following actions as you design new omni-channel strategies:

  1. Start small – A complete overhaul of your marketing strategy is expensive and can be jarring to customers who don’t appreciate change. Start small based on customer feedback and address one issue at a time.
  2. Evaluate your customers’ needs – If your website lacks a key component, like a store locator, solve that issue first by using different technologies that check their location, find the nearest store, and connect to GPS. If your customers are unfamiliar with your product, create a content blog that tells them why it’s useful.
  3. Look at your website – An objective evaluation of your website helps you see whether it flows well. Click on each link, perform searches, and check whether the customer can easily access and learn about your product.
  4. Pay attention to statistics – Track the effectiveness of your campaigns by measuring each click and asking yourself how often it results in a sale. Narrowing your focus will save time and effort.
  5. Treat each customer uniquely – Your customers are not identical and creating different strategies to address each audience segment is key. Marketing automation tools can capture data and create customized messages for a more personal touch.
  6. Consistency – Use your brand, logo, slogan and colors consistently throughout your media to enhance the customer experience. Be sure your site looks appealing across all devices and confirm that you’re sending the right message.
  7. Use all opportunities to connect – Keep in touch with customers on your email list with relevant content and calls to action. If they’re on the verge of a purchase, follow up with a note or incentive to nudge them to complete the sale.

Why Is Omni-Channel Marketing Important?

Focusing on your customer is critical to your company’s success and reputation, so account for the following:

  1. Your bottom line – Paying close attention to your customers’ experience can help you generate up to 60% more profit than companies that simply sell products with no direction. Drawing people to your site and treating them well can pay huge dividends.
  2. Loyalty – A great strategy builds brand loyalty as your happy customer will return for more purchases or services — and they’ll tell their friends. Enhance this loyalty through buyer profiles, customer segmentation, content specific to a buyer’s behavior, seamless flow across multiple devices, and customer support.
  3. Evolve – It would be wonderful if simply designing a product and website with good customer service were enough, but this ever-changing world dictates vigilance and change. Take a look at your traffic and return on investment every so often to find out where you can improve.
  4. Keep it real – Adding automation is advantageous, but make sure it’s not done at the expense of customers’ comfort and experience. Study, plan, and be prudent when choosing new strategies.

New Omni-Channel Marketing Trends for 2020

While omni-channel marketing is not a new concept, it has taken on more importance of late. Today’s customers are more educated and conduct extensive research before buying a product, and companies need a way to stand out from the competition. Plus, COVID-19 continues to affect marketing and business, keeping customers at home and limiting their experiences to digital platforms as opposed to physical storefronts and ad displays.

Omni-channel marketing combines all customer interaction points, including retail stores, online sites, email, social media, and more, on any device customers use. It’s critical to focus on this entire customer experience while making it feel human.

  1. Appeal to customer emotions – Known as customer intimacy, this strategy involves branding your product or service to create an emotional response in your customers. Study what triggers their behavior and write blogs or ads to address their needs.Employ relationships, current events and product uses to bring a personal touch and connection to your brand. Although it sounds counterintuitive, today’s automation software can bring your customers together by uniting them behind a cause or purpose.
  2. Don’t forget retail stores – With the rise of technology and stay-at-home, it’s easy to focus only on emails and online sales, but people inherently crave social interaction. Don’t neglect the in-person stores as an option to connect with your customers.Part of the seamless interaction across your channels involves directing consumers to a retail store through store locators, GPS directions and in-store promotions or giveaways. Conversely, if someone walks into your store, provide digital options to keep in touch, such as an email list sign-up, website reminders, check-ins, or social media sites.
  3. Use technology to manage your campaignsMarketing automation software is sophisticated, combining artificial intelligence with your customer data to craft specific, personal written and digital communication that appeals to each customer.By using the software’s workflow, you can set it up to automatically send emails, texts, or other messages based on behaviors. The data gathered from customer profiles or spending habits can help you pinpoint what parts of your strategy are working and where you might want to focus on new ideas.
  4. Explore new ways to deliver content – You might already have a content blog, but consider branching out to include a video blog, or vlog. Today’s on-the-go consumers don’t always have time to read a long article — no matter how engaging it is — so a vlog, or even better a subscribable YouTube channel, might fit the bill.While they’re waiting for their latte, for instance, they can push play and watch a snippet or two. This medium also offers opportunities to explore emotions because it stimulates more senses.
  5. Targeted ads – Consider exploring programmatic ads that are based on consumer profiles or behaviors. These digitally sent ads are generated according to customer preferences, allowing you to speak personally to more members of your audience.Using real-time data, you can target the sale of a product to baby boomers and millennials alike, and both groups will feel as if you related only to them.
  6. Keep your customers – It’s one thing to attract new customers, but retaining them is an art form. Sure, you’ve already persuaded them to buy once, but a top-notch product and customer experience will keep them happy and lead to sustainable growth for your company.Customers are often inundated with information, and it’s important to keep their attention and engagement with a long-term strategy. Keep creating fresh content and provide incentives for them to come back or spread the word that your product or service is the must-have brand.

Time to Act

Omni-channel marketing is a wonderful method to unify your workforce and customers into a single mission. A well-thought-out strategy is of utmost importance.

Knowing your customers is crucial, because they ultimately drive the forces and folks that will keep your business thriving. Using one or more techniques can be the difference between building your business and struggling to attract new clients.

Remember, there is no one-size-fits-all strategy. These are good guidelines, but ultimately, your specific industry and product will dictate the direction you should follow.

Marketing automation software and consultants can guide you through the process, but often the best decisions come down to your gut feelings and personal connections.

AUTHOR
Kim Jamerson
Kim Jamerson
As Vice President of Marketing at SharpSpring, Kim heads up lead generation efforts through a variety of channels and processes. She has an extensive background in marketing and communications, ranging from TV news to enterprise software and healthcare.

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