Technological advancements are moving along at an exponential rate. Most marketers consider this development as both a good and a bad thing. For one, it helps brands communicate effectively to their target audience by delivering the right message to the right people.
Understanding digital marketing is just half of the bigger picture. The other half requires you to learn and adapt to new strategies consistently. These things can overwhelm you due to the complexity and stack of new information you must take in as the industry undergoes continuous evolution.
Omnichannel marketing is among the terms that easily fall off the radar. Most would simply assume that this approach refers to using more than one channel to promote to a certain set of audiences. Some even thought that omnichannel marketing is incongruent with multichannel marketing when in fact, those two are entirely different from each other.
To shed light on this matter and answer some of your questions surrounding this branch of digital marketing, here’s everything you need to know about omnichannel marketing.
Omnichannel Marketing by Definition
Omnichannel, by definition, is a term that refers to a cross-channel strategy for creating a unified and fully integrated system. It improves customer experience and builds better relationships across all channels and touchpoints. It covers all digital channels, point-of-sale (POS) systems, and physical and online experiences.
Therefore, omnichannel marketing is a practice that aims to create a seamless and hassle-free transaction from the first customer interaction to the final one, whatever channel or platform you are using.
In other words, people can enjoy a more holistic transaction with businesses. This approach aims to ensure that every time a customer triggers an interaction with your brand, it will feel like a continuation of their previous transaction, regardless of where they made a touchpoint. This tactic is helpful for e-Commerce to create continuity and faster checkout.
Some good examples of omnichannel marketing include:
- A customer getting an email reminder about the items on their carts and have yet to complete the order.
- A customer getting a pop-up notification while browsing through an online shopping site.
- Receiving product or service recommendations based on the items that are in their cart and those that they’ve purchased before.
How Is Omnichannel Marketing Different from Multichannel Marketing
Omnichannel and multichannel marketing are new-age branches of digital marketing that both make use of multiple channels. It is probably the main reason why many people struggle to distinguish the difference between these two strategies. However, if you examine carefully, you can quickly identify the distinction between one over the other, especially if you look at the following areas:
- The position of the customer as the centre of importance
- How brands deliver consistent messaging across any channels or touchpoints
Let’s expound on these points further.
Multichannel marketing is focused on campaigns utilising a variety of channels which include email, social media, mobile, and other online mediums, to reach out to potential customers. The basic principle of this strategy is that each channel will work independently from the other. This means that the corresponding efforts you have for social media will be different from email and website. In essence, you’ll have to come up with other initiatives depending on the channel you’re targeting.
In general, multichannel marketing is a huge step up from the industry’s outdated approach of using single-channel campaigns, in which businesses can only do marketing in one channel.
Omnichannel marketing is an upgraded version of the multichannel approach. Rather than focusing on the medium, omnichannel is all about improving customer experiences from the moment they make a touchpoint with the brand. This strategy integrates and aligns with all channels to create a more cohesive process for the clients.
It spans through the very start of the customer journey and even goes beyond after the conversion happens. You can think of omnichannel marketing as a more modern and advanced format of retargeting. Because of this, businesses can create more personalised messaging for their customers while maintaining a decent level of visibility towards them without being too aggressive or intrusive.
Omnichannel marketing can be a bit complex in the sense that it requires careful planning and involves a lot of aspects to fulfil. However, once you get the hang of this approach, you’ll enjoy a much higher conversion probability and drive sales.