Business practices are ever-evolving. With new technology comes new and better tools to help businesses grow and expand their reach. The internet, for instance, has revolutionized the way companies promote their products and services. This has also paved the way for different advertising and marketing channels, allowing companies to boost brand awareness and increase their sales in a way that wasn’t possible a few decades ago.
According to research, an average of 90% of consumers who own multiple devices switch between two to three every day to complete tasks. For your company to leverage this fact, you need to help consumers complete those tasks when and where they want to. This is the main reason why multichannel sales have grown to trillions of dollars. Similarly, it is also the reason numerous enterprises are embracing the omnichannel marketing strategy nowadays. This is especially true in Singapore, where a lot of marketers are moving away from the push-based marketing techniques of the past to more personalized strategies that foster loyal and lasting relationships with customers.
Definition of omnichannel marketing
Omnichannel is using multiple channels to promote your brand and reach out to your audience across all the devices that they use in a cohesive manner. It’s an unconventional yet integrated way of connecting with your customers and followers where and how they want to. Putting social media, mobile, website, call center, print, email, and warehouse together in one marketing basket is considered omnichannel marketing.
A buyer can be shopping in a physical store or on an online shop from a mobile phone and enjoy the same experience. It’s important for all the platforms you use to market your brand to work in unison. In Singapore, a majority of businesses invest heavily in multi-channel experience – social media, blog, website – to connect and engage with existing and prospective customers. However, if there is no consistency in messaging, customers do not enjoy a seamless experience across all channels, which can be a problem that can cost you a lot of money.
In a gist, omnichannel marketing is ensuring a unified and consistent customer experience across multiple marketing channels. This includes seamless messaging via traditional and digital channels in a way that builds a unified brand voice and fosters trust and loyalty between you and your target audience, which can help you maximize conversion rate and revenue. This allows for a smooth experience, which is what customers expect from the brands they use.
Omnichannel vs. multichannel marketing
One of the major advantages of omnichannel marketing over multichannel marketing is that the former focuses on optimizing the overall customer experience, while the latter simply enables one touchpoint at a time.
1. Channel vs. customer
The multichannel approach focuses on getting the word out through the greatest number of marketing channels to gain the most engagements. Conversely, omnichannel marketing engages with customers as a holistic whole, ensuring the best overall customer experience throughout all the marketing channels used. In other words, omnichannel is about building a stronger relationship with your followers.
2. Consistency vs. engagement
Omnichannel marketing means consistency, ensuring that customers will get the same experience and messaging through every channel used. This allows users to be easily familiar with the brand, thus helping build a relationship faster. This is why all internal departments, including sales, social media, PR, and customer success, should all be in tune with your company’s messaging to ensure the success of the strategy implementation.
3. Effort vs. effortless
Omnichannel wants to make sure every customer gets an effortless buying experience, which improves their overall experience. Companies need to understand how to eliminate effort from the customer experience to keep them coming back to your physical store or online shop for more.
Advantages of omnichannel marketing
The omnichannel marketing approach is not a marketing tactic. It’s an evolution for the e-commerce world that helps companies reach out to more people faster and easier than ever before.
There are lots of benefits of incorporating omnichannel marketing into your marketing strategy.
1. Enhanced customer experience
Aside from letting customers search and buy through a unified buying experience, omnichannel marketing gives consumers the chance to interact with the brands they love in a way that feels natural to them. In turn, it allows businesses to send the best action whenever, wherever necessary, which can result in an increase in conversion and customer retention.
2. Increased revenue and conversion rate
Omnichannel marketing is about creating positive experiences for customers at every stage of their lifecycle. An excellent example of doing omnichannel marketing the right way is what a global coffeehouse chain did. They offered a pre-order option via an app, allowing customers to order and pay in advance, and then pick up their order at the shop of their choice. This saves people a lot of time since they don’t need to fall in line to get their coffee fix. This strategy is so successful that it makes up 29% of their transactions. This technique does not only enhance the customer experience but also boost conversion rate and revenues.
3. Better data collection and audience segmentation
Promoting your products and services using an omnichannel approach lets you collect and consolidate customer data efficiently from the different channels used. This helps you to better understand your target audience, allowing you to personalize content according to what your market wants. As a result, you’ll be able to increase your conversion rate and ROI.
4. Optimized budget across channels
Because omnichannel marketing allows companies to centralize data, it can help them produce accurate sales forecasts and demand estimation, which minimizes wastage in inventory and prevents overproduction and warehousing products that are not sold. Aside from that, this can also help lower advertisement expenditures by keeping track of historical data from past purchases. With the centralized collection of data through omnichannel marketing, you will be able to design your campaigns in a way that is highly cost-effective. Through the information you will be able to collect, it will also be easier for you to choose the channels to use, helping you maximize your marketing budget.
Developing your omnichannel marketing plan
Omnichannel marketing is about placing the customer at the center of all your marketing efforts.
The following are some tips you can use to develop your omnichannel marketing strategy.
1. Deep understanding of who your customers are
You won’t be able to formulate a successful marketing strategy if you don’t start with getting to know your customers well enough. You have to walk in your customers’ shoes to know the kind of shopping experience they expect from your band. You’ll only be wasting money and resources if you don’t do ample research to get to know your target audience properly.
Once in a while, it’s important that you review the customer experience you are giving your followers. Test the end user’s experience by trying to purchase from your own company and engage with all your available channels. To get a clearer perspective, test it internally and externally. This should help you identify all the areas that need to be improved or removed completely.
Additionally, ask for customer feedback to know how to overhaul the overall user experience. Through customer reviews, you’ll be able to answer some important questions that can help you improve your marketing strategy.
What kind of content do your customers look for? At what point in the customer journey do they find the free tools you offer valuable? Are they optimized for the devices your customers use?
Thorough research will help you find the answers to those questions, which should help you offer a much better buyer experience.
2. Fully automated marketing process
To eliminate human error and enhance productivity, your company should consider automating every marketing process, from email marketing to inventory management.
Here are some technologies to help you streamline your processes:
- Automated email marketing platform
- Analytics and data visualizations solutions
- Customer relationship management software
- Responsive e-commerce theme
- Shipping software
- Social media management tools
- Inventory management app
Keep in mind that CRM is the heart of your marketing strategy and the analytics tool is the brain. Utilize the data you collect from getting to know your customers to know which processes should be automated and which ones should be let go of. So make sure that you have both in your marketing arsenal, then build the rest of your stack around those tools to reach your customers in the most relevant manner.
3. Websites optimized for mobile devices
Customers are now accessing content on multiple devices and channels. This means that your website should be displayed well on various screen sizes – all web pages should be designed responsively. This is especially true for landing pages, on which users will need to enter personal information, which is vital to your business. People also don’t like to pinch and zoom on web pages just to find the content they are looking for.
Similarly, websites should load fast as more people are using their smartphones to access information on the internet. As per Google, the longer the load time the higher the probability of bounce. This means that visitors can quickly abandon your site if they feel that the load time is way too long, which is more than three seconds.
All of this proves that the need to optimize a website for mobile devices is an absolutely important step if you want to implement omnichannel marketing.
4. Messaging/content that resonates with user behaviors
Your omnichannel marketing strategy should be built around your content and messaging. Take, for example, an item that a customer has placed in the cart but is yet to purchase. You can convince that customer to continue the purchase by using content to reference that intent.
Similarly, you can send out emails to customers who have purchased from you in the past. You can recommend complementary products or offer discounts to persuade them to purchase from you again. Sending out personalized emails can also help you reconnect with customers who have not visited your sites for some time and motivate them to revisit your shop and purchase from you again.
Carefully crafting your messaging and content that will resonate with user behaviors will help you make customers feel that you care about them – that they’re not just a number in your books. This is why you should make it a point to engage your customers and prospects with the right content and messaging.
5. Consistency in brand imagery
Keeping all brand imagery consistent ensures that customers and prospects will not be confused along the way. Using the same logo on all your social media profiles, as well as on your website and email marketing campaign, will make your brand look more professional. Keep in mind that any confusion, no matter how small, can have adverse effects on your branding.
6. Content produced and shared by users
Another effective way to succeed with omnichannel marketing is to ask users to generate content for your brand and share it across various channels. Not only will you gain new customers but will also help build lasting relationships with existing customers.
One way to motivate customers to share content for you is to offer incentives. It’s going to be a win-win situation for your company and your followers since the content generated by your consumers is fresh, relevant, and organic, which will appease the SEO gods. On top of that, user-generated content turned into shoppable content can boost conversions.
Every digital marketing agency must take advantage of omnichannel marketing. Not only is it easy to do but also increasingly beneficial than traditional methods in terms of audience segmentation and targeting, budgeting, increasing brand awareness, and communication with customers.
All in all, omnichannel marketing will help you stay ahead of the competition, adapt quickly to market changes, and more importantly, succeed. Marketers in Singapore and abroad are making the big leap in focusing on omnichannel marketing to increase customer base and increase retention to boost sales.