Have you investigated the benefits of adopting an omnichannel marketing experience? While the term might sound intimidating at first, we think that plenty of brands can expand their horizons by making intelligent use of multiple channels – and this blog post will try to explain why that’s the case.
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The prefix “Omni” derives from the Greek for “everything”, as in “omnipresent”. And, as you’re reading this blog, I’m sure you’re already familiar with the concept of sales “channels“. So what exactly are we referring to with this industry term?
An omnichannel strategy is a marketing approach that covers and utilises all available promotional channels – namely, all of those identified as relevant for a specific campaign. Instead of focusing on one particular marketing channel, they cast the net widely and encompass many.
At the same time, these strategies need to retain maximum focus, ensuring that the brand message and voice remains constant and that every piece of content created measures up to the required quality level.
The idea isn’t to bombard consumers with content across as many channels as possible (as is often the case with cruder “multichannel marketing”). Instead, the omnichannel approach tries to create a seamless, “surround-sound” customer experience: wherever people read or view your content, it directs them to the relevant destinations and encourages them to make a purchase.
Before we offer some suggestions for how to manage your omnichannel marketing efforts, it will probably help to run through a couple of examples of how brands have tackled the challenges of taking an omnichannel approach.
The children’s entertainment giant Disney is far from traditional when it comes to marketing. By creating a suite of mobile-optimised websites with simple interfaces, and coupling them with a holiday organisation app called My Disney Experience, the Anaheim-based brand has made it easier than ever for consumers to spend money at its portfolio of resorts (or to make online toy purchases).
Beauty products retailer Sephora is just as slick, bringing together physical products, helpful advice, mobile websites, and one of the finest customer reward schemes around. Beauty product purchasers can easily customise their range of cosmetics, make repeated purchases, and rack up customer points or access tutorials to make the most of their purchases. It’s a stunning application of the omnichannel idea.
Finally, fashion giant Timberland has pioneered another idea which relates to omnichannel marketing: Near Field Communication (NFC). This system allows the retailer to deliver customised, incredibly specific content to shoppers as they browse Timberland stores online. At the same time, in-store “touch walls” make it easy to check stock levels and browse products, while a mobile app lets customers make buying decisions wherever they are.
The case studies above offer a few examples of how to successfully implement omnichannel marketing approaches, and these could be relevant to all sorts of brands. They are also all based on the following three main ingredients.
Firstly, omnichannel strategies are always customer focused. When they succeed, they do so by working with customers and understanding how they shop. They deliver tailored content via easy-to-use tools, exactly when consumers need it.
Secondly, mobile apps play a key role. In many cases, they are the hub around which omnichannel strategies function. But apps usually aren’t free agents – as Disney’s example demonstrates, it’s the way that an app interacts with the company website which matters.
Finally, omnichannel marketing relies on targeted content which is created with an understanding of the customer experience. This means delivering reliable content which nurtures trust and remains consistent across all channels. For instance, marketing emails won’t send customers to irrelevant landing pages or make promises that can’t be fulfilled, and the brand’s voice will be recognisable regardless of the channel.
The key is to blend cutting-edge technology with intelligent content planning and high-quality production. At greatcontent, we can deliver all the branded editorial content that your company’s omnichannel strategy could need.
So, if you want to take full advantage of omnichannel strategies, be sure to get in touch. We can help you create effective digital content for your ecommerce site which will fit perfectly with the strategy you adopt.
Text: Sam Urquhart