When creating an effective marketing strategy for your business, consider all of the different customer touchpoints. Focus on learning how shoppers like to move between different engagement channels (for example, browsing on social media to shopping online) and what information they are looking for while interacting with your store and similar stores.
Building all of this into an omnichannel marketing strategy allows you to ensure that you’re providing your customers with a consistent customer experience. This is true for both retail and eCommerce businesses, as well as those omnichannel retailers.
Some businesses get overwhelmed when planning and creating a cohesive marketing strategy, especially as they begin considering every single touchpoint and every single customer. Instead, use these tips to design a realistic strategy that will engage most customers, while ensuring your marketing is doing the hard work for your long-term and you’re not likely to become overwhelmed.
Why should your business use omnichannel marketing?
Consider the whole customer journey from awareness to consideration to purchase; your customers are likely to have multiple different touchpoints and interactions with your business. Research shows that more than half of customers engage with three to five channels during each journey, highlighting the importance of consistency across all of these channels.
Omnichannel marketing enhances the customer experience you’re providing by creating consistency, which, in turn, increases sales and improves loyalty. Customers want fast, efficient transactions and solutions. Providing this can help reduce acquisition costs and grow your business faster. This means better value for your customers and you.
8 Omnichannel marketing strategy tips to boost ROI
Below, we’re going to dive into the eight tips that will help you begin creating, rolling out, and analyzing your omnichannel marketing strategy. The primary goal is to increase your return on investment, so bringing all the data into one place allows you to compare tactics to ensure you’re creating the best strategy possible. Not sure if omnichannel marketing is right for you? Learn how omnichannel strategy is quickly becoming the future of retail.
1) Identify the channels that your audience is interested in
Working out who your customer is, beyond just demographics like age and gender, can help you better define which channels you need to prioritize. Omnichannel experiences don’t have to combine all potential touchpoints. Instead, knowing which channels your ideal customers spend the most time on will help you narrow your focus.
Once you know which channels, understanding the device they use and what content they want is essential to a successful strategy. Some people watch videos on Facebook, others on YouTube. Are they watching television on a tablet or a TV? What device do they use to check their emails? Are your emails and website optimized for various screen sizes? And does all of this marketing clearly represent your brand and your product offering, and how you expect your customers to engage with them?
2) Keep the brand consistent across platforms
Building consistent branding across platforms ensures that your customers aren’t confused, and they can immediately know that it’s your brand they’ve scrolled across. When designing your omnichannel strategy, you need to find a balance between creating consistency and channel-specific content.
One of the best ways to do this is to leverage existing content into other platform-specific pieces. For example, taking an infographic from a webinar to create a social media post or turning a blog post into quotes for Twitter. This not only builds consistency but also provides better returns from each content piece you create as you can use it more.
3) Leverage new marketing channels and marketing automation
Rather than being stuck in the past, look at how you can embrace new marketing channels and automation to improve the customer experience you’re providing. New omnichannel marketing solutions can help streamline your processes, save you money and increase sales. Marketing automation can help reach your customers at the right time, and also improve revenue.
There can also be increased returns when using technology like augmented or virtual reality that allows customers to try before they buy. This can be for furniture, clothing, or make-up, where customers can see products in real situations or on themselves. In fact, we wrote about this over on Shopify’s blog when sharing our predictions for the future of retail post-COVID-19.
4) Use data to gain business advantage
An omnichannel marketing strategy provides you with data that allows you to understand your customers better. The data and insights you gather from digital channels need to be analyzed to see where your customers are coming from, how they’re engaging with your brand, and what it takes to turn them into paying customers.
For example, you might see high numbers of followers on Instagram, but working with the data can help show what content drives customers through to conversion and what content results in likes but no action. Or you could learn how retargeting ads work for your customers that have abandoned their carts and whether you can convert them.
5) Listen and respond to your audience through your marketing channels
Creating an omnichannel approach to your marketing allows you to create consistent engagement with your customers in a variety of places. This includes in-store, online, and through multiple different channels (like social media). You can also craft refined, personalized messaging that’s relevant to each customer. While it goes without saying that social media is a wonderful tool for retailer-to-customer (and vice versa) engagement, one of the biggest complaints customers have about a brands' behavior on social media, is their lack of response when messaged. Consistency is essential and it’s times like these that automation becomes a powerful addition to any marketing strategy.
Let’s create a scenario.
A customer, let’s call them John, has contacted your brand through Facebook messenger to let you know that they really enjoy shopping in-store but their most recent product wasn’t what they expected and they are dissatisfied with the service they’ve received. It’s one thing to respond directly to John with an apology and an offer of (for example) a free replacement – but what else could you be doing? What if you were to create a ‘nurture’ flow for a specific segment of at-risk customers who’ve left negative or dissatisfied feedback? By collecting customer data at the POS, you’ll be able to find John’s purchase (and therefore contact details) and add him to your segment. From here, John first receives his personalized apology and offer. He’ll also get curated communications that nurture him towards making another purchase and once again become a loyal customer with your brand. Once he has made that purchase, John simply exits the segment and the automated flow.
Automated email flows allow you to create extra communication touchpoints with maximum impact and minimum effort. By setting up procedures, automations and ensuring you have the right people on board to engage with your audience (no matter where they chose to contact you). This will ensure customers like John feel appreciated and loyal to your brand. It’s simple engagement like this that enhances the customer experience and increases the likelihood of both purchase and repeat purchase.
6) Make use of offline opportunities
Your customers’ world exists both online and offline. Whether you have a physical presence with retail stores or not, there are still plenty of ways to utilize offline opportunities in your omnichannel campaigns. With a strong understanding of your customer, you can look to show up in other channels like radio, branded merchandise, magazine ads, event sponsorships, or direct mail. In fact, one of the strongest approaches is to simply ensure your branding and your customer journey are consistent at every touchpoint and this means that when they’re in-store with you, they feel it’s just as easy to explore, browse and engage as it is online.
Ensure that you continue to maintain a consistent brand voice by selecting the right channels. Also, make sure you leverage this content for other uses as well. Photographers, videographers, writers, and influencers can all create online content from your offline experiences.
7) Personalize the customer journey
One of the benefits of using omnichannel marketing software is the ability to create personalized interactions which result in an exceptional customer experience. Technology that allows you to send SMS, email, and push notifications that are relevant, timely, and useful can help to drive sales.
Before you begin, ensure you spend time crafting the right messaging for each channel, especially if customers will be receiving more than one. You also want to ensure you’re only using the channels that are going to provide value to your customers so that you’re generating a return on investment.
8) Analyze and retarget your customers
Most customers need to see or hear about a product more than once. Or they need time to compare alternatives. Or they may simply have forgotten to complete a purchase. Omnichannel advertising tracks your customers to gently remind them about your products after an initial interaction. This is where retargeting can help increase your sales.
Using data from across social, web traffic, and email can help you track people through their customer journey. Integrated platforms automatically collate data from across your various touchpoints to know who to interact with and what advertising to serve them to improve conversion.
Creating an omnichannel marketing strategy can help increase revenue, enhance customer experience and help you better understand your customers. Learning which channels your audience uses, how to best show up on them, and new ones as they launch gives you the data to understand, listen to and respond to your customers.
Using Marsello allows you to do this on a single platform, creating efficient systems that pull all your data in one place. This means you can personalize the experience for your customers which drives customer loyalty and retention.