By now the term "omnichannel marketing" isn't breaking news to any marketer. Every publication, blog, industry event, and Twitter influencer has had their say about the rise of omnichannel.
Omnichannel Marketing (OCM) has been fundamental in bridging the gap between the physical and digital retail experience customers encounter when making purchases. You really have to do some digging to figure out what your current and potential customers value more. Do they prefer the ease and safety of shopping online? Or do they prefer to see, feel, sample, or try your product before they purchase it? Maybe they want the option to do both? All of this will take time to figure out, especially since we’re still navigating a pandemic. For your business to survive, your team needs to be adaptable to the customer climate. What customers want or prioritize changes from one day to the next and this is where an omnichannel strategy can help with that fluctuation.
Though omnichannel marketing is nothing new, it's definitely not easy, and most marketers are still trying to perfect it. Your martech stack has to be seamlessly integrated so that you know the customer no matter what channel or device they engage on. You’re expected to deliver personalized messages each and every time, and you have to attribute the success of all these complex efforts.
Is your head spinning yet? In this post, we break down what omnichannel marketing is, why it's important, and the four pillars you need in place to be successful.
The root, "omni," means all, of all things, or in all ways or places. Omnichannel marketing is a strategy that ensures your current and/or potential customers are offered consistent and connected messaging across all the channels they encounter as they make their way through your sales funnel. This includes customers who shop for your product or service online, over the phone, or in your physical store (if you have one.)
There are all kind of benefits from Omnichannel Marketing, but let’s get into some of our favorites:
Data is essential for your sales teams, but even more so for your marketing department. Omnichannel attribution is what lets your team know which channels your customers are coming from, how they’re interacting with each channel, and even why they chose the journey that they did. This all affects your budget, sales, and analytics because it lets you know where you should be investing your team’s time and energy — and where you shouldn’t. It also helps you understand where adjustments need to be made.
It can be easy to confuse the two topics so we’ll use an analogy.
Think of multichannel marketing campaigns as fishing with a net. You're throwing your net (messaging) into a vast number of different channels and seeing what fish (customers) you catch.
Omnichannel marketing is like trying to lure a specific fish — your target customer. You utilize a variety of lures, bait, and tools (multiple channels) precisely to target the fish. Your approach is specific to that fish, based on its past encounters with you and its eating preferences. It's a much more targeted approach.
The first key principle of omnichannel marketing is visibility. You know your customers are moving between channels and devices, effortlessly. In fact, Google reports that 90% of consumers move between devices when making a purchase.
The first step towards a singular view of the customer is a fully integrated tech stack. Your marketing automation, retargeting platform, CRM and other solutions should all work together under the guise of a single view of the customer. You need to have insight into every interaction a potential customer has with your business across channels and devices.
But what happens when your customers jump offline to make a phone call? The thread is lost unless you have conversation intelligence. Without visibility into offline behaviors, you’ll miss out on the complete view of the customer journey.
Key takeaway: Marketers need to focus on the right set of tools that allow them to have complete visibility into the entire customer journey — from first interaction to completed sale, and everything in between.
According to a study by The CMO Club, 82% of respondents surveyed felt an inability to measure cross-channel performance is standing in the way of their omnichannel marketing success. Accurate measurement on every possible customer touchpoint is an essential part of omnichannel marketing.
Once you have visibility into all of the interactions a potential customer is having with your business, you can then measure the success of your marketing efforts. What offers, landing pages, retargeting ads, and more are working? What is influencing people to buy? You need to understand the impact of every marketing touch point whether the customer is interacting on a laptop, tablet, or mobile.
Marketers need to be able to accurately measure the impact of their marketing efforts across channels, devices, as well as offline and online. Let’s say you’re A/B testing a landing page. One page may be performing well online, so you optimize towards the high performing version. But if you’re not looking at the offline impact of your landing pages, you may miss that the second landing page was actually driving more phone call conversions than online conversions, and you actually "optimized" against the higher performing version.
Key takeaway: If you can't give proper credit where credit is due, you won't be able to optimize your marketing efforts, and fail to provide a one-to-one, personalized customer experience.
Use online and offline data together to deliver a seamless omnichannel customer experience. One-third of marketers surveyed by Adobe would prioritize personalization because it is considered the most important to marketing in the future. However, marketers surveyed by Econsultancy and Monetate stated that the biggest challenges with personalization are gaining insight quickly enough (40%), having enough data (39%), and inaccurate data (38%).
Your tools like real-time personalization, social media analytics, predictive analytics, marketing automation, CRM, and more need all of the online and offline data from your potential customers. If a customer visits your website and picks up the phone to call, you can push that offline data to your real-time personalization platform so you can design a returning web visitor experience that makes it easy for that potential customer to call again.
Key takeaway: Integrate online and offline behaviors into your automation tools to create the most successful omnichannel customer experience.
In a study from Multichannel Merchant and Neustar, 78% of respondents currently realize or expect a sales lift with an integrated omnichannel marketing strategy. However once you have the omnichannel customer experience in place, you’re only halfway through the battle. The next step is to have the capability to accurately optimize your marketing strategy and budget based on complete visibility into your marketing performance.
What offers, landing pages, products, or services are driving your visitors to take the next step? What channels are they interacting with your business that leads to a purchase? With complete visibility into the complete performance of your marketing campaigns, you are able to make more powerful optimizations to your marketing strategy and budget.
Key Takeaway: Optimize your marketing with complete insight into the online and offline impact. You will make more powerful optimizations and smarter decisions.
Hopefully, these four pillars will help make the concept of omnichannel more accessible. We'd love to hear how you are incorporating visibility, measurement, personalization, and optimization into your marketing.
With over 300 locations, AutoNation is America’s largest and most admired auto retailer. Since buying or servicing a vehicle is a complex purchase, phone calls are often a key piece of the customer journey. This human-to-human interaction helps to reassure customers, and it gives them the opportunity to ask questions they couldn’t find answers to online. Because of this, AutoNation knew they needed a way to tie phone calls to their digital marketing efforts and the broader digital journey.
Before using Invoca, AutoNation had a different call tracking solution in place. But their vendor wasn’t giving them enough data and granularity about the customer journey. “Our last call tracking provider didn’t have anywhere close to the technology, the features, or the data resources that Invoca does,” said Matteo Togni, Product Manager of Localization and Digital Product at AutoNation. “Switching to Invoca was a no-brainer.”
With Invoca, AutoNation has full attribution for the web pages, digital marketing campaigns, and search keywords that drive high-quality phone leads. With this data, they can allocate more budget to their top-performing campaigns and eliminate campaigns that are primarily driving support calls and non-sales related inquiries. AutoNation also uses Invoca to automate call quality assurance (QA) by automatically scoring every sales call with AI. This helps them ensure the leads they drive are being effectively handled and converted.
Learn how Invoca helped AutoNation connect the full omnichannel customer experience in the video below:
Want to learn more about how leading brands use Invoca to improve their omnichannel marketing? Check out these resources: