One of the best aspects of digital marketing is how you can easily and inexpensively use multiple channels for your marketing.
Whether it’s social media, email, your website, content marketing, boosted posts, video, paid search, or digital ads (what have we left out?), there are so many different channels to choose from.
What is multi-channel marketing?
Multi-channel marketing is simply using multiple marketing activities to spread your message and create more awareness for your products and services. Your channels could be your website, email, social media, search engines, marketplaces, video channels, digital ads, or a host of other venues online and offline.
Think about it this way – if you wanted to catch the maximum number of fish, would you put one baited hook in the water, or four hooks, or would you use a large dragnet? The dragnet is going to give you the best results. That’s the principle behind multi-channel marketing.
According to Shopify, 73% of buyers use multiple channels on their path to purchasing a product or service. Multi-channel marketing meets the challenge of channel hopping, and whether it’s a marketplace, email, social media, your website, or someone else’s website where you guest-blog, the more broadly you multi-channel, the more likely you are to increase your sales.
What’s the difference between multi-channel and omni-channel?
Omni-channel simply means all channels, if that were possible. It certainly means more channels than multi-channel. This is how John Bowden, Senior VP of Customer Care at Time Warner Cable, explains the omni-channel approach from a customer experience viewpoint:
“Omni-channel… is viewing the experience through the eyes of your customer, orchestrating the customer experience across all channels so that it is seamless, integrated, and consistent.
Omni-channel anticipates that customers may start in one channel and move to another as they progress to a resolution. Making these complex ‘hand-offs’ between channels must be fluid for the customer. Simply put, omni-channel is multi-channel done right!”
Omni-channel takes every touchpoint of the sales process into consideration to create, what Bowden calls, a seamless, integrated, and consistent experience for the customer. Multi-channel is reaching consumers to turn them into customers.
How to plan your multi-channel marketing
1. Do you have a clear idea of who your ideal customer is? Study your target audience until you can create an ideal customer persona. Once you can understand your business from the perspective of your ideal customer, you are ready to plan your multi-channel marketing.
2. Do you have a clear understanding of your competition? How are they using multiple channels to reach the same people you want to reach? Use your competitor’s marketing for inspiration, not to copy them, but to learn from them. Use your own approach once you’ve seen what your competitors are doing.
3. This gets us to the most important aspect of your marketing – you. What is unique about you or your business? What is it that you have to offer that no one else does? Advertising legend Rosser Reeves called this your “unique selling proposition.” Once you know what that is, promote it to the fullest extent possible.
4. Choose the marketing channels that will best reach your target audience and will best showcase what you have to offer. If you’d like help with search engine optimization for your website or other services for your multi-channel marketing.
Multi-channel marketing doesn’t have to be too hard but you also don’t need to over complicate it. It just needs the right approach and strategy execution and for those two things we exist. I can help you and your marketing team, so let’s talk.