How Omni Channel will Benifit Your Business
1. Walk in Your Customers’ Shoes
Regularly review the experience your customers go through in order to research, purchase, and connect with your products. Test the experience by placing orders, interacting via all available channels, submitting a support case, and more. If possible, these tests should be performed by external and internal testers. Does everyone have a delightful experience? Are there any unnecessary barriers?
2. Measure Everything!
Data is everywhere (and apparently very “big” these days), and marketers are becoming increasingly savvy about the best ways to leverage it without becoming invasive. Julie Bernard of Macy’s summed things up at last year’s Data Driven Marketing conference:
“We can now measure success in terms of the response of real people over time, in addition to measuring individual campaigns. We have enough data at the customer level to see how she interacts both online and in the store, so we can tailor messaging and offers to her appropriately by channel. We strive to balance the use of customer data to inform content relevancy with the use of consumer insights to ensure that the relevancy is coupled with a sense of discovery and inspiration.”
3. Segment Your Audience
Understand which data points are useful to you, and segment your audience accordingly. Which data points actually help you better understand your audience? Using marketing automation, you can capture this information to build very rich profiles about your customers and the customer journey – you can even partner with companies like Acxiom or DSPs to enhance your data with more intelligence.
This kind of rich data can be translated into customer use cases, and also used to build buyer personas. For example, male iOS users who work in the tech industry and are between the ages of 25 and 35 are more likely to buy based on technical specifications. If you discover you are marketing to that audience, you might highlight technical specs in your landing pages and nurturing strategy.
4. Develop Content/Messaging that Addresses Use Cases and Behaviors
Content and messaging is key. If a customer has previously engaged or purchased your product, you probably want to consider that in your marketing. If a customer has put something into a cart, but hasn’t yet purchased, use your content to reference that intent.
In my sixth recommendation, I discuss the great content that Zappos creates to address use cases. I’ve also received emails from Bonobos referencing previous purchases, and recommending complementary products. This type of content and messaging makes consumers feel personally spoken to, and helps drive much higher engagement, loyalty, and purchases.
Here’s an email I received from Bonobos, recommending a shirt to pair with jeans I’d recently purchased through the site:
5. Don’t Limit Use Cases to Marketing/Sales
Consider how listening and responding can help your support team, product team, merchandising teams, and even your customer service efforts. In a recent article on Digiday.com, GM’s head of global social media strategy was quoted as saying:
“A lot of it is about being able to provide a better service for our customers. If we can plug social into all the other CRM [Customer Relationship Management] data we have, then we have a full portfolio on the customer. If we know their VIN [Vehicle Identification Number], if we know their name, if we know their Twitter handle, and we know whether they like to go to the dealership or they don’t like to go the dealership, this helps us treat them in a way that they want to treated.”
First of all, what is omni-channel marketing? The term “omni-channel” may be a marketing buzzword, but it refers to a significant shift: marketers now need to provide a seamless experience, regardless of channel or device. Consumers can now engage with a company in a physical store, on an online website or mobile app, through a catalog, or through social media. They can access products and services by calling a company on the phone, by using an app on their mobile smartphone, or with a tablet, a laptop, or a desktop computer. Each piece of the consumer’s experience should be consistent and complementary.