What is omnichannel marketing?

Natalia Ferreira

Product Marketing Manager

It can be a struggle for marketing leaders to create marketing strategies that consistently boost customer interactions and drive return on investment. According to Gartner, over 70% of CX leaders struggle to design campaigns that increase customer loyalty and achieve results.

One way that brands can improve CX is by creating a communication strategy that increases open rates and encourages engagement. Whether we are talking email, voice, WhatsApp, or live chat, it has become clear that it is necessary for brands to connect with customers by giving them choice.

However, it goes beyond just preference. As an article by Forbes states, the omnichannel communication trend is past just being a buzzword and needs to be incorporated into all marketing strategy. According to their research, omnichannel campaigns saw an 18.96% engagement rate, while single-channel saw just a 5.4% engagement rate.

What is omnichannel marketing?

Omnichannel marketing is the art of creating personalized and consistent customer experiences across all the channels and devices that people use. In the case of omnichannel communications, this means being available to your customers on SMS, WhatsApp, email, RCS, voice and messaging apps, across multiple devices.

Offering different channels can massively improve your open rates and marketing ROI. Companies with high levels of omnichannel customer engagement saw a rise in annual revenue of 9.5% year on year, compared to 3.4% for companies with low levels of omnichannel consumer engagement (Aberdeen Group).

In order to optimize your campaigns and customer engagement, it is necessary to meet customers where they would expect a message, when they need it most.

Choose the right channel at the right time

Different types of messages are suited to specific channels. For example, when sending a contract or a message that needs to be saved for future consultation, then email is a great option.

For a time-limited promotion, a digital channel such as WhatsApp or RCS allows brands to instantly communicate with customers with links and images to generate further interest.

If there is an urgency to the message because it impacts the customer imminently, for example where a loan has been approved or there is a service disruption, then SMS should be the primary channel with another as a fallback option. This ensures that the customer will see the communication as soon as possible.

How do you create an omnichannel strategy?

To create an effective omnichannel strategy, brands need to consider their target audience and both the types of messages that are most likely to resonate with them, and the best channel to send them on.

This allows companies to engage customers across different touchpoints and communication methods with a consistent message. This is in turn increases delivery and open rates, and prevents the same message being sent to the same customer multiple times.

Omnichannel vs multichannel

This is the key difference between an omnichannel and multichannel campaign. Although all omnichannel campaigns are multichannel, the opposite is not true. In a multichannel strategy, brands have more than one option to communicate with clients but there is no thought put into which channel is best. The same message is pushed out on all channels, resulting in consumers getting a repetitive experience that erodes engagement.

An omnichannel marketing strategy means that while you can communicate with your customers across multiple channels, you can select the right message in the right channel at the right time. This means no repeated, inconsistent, and irrelevant messages.

Omnichannel throughout the customer journey

According to Gartner, 50% of major enterprises would have failed to combine engagement channels by 2022, resulting in a disconnected and segregated customer experience that lacks context. This demonstrates the urgency in creating an omnichannel strategy throughout the marketing funnel.

For a fintech for example, this omnichannel approach can be visualized from discovery (by sending push messages that motivate the customer to open an account), to onboarding (using SMS to remind customers to complete the registration form), through to the signing of contracts (by emailing the terms and conditions of their contract as well as the final document), all the way to re-engaging lapsed customers via digital channels (such as with links to products and offers which are a good fit for the customer).

Investing in an omnichannel marketing strategy that allows for customer communication to happen across all devices, platforms and channels is an imperative today. It can lead to higher engagement, better return on investment, and customer loyalty. Customers want to be informed but they want this communication to be seamless and relevant.

An omnichannel strategy enables this engagement without spamming customers, delivering the value and ROI that marketing leaders are looking for.

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Natalia Ferreira

Product Marketing Manager