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Omnichannel Marketing: As good as your data, and your ability to master it

The concept is powerful: You would reach consumers, in an individualized way, via every available touchpoint with your marketing content.

They’re hearing from you via web, mobile devices, e-mail, SMS, in-store, social media, push notifications, Smart TVs and even direct mail. All the messages are coordinated and consistent with one another. And they feel like you know them, because the messages reflect their buying and browsing history, as well as plenty of other data that gives you a snapshot of who each recipient is.

And what they want.

This is omnichannel marketing, and the only reason it hasn’t been around forever is that technology only recently made it conceivable – let alone doable.

But that doesn’t mean everyone is doing it to its greatest advantage. A recent survey by DMN and Selligent Marketing Cloud suggests most brands are struggling to integrate all channels into their pursuit of omnichannel excellence. Most are doing pretty well with e-mail, web and social media – but they’re a bit further behind incorporating things like in-store, chatbots and push notifications.

Another recent survey, by the customer data platform Everage, suggests that only 3 percent of brands indicate they’ve got all channels connected. More than half say they’ve got only a few channels connected, and 21 percent say they’ve got none connected at all.

In that same survey, a majority of consumers don’t think the brands are really demonstrating they know them – although most are willing to give them more time to figure it out.

So if omnichannel is a potentially powerful approach to marketing – and it clearly is – then how can marketers unlock its value and utilize it to its full potential?

Let’s start with the data itself: Omnichannel marketing draws from a vast array of data, which has been culled from websites, mobile apps and a variety of other platforms. It’s grabbing everything from names and addresses to mobile numbers, e-mail addresses and IP addresses. That also comes with privacy regulations, so you need to know your obligations there. But do you have the best systems and protocols to deploy this data for an effective omnichannel initiative?

Now, about the personalization: Do you have the systems that allow you to keep on top of what individuals are doing? In some of the surveys referenced above, consumers complained that they were treated like prospective customers when in fact they had already purchased.

Of course, you’re not really doing omnichannel marketing at all if you’re not connecting all the available channels. From there, it’s essential that the content is consistent across all touch points so the consumers aren’t getting disjointed messages.

The potential of omnichannel marketing is so enormous, it only makes sense to do the work on the front end to make sure you’re getting it right.



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