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What is an Omnichannel Marketing Strategy and Do I Need it?

For far too long, nobody batted an eye when a business’s website, their brick and mortar storefront, and their marketing campaign had very little — if anything — to do with one another. It was completely fine for each of these different forms of communication — also known as channels — to tell customers different messages. A person could hypothetically see a company’s billboard that advertised one thing, visit the company’s website and see something else entirely, then visit the company’s storefront and hear something completely different. Not anymore, though. 

Today, given how connected customers are to the internet and how heavily many small- to medium-sized businesses (SMBs) rely on the internet for social media, marketing purposes, and e-commerce, there’s no longer an excuse for a company’s channels to be so disheveled and disconnected from one another. This is what’s known as multichannel marketing: the use of multiple channels to communicate with customers about a company or brand. Despite being the norm for so long, it’s quickly becoming a thing of the past.

In its place, omnichannel marketing has emerged on the scene. But what exactly is an omnichannel marketing strategy? And if you’re an SMB with a multichannel marketing strategy, is it worth putting in the time and the effort to rework your marketing strategy and transform it from multichannel to omnichannel? Let’s discuss, then decide on an answer.

What Is an Omnichannel Marketing Strategy?

Instead of employing a separate strategy for online marketing, physical and digital advertising, and brick and mortar storefront branding, an omnichannel marketing strategy streamlines all of these different channels and makes it a priority to get them all on the same page. It’s a purposeful integration of all forms of communication, staying consistent at each point in the sales funnel, thus allowing for a more effective and memorable customer experience

An omnichannel marketing strategy puts the customer at the front and center of your SMB’s tactics. It’s no longer about getting the word out — it’s about creating a positive customer experience. Consumers communicate with businesses via all sorts of channels these days, whether it be social media, email, chat, text, or at the storefront. Omnichannel marketing guarantees that the customer will always be told the same thing so that their conversations can be picked up where they left off no matter the channel.

Do I Need an Omnichannel Marketing Strategy?

Research conducted by Google shows that 98% percent of consumers switch between their devices at least once a day if not once every hour. It makes sense: How often do you go from your phone to your laptop to your desktop to your tablet and back again in a single workday? The same applies to your customers. Before this rapid device switching became such a common phenomenon, there was no reason to suspect anything was wrong with a multichannel marketing strategy. Today, with 87% of customers saying they wish their online experience between a business’s channels was more seamless, there’s an obvious need to switch things up. 

This is why your business needs an omnichannel marketing strategy. An omnichannel marketing strategy makes SMBs accessible across every channel and works to ensure a seamlessly integrated experience across the board. No matter if your customers are using an online platform or a physical one, the messaging and branding remain consistent and cohesive. This omnichannel marketing strategy helps ensure your business takes a truly consumer-centric approach that never lets the customer’s experience leave the forefront of their mind. The result is a happier customer who is more than willing to trust your business and your branding for years to come.

How Can Small to Medium Sized Businesses Implement an Omnichannel Marketing Strategy?

If you’d like to implement an omnichannel marketing strategy for your SMB — which, as you’ve seen above, you most certainly should — you’re going to need to know where to begin. Before anything else, it’s worth prioritizing a few key points: 

  • A distinct brand voice and clear brand vision that is easy for the customer to identify
  • Unique brand messaging that takes the customer’s preferences into account
  • Original content that is conscious of the customer’s journey and aware of their past interactions 

Each of these key points works to help your SMB develop its voice, personalize its experience, and streamline its channels. Once this is done, your customers will be able to tell the difference. Omnichannel marketing strategies must be aware that the customer’s journey will likely stretch across multiple devices, which means multiple channels. By looking at each of your business’s channels and prioritizing the best possible experience for the consumer as they move from channel to channel, SMBs can create omnichannel-minded touchpoints on the path that leads to a better customer experience and, in turn, better sales for your business.

Additional Implementation Tactics

From here, you can consider these additional ways to implement an omnichannel marketing strategy.

  • Collect and analyze data about your customers. Figure out your target audience, determine their preferred channels, track which kind of messages get the best results, and analyze this data to better form your omnichannel marketing strategy.
  • Map the customer’s journey from beginning to end and use the map to create targeted campaigns. If you don’t understand their path, then you can’t possibly expect to implement an effective omnichannel marketing strategy.
  • Create a clear, concise handbook for your brand’s voice and stick to it. Make sure this handbook is accessible to everyone at every step of your business, from customer service to the employees working in the storefront to those working in the office and everywhere in between. This handbook will make sure messaging is cohesive from channel to channel.
  • Test, test, test. Don’t be afraid to experiment and tinker with your omnichannel strategy to make it the best it can be. Optimization is essential to an effective omnichannel marketing strategy, and there’s no need to fear going back to the drawing board if the end result is a better strategy for your SMB.

The Bottom Line: The Need for an Omnichannel Marketing Strategy

At the end of the day, 74% of customers will flat-out abandon a company if their experience is filled with too many hurdles. This is what happens when a business opts for a multichannel marketing strategy instead of an omnichannel one. As such, it’s so important for small- to medium-sized businesses to prioritize omnichannel marketing. This intentional integration of all communication channels and this determination to stay consistent at each point in the sales funnel will allow for a far more effective and far more memorable customer experience, increasing their willingness to return to your business and increasing your revenue in turn. 

About LOLA POS

LOLA POS is a merchant advocacy group dedicated to reducing or eliminating the unnecessary fees associated with accepting credit card payments. Since 2004, LOLA POS’s payment processing solutions have been delivering tailored solutions, best-in-class customer service, and high-quality service offerings for businesses across multiple industries. Whether it’s high-risk or low-risk, brick-and-mortar or e-commerce, LOLA POS will create the best processing experience for your company. That’s because at LOLA POS, . For more information, visit us at our website or by calling (866) 509-7199.

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