Marketing across multiple channels is challenging – it takes everything from organic and PPC campaigns, advanced SEO strategies, and harnessing customer data analytics to get it right. What’s more, the struggle to maintain communications with customers across all channels can create inconsistencies, making it harder to gather data and present a consistent brand image.
That is why experts recommend creating a solid plan before you move on to multiple channels to market your products. In this article, we will see how multi-channel marketing campaigns can boost ROI and how to overcome challenges for a better customer experience.
Benefits of multi-channel marketing
There are many reasons why you should opt for multi-channel marketing campaigns to grow your ecommerce business.
Conversions and ROI
It has been proven that multi-channel marketing can improve the ROI of businesses by almost 300%. This is because it allows businesses to interact with customers on different channels at every stage of their purchase journey. As you utilize more communication channels and customers find out about your business, chances are it also improves conversions.
Personalization and engagement
No matter how many PPC or email marketing campaigns you deploy, if your campaigns are not targeting your target customers, there is no point in spending your money on these campaigns. Multi-channel marketing is a better approach, as it allows marketers to personalize the content on each social media channel according to customer needs. You will have, for example, a different audience on LinkedIn vs. Instagram, so you can create unique marketing content for both media channels to engage relevant audiences.
A constant presence on multiple channels allows businesses to stay in touch with customers more easily. It also allows marketers to stay updated with the latest trends and see what customers prefer, allowing them to create marketing content that has a better chance of converting customers.
For example, one great way to enhance your multi-channel customer service is by employing chatbots for personalized communication in multiple languages. This will allow you to be present on more channels without necessarily hiring more staff.
Challenges of Multi-Channel Marketing
There are a few common obstacles that marketers face with multi-channel marketing campaigns:
Inventory and financial management
A major challenge that business owners face when they start their ecommerce store is managing more than one channel. When you have multiple channels to sell on, it can be difficult to manage and predict supply and demand or estimate how much product you need to stock. Keeping too much inventory can be costly, and not having enough can lose you current and new customers.
Additionally, manually managing your business while trying to upscale can be pretty hectic. You will probably have to hire additional workers and expand HR and financial management practices.
One way to ease this transition is to automate as much of your business processes as possible. For example, you should look for accounting software that comes with crucial features like automatic updates for invoicing data and bulk transaction updates, which will go a long way in improving your overall financial management and ensure your business is scalable.
Another challenge that ecommerce marketers face is a lack of consistency when branding content across multiple communication channels. You want to be sure that you are making a strong impression that is relevant to your target audience without giving up your brand identity.
It is much easier to control your content and brand image when using only one platform. But when you start expanding to other communication channels, you have to simultaneously manage customer interactions across all platforms. Moreover, you have to maintain a positive brand impression on every channel that can help boost interaction and conversions.
As you start upscaling your online business and expand to marketplaces, you might encounter various growing pains along the way. For example, the more you expand, the chances are you are likely to deviate from maintaining your product quality and focusing on quantity to keep up with the increase in demand.
You may also have to change how your products are manufactured and find suppliers to help you take on these challenges. It is important not to skimp on quality or brand identity just because you are upscaling.
Tips for successful multi-channel marketing
Many marketing experts claim that they don’t have the time to manage multiple customer messages across different marketing channels. The best solution to this problem is automation.
Automation allows marketers to schedule communications and pre-prepared answers to specific questions so customers can find prompt solutions. Strategies like automating live chats and contact segmentation for automated email marketing can maintain the personalization required to retain customers while still being efficient. Automation can free up valuable time, making space for focusing on more high-priority tasks.
Outsource your marketing content
As you generate different content for various channels, you need to prepare more content, schedule posts, interact with customers through comments, etc. All this can get overwhelming if you’re the only one managing all social media accounts. To ensure that your channels aren’t ignored, list all the tasks and responsibilities and outsource your content creation and other functions where possible.
Focus on providing value
One of the most effective ways of optimizing your marketing strategy is to focus on what your customers want from you and to personalize accordingly. This creates an overall positive brand experience no matter what the communication channel.
This means that marketers need to be more vigilant with customer data and use it to create customized messaging like recommendations, sales pop-ups, new product launches, etc. People will be more likely to buy if the marketing materials you show them are targeted to their needs.
Adjust your branding and messaging
As you expand your business and sell on more than one channel, you need a firm understanding of what each platform requires. Each forum requires different criteria such as the languages, photo size, caption word count, trending hashtags, etc. Understanding this is crucial because it helps marketers optimize the content they create.
Work with your content writers and graphic designers to paint the right picture while also optimizing the message you want to convey to your audience. Also, encourage customers to leave reviews and post testimonials that let others know how amazing your products or services are. This can go a long way to build trust in your brand.
Multi-channel marketing is undoubtedly a beneficial strategy for ecommerce marketers to utilize, but to truly make it successful, you need an effective plan of execution. These tips will give you proven strategies to generate a sustainable profit from your multi-channel campaign without neglecting your customers or brand consistency.
You can strike a balance between acquisition and retention with a personalized yet automated multi-channel marketing approach to convert prospects and maintain ongoing customer relationships.
Lee Li is a project manager and B2B copywriter with a decade of experience in the Chinese fintech startup space as a PM for TaoBao, MeitTuan, and DouYin (now TikTok).