Only some companies pay great importance to the development of the online marketing, that means they do not plan to develop sales strategy based on the new possibilities of combining online and offline marketing. Till now, the most effective marketing strategy was multichannel, which means it used multiple channels in reaching out the customers through different channels of communication – mobile applications, websites, stationary stores, etc. Currently, marketers attention is focused on omnichannel strategy, which concerns not only on reaching out the customers using multiple channels of communication but also links them together.
It is not only about the decision whether it is better for the customer to reach him through the stationary store or on-line ones. The most important are to combine a lot of different channels of contact with the customer in order to increase the number of recipients, and preventing the loss of leads at various stages of the purchasing path.
Many popular brands postpone the introduction of on-line shops or other tools of communication with customers, fearing of a drop down in profits from stationary stores. An example would be IKEA, which postponed for years the opening of the on-line shop in Poland. To such a step IKEA has decided only in several countries in which they sell. This strategy of furniture manufacturer stems from concerns about the fact that the introduction of new sales channels can have unexpected consequences, such as the loss in the operation of the restaurant in IKEA points. With the use of the on-line store, furniture manufacturer will also have to deal with the problem of delivery of its product range. In a case of purchase of furniture through the Internet, the customer will require the fast and secure delivery.
At the stage of change in sales strategy, new channels of communication should be introduced to customers very slowly, to examine increased interest and new consumers’ needs. Despite the risks associated with the use of modern marketing strategies, omnichannel is an interesting trend that should be known better and maybe consider to implement in your own company. There are many indications that the multichannel will become the future of the marketing. Here are the three most important points on which your should start when planning the implementation of the omnichannel strategy.
- Channels of communication,
- Customer Journey.
Before creating marketing strategies the key is to analyze the current data about customers, their purchases and the market in which they operate. Synerise has a special module to create recommendations for customers on the most effective channels of communication with customers and closing sales that will tell us which of the communication tools are the most reliable for our company and where we find most of the recipients of our product. Selecting channels of communication with customers is the first stage of preparing the implementation of omnichannel strategy in the company. Below are the most important ones:
- Social Media
- E-mail Marketing
- Offline Media
When choosing channels of communication with our customers, we should be guided by the needs of our customers, not quantity. Sometimes it’s better to choose only 2-3 channels of contact with consumers, but so powerful that through them we can build a cool brand image, promote products and continuously explore the needs and problems of customers. The key to success is to use a good platform for Marketing Automation, which will allow us to integrate many channels of communication with the customer, and will provide recommendations for marketers based on advanced analysis of customer data.
The content affects if we get interested or discouraged a customer. The information that we present in our communication channels must be adapted to the place in which they are and what they are looking for. It can be divided into four categories:
The proper content we published in communication channels where customers know the brand or the product eg.: in the search engine, on the website, in the products advertising, etc.
Discover, the moment the customer discovers our product. If we want to reach the customer, we have to first of all explore his needs. At the stationary store salesman verifies the needs, but if the customers looking for information about our products online, we can conclude about that on the basis of search queries, clicks, advertising, etc.
In Explore, the customer collects information about our products, he mainly uses website, video, social media and promotional meetings.
Engage is the stage when we have to convince the customer to interact with the brand, we can build commitment in channels such as mobile, website, social media and stationary stores.
Buy – the last category concerns the purchase. In the omnichannel strategy it will be the stationary store, the online store (available in web and mobile) and the call center.
Content is important not only for these already mentioned stages of customer interest, but also in the context of the knowledge of where the customer came to us and how he behaves in communication channels. Analyzing customer behaviour in a particular context (time and place), we can adjust it to a suitable personalised content.
Customer Journey, is a map presenting how the customer goes the process of purchasing. The customer journey takes into account the communication tools with a customer, but also elements such as complaints, reporting of damage, repair, replacement, etc. It should be prepared before analysis of the purchasing process and analysis at which stage a leakage (loss of leads) takes place. But before we start it, we create a persona, that is a full description of the exemplary customer preferences, tastes, place of residence, age, and anything that can allow us to know in detail and to determine our target group. Then, on the basis of the history of purchase, we should define where is the leakage, for example:
- Leaving the website
- Abandoning the cart
- Breaking the cycle of education (e – mailing)
- Uninstalling application
- Making a claim, etc.
In preparing the customer journey, we should choose support systems that help us design it graphically and verified it immediately. The picture below shows how the customer journey looks like in Synerise:
In Synerise we can set the actions that follow one another, leading to the event that might result in shopping. So we understand actions as all brand messages which can induce a customer to buy, for example receiving a discounted coupon etc.
By analyzing the customer journey, we know the reasons why people buys or not, reasons for leaving the e-mailing subscription, or abandoning the cart. With this knowledge, we can create a better communication strategies plan based on multiple channels and to take into account the fact that the customer can use them in any configuration.