Omni-channel marketing is a term that anyone working in the connected television (CTV) industry should become acutely familiar with in the coming months. In a time of remarkable change and development, which has seen CTV explode in popularity not just in the United States but across the world, companies working in this field need to consider how best to market themselves and their products. The answer increasingly looks to be the omni-channel method as it offers a number of key benefits to both the advertiser and the consumer.
As often occurs in industries characterized by rapid technological development combined with considerable popularity and public interest, there is a degree of confusion about the particularities of omni-channel marketing as a concept. It need not be so confusing, however, and at BidMind we have spent considerable time studying and implementing its tenants. Let us walk you through omni-channel marketing, its forms, benefits, and best practice examples.
What is Omni-Channel Marketing?
Omni-channel marketing refers to the systematic bringing together of a number of key issues pertaining to marketing including branding, social media, customer outreach and messaging. Hence the term ‘omni-channel’, meaning ‘of all things,’ and perhaps most commonly known in popular culture by the term ‘omnishambles’ made popular by the character of Malcolm Tucker on the British TV comedy The Thick of It. Therefore, omni-channel refers to bringing together several aspects of the marketing process into one channel, instead of keeping them organized separately.
The point of this coalescence of activities is to move prospects smoothly down the sales funnel, providing them a positive and in-depth experience that will incentivise them to make a purchase then and in future. The system is focused on the consumer, which makes sense when you consider just how much access they have to your brand and its related services. Whether it be via a CTV app, social media, or some other platform, to provide the customer with the best possible experience you have to employ consistent messaging.
Consider some of the following examples to highlight the importance of brand uniformity:
- A customer enters a physical store, logs on to its wifi, and your company then sends them a personalized email about available discounts.
- If someone is preparing to churn or leave your service, you send personalized content to their social media to encourage them to stay.
Examples of Omni-Channel Marketing
If you spend even a small amount of time consuming media content and/or studying the marketing industry you will have encountered omnichannel marketing. It’s become popular amongst companies of all shapes and sizes thanks to its efficacy. Examples abound of brands that have turned this system to good use and these are but a few of them.
Disney Disney is an absolute giant in media and entertainment but it also offers real-world experiences like theme parks, cruises, and hotel accommodation. As such, the company was an early adopter of the omni-channel marketing approach. Its booking websites are linked with Disney+ and apps that allow a seamless experience when consuming media at home or visiting resorts. Omni-Channel vs Multi-ChannelStarbucks The coffee supergiant was an early innovator with its app and it serves as a great example of omni-channel marketing. Its in-app loyalty card has all the usual features but can also be reloaded via other cards and platforms instantly. This, combined with intuitive marketing and social media, offers a high-quality consumer experience.
Walgreens Prescription medication might not be the first thing you think of when it comes to omni-channel marketing, but American pharmacy chain Walgreens has made good use of it. The company’s app can be used to order and refill prescriptions, set dosage reminders, and communicate with linked physicians. This streamlines a process to take mere moments when previously it could take days.
Omni-Channel vs Multi-Channel
There is of course a fair amount of overlap between omni-channel and multi-channel marketing as they are focu
sed on providing communication and branding to sales targets. However, the main difference between the two concepts is that the omnichannel system is more focused on integration between various channels to create one unified stream. Multichannel on the other hand has a much more fragmented structure.
Omni-channel marketing is intended to use its single-channel integrated model to put the customer at the absolute center of the sales funnel.
This is opposed to the multi-channel system where each channel provides different services and runs separately from the others, which can lead to a fragmented user experience. Omni-channel marketing, on the other hand, provides a seamless experience to ensure that patrons can easily access information from any of the services owned or operated by the controlling brand.
This streamlined and uniform approach to brand messaging is why omni-channel marketing is preferred by companies with several platforms and apps, like Disney, HBO, and other CTV companies. Not only does it ensure that branding is published in the same style and with the same aims across all services, it also provides companies with the ability to really get into the finer details of advertising. It’s niche, highly focused, and simply far more effective than multichannel marketing.
The Benefits of Omni-Channel Marketing
At this point, you may be asking yourself something along the lines of ‘is omni-channel marketing the right system for me,’ which is a good question. Not every system is right for every company of course, but there are a number of key advantages at play here that you should consider.
Customers that enjoy their user experience are more likely to continue paying for your products and services. It’s simple stuff, and as omni-channel marketing provides streamlined and targeted interactions, it increases customer retention as well.
Users that enjoy using your service are naturally more likely to recommend it to their friends. Over 70% of consumers will buy a product if it is recommended to them on social media either by their friends or by influencers. An omni-channel system ensures it’s easy to secure those crucial referrals by making it simple to access multiple forms of content on one system.
Integrated Analytics and Data
Under the multi-channel approach, data would be created and stored in different silos however under the omni-channel system all marketing information is stored in the same location. This makes it easy to analyze the data, process it to uncover actionable insights, and then apply it to improving the overall user experience.
How Do You Implement a Solid Omni-Channel Marketing System?
Implementing any new marketing system for your company can be daunting and the same applies to omni-channel marketing. If you’re planning to do so, follow these steps and the process should be streamlined for you.
Understand Your Audience
You won’t get anywhere if you don’t have a solid understanding of who your audience is and what its expectations are.
Whatever CRM tool you use you need to apply it towards personalizing the user experience as much as possible. Use the data you gather to create a unique experience for customers and they will become loyal consumers.
Invest in a CRM Tool
There are plenty of options out there and it’s best you choose a customer relationship manager (CRM) tool yourselves, but make sure it is precise and easy to feed information into.
Track Your Data
After you’ve followed the previous steps you need to track your results, analyze your failures and success, and understand what you can do to improve going forward.
Omni-Channel Marketing, CTV, and Advertising
So as we’ve seen, omni-channel marketing offers considerable advantages for the publishers of media content, and in particular to CTV streaming services. With combined spending on CTV forecast to reach over $4.5 billion this year, there exists considerable opportunity. Combined with declining interest in linear TV, CTV represents the future of media consumption making it more lucrative too.
The streamlined and multiple device/app system which characterizes CTV means that omnichannel marketing is a good fit and one that can also appeal to advertisers too. Not only does CTV have a large and exponentially growing audience, the omni-channel marketing system also ensures that once a user has consumed a particular ad or piece of content, but it can also be followed by strategic display ads with a timely call-to-action. Advertisers can also track their work in real-time, just as one can do using omni-channel marketing, in order to ascertain what works and what doesn’t.
Omni-channel marketing is a solid system for any company and particularly for CTV service providers. That’s why it’s hardly surprising that giants like Amazon, Disney, and others are investing heavily into using this system; They’re doing so because it is proven to work. Now that CTV’s growth looks unlikely to stop, employing a system that provides high-quality value to consumers looks to be a strong strategy for any marketing team.
The most important factor for any team wanting to implement omni-channel marketing as a strategy is to be consistent. Make sure your brand message is easily published and consumable across whatever services or platforms you may employ. If you do this then you will surely make a success of omni-channel marketing.