The need to be an omnichannel brand is, by itself, a given in this age of the omniscient consumer. But even a few years into this state, what most brands still struggle with is the ‘How’. How does one get his hands and head around the multitude of channels, diverse audiences and a range of communication devices? Is there any method to this madness?
To paint a simple analogy, imagine planning an evening out at the movies on a Wednesday. When you’ve decided on the movie, you’ll want to call some friends for company. Of the 100 odd buddies on your list, there are probably 30 you know who might succumb to the temptation of watching a mindless romcom. Of the 30, you know 5 are not in town, 5 have families they don’t usually part with on a weekday and another 5 who are alcoholics who can’t part with their work. Of the 15 left, you don’t really feel like calling the same 5 you went out with the last week and so you’re left with 10. Since its Wednesday afternoon when you’ve got this itch to visit the theatres, you’ve got to find out how many can turn up before you get those tickets. You probably start by sending them a whatsapp. Then follow that up with a call to a couple who need a little persuasion and then an email sending them the ticket details and location. Whoa! Before you know it, you’re omnichannel!!!
So, what’s stopping brands from just piling on this omnichannel train? Because, the devil’s in the details. And in this case, that’s the data. When a list of 100 buddies burgeons to a few million friends and all you’re armed with is your mobile phone, we already know you’re not going to catch that movie tonight – unless you want to go alone or just randomly call up a few on the list, both of which might not get you the experience you aimed for.
For brands to realize the power of omnichannel marketing, they need to get a few ducks in a row:-
- Get your consumer data consolidated– you’ll know where to start
- Ensure you know enough about your consumers’ behaviour, psychographic and purchase details – you can now target whom you want to invite to the party
- Check how to connect and retarget them, based on their propensity – you can zero in on the channel and approach to moving them through the funnel
Well, granted it’s really not rocket science. But, neither is it a piece of cake. It involves some heavy duty Big Data crunching, serious automation, accurate segmentation and flexible multichannel communication. You’ll have to work through some of this with some experts to get your Big Data foundation right. But, to really make a success of the automation, so it impacts your top-line revenue, leverage an omnichannel marketing automation platform. They’re available through affordable SaaS models, that not only make your life easier but also open up new opportunities and communication possibilities for your brand marketing.
The writer is Manager, Product Marketing – interact.
The views expressed here are personal