The Importance of Omni-Channel Marketing for Your Small Business

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No matter how efficient it may be, no channel is omnipotent. This means that in order to maximize your reach, you need to send a consistent brand message over as many different channels as possible.

Some see this as integrating your blogging efforts, email marketing and social media marketing strategies but some of the most experienced marketers see well beyond this. What they see is that the true omni-channel marketing depends on both online and offline means, which is something that a surprisingly large number of marketers fail to realize.

 

Here are several things you need to know in order not to make the same mistake.

1.      Multiple formats:

The first thing you need to understand is that you need to invest in a plethora of formats, not all of which are compatible with every channel you use. Videos are great for YouTube and Facebook, where about 100 million hours of video gets watched every single day.

On the other hand, video length might be an issue on platforms such as Instagram or Snapchat. Still, if you decide to livestream, these platforms might prove themselves to be surprisingly effective.

Apart from this, you also need to consider podcasting, yet, here, it might be for the best to go with YouTube. As for the other formats worth considering, you might want to go with infographics.

Online audience strays away from reading with each passing day. Infographics, on the other hand, are skim-friendly and, due to their graphic nature, have an easier job of keeping the audience focused, interested and even entertained.

2.      Utilize print:

Another thing you can do here is find a way to complement your digital marketing strategy with print. For instance, instead of a recommendation, you could include a well-written positive review of the product on its package. Or add campaign hashtags on printed materials.

Something as simple as adding social media network icons on your custom design promotional products can remind people that you’re present on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube, as well as encourage them to look you up.

In this way, you’re using an offline method in order to increase the reach of your online content. This method alone is the embodiment of offline-online marketing symbiosis.

3.      Create a sequence:

Another misconception about omni-channel marketing lies in the idea that it helps you reach isolated targets but this is not its primary purpose. What you need is a way to help drive a potential customer through every single segment of your marketing one step at a time.

For instance, you want a person who reads your tweet to visit your blog, then view a banner ad and finally take action.

This is particularly important when you consider the principle of the customer lifecycle, where not everyone who gets in touch with your business is ready to become a customer right away.

In this way, you can abide by the rule of seven, which indicates that a person needs to encounter your brand on at least seven separate occasions in order to feel encouraged enough to take action.

4.      Access from multiple devices:

Another thing worth keeping in mind is the fact that your audience will access your content from various devices, most of which have users who prefer different formats. For instance, desktop audience uses the internet through a browser most of the time, while mobile users go for apps, about 90 percent of the time.

Videos, infographics and podcasts (that we discussed earlier on) are also quite mobile-friendly. Because of this, when constructing your online presence, you need to think about how various forms of your presence may appeal across different devices.

5.      Guerilla marketing:

At the end of the day, sometimes you have to learn how to think outside-of-the-box in order to achieve the effect you hoped for. That being said, you need to go for guerilla marketing, which implies the use of various non-standard offline marketing techniques.

For instance, you can treat your own premises like a billboard and use urban art to your advantage. The best thing about this is the fact that most of these methods might be done on a budget. Considering the impact, this gives a truly outstanding ROI.

Conclusion

At the end of the day, a single message coming from several sources has far greater credibility than one arriving through a single channel. This is why you need to diversify your marketing, not just for the reach but for the trustworthiness and reliability, as well.

For a small business, building a corporate reputation from scratch is all but easy, which is why it is so important not to let anything slip your mind. When built properly, an omni-channel marketing system can be surprisingly self-reliant.

 

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