What Is Multichannel Marketing? (Strategy and Examples)

What Is Multichannel Marketing? (Strategy and Examples)

To reach a target audience, consider meeting them where they are. The modern marketing industry opens up several ways to interact with potential customers, so creating a multichannel marketing strategy to help your company achieve its goals is something to consider.

A successful multichannel campaign boils down to two things: maximizing return on investment (ROI) and minimizing customer acquisition costs. This article will cover:

What is multichannel marketing?

Multichannel marketing (MCM) integrates multiple channels—social media, blogs, email, TV, mobile, and streaming services—to reach customers everywhere they are. “Omnichannel marketing” is essentially next-level MCM, creating a seamless experience across all channels.

When it comes to large, segmented audiences and tailored one-on-one interactions, MCM can get exponentially granular and complex. Marketing automation can help power more sophisticated MCM efforts, injecting customer data into marketing to generate personalized messaging and timing placements to customers’ behaviors. For example, when someone browses an e-commerce store, that action will trigger ads on social media sites or an email with a coupon.

For more basic MCM efforts, however, consider broadening the message or narrowing the audience to maximize ROI.

If your company is not using an end-to-end automation platform or putting its MCM campaign in the hands of an agency, consider starting small and always let the data lead the way.

Benefits of a multichannel campaign

Creating and managing a multichannel campaign has its challenges. However, it can pay dividends when done correctly. Below are a few benefits of multichannel marketing strategy:

  • Meets customers where they are. A multichannel campaign can help cast a wider net. It gives potential customers a chance to get to know the company, helping develop brand recognition.
  • Allows for the collection of additional data. A multichannel campaign creates more touchpoints in a marketing funnel, enabling the gathering of more information about potential customers. This data can help a company manage and adjust its strategies while measuring success.
  • Increases engagement. When a target audience is given options on how and where to connect with a certain brand, this increases engagement, which generally translates to higher conversions. With a multichannel campaign, visibility is increased, and this gives customers a chance to engage with a company or a brand through their preferred channel.
  • Tailored and targeted messaging. A multichannel approach allows marketing teams to put the right content in front of a segmented audience rather than sending the same generalized advertisements in various channels.
  • Drives positive brand interactions and experience. If a marketing team develops a consistent brand message that provides value and integrates well with the platform used, this can increase a brand's customer base and build brand loyalty. This might mean posting high-quality photos and expressive captions on Instagram and engaging through articles or longer posts on LinkedIn.

4 steps to take before starting a multichannel campaign

The goal of a multichannel marketing campaign is to introduce a brand across spaces, whether through online or offline channels. But showing up is only the first step. Here are three things for the consideration of any marketing team before starting a multichannel campaign.

1. Define the end goal of the campaign

Before creating a multichannel campaign, consider the end goal. A good goal statement describes the campaign’s purpose, direction, vision, and provides the parameters to measure the campaign's success.

Examples of goals include:

Increase brand awareness

Brand awareness means the brand is heard, seen, and recognized by the target audience. If the goal of the multichannel marketing campaign is to increase brand awareness, consider choosing channels where traffic can be monitored which allows for intentional interaction with potential customers. Consider setting specific goals, such as:

  • Increasing newsletter subscriptions by an X amount by the end of the campaign
  • Increasing website traffic by X number
  • Having X number of Instagram or YouTube followers by the end of the campaign

Increase product awareness

Product awareness is about building knowledge about the products a company has to offer. With the right distribution channels and targeting strategy,  products will be presented to customers who need and want them. If product awareness is the goal of the multichannel campaign, then the campaign could be centered on introducing the benefits of the product through educational content marketing.

If a referral program is already in action, consider tweaking it to make the rewards more appealing to get existing customers to spread the word about the products on offer. Set a goal of increasing the number of referred customers by a specific percentage or number.

For instance, if referrals only account for 10% of the customer base, the goal could be to double it. A referral program can also help convert potential customers who’ve developed misconceptions about a certain brand.

Increase consideration

Brand consideration is regarded as the bridge between awareness and conversion. It represents the probability of a potential customer choosing one product over others on the market. Consideration relies on a customer’s perception and level of engagement with the brand being marketed.  

Since engagement and conversion are the main factors of consideration, the campaign should focus on the brand website and product pages for this goal. Monitor the number of product page views, bounce rates, or email signups. These metrics can help shed light on what’s stopping conversion and how strategies could be adjusted to entice a customer to buy the product.

Increase revenue

If the primary goal of the MCM campaign is to increase revenue, improving sales or reaching new demographics are great strategies. Either way, monitoring changes over specific time frames during and after the marketing program can help to highlight trends and fluctuations. Consider setting specific parameters to measure the success of the campaign.

In the quest to increase revenue, any good campaign considers existing customer retention while engaging new customers. For example, the campaign can be inclusive of current customers by encouraging referrals. At the same time, consider utilizing digital marketing to find new customers through search engine optimization (SEO) to educate them on the value and benefits of the products or services.

2. Maintain consistent messaging, branding, and assets

There are three main aspects of a multichannel campaign that should be consistent:

  • Messaging: The effectiveness of a campaign will be determined by how well its message resonates with the target audience. Customers not only have to see the right message, but it should also align with their values. Therefore, the MCM strategy should emphasize properly targeted marketing messages across channels.
  • Branding: Branding represents a company’s visual identity—name, logo, design, packaging, etc. But it’s also a way of separating the brand from competitors and establishing why it’s a better choice. Consider a campaign with the presentation of a cohesive branding approach across a variety of channels.
  • Assets: Marketing assets include emails, brochures, sales letters, blog posts, website content, videos, and images. Create or use assets relevant to the brand’s marketing strategy but also most suited to the platforms the campaign is using.

3. Define forecasting and attribution models

Forecasting refers to understanding the role of data and trends and utilizing them to define specific goals for leads and sales from each channel. Conversions and sales are then measured and attributed to the marketing efforts that produced them. The practice of forecasting and attribution helps determine the effectiveness of individual strategies, messages, and channels mid-campaign. Your brand can use the data to optimize your current and future campaigns.

An attribution model refers to the set of rules that ascertains the value of each customer touchpoint that leads to a conversion. The goal is to pinpoint the channel attributed to the conversion. It’s one of the ways marketers minimize their costs and maximize revenue.

The most popular model—and the default setting for Google Analytics—is the last-touch or last-click attribution. As the name implies, this model gives the conversion credit to the last interaction a customer had with a brand before clicking “buy.”

There’s also a multitouch attribution model. With this model, a marketing executive can review a conversion event, like a customer ordering a product, and look at each touchpoint’s role in making the sale. Multitouch attribution models include:

  • Linear attribution model: This model gives all touchpoints the same credit in the conversion.
  • Time decay model: This model gives all touchpoints credit but assigns the bulk of the credit to the interaction that happened just before the conversion.
  • Position-based model: This model, also called U-shaped attribution, splits the credit for a sale between the customer’s first interaction with a brand and the last-click interaction.

When defining which attribution model to be used to measure the success of the marketing efforts, the marketing team will be better equipped to understand the customer journey. Thus, changes to the campaign and spending can be considered accordingly.

4. Identify the right campaign channels

The channels chosen will depend primarily on the target market and the goals of the campaign. If the main goal is to establish an online presence, consider focusing on digital marketing channels. If traditional channels are still effective, though, consider other traditional marketing strategies.

Traditional channels include:

  • Print advertising (e.g., newspapers, magazines)
  • Radio
  • Television
  • Direct mail or newsletters
  • Billboards
  • Events and trade shows
  • Loyalty and incentive programs
  • Direct selling

Digital channels include:

  • Websites
  • Blogs
  • Social media (e.g., Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn)
  • Email marketing
  • Mobile apps

Here are some criteria to consider when choosing channels for the campaign:

  • Is it a suitable channel to reach the target audience?
  • Is it within budget?
  • Can it communicate the brand’s message effectively?
  • Can a marketing team measure how well it performs efficiently?
  • Is it compatible with the other channels chosen?

How to implement a multichannel campaign in 10 steps

Here’s how to create a multichannel campaign from start to finish.

1. Identify the objective of the multichannel campaign

First, be clear on what the MCM campaign is setting out to achieve. Set goals that state the campaign’s intention, whether it’s to increase brand authority, reach new demographics, enter new markets, or something else. The objective will also guide the campaign vision and provide key performance indicators (KPIs) to gauge the success of the campaign.

2. Communicate the objective and duration of campaign

Next, make sure the intent of the campaign is communicated and understood by each person involved. Each team working on the different channels should know the duration of the initiative. This way, a cohesive experience is created for the target market.

3. Create buyer personas

A buyer persona is an image of a company’s ideal customer based on data and research. It generally includes age, location, job, income, educational attainment, and other factors. Similarly, if the company’s product or service is for everyone, this allows for the buyer persona to be segmented based on age, location, income, etc.

Creating a buyer persona for a MCM campaign helps to focus resources on potential customers with a high probability of buying. A clearly defined buyer persona also enables the development of targeted messaging to attract customers. Knowing the customers also makes it easier to choose which new channels to use to reach them.  

4. Develop a precise message

Tailored messaging is the key to getting conversions. Therefore, the next step should be to develop a concise and focused message that resonates with the target audience. Then, customize how the message is delivered across channels, but ensure clarity and consistency aren’t lost.

5. Develop specific strategies and tactics for each channel  

Develop and adapt the approach across channels. For example, when using social media for lead generation, attract potential customers using the rules of each platform. This means photos and short videos work best for Instagram, while Facebook can be a good place for pay-per-click (PPC) ads.

Channel-specific assets

Here are a few examples of marketing assets:

  • Social media: Logos, blog links and articles, product photos, product descriptions, videos
  • Website: Logos, email campaign, landing pages, infographics, newsletter, ebooks, white papers, case studies
  • Television: Video ads
  • Radio: Script and recordings
  • Print: Brochures, sales letters, flyers, newspaper and magazine ads

6. Review the campaign strategy with the larger marketing team

Review the campaign strategy with the marketing team. The campaign should have cohesion and harmony, even if different people are working on the backend. Remember that a customer can and will move across different spaces, so the strategy, messaging, and KPIs should work together.

7. Launch the multichannel campaign

It’s time to launch the multichannel campaign. First, make sure the team is well-prepared to capture customer data and interactions as they happen. Consider using marketing automation to help track and manage initiatives.

8. Communicate campaign results on a weekly basis

A campaign is not successful until it’s out in front of the target market. So, make sure to create a schedule and plan to meet with each team weekly to report campaign results. Information regarding potential buyers’ engagement and reactions with the campaign is crucial to choosing how to proceed.

For example, from looking at the campaign results, one might choose to discontinue products, eliminate a low-converting channel, or double production of a particular product.

9. Review campaign success

Keep an eye on analytics to measure how each channel is performing. From the campaign results, it can be determined which channels are effective, which channels boost other channels, and which channels can be eliminated. By continually monitoring the campaign, the creative and operational aspects of an integrated multichannel marketing strategy can be balanced.

10. Evolve and adjust the strategy based on performance

A company should always give their campaign time to work. However, make sure to listen to the data and adjust strategies based on performance.

Creating and managing a multichannel marketing campaign is a project that involves constant modification and optimization. So, keep readjusting, and in time, what is and is not working will become clear.

Produce a multichannel marketing campaign that converts

The success of a multichannel marketing campaign depends on various factors including but not limited to the objective of the campaign, consistency in branding and messaging, using the proper channels, targeting the right buyer persona, and procuring the appropriate marketing assets. There’s also the matter of choosing suitable KPIs and metrics to gauge the success of the campaign.

Producing a multichannel campaign has its challenges. But its benefits can outweigh the cost if it was planned correctly and the right team is onboard to develop a winning multichannel marketing campaign. Ready to get started on marketing initiatives? In search of skilled and experienced digital marketers and marketing strategists to handle an upcoming campaign? Connect with top independent talent on Upwork today.

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What Is Multichannel Marketing? (Strategy and Examples)
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