Sunday, 23 April 2017 11:07

Search Engine Optimisation Trends 2017: Cross-Channel Marketing

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One of the most noteworthy trends in 2017 is the sudden immense importance of cross-channel marketing, as opposed to the more dated multi-channel marketing.

These two have used interchangeably but are actually quite dissimilar to each other. Multi-channel marketing refers to having marketing presence in different channels. Cross-channel is like so but the approach is integrated, which requires extensive planning.

An example of multi-channel marketing is having ads in social media, mobile apps, Google searches and email. The cross-channel marketing version of this feeds ads through social media etc. after you’ve browsed / considered buying a product on an app, say Google Play. The integrated approach acts as a filter. You don’t waste your marketing efforts on people who are not likely to buy.

According to several studies, top marketing teams use cross-channel marketing 35 times more than under-performing ones. And, 73% of those who already use the strategy claim it has improved their conversion rates.

The Optimal Approach to Cross-Channel Marketing

When you decide to get into cross-channel marketing, make sure to take time to plan your attack. Its effectiveness as a marketing strategy depends on how thorough you are when it comes to:

  • the right marketing message and call to action
  • timing your marketing efforts
  • choosing the correct channels to use

Cross-channel marketing is still at its infancy stage. Technologies – particularly those in analytics – still need to evolve in order to measure and optimally implement the strategy. However, rest assured that your efforts will reap benefits. Consumers are jumping from one device/ platform to another. And, you need cross-channel presence to capture your moving target.

Your Brand and Cross-Channel Marketing

A lot needs to happen in order to grasp the immense possibilities of cross-channel marketing.

1. Visibility
According to Google, 90% of online shoppers jump from devices and platforms before making an actual purchase. This drives home the need to target your market across several channels. You need to be visible wherever they are.

An issue that arises here happens when your customers go offline. Currently, there are no metrics to track what your customers do vis-a-vis your brand when they’re offline. This blind spot can make you miss your target. The key is to make the most of the available tools and stay keenly aware of what happens offline.

2. Personalisation
More than 30% of marketers today rank personalisation as the number one factor in marketing success. This comes into play even in cross-channel marketing.

At this point, you have several avenues and tools to help you personalise that buyer’s journey. Social media, CRM, your business website and the like provide you with useful data regarding your clients. Map your customer’s online and – when you can – offline behaviours, steering clear off inaccurate data.

3. Measurement
Effective cross-channel marketing relies on accurate metrics on consumer behaviours across online and offline channels. These metrics come into play when you plan your cross-channel marketing and then eventually measure its performance. So, make the most of analytics tools you have access to. When you devise your cross-channel marketing, make sure to have accurate data at the centre of it.

Once you’ve devised a cross-channel marketing strategy, the next step is to ensure its optimised implementation. Know the channels that drive traffic and buyers. If possible, map out how these channels relate to each other. Use these channels as the foundation of your cross-channel marketing efforts.

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Tim Williams

Founder and Managing Director of A Website That Works For You, Tim Williams has lead "The Green Team" to success helping business owners take advantage of leading Web Design and Online Marketing practices.

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