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Omnichannel communication is a term that refers to providing a seamless and consistent customer experience across different channels, such as websites, mobile apps, social media and more. It is a way of ensuring that your brand voice and message are aligned with your customer’s preferences and needs, regardless of the channel they use to interact with you.
Omnichannel communication is not only beneficial for customers, but also for businesses. Data from McKinsey indicates that omnichannel customers shop 1.7 times more than single-channel customers and also spend more*. Omnichannel communication can boost your engagement levels, build and maintain strong customer relationships and level up customer satisfaction. Read How BlueStone Uses Omnichannel Marketing & Recommendations to Maximize Conversion
However, implementing an effective omnichannel communication strategy is not easy. It requires planning, coordination, integration and optimization of various channels and systems. Some of the common challenges that businesses face when trying to adopt an omnichannel approach are:
Lack of data and insights: To provide personalized and relevant customer experience across channels, businesses need to have a clear understanding of their customers’ behaviors, preferences, needs, and expectations. They also need to track KPIs and measure the performance of each channel and how they contribute towards achieving business goals. However, many businesses lack the tools and processes to collect, analyze, and act on customer data and insights from different sources leading to a gap in providing users with the best customer experience.
Lack of integration and consistency: A cohesive customer experience across channels requires that the channels are integrated and synchronized with each other. It also requires that the brand voice, message, and design are consistent across all touchpoints. However, many businesses struggle with integrating their channels and systems, especially when they use multiple vendors or platforms. They also face challenges in maintaining consistency in their communication across different teams and departments causing customer churn.
Lack of resources and skills: An effective omnichannel communication strategy requires the right resources and skills in place along with a dedicated team that can manage and optimize the channels and campaigns, backed by the right technology and tools that can support omnichannel efforts. However, bootstrapped or pre-revenue businesses might lack the budget, time, or expertise to invest in omnichannel communication.
So how can these challenges be overcome and an effective omnichannel communication strategy be implemented?
Here are some tactics that can help build up a more effective omnichannel strategy:
Use an omnichannel customer engagement platform: You need to use a competent platform that can support all the channels — from email and SMS to push notifications, in-app messages, web messages, social media ads, and webhooks— and that can collect and analyze customer data from various sources.
It should be able to segment audiences based on their behavior and preferences so you can send dynamic content that adapts to each channel and customer context. It should also be able to automate workflows and campaigns, measure communication effectiveness and ROI, and optimize your communication strategy based on feedback and insights.
By delivering such tailored, unique and relevant experiences across channels, businesses can mitigate churn, boost customer lifetime value and loyalty.
Unify customer data: As your brand collects customer data from all its multiple sources, you will need to integrate it all if you want to analyze it for insights. Have one central repository — one version of the truth — to house all the data from your CRM and web analytics tools to your social media, email, and SMS channels. Breaking down data silos and unifying customer data creates a single and holistic view of each customer. And understanding their behavior will allow your system to segment them into relevant groups so they can receive unique experiences across channels.
Unifying customer data also enables you to measure and optimize the omnichannel strategy based on data-driven insights and feedback. Cleartrip achieved 5x more cross-sells with personalized omnichannel marketing campaigns by gaining a holistic view of the entire user journey leading to a deeper understanding of customer behavior.
Use best practices for each channel: While having a unified platform for all your channels can make your life easier, you still need to follow the best practices for each channel to ensure that you provide a great customer experience. For example, you need to ensure that your website is responsive, your mobile app is user-friendly, your social media posts are engaging, your email subject lines are catchy, your SMS messages are concise, your push notifications are timely, and so on. Test and optimize your messages for each channel based on their open rates, click-through rates, and conversion rates.
Track the right KPIs: To measure the effectiveness of an omnichannel strategy, it is important to track the right key performance indicators (KPIs) that align with your business goals. Metrics such as retention, customer lifetime value, omnichannel attribution, omnichannel ROI and more, must be closely monitored.
For example, BharatPe users were dropping off mid-session while navigating products like loans or bill payments within the app — either due to lengthy navigation or network issues. Their spray-and-pray campaigns that used mass messaging without any user segmentation or personalization were largely ineffective in retaining users. However BharatPe started using CleverTap’s real-time analytics to uncover user trends and track behavior resulting in doubled CTRs for their omnichannel campaigns.
Omnichannel communication is a powerful way to connect with your customers and provide them with a seamless and consistent experience across different channels. However, the challenges we listed above require careful planning and execution if you want to sidestep potential minefields.
By using CleverTap’s all-in-one engagement platform for all your channels, you can overcome these challenges and implement an effective omnichannel communication strategy that drives tangible business value. Click here to schedule a demo today.
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