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what is omnichannel?

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Omni-channel marketing is a marketing strategy that seeks to connect with potential customers through all possible channels simultaneously.

Etymologically, the word is made up of the prefix "omni", which means totality, and the noun "channel". In marketing, this refers to the medium (physical or telematic) through which the customer and the company communicate. Unlike the term multichannel, the particularity of omnichannel is the use of all channels at the same time, to create a joint and organised communication.

What is omnichannel?

By channel we mean not only the distribution channel, but also the media used for advertising, as well as points of sale and post-purchase communication. Moreover, the use of channels is customised to the market niche (or niches) to be reached. The best omni-channel strategy will always be to achieve the perfect balance between content and context.

The appearance of the term already highlights the current market situation. A few channels are not enough to communicate with customers, let alone one. But today's diversification of media has led to specificity. Not all channels are optimal for communicating in the same way. Part of the strategy is to choose which of them are most appropriate for our buyer personas. The behaviour of these buyer personas helps to find out which channels are most effective. And, although there are large generational differences, a Hubspot study has shown that, regardless of the generation to which prospects belong, they all prefer the website as their first choice for information about a company.

It is important to personalise communication according to the different channels, however, it is essential for a good marketing strategy to always deliver the same message. Promote the same offers or news on all platforms and always use a unified tone. For example, the melenics are more likely to watch videos than read a report than the baby boomers. The important thing is that the message conveyed in the video is the same as in the report. Even if one allows direct access to the other.

It is also important that the experience in the physical space is not undermined by putting more effort into telematic communication. Offering an email to resolve queries but none of the employees at the point of sale is capable of resolving them is a mistake in the omnichannel strategy.

Likewise, the variety of channels should not mean duplicating efforts. Part of the communication is common to all channels, and there should be a good prior organisation so as not to carry out the same task as many times as there are channels. A good resource for this is to have an optimal database.

It is also not optimal to make efforts in vain. Not all the channels that one would like to use give good results, or at least are not achieved at the first attempt. To evaluate the success of omni-channeling it is essential to carry out audits in the different channels used, detect errors and improve.

The variety of channels, however, cannot translate into disproportionality. Social networks are currently a very useful tool for generating a marketing conversation, but they cannot displace other more traditional channels such as events or email lists. In fact, a good omni-channel strategy would be to promote a brand event through networks, or to include your email in your social network profiles. Calls to action or links that connect channels will always be a good strategy.

Among the multitude of channels, listening is still important, as in other models of channelling communication. Years ago, one-way advertising was replaced by a two-way conversation, in which the consumer feels that they can contact the company whenever they need to. In the case of omni-channeling, it consists of being able to do so through various channels, connected between them, to choose the most convenient option.

Establishing the right conversation with the buyer persona helps both parties to grow: company and consumer. The most important aspect of omnichannel is to increase the presence of our company, and not only in the prospect's thoughts, but also to accompany them in all stages of the buyer's journey (recognition, consideration and decision).

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