Cross Channel Marketing 101: What It Is and How To Get Started

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The cross channel marketing approach is an effective way to maximise the potential of your marketing strategy. Learn its benefits and how you can get started.

Digital marketing has evolved in many ways you might not be aware of. Things aren’t the same as they used to be.

Today’s consumers are more connected than ever before, and digital marketing agencies have to meet them exactly where they are. They have every means to engage with brands using Facebook, Instagram, YouTube and Twitter, to name a few. 

This means that there are many channels used by customers daily—and is there ever a way to keep up? If you don’t have a large team or advanced technology, how can you reach customers and stay ahead of the competition?

That’s where cross channel marketing comes in. It allows you to build a seamless customer experience using a holistic digital marketing approach without breaking the bank. Let’s delve deeper into it!

What Is Cross Channel Marketing?

1. What Is Cross Channel Marketing
Corporate Management Strategy Solution Branding Concept

Cross-channel marketing is a customer-focused digital marketing strategy that aims to establish a connected customer journey across mobile apps, social media and other platforms. 

It allows you to reach the right customers in different channels all at once, including email, SMS, call centres, in-store and mobile phones. However, everything requires unity. You blend marketing channels together to acquire customers and guide them throughout the life cycle (from acquisition to loyalty to retention). 

This is why cross-channel marketing is extremely beneficial for every brand, especially for local businesses. Since most of them operate on a small budget, maximising their marketing efforts on different channels won’t require them to spend so much money. 

With social media marketing alone, they can reach thousands of potential customers and drive engagement just by posting quality content. 

Not only that, but several offline cross-channel marketing ideas can also help them drive foot traffic in their brick-and-mortar stores. This includes word-of-mouth marketing, radio stations and strategic ad placements.

How It Works

Let’s say you want to start a cross-channel marketing campaign for a smartphone brand. First, a potential customer comes across a paid Google ad about your smartphone and its features. You trigger their curiosity, but they’re not ready to make a purchase. 

They click the link which takes them to a blog post explaining why the brand is different and better than the competitors’. The customer enjoys reading the blog, so they subscribe to your newsletter using the link on your CTA. They are now a part of your mailing list!

You send them the first e-mail to continue their journey. In that email, you explain how the smartphone can address problems like improved battery life and unmatched storage space. 

With this example, you can notice that even though you jump from one channel to another, you have one goal: to help customers address pain points and provide a solution. 

Why Should You Use Cross-Channel Marketing?

Now that you have an idea of how the cross-channel marketing strategy works, let’s discuss a few of its benefits:

Improved Brand Exposure

Branding Strategy Marketing Business Graphic Design

Research conducted in 2007 gave birth to the mere exposure effect. It showed that when someone is repeatedly exposed to a brand or a company using ads, it develops a warm feeling that can urge them to buy. 

So, when you consistently connect to customers on various platforms with relevant information, achieving high conversion rates is possible. 

Optimised Customer Journey

customer journey maps illustration

The customer journey doesn’t just happen in one place. It spans across offline and online channels, so you have to apply a holistic approach to influence their actions. In fact, a study of 46,000 people revealed that approximately 73 per cent of shoppers buy from more than one platform. 

This further proves that cross-channel marketing works, especially since the world is getting more connected by the day. Digital marketers will find it easier to optimise the customer journey because they have unified databases instead of fragmented ones. 

Build Trust In Your Brand

benefit of cross channel marketing

Your target audience is likely overwhelmed with hundreds of promotions every day—from podcasts to Youtube ads to billboards and discounted products. And before you can even earn their trust, you need to stand out from the crowd and cut through the noise. 

With cross-channel marketing, building trust becomes easier since you focus on creating personalised interactions with your audience. 

You don’t solely focus on the hard sell. You make it your mission to deliver useful information, convincing potential customers that your brand is worth their time and trust.

Helpful Tips To Get Started With Cross-Channel Marketing

To start a winning cross-channel marketing strategy, here are some helpful tips you might consider:

Tip # 1: Create Buyer Personas

No matter what marketing strategy you use, it is important that you understand and know your customers. That’s why you should create buyer personas that indicate your customers’ behaviours, habits, preferences and modes of communication.

For instance, you can use your social media platforms to find out the common pain points and needs of your audience. This is a starting point to develop your buyer personas and adjust your cross-channel marketing strategy accordingly. If you are unsure how to do it, you can always consult to digital marketing agency with social media marketing service.

Determine what your potential customers like and what they don’t. Don’t just stick to common behavioural patterns that may not fit your buyer profiles. How do they usually make a purchase? Which platform do they commonly prefer? What do they buy?

Tip # 2: Unify Your Data

Once you’re done defining your buyer persona, it’s time to build unified data through a customer data platform (CDP). This is considered the backbone of any cross-channel marketing strategy, so make sure not to skip it!

Make sure that you already have the analytics data to make sense of your leads’ touch points before using a CDP. 

In most cases, unifying your data involves tracking URLs or browser cookies to connect a lead’s profile to their online activity. You want to see which marketing campaigns have made an impression on them, which emails they’ve interacted with, the blog posts they’ve read and the PPC ads they clicked on. 

You should also include the conversations that your customer service team had with a certain customer. All of your channels’ data must be reflected in your CDP for better results.

Tip # 3: Create Customer Segments

We want to emphasize that you need to make your CDP as comprehensive as possible for clearer customer segments. Your CDP should be able to provide insightful reports to help you understand data. 

That way, you can categorise your target audience by psychographics, geography and behaviour, as well as tailor your offerings accordingly.

Invest enough time to study the data related to your touch points and observe if there are successes and failures that took place. 

For instance, a huge chunk of your leads who are already paying customers has something in common. They interact more with one of your campaigns than the others, contributing to high conversion rates.

So, when you have an idea of how to segment your target audience, you know which channels to prioritise. You know what type of content your paying customers have resonated and engaged with. 

Tip # 4: Choose The Right Marketing Channels For Your Strategy

marketing channel illustration

The next effective tip is to identify the right channels for creating a productive cross-marketing channel strategy. This is where you need to be selective. 

You can’t just assume that every channel, whether offline or online, will complement other mediums that you’ll pick. Your campaign will likely fail if you invest so much time and money in a channel that your audience won’t bat an eye at. 

To get you started, here are some of the best marketing channels you may consider:

There are lots of channels to choose from, so where should you start? We recommend that you establish a foundational strategy first to boost your online presence. Start with SEO to rank higher on the SERPs, launch PPC campaigns and build a good website.

Then, you can add other channels later on when you gain enough traction, impressions and clicks.

Tip # 5: Take Advantage Of Smart Content

When your customers are segmented based on their demographics, age and many more, the next step is to customise your content to match their needs. 

One of the easiest ways to achieve this is to take advantage of smart content. It is a term that refers to the aspects of an ad, website or email body that change depending on past behaviours or preferences of a viewer. 

Simply put, it says that ‘if a lead did this certain action, show them this.’ That’s why your CDP should include a complete set of customer interaction data so you know what needs to be worked on. 

You have to know what stage they are in the buyer’s journey and meet them there. Let’s say a customer doesn’t push through with a purchase and abandons their cart. Utilise smart content and send an email that offers discount codes. And for the customers who buy your products, sending a thank you email is also a bright move. 

Here’s a tip: choose a content management system (CMS) that integrates CDP to make unifying your content easier.

Tip # 6: Monitor And Analyse Performance

One of the greatest benefits of cross-channel marketing is that you can monitor the performance and see how your efforts are helping your business. 

Having the data from this strategy will give you valuable insights into your overall performance and ROI. You can also use the information to find other ways how you can improve and optimise your cross-channel marketing approach.

Run experiments. Change the placement of your CTAs to see how your customers interact with SEO content, A/B test your emails or tweak the traits of your target audience for Google ads. 

Another great tip is to ask yourself questions like:

  • Does my web strategy go hand in hand with my social media strategy?
  • Am I targeting the right customers on every channel I use?
  • Am I being consistent? Does my entire campaign say the same thing throughout various channels?

Cross-Channel Marketing Examples

When done right, cross-channel marketing can help you create a strong brand to build stranger customer relationships. Take a look at the two brands that successfully launched a marketing campaign by unifying their actions in multiple channels:

Starbucks

Starbucks store

Starbucks has made the most out of its mobile app by combining offline and online experiences. The company uses a reinforcement learning platform that rewards customers for their purchases. Additionally, it offers personalised suggestions by looking at their shopping habits and activities. 

Users will also receive push notifications on Starbucks promotions, resulting in increased foot traffic. 

This allows Starbucks to meet their customers wherever they are. Their effective use of artificial intelligence (AI) has helped them understand and anticipate consumer behaviour. 

Mercedes Benz

mercedes benz

Through offline and digital methods, Mercedes Benz launched a campaign strategy for its CLA product. They said that it was the best product launch they ever had in about 20 years.

How did they exactly pull that off? First, they conducted research from the ‘Generation Benz’ online community. The information they gathered guided them in creating new tactics and understanding their customers. 

When it was time to launch CLA, they started a Superbowl ad with Kate Upton and Usher where they performed at a Mercedes-sponsored stadium. The company bought Facebook ads, created a microsite for their products and started the #clatakethewheel to boost engagement. 

They also partnered with a popular Youtube personality and Instagram photographers. When the campaign was about to end, Mercedes Benz garnered more than 85,000,000 organic impressions and two million likes.

The CLA product launch helped the company improve their overall revenue by up to 14% from the previous year alone. 

Final Thoughts

There’s no doubt that the cross-channel marketing approach is one of the most efficient ways to reach out to your target audience. It gives you helpful data insights and allows you to make constant improvements for better ROI.

But what makes this strategy different from others is that it helps you gain knowledge of your customer’s behaviour. This can open greater opportunities, higher conversion rates and meaningful interactions to attract more customers. 

Remember, when your branding and content are coordinated, boosting brand awareness and engagement is something that’s already within reach. 

So, if you’re considering integrating the cross-channel marketing approach into your marketing efforts, the best time to start is now. 

Start creating your buyer personas, unifying your data and establishing a better flow of content. The earlier you gain the trust and attention of your target audience, the better.

We are here to help you track your channels, build your brand, meet customers at the right time, drive sales and create killer SEO content to establish trust. 

FAQs

What is cross-channel marketing?

Cross-channel marketing refers to a company’s ability to connect and engage with customers on a range of communication channels like apps, social media, email and SMS, among many others.

What is an example of cross-channel marketing?

One good example of cross-channel marketing is card abandonment. To recover abandoned carts and encourage customers to push through with their purchases, you can send SMS messages or email to offer discounts.

How do you prepare for cross-channel marketing?

To get started on cross-channel marketing, here’s what you should do:

1. Create buyer personas.
2. Unify your data.
3. Create customer segments.
4. Choose the right marketing channels.
5. Take advantage of smart content.
6. Monitor and analyse performance.

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About Roots Digital

Roots Digital is an award-winning digital marketing agency and SEO agency headquartered in Singapore, specialising in eCommerce Marketing and lead generation. We are a Google and Meta Business certified partner working to deliver the best-in-class digital marketing campaigns from large enterprises and SMEs to growing start-ups.

Some of our core digital marketing services include SEO servicesSEM services, Google Ads management servicesGoogle Analytics services and more.

Feel free to reach out if you’re interested in working with us. Connect with us via our service enquiry form. You may schedule a call for more information and to know more about our digital marketing services.

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Ian Ong
Ian Ong
Marketing Director @ Roots Digital, a digital marketing agency in Singapore. Aka the guy responsible for growing the digital marketing agency.
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