Multichannel Marketing — Using the right language to reach your customer

I remember some years ago preparing to present a sales training course and on the first day, when driving to it and wondering if my content was on the money, I pulled up at a roundabout behind a four wheel drive. On the spare wheel cover on the back of the vehicle, and right in my line of vision, were the words “So what’s stopping you”?

This became my opening position in the training session and we spent some time, before launching into the content that I had prepared, discussing what was stopping them achieve their goals. In fact we discovered that not too many of them actually had any goals at all. It’s true that if you don’t know where you are going then you will end up somewhere but it may not be in the right place.

Similarly with direct marketers, many are going through the motions but don’t really have a clear understanding of where they really want to be. I recently asked a person when discussing opportunities available what was his marketing strategy and without a great deal of conviction he answered that all they did was advertise in the local newspapers. I asked if he knew what the response to those expensive ads was and he was unable to provide any substantiation that the ads were in fact working at all.

Multichannel marketing provides tools that enable you to totally track the effectiveness of every campaign and provide you with clear indications of what the return on your investment really is. This gives you the ability to understand which method is best to use to reach your market and how to actually get there.

In today’s market it is vital to understand the various channels available that can be used to reach your market. David Ogilvey, the direct marketing guru said “If you’re trying to persuade people to do something, or buy something it seems to me you should use their language, the language in which they think.”

These days local newspaper readership is dwindling significantly, and so why keep on advertising in a dying medium? Understanding your target audience is essential to your success and using “their language” is critical to that success. For instance how many people under the age of thirty actually read a newspaper let alone a local newspaper? On the other hand how many are on Facebook or Twitter or receive messages on their smart phone?

The use of multichannel marketing  techniques enable you to reach your audience, diverse as most are, in the most appropriate way and to test the various channels to get the results that you are looking for. Combining those channels in the right way will also improve results enabling customers and prospects to take the action they have been called to take.

Working with an organisation that understands marketing requirements and how to put multichannel output together is critical to the success of your campaign. Find the right organisation and your overheads and management issues will be reduced which will be reflected in an improved return on your investment.

The “New Way” of Direct Marketing

Making a shift from single channel marketing to multichannel marketing requires a change in mindset and sometimes moves us out of our comfort zone and into areas of the unknown. For those who have ventured out and embarked on the “new way” of direct marketing they have seen significant improvement in their results.

However, I am amazed at the amount of marketing managers and direct marketing consultancies that know little about multichannel marketing and continue in the single channel of direct mail, wondering why the results do not improve and yet the costs continue to escalate. Don’t get me wrong I am an advocate of direct mail – but stand alone or as a single channel – I believe the days are limited.

The constant reminder ringing in my ears that says “if you keep on doing the same thing you will keep on getting the same results” is ever so true in this industry.

Moving into multichannel marketing has its risks and certainly will shake you from your comfort zone, but with the proliferation of new devises and mobility, unless we communicate with prospects and customers in the way they communicate then we will be left behind.

There are numerous examples of the change in response rates from those who have ventured into multichannel marketing. One retail application saw a response rate of 150% to a direct mail post card campaign. Unheard of as a standalone campaign, but by adding social media, personalised landing pages and other multichannel applications the campaign went viral and hence the response rate. From a starting point of 20,000 names on the database at the end of the campaign they had added another 13,000 active names.

Can you imagine how many direct mail campaigns would need to be undertaken to increase your database by 65% and the costs associated with that?

This is just one example of what can be done. Organisation starting to use multichannel marketing include charities, educational institutions, insurance companies, telcos, training companies and the list goes on.

Stepping out into new territory is often best done with someone who knows how to plot a course through the terrain. This is also true for those stepping out into multichannel marketing. Having someone who knows how to get there and who understands the pitfalls along the way is an essential element in the process.

AMS Direct Marketing Solutions can help you plot a course.