How Omnichannel Marketing Can Improve Your Customer Experience (CX)Posted on May 17th, 2021 by Cameron Schulz
Omnichannel and Customer Experience (CX) might win the award for the marketing industry topics with the most buzz in 2021. Maybe you think it’s a bit early to make such a bold prediction, but the truth is: we’re nearly six months into the year. If that little tidbit didn’t blow your mind, this next one might. The discussion around omnichannel and customer experience is merging, and their work together might just be the collaboration of the century.
Today, omnichannel—while often referred to as a marketing strategy—impacts far more than a single department. The omnichannel strategy is truly holistic, impacting every aspect of—that’s right—the customer experience. More importantly, it’s having a positive impact on CX.
Omnichannel is providing a solution to some of the greatest CX challenges reported by customer experience practitioners, solution providers, and industry analysts in a recent report from CX Network, and subsequently it has the power to deliver significant improvements to an organization’s overall customer experience.
How Does Omnichannel Improve CX?
In our February Blog, Omnichannel Marketing: Why Connected Channels Bare Better Experiences, the number one reason shared was the customer. Omnichannel is an entirely customer-centric strategy, which means the marketing message and the buying journey are malleable to the customer’s agenda. Not only does this solve the common CX challenge of “building a customer-first culture,” stated in the report mentioned earlier, but it also incorporates two important qualities into CX – value and consistency.
As omnichannel seamlessly integrates channels and removes frequently encountered roadblocks, it brings value to the forefront and delivers it to customers more immediately and continuously. However they take their journey, and wherever they begin, prospects and customers experience consistent brand messaging that’s personalized to deliver relevant information that’s specific to their business needs and inquiries.
Marketing strategies that are product or company focused might be able to deliver a consistent brand message, but they’re often over-generalized and vague, which provides little to no true value to their audience. Additionally, traditional strategies might deliver limited customization, but their ability to be consistent will be limited due to their lack of channel integration and inability to share data across departments.
Interdepartmental data sharing also happens to be an important factor in CX that omnichannel has the potential to improve. Omnichannel takes breaking down siloes to the next level—including all departments that play a part in the buying journey and customer cycle in the process of creating clear communication channels and establishing consistent collaboration of information to create a universal customer profile.
Increased interdepartmental collaboration and the universal view of the consumer increases the impact of every interaction and streamlines the buying journey. Everyone has access to the same information about the customer, and the file is updated following each interaction to reflect latest information gathered. This practice ensures that time is never wasted collecting repeat information and increases the personalization opportunities available at each touch point.
Perhaps the greatest improvement that omnichannel has to offer CX is achieved as a joint effort. Altogether, customer-centricity, interdepartmental collaboration, consistent brand messaging, Artificial Intelligence (AI), and integrated technology collectively benefit CX by creating the imperative connection between channels.
Channel integration impacts many important aspects of CX, including data quality, personalization, and closing critical gaps where pipeline velocity and quality experience significant decline.
The most prominent gap—the one between digital and physical channels—also poses the largest threat. To improve CX and achieve increased sales success, organizations must be prepared to meet their consumers where they are, whether it’s digital or traditional, and still provide the same high-quality interaction.
Omnichannel strongly emphasizes the integration of all channels but puts the most emphasis on the integration of traditional and digital—enlisting the help of all its foundational elements to support that critical point of transition.
The Experience of It All
Experience. Experience. Experience. Obviously, customer experience is all about creating an experience for the customer, but if you look at our definition in What is Omnichannel Marketing?, you’ll find that omnichannel is also acutely concerned with creating an experience. And, although our definition specifically states that omnichannel aims to create a ‘brand experience,’ as a well-known customer-focused strategy, there is an implied ‘for the customer’ that follows.
The clear mutual interests of omnichannel and customer experience have naturally and powerfully drawn the two together. As the walls between departments are torn down, and more leaders begin to recognize the benefits of omnichannel, customer experience will also begin to reap the benefits of the all-encompassing strategy.