A Guide to Multichannel Marketing

Marketing Across the Board

Most marketing analysts, bloggers and other media commentators agree that marketing spend is shifting away from offline initiatives towards online strategies – whether that’s pay per click advertising or social media sites. The key to a successful marketing campaign is to get the balance right between online and offline strategies – take a multichannel approach – so that online and offline initiatives complement each other.

Here is a brief guide to help you incorporate both offline and online advertising into your promotional strategy.

What is your target audience?

The different channels you choose to invest in should be determined by who you’re trying to target. Ask yourself some key questions – are you targeting new customers or existing customers (or a particular segment of your existing customer base)? Does the particular segment have a particular affinity towards a certain channel? Let’s look at a simple example based on demographics. If you’re planning to advertise to tech-savvy 20-something-year-olds, focus most of your attention on pay per click advertising and social media sites. However, if your target audience is pensioners, you may wish to utilize most of your marketing budget on a direct mail campaign.

What are you selling?

Don’t forget that where you place your adverts will depend on what it is you’re planning to advertise. You might be looking for a way to sell a new product or service, or you could simply want to raise awareness of your brand, so your target audience remembers it when they need to buy your products or services in the future.

Keep in mind your products and services – and their unique selling propositions – as this will help you work out where your advertising efforts should be focused.

The growth of social media

Social media sites such as Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn are now used by millions of people around the world. These sites provide a great opportunity to communicate your brand and marketing campaigns (often on a real time basis) as well as driving traffic to your web-site. According to a survey bySourceLink, 64 per cent of companies use social media as some part of their marketing plan.

By utilising popular networking sites, companies can be confident they will be seen when customers go online to speak to their friends and check their messages – for some social media devotees, this can be several times a day!

But social media shouldn’t operate in isolation. SourceLink’s findings also reveal the importance of relying on other forms of advertising as well, with results showing that 69 per cent of respondents conduct multichannel marketing and 56 per cent regard this as vital to their promotional plans.

Go offline with promotional products

According to the British Promotional Merchandise Association, promotional products generate a better return on investment than TV and radio advertising (promotional products also have a lower entry point).

Everyone loves to receive a freebie, and by giving your customers a product they can use day in, day out, you can be confident your brand’s identity will be spotted on a regular basis. Think about the level of exposure you could generate with a simple promotional mug. After all, us Brits love our teas and coffees! Every time the recipient of the mug goes to make a brew, they will see your logo, brand name and contact details, which should resonate with them when they need to buy your products and services in the future.

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