Gone are the days of old-school marketing where business ads were limited to billboards, radio, and print. In today’s digital world there are more channels than ever you can use to reach your customers, but multichannel marketing has its own pros and cons that are worth considering.
This one is a no-brainer: The more channels featuring your ads, the more people you’ll reach. However, an even greater benefit of multichannel marketing is the ability — as they say in both advertising and psychology — to meet people where they’re at. For example, if you run a local Italian restaurant, you could invest in paid search to get in front of people searching Google for “Italian food near me,” while also using Facebook to build more general awareness in your community.
Multichannel marketing helps you fine-tune your campaigns to better align with your business goals, and the overall customer journey.
One way newer companies can use multichannel marketing best practices to fine-tune their campaigns is to first run a Facebook campaign to promote your business to an in-market audience. Then, you can retarget your marketing to prospects who clicked on your display ads, while also offering an email discount code to those who reached your landing page and signed up for your newsletter.
Your customers will very rarely be ready to buy your product or sign up for a demo after their first marketing touchpoint with your company. But with multi-channel marketing, you can give them multiple avenues to convert when they’re ready. They may first hear about you through word of mouth, do a Google search to learn more, and then convert when you serve them a Facebook ad a week later.
More marketing channels means that more resources will be needed, both in terms of money spent and hours worked. Generally, it’s pretty easy to see at a glance whether a new channel fits within your budget or spending limits. That said, some channels aren’t as easy to asses because they require so much time-intensive work.
Content marketing is a great example of this — to save on budget, many companies have internal team members write content, which cuts away at the time they can devote to other marketing efforts. Rather than spreading yourself too thin and overloading your personnel, you’re usually better off focusing your efforts on just a handful of channels.
Being able to tailor your marketing to the customer journey is both a blessing and a curse. The benefits are vast, but the customer research required to earn those benefits is an undertaking unto itself. Companies that have the resources to conduct extensive user and customer research will always achieve vastly better results with their multichannel marketing than those that don’t.
There’s no good in doing multichannel marketing if you can’t track what’s working and what’s not. Unfortunately, multichannel marketing is notoriously complex from a data and analytics standpoint. While it’s certainly not impossible to succeed at multichannel attribution, it does require much more advanced analytics tools and know-how.
We live in a highly digital world, so chances are your company will benefit from being present in multiple marketing channels. Rather than asking whether or not you should be doing multichannel marketing, you should instead be asking yourself how many channels you should invest in.
That number ultimately comes down to your business’s needs, and how many resources you have to play with. For example, a startup apparel company that targets Gen Z would be wise to prioritize their small marketing budget for Instagram advertising and influencer marketing, not Facebook ads. (Recent data shows that demographic uses Instagram more than Facebook.)
Alternatively, a highly profitable B2B software company could afford to advertise with LinkedIn, paid search, and Facebook, in addition to event and trade show sponsorships. They could also invest in SEO and content marketing to gain new customers organically. Most importantly, they could (and should) invest more heavily their analytics and A/B testing capabilities so they can be more strategic with resource allocation to each channel.
A good rule of thumb? Only invest in as many channels as you have the resources to fund and track. To return to our hypothetical t-shirt company, let’s say they’re planning a modest increase to their marketing budget. If it came down to choosing between adding another channel or adding an efficient analytics tool, the latter is a better long-term decision. Otherwise, they’ll keep adding new channels with no way of knowing whether they’re actually working.
It’s also important to understand that having a bigger budget doesn’t mean you should take a scattershot approach to choosing marketing channels. Your apparel company may someday have enough money to afford trade show sponsorships, but that doesn’t mean it’s a good investment for businesses in your industry. Do your research before adding new channels so you can be confident that you’re using your marketing dollars wisely.
But regardless of the kind of company you run, it’s always critical to figure out which of your marketing channels are working, and which ones aren’t. By making careful use of your data and analytics, your company can get the most out of multichannel marketing.
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New year, new partner program? With a new year upon us, it makes sense that many organizations are setting performance goals and making business resolutions for 2019. While goal setting is always a good idea, there are a few ways you can increase the odds of your partner accomplishing their goals in the year ahead.
When you’re identifying your partner goals for a new year, it can be easy to overshoot by setting goals that are unattainable. Instead of inspiring your partners, this will only overwhelm them. You should aim to set attainable goals that will help both of your bottom lines in 2019.
It’s always a good idea to consider the current health of your channel, as well as past performance when you’re setting partner goals. This can help you identify areas for improvement and opportunity. You can leverage the analytics in your PRM system to measure content marketing success and drive your goal-setting initiatives for the upcoming year.
Your partners are regular people with strengths and weaknesses just like anyone else. When you’re setting goals for your partner program, make it a point to consider the limitations of your partners—not to mention how you can help address those limitations in 2019.
For example, some partners may seem disorganized or unresponsive. With the help of a PRM solution, you can centralize all partner resources in one place and avoid losing your emails in a cluttered inbox. This will help address any limitations that may be pain points for you currently and will offer a better experience to your partners.
Remember that you’re in a partnership—both sides should be accountable for driving sales in the New Year. You should make it a point to demonstrate to each of your partners that their success is tied to your own. By showing that you’re also accountable, you can be a better support to your partners and encourage them to engage, collaborate, and work toward meeting your shared goals.
Not only should you show that you’re equally accountable for your program’s success, but you should also take the time to build a relationship with each of your channel partners. You want your partners to recognize their importance and the value they provide because this will motivate them going into the upcoming year.
As in any relationship, you should make sure you’re aware of the needs and expectations of your partners—and do what you can to ensure that they’re met..
You should provide as much support as you can to help your partners drive sales and work toward meeting business goals. Be responsive to their questions, provide them with helpful resources, and communicate frequently to make sure they’re getting what they need. Your own personal goal should be to make it as easy as possible for them to sell more of your products, faster.
Don’t leave room for interpretation. Instead, you should aim to be clear and descriptive when setting your 2019 goals to ensure they’re defined clearly for your partners. This will help make sure you and your partners are all on the same page about priorities going into the year ahead.
Are you wondering what the return is on investing in a PRM solution? If you’re making plans and setting goals for your partner program in 2019, you should check out our ROI calculator to realize your company’s full revenue potential with a channel sales acceleration tool.