Technology allows us to choose how, where, and when we want to use our multiple devices for a wide variety of daily tasks (shoe shopping, content searching, email checking, Facebook browsing, etc.). So, how are you supposed to know which individual channel is going to best reach your customer?
Trick question; there is no one best way. Thanks to the ever-expanding multimedia landscape, single channel promotions just don’t cut it anymore when it comes to reaching your desired audience effectively.
We see the most success in direct marketing campaigns through focused activity in what we call, “The Big Six in the Mix.”
These six touchpoints are some of the most current and influential methods of reaching your customer. When used together, your chance of hitting the right person at the right time is much greater than using any one channel on its own.
The Big Six Channels in the Mix
1. Direct Mail. This traditional channel now allows marketers to take advantage of variable printing technology (think PURLs and QR codes) to present hyper-relevant imaging and messaging to each recipient. Calls to action with coupon codes and links to landing pages will drive online engagement. Direct mail brings your message into the home without requiring the customer to initiate the contact. As fewer mail pieces pass through the mailstream (less and less each year), you will gain a higher “share of mailbox,” making a bigger splash.
2. Email. As a very cost-effective, targeted, trackable tactic, email helps build and foster relationships. It keeps brand awareness high—an important factor not only in customer acquisition, but also in retention. The subject line serves as your headline. Make it compelling with a short promise, benefit statement or call to action to achieve high open rates. Include button links at the top and bottom of each message with text links in the content to achieve high clickthrough rates.
3. Digital Display. Targeted digital advertising is one of the most effective ways to access the largest possible audience within your target market. With display you can reach an audience on a large scale to create mass awareness. Display also builds trust to ease conversions through your company website. If visitors to your site happen to leave without taking the desired action, you can bring them back through retargeting ads displayed on other sites they happen to visit.
4. Social. Social media platforms like Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn are where people have conversations, trade recommendations, ask questions and share links. Join the conversation and occasionally drop a link to a blog you just posted, a landing page or an article that features your brand. Your own Facebook and LinkedIn pages can bring the conversation right to your door.
5. Mobile. With reports that people are looking at their mobile devices an average of 150 times per day, engaging with them through their smart phones is an essential part of the mix. By collecting your customers’ mobile numbers, you can deliver messages, ads and media to their handhelds. Typically read within minutes, they serve as the perfect means for offering time-sensitive and geo-centric promotions. Be sure to include easy-to-remember URLs or QR codes on your print materials, which will lead them right to the last of the Big Six…
6. Landing Page. All roads lead here. This is your lead generation hub. It should have minimal navigation and a simple form. The copy must clearly and quickly convey the value of the offer. Keep it brief and to the point. What will visitors gain? Will they learn something new? In exchange for receiving their contact information, give them something of value—an e-book, free shipping, a percentage off the retail price.
Much of a consumer’s brand experience is influenced by these six touchpoints encountered during the sales process from brand awareness to lead conversion. By creating a consistent customer experience across the mix, you will keep your brand top of mind and increase your chances for engagement. En masse, a multichannel campaign will provide an overall lift in visits to your website, which you can monitor with Google Analytics. Just make sure that when you get a live one, you don’t let it go.