• Nikki Ault

The Missing Piece In Omni Channel Marketing

The world is ever-changing in technology advancements. There are new products and items that are constantly coming out that can connect to the Internet and access needed information at a moment's notice.

In the world of marketing, each of these devices are called channels, and can include brick and mortar establishments, social media platforms, and even subject matter experts as well.

Many marketing agencies are familiar with multi-channel marketing as it is the ability to interact with potential customers across various platforms, or channels.

Omni, derived from the Latin term Omnis, is defined by Merriam-Webster as, all: in all ways, places, etc.: without limits. Omni channel marketing is multi channel marketing but connects all of the channels seamlessly.

The difference between multi-channel marketing and omni channel marketing is aligning the message, goals, objectives, and design across all channels and it is completely geared towards the customer perspective and experience.

Certona.com provides a visual for what a customer's journey through an omni channel approach may look like:

Omni Channel's Missing Piece

A completed jigsaw puzzle that has one piece missing, is just not a completed jigsaw puzzle.

Just the same, your omni channel marketing strategy is not complete without the missing piece that is all too often left out: digital signage.

Digital signage uses digital displays or screens to display content such as images, video, streaming media, and information.

As mentioned earlier, technology is advancing at an extremely rapid rate. This includes not only the devices themselves, but the way customers respond to being marketed to. The digital signage market is expected to grow at a CAGR of 8.18% between the years of 2015-2020.

Having digital signage as a part of the omni channel puzzle can create a new revenue stream for the agency and provides the agency with a chance to partner with a digtial signage provider.

Show Me The...Revenue

As a marketing agency, you get the opportunity to develop a strategy for your customers that will ultimately help grow their business. Even with the growth of technology, physical locations are still an essential part of the business.

"How do I help my client keep up with the ever-changing technology, as well as, implement an omni channel marketing approach that also includes the physical location?" That answer is digital signage.

Adding the option of digital signage to your client's marketing plan can help the client reach their marketing goals, as well as, increase the revenue earned for the agency.

Another technology that can be combined with digital signage and/or used as another channel in the marketing plan is beacon technology. Beacon technology uses radio transmitters to search for blue tooth enabled devices, such as smartphones, and can send specific triggers to an app on that smartphone.

The interesting thing is that the digital signage displays can also receive signals from the beacon and in this case, the beacon can become the bridge between the customer and the digital signage display. This type of technology enables the client to capture customer data and create specific data to be transmitted to the display as well as the customer's smartphone. This creates an elevated customer experience as well as the potential for an upsell or an unplanned purchase to take place for the client.

What's a better way to ramp up utilizing digital signage or beacon technology in your omni channel strategy than partnering with a digital signage provider?

Stop, Collaborate, and Listen

By partnering with a digital signage company, the client receives subject matter experts in that channel while the agency still controls the content and omni channel strategy as a whole.

In a successful digital signage solution, there is the content, a content management system (CMS) that controls the organization, and scheduling of the content that will be displayed and the hardware. Collaborating with a digital signage provider that can take the lead with the technology side can make this an effective piece for the client.

What's also great about this partnership, is through the CMS, content can be organized and fashioned for specific locations or departments of a company if need be. This means other channels in the marketing plan can be affected positively by the content provided through the digital signage channel.

So how does the agency prove the value of digital signage as a missing piece for their client?

The Value Of Digital Signage For Omni Channel Marketing

As an agency, you will be putting together an omni marketing stratetgy based upon your client's needs and desires and across a variety of different industries. Since we mentioned digital signage as the missing piece of the omni channel plan, it is important that your client understands the benefits of it.

First and foremost, digital signage can be customized to meet the customer's needs and desires. The message options are endless; whether it be used as a kiosk, an information provider, a sales driving force, an internal staff communicator, or for entertainment, digital signage can provide big value. Some of the statistics below also show the relationship between digital signage and the customer.

Kiosks can be used as digital signage in the omni channel strategy to upsell customers, provide store or home delivery options, allow for customer feedback, make the experience personalized or interactive, provide wayfinding or directions, and can even provide sales or coupons all to benefit the customer as well as the client.

Having options outside of the standard digital display running content increases the value to the customer based upon their needs. Another form of communication that can take place between the client and their audience through digital signage is data visualization.

Data visualization is just taking essential data, from any channel, such as key performance indicators or sales statistics, and turning it into a visual representation on the screen.

Using data visualization can drive employee engagement, create a culture of community within the company, and satisfies another piece of the omni channel approach. You can learn more about data visualization with our blog, Data Visualization Driving Employee Engagement.

The omni channel marketing approach is evolving into the strategy desired by many companies. Why? Because the client's customers desire for things to be readily available to them, and available seamlessly. Zendesk reports that 87% of customers think brands need to put more effort into providing a seamless experience.

As an agency it is important to have a clear understanding of the benefits of using digital signage as an option as part of the omni channel marketing strategy. With this, it is important to help the customer find the why behind that digital signage to then provide their customers with that seamless experience.

There are typically two options when partnering with a digital signage provider.

Option #1: White label service. This is where the service is produced by the digital signage provider and the agency rebrands it as their own service.

Option #2: Traditional partnership. In this program the digital signage provider executes the signage portion as part of the agency's marketing strategy.

Contact Coffman Media to learn more about digital signage partnering options and how to complete that missing piece of the omni channel marketing strategy with digital signage.

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