Your audience is everywhere, especially in the digital realm. If they’re seeking solutions for a specific problem, they can chew through hundreds of pieces of content from a dozen different sources to find the information they need to make a decision. How do you secure your slice of that rapidly shifting and increasingly fractured attention? One answer is to be everywhere they are through omni-channel marketing and content immersion.
Omni-channel marketing offers your leads multiple ways of getting what they need to know from you in a coordinated, multi-media format that’s responsive to them. Prospective customers move from a social media mention to an article to a video link to a landing page to a direct mail product package with minimal effort. At every step of the way, they encounter deeper levels of relevant content. What makes automation-assisted, omni-channel content immersion strategies different from traditional multi-channel marketing is the ability to gather feedback and measure effectiveness. It becomes a responsive system that serves up what each prospect wants – the right message, to the right lead, at the right time.
Omni-Channel Content for B2B
Reaching people on multiple channels is a time-tested winning technique for B2C marketers. You see it every time you open a magazine or see a website that features an ad with the same tagline as the product’s TV and radio spots. Backing up that ad campaign with more in-depth content, either digitally or through direct mail, is also a proven strategy for success. B2B companies rarely went this route because the audience segments involved are. Investing in broadcast and print channels is perfect for surrounding a large audience with a marketing message. It doesn’t make much sense when connecting with a narrow but deeply engaged audience.
What B2B organizations needed was a way to reach that highly specific audience but still retain the immersive quality of the marketing message. That’s where omni-channel marketing comes in. With it, marketers deliver a seamless, immersive experience to B2B customers – one that’s expressly tailored to their leads’ needs in ways a mass-market blast could never be.
Omni-Channel versus Multi-Channel
Multi-channel marketing refers to a top-down, business-driven view that’s more similar to broadcast programming. Your marketing team creates content and distributes it via a number of information channels to an audience. Omni-channel marketing is a user-oriented view that creates a two-way connection between your marketing team and your customers, creating a sort of conversation: not simply “Here’s the message we have for you” but “Here’s an array of content in different formats for you to choose, and when you do, we’ll make sure to supply you with more.” It’s a seamless integration of multi-channel information streams in a way that makes sense from the user’s perspective.
When your leads see your content on your blog, on YouTube, in an industry journal, and via direct mail, that’s multi-channel marketing. When they get customized content based on their behavioral cues from social media interactions, site activity, and chosen preferences, that’s omni-channel marketing.
Immersive Experiences for Content
Omni-channel marketing lets audiences create their own content environments. If they have a history of watching video demonstrations and webinars, your marketing automation system knows to deliver them more of what they like, offering additional options they might enjoy. The software is adaptive; it tracks content visitors have already received so they get fresh, new information as they need it.
Crucially, that flow of content becomes more in-depth over time, allowing leads to progress along the marketing pipeline. You aren’t just delivering more information; you’re delivering more relevant, complex information as leads become more knowledgeable. Think about how entry-level coursework is broad-based and general versus the in-depth material you got in more advanced classes, and you’ll have a good idea of the progression from general to specific that a marketing automation system’s content flow can provide.
The responsiveness of omni-channel marketing and content immersion is a boon to businesses too. The feedback your software receives from leads’ choices in content give your marketing team volumes of information about what to provide audiences with future content. Are your videos taking off? Record some more. Is your latest white paper a hot download? Get your content marketing team at work on a follow-up. Let your audience be your guide to content creation, and you both benefit from the omni-channel marketing experience.
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