How to Create a Multi-Channel Marketing Plan for eCommerce

Sometimes you go crazy wondering where your audience is, right?

A friend of mine, Chad, has an eCommerce store. And saying that things were rough for him at first is an understatement. 

You know, eCommerce has been growing so fast lately. In fact, more than $3.5 trillion were made in sales in 2019 according to Statista. 

Quite impressive for an industry that was considered fraud and uncomfortable just years ago, huh?

Well, Chad created a wonderful product and put so much effort into making everything perfect right at the beginning.

Yet, he could not find customers… Bummer! 

His ads were running on Facebook and Google only…

And that is when it hit me: you can’t go without multi-channel marketing

That’s why I decided to put together this article. For eCommerce stores like yours who are wondering why you don’t receive as much attention (money) from your audience as it should. 

In today’s article , I’ll tell you:

  • What multi-channel marketing is—may seem obvious from the name but there is more to that!
  • Why you have to start implementing it right now (to avoid getting into such situations as Chad’s).
  • How to build your very own multi-channel marketing plan that will grow your stunningly eCommerce store.

Do you want to reach EVERY prospect that might be interested in your product? Let me tell you how… And by the way, Happy New Year! 🍾

In a rush? Want to download this article as a PDF so you can easily take action on it later? Click here to download this article as a PDF guide.

What Is Multi-Channel Marketing Anyways?

What did you think about when you heard of “multi-channel marketing” above?

Well, obviously it is about marketing on multiple channels. Stop messing around, Matt, it is as clear as a day!”

So yes, multi-channel marketing is about that. 

Interacting with potential customers on different channels with the purpose of making a sale. 

But the question is: what are those multiple channels?

You see, prospects and customers have preferences. Both of them sure do!

Some never trust or pay attention to Google advertisements—but they love targeted advertisements on Instagram. 

And some other customers still do not have an Instagram profile. 

We’re all different and have our own way of interacting with ads and brands. 

That’s why by putting up your ads only on Facebook, you can lose all potential customers from TikTok, Instagram, Pinterest, or Google researchers. 

And you don’t want to lose a potential customer, right? 

You see, 70% of shoppers love discovering products on Instagram only. So you lose them if you don’t market your brand on this platform. 

Not to mention there are many social media campaign examples you can run for this purpose!

Now, can you imagine all the prospects you lose from other social media platforms? 

The numbers are so high that you don’t want to use them combined with “customers lost”.

So to realize how much customers multi-channel can bring you, consider this…

Social media is not even half of it. 

That’s right!

Multi-channel is also about interacting with prospects via the following channels: 

  • Emails
  • Websites
  • Phone calls
  • Physical stores
  • Messages
  • Podcasts
  • Webinars
  • Big events…

…and so many more. 

As you see, the power of multi-channeling is a bit overwhelming to be honest. 

It will literally skyrocket your eCommerce growth. And there are plenty of conversion rate case studies for your eCommerce business that will show you how.

Because there’s so much more you can do than just putting an advertisement on one single channel.

Source

Alright. 

Now that you know what multi-channel marketing is and how it will help you boost your eCommerce growth, let me ask you a question…

Do You Really Need to Put That Much Effort in Marketing?

As I said before, the number of channels in marketing is overwhelming. 

Multiple channels mean a different type of content and different amount of effort and people you have to get involved with.

So let’s get inspired to use more channels than one in your marketing strategy!

You’ll take a look at all the benefits of multi-channel marketing in my quick overview

So let’s start with the first benefit…

Benefit #1 of Using Multi-Channel Marketing: Increase Your Brand Visibility

Yes, we have discussed that multi-channel is a great opportunity to engage with bigger audiences. But there’s more though. 

Let’s think for a second about one single prospect who enters your eCommerce sales funnel

He is scrolling peacefully on his feed on Facebook. 

Among all the posts, he sees the advertisement of your company. 

And he immediately thinks: 

“I have never heard of this company before. Do I actually need their product? Might find more popular brands with the same product elsewhere”.

So he goes back to scrolling and going about their day. 

This could have been the end of the story. 

You spent money on your retargeting ads strategy but never converted a lead into a paying customer. 

But multi-channel marketing will not give up on that!

So your prospect quits scrolling and goes to get a morning newspaper. 

Wait, what? 

Is this the ad of the company that he just saw on Facebook?

Then he sees your product while an influencer on TikTok makes a funny video with it.

Poof! Magic! 

Now you’re not just some random brand that people have seen in their news feed once. 

You are a company with a well-known brand that is everywhere. And this means that:

  • You are popular.
  • Your strategy is consistent.
  • Your potential customer is familiar with your brand and even knows your colors and logo.
  • Your potential customer remembers a catchy phrase that you have used in a marketing campaign.
  • Your potential customer knows what your product is from the ads he came across with, knows how to contact you, knows how your product works from TikTok, and they even got to see customers’ feedback if you published it.
  • Now, thanks to multi-channel marketing, your chances that prospects will discover you further and become your loyal customer are much higher.

Just imagine how many benefits you get!

Consequently, you can not only reach bigger audiences but make the advertisement more effective for every single customer!

Alright. Next benefit…

Benefit #2 of Using Multi-Channel Marketing: Stay Relevant to Every Buyer Persona

Yes, there are products that are relevant to a variety of ages, genders, and locations. 

What are you supposed to do when your target audience is extremely diverse? 

Multi-channel marketing is your answer.

So let’s take a look at this example.

You offer CV writing services.

There will be teenagers who want to get their first job. 

There will be students who had some internships but they still struggle to be interesting for employers. 

There will be experienced adults and seniors who want to find something to busy themselves with. 

And just as CVs will differ for every age group and job, your channel will be different too. 

As you can not find seniors on Twitter, no student will buy a newspaper to look at your service offer. 

Yet, if you put an ad on both channels, you will bring together such different people that share from no to very little in common. 

Benefit #3 of Using Multi-Channel Marketing: Allow Customers to Contact You in the Most Convenient Way

As a consumer myself, I can claim that there are actually advertisements that I find persuasive. 

Yet, then I am too busy to actually explore the brand, forget to save the ad, and end up forgetting all about the business. 

But did you know that 75% of millennials hate phone calls according to BankMyCell? And 81% of them will have a rise of anxiety before answering one. 

Source

So if you give the opportunity to your audience to contact you via a phone number, via a direct message, or leave a comment on your site, you can skyrocket your conversions. 

Why?

Because of the Law of Range—one of the 11 Laws of Sales Funnel Physics.

And what exactly does that mean?

Well, the Law of Range says that audiences respond to having the freedom to choose a variety of products and services.

So if you limit those possibilities to only contacting people through a phone call, then that’ll mean they won’t pick up the phone. And therefore, you’ll lose the possible sale.

But there are also channels where people search for products purposefully, like Pinterest.

In fact, there are many social media platforms for lead generation.

And there are also channels where your prospects hate to see advertisements.

So your prospect might be triggered by your ad about time management in their yoga class but at the same time, they will love to see cute ideas you offer for planners on Pinterest.

See how that works?

Let’s take a look at the next benefit…

Benefit #4 of Using Multi-Channel Marketing: Make More Money from Your Investments

It sounds like a dream, huh?

Yet, with multi-channel marketing, it is a sweet reality. 

From the 2 benefits I’ve explained above, it’s obvious that your advertisement will be much more effective and pull in diverse audiences that you could never have thought you will reach with multi-channel marketing. 

And this next benefit is about numbers so there’s no better way to explain this benefit than through stats.

Let’s take a look at some shocking numbers and statistics to prove the point:

  • 87% of retailers believe that multi-channel marketing is crucial for the success of their stores. (Research Live)
  • 50% of multi-channel marketers always or usually hit their financial target. (PFL)
  • Multi-channel customers spend 10% more than regular ones. (Harvard Business Review)
  • 30% of multi-channel shoppers have a higher lifetime value. (Google)
  • Marketers who use multiple channels see a 9.5% growth in revenue every year. (Lead Forensics)

Source

How Do You Build a Multi-Channel Marketing Plan?

I am sure that all the benefits and statistics explained above make you want to start implementing multi-channel marketing in your eCommerce business. 

Yet, according to Invesp, 21% of marketers still do not know how to do so.

But the situation is inexcusable. 

eCommerce business owners miss out so much if they do not know how to use multi-channel marketing.

So it’s time to fix the problem once and for all (or till the time that the trends change again at least). 

Without any further ado, here’s your ultimate plan for building a multi-channel marketing plan.

Step #1: Create Different Customer Personas Profiles

Yes, I have mentioned way too many channels eCommerce businesses may use in their multi-channel marketing. 

It is overwhelming and you may find yourself dropping the idea because it is just too much work.

But do not rush into that decision though!

Not every channel is relevant for every business. And at the end of the day, it all depends on your target audience.

Moreover, it is impossible to be everywhere if you are not some enormous international company. 

So start small.

What you need to do is to get as much data on your target audience as possible: who they are, where they live, how old they are, etc.

Based on the data, you have to categorize them in small groups. Every group will have channels that they prefer the most. 

Sometimes they will be the same channels, sometimes they will overlap partly, or will be completely different. 

The main point is still achieved: you define what channels are the most relevant for your business, and you go from there. 

Step #2: Collaborate

It’s an extremely common practice that companies have separate teams who work with different channels. 

It’s hardly possible for one person to curate it all: they will either go crazy or ask for help in the future anyway. 

In this very logical move, there’s a small management detail that can lead to big problems. 

Multi-channel marketing done right is very consistent. If a potential customer sees very different messages and brand image on different channels, they are likely to:

  • Not understand what your brand is about
  • Do not trust you 
  • Get confused
  • Not recognize that the advertisement is from the same brand

You probably do not want to end up in this mess. 

So make sure that all experts from different channels get together to discuss the content of the main message. Not the wording or form but the message itself. 

They have to translate the same values after all.

Step #3: Embrace the Rules of Every Marketing Channel

There is another reason for having different managing teams for different channels except for an immense amount of work.

Every channel has its rules and preferable content types. 

That is what makes multi-channel marketing so challenging but exciting at the same time. 

For instance, 23% of marketers do not use this marketing strategy just because they don’t have enough time and resources according to Invesp.

Source

It is better to find an expert in every channel than the one who knows bits and pieces of everything. 

So you have the same message but they are packed up in different forms. 

For example, Instagram is visual. It is just the way it is and you can not bring your lengthy articles from your blog in there. 

It will be money and time spent in vain.

So have the same message but translate it for every channel and buyer persona who uses this channel.

Step #4: Adjust Your Plan According to Success (or Fail)

The most important thing in everything eCommerce retailers and marketers do is to measure their work

When you try multi-channel marketing for the first time, you assume a lot of things at the beginning. 

However, you probably know by now that assumptions and real life rarely overlap fully.

Therefore, you have to measure the success of every channel to do the adjustments.

For that, find out this:

  • What channels perform better than the other
  • What channels are overlapping
  • What channels influence other channels
  • What channels are not worth the effort (do not be afraid to drop some channels)

It is also worth remembering that measurement is not a one-time thing. 

The world is changing so fast that you might do the initial readjustments. 

But then suddenly some channels will become more popular than the others due to a variety of factors such as new features of the channels, the appearance of new channels, outside factors, etc.

You may also find out that you have to put more effort into some platforms that you have considered unrewarding at the beginning.

Conclusion

Download the “How to Create a Multi-Channel Marketing Plan for eCommerce” so you won’t forget to take action on it later. Click here to download it now.

It is so good to find out how you can finally get the attention of all your potential customers, right?

Even though multi-channel marketing is so challenging, its benefits are too good to be ignored.

As soon as you start working on different channels, you’ll see that your efforts are worth it.

My friend Chad noticed it. 

We started using different channels, and in 2 weeks, we didn’t wonder whether his website was invisible.

In fact, his business scaled so fast that he had trouble with catching up to everything (so yeah, maybe get ready to skyrocket before you skyrocket).

In this article, we have learned 4 amazing benefits of multi-channel marketing and 4 steps on how to build a plan that is tailored for your eCommerce business only. 

So tell me something, will you start using multiple channels for your marketing after reading this article?

How many channels do you think you need to use? What are they?

If you have already implemented multi-channel marketing, what is your favorite channel? Have you noticed any difference in sales?

Let me know in the comments below!

Keep AutoGrowin’, stay focused.

Alyse Falk is a freelance writer with experience in digital marketing, technologies, content marketing, marketing trends, and branding strategies. Alyse also writes for several reputable sites where she shares her hints for creating content.

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