Difference Between Similar Terms and Objects

Difference Between Multi-Channel Marketing and Omnichannel Marketing

The business world has become super competitive. As a result, aggressive marketing is no longer a luxury but a necessity for brands to stay afloat. While in the past businesses only engaged consumers using traditional marketing channels, modernization has led to better marketing channels, especially in the online community. Brands can hence market on online platforms such as Facebook, Google, Instagram and Twitter. Even with this, clear thought online strategies should be applied. Among commonly confusing marketing strategies include Multi channel and Omni channel marketing strategies. 

Multi-channel Marketing

This is a marketing strategy that aims to interact with customers through independent channels including email, social media, websites, print ads, landing pages and mobile, just to name a few. Here, each channel operates independently, with varying goals, strategies as well as budgets. 

To illustrate multi- channel marketing, brand Y advertises its product on Instagram. Upon enquiry, the customer is directed to the physical store. Since the channels work independently, the customer finds the product unavailable at the physical store, causing frustration. 

This strategy is often inconveniencing because;

  • Consumers may experience miscommunication between various channels
  • Customers may get frustrated with the need to use multiple channels
  • Different selling styles between channels

Although this strategy markets the brand, it does not put the customer first. This limits the chances of repeat sales. 

Omni channel Marketing

This is a marketing strategy that strives to provide a smooth buying experience for the customer irrespective of the platform, channel or stage of the buying process. As such, the consumer is satisfied through the consistent and seamless buying experience, hence ensuring repeat purchases. 

To illustrate this, we will hypothetically use brand X and consumer A. Brand X may put up an attention-grabbing ad on Facebook, which in turn attracts consumer A. The consumer may instantly complete the buying process by purchasing the product, but if that is not the case and he gets distracted, an email is sent to him requesting him to complete the process, with an initiative such as a discount since he is a first time customer. After the purchase, the brand will then target the consumer with similar ads on the platform or other frequented sites, to generate more sales. 

An effective Omni channel strategy comprises of:

  • Marketing channels- Brands need to increase their presence on their client base channels. This can either be done through offline or online channels.  
  • Consistency- To provide the best experience, brands should be consistent with communication, presence and enjoyable user experience. 
  • Personalization- A customized message attracts, converts and retains sales.    
  • Optimization- To main the interactive nature, brands should optimize the processes.

This strategy tends to focus more on the consumer as opposed to the brand. Although very effective, one of the barriers to this strategy is the complexity and costs involved. The implementation requires technology investment which may not always be available. 

Similarities between Multi-channel marketing and Omni channel Marketing

  • Both are marketing strategies

Differences between Multi-channel Marketing and Omni channel Marketing

Definition

Multi-channel marketing refers to a marketing strategy that aims at interacting with customers through independent channels including email, social media, websites, print ads, landing pages and mobile, just to name a few. On the other hand, Omni channel marketing refers to a marketing strategy that strives to provide a smooth buying experience for the customer irrespective of the platform, channel or stage of the buying process.

Main focus

While multi-channel marketing puts the brand at the base of the marketing strategy, Omni channel marketing puts the customer at the base of the marketing strategy. 

Consistency

While multi-channel marketing lacks consistency as a result of the lack of integration between the different marketing platforms in use, Omni channel marketing applies a consistent brand experience and image hence ensuring consumer retention.  

Dependency

While the marketing platforms in multi-channel marketing are independent, platforms used in Omni channel marketing are dependent on each other. 

Personalization

Multi-channel marketing does not focus on customer personalization while Omni channel marketing focuses on consumer personalization hence delivers the best consumer experience. 

Best fit

Multi-channel marketing is ideal for companies looking to expand their online presence while Omni channel marketing is ideal for companies looking to fine-tune their online market share. 

Multi-channel Marketing vs. Omni channel Marketing

Summary of Multi-channel Marketing vs. Omni channel Marketing

Multi-channel marketing refers to a marketing strategy that aims to interact with customers through independent channels including email, social media, websites, print ads, landing pages and mobile. It focuses on the brand as opposed to the consumer; hence it’s ideal for companies looking to expand their online presence. On the other hand, Omni channel marketing refers to a marketing strategy that strives to provide a smooth buying experience for the customer irrespective of the platform, channel or stage of the buying process. It puts the customer at the base of the marketing strategy hence increasing the chances of repeat sales. The strategy is ideal for companies looking to fine-tune their online market share. 


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References :


[0]Image credit: https://pixabay.com/de/illustrations/gesch%C3%A4ft-gesch%C3%A4ftsfrau-erfolg-team-1137397/

[1]Image credit: https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Multi_Channel_Tag_Cloud_-5.png

[2]Swapnil & Kumar. Supply Chain Management Strategies and Risk Assessment in Retail Environments. IGI Global, 2017. https://books.google.co.ke/books?id=7Ow_DwAAQBAJ&pg=PA101&dq=Difference+between+Multi+channel+marketing+and+Omni+channel&hl=en&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwj25ta1kOvoAhWSoBQKHfsyCvcQ6AEIUDAF#v=onepage&q=Difference%20between%20Multi%20channel%20marketing%20and%20Omni%20channel&f=false

[3]Wilt R & Vaduva S. Applied Ethics for Entrepreneurial Success: Recommendations for the Developing World: 2018 Griffiths School of Management Annual Conference (GSMAC) on Business, Entrepreneurship and Ethics. Springer Publishers, 2019. https://books.google.co.ke/books?id=I46dDwAAQBAJ&pg=PA132&dq=Difference+between+Multi+channel+marketing+and+Omni+channel&hl=en&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwj25ta1kOvoAhWSoBQKHfsyCvcQ6AEIZjAI#v=onepage&q=Difference%20between%20Multi%20channel%20marketing%20and%20Omni%20channel&f=false

[4]Shearer C & Houlind R. Make it All About Me: Leveraging Omnichannel and AI for Marketing Success. LID Publishing, 2019. https://books.google.co.ke/books?id=x-qVDwAAQBAJ&pg=PT39&dq=Difference+between+Multi+channel+marketing+and+Omni+channel&hl=en&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwj25ta1kOvoAhWSoBQKHfsyCvcQ6AEIbjAJ#v=onepage&q=Difference%20between%20Multi%20channel%20marketing%20and%20Omni%20channel&f=false

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