Getting Smart about Omnichannel

November 24, 2020 Sharon Smith

Applying analytics to pinpoint customer relevancy

In another post, I discussed the important building blocks of a multichannel communication strategy. However, developing this multichannel strategy into a constructive omnichannel solution requires practice and care. Companies using a scattershot approach are finding out that it isn’t necessarily effective. In fact, in an effort to reach customers in every conceivable way, some organisations have lost touch with what their customers actually want. In other words, in trying to be everywhere, companies’ risk being nowhere.

The importance of customer experience continues to grow and the need for CX leaders to demonstrate impact grows with it. The 2019 Gartner Customer Experience Management Survey found that 86% of respondents say they will compete based on CX two years from now.

Honing the fundamentals

Multichannel integration, to form that true omnichannel experience, involves getting back to the fundamentals of your consumers’ behaviour, then choosing channels based on what they really want. It also includes selecting the most efficient channels based on demonstrated consumer behaviour, then cleverly integrating these channels for the ultimate customer experience.

Focus on the fundamentals of consumer behaviour. Then, leverage technology and analytics to choose channels based on what customers really want.

The best way to see and understand that behaviour is through analytics. Analytics helps laser-focus on target customers and determine which channels they are using and for what purpose. Adopting a strategic, integrated, analytics-driven approach that focuses on consumers helps build relevancy in their eyes.

Below are five interlocking techniques and technologies that provide the clarity and insights required to achieve both meaningful and timely interactions:
 

1. Micro-moment management

A term coined by Google half a decade ago, micro-moments are a recognition of the increasing importance of devices, particularly the smartphone, in consumer decision making. As Google noted at the time: “These I-want-to-know, I-want-to-go, I-want-to-buy, and I-want-to-do moments are loaded with intent, context, and immediacy … These micro-moments are critical touchpoints within today’s consumer journey, and when added together, they ultimately determine how that journey ends.”

Given the average adult checks his/her smartphone screen every 12 minutes of the waking day, it’s hard to disagree. The ability to manage messaging tone, frequency, and timeliness is essential to micro-moment success.

2. Customer data platform

A data-driven strategy necessitates two things above all others: access to quality data and the ability to effectively manage it. Only then can you turn data into information, information into knowledge, and knowledge into wisdom. A customer data platform allows you to ingest data from multiple sources including legacy systems, CRM programs, social channels, IoT devices, and third-party sources to create a single unified record. Each interaction is captured to add another layer of insight available in real time.

3. Journey orchestration

As I debated in a previous post, omnichannel communication is a capability not a technology — and it’s a capability that starts with intelligent orchestration. Organisations need the ability to create unique, personalised journeys based on the most relevant communications, offers, or instructions. And they need to be able to deliver those messages with the right cadence, at the right moment, across any digital channel or device.

4. Real-time decisions

The power of now is an indisputably competitive advantage. Access to actionable insights is only of use if you are able to deploy messaging at a time that will influence the customer. That’s why a predictive engine powered by artificial intelligence and machine learning is an essential piece of the communications toolbox. Advanced analytics and machine learning capabilities enable organisations to turn digital-channel behaviours into new opportunities to connect with end users in more relevant and meaningful ways.

5. Good customer data

As noted above, successful multichannel campaigns are predicated on quality data. Without quality data, there is no precision. With quality data, you will know your customer better, you will know how to delight existing customers and you will know how to find new customers. Above all you, will know the right time to hit send.


A strategic, selective, and orchestrated approach to omnichannel campaigns needs a platform that can bring these techniques and technologies together. One that can capture each customer’s interaction across every channel and continually build their identity to create a single customer view and a truly personalised experience. In short, organisations need a partnership with a supplier who can provide a platform or a “platform as a service” to empower strategic goals to help deliver your customer experience vision. No more scattershot.

About the Author

Sharon Smith is Director - OmniChannel Communication Services (Europe) at Conduent. You can contact her at sharon.smith3@conduent.com.

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The Building Blocks of a Multichannel Communication Strategy
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