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November 14, 2016

Cross-channel marketing is quickly becoming the norm, as more people are consuming more content across multple personal devices. This Kick Wire presentation reports that 79 percent of users (including 90 percent of millennials) move freely from device to device. It is now necessary to focus your campaign conceptualization on how to deliver a consistent, personalized brand experience to today's connected consumer. Here are four ways to improve your cross-channel campaigns.

Understand the Difference Between Cross-Channel and Multichannel Marketing
A multichannel campaign simply has a presence on several channels. For example, a multichannel advertising campaign could include mobile ads, web banner ads, radio and TV ads, and sponsored blog posts. This "surround sound" effect increases the chances of consumers seeing your ads. With cross-channel campaigns, advertisers take things to the next level and seamlessly integrate the customer experience across channels. Think about a user who begins the research process with a mobile ad that drives them toward a related landing page, and then drives them to make a purchase in an integrated, targeted process. Cross-channel campaigns also leverage channels such as TV and out-of-home advertising. For example, as Adobe notes, the travel brand Thompson used cross-channel advertising to achieve a 20 percent value increase in desktop bookings by retargeting customers who had already seen an ad on mobile. Remember: Customers don't think in terms of channels. They switch devices or platforms for convenience and anticipate that brands will provide personalized, targeted experiences across them.

Incorporate Better Cross-Device Identification Technology

A study published on MarketingProfs notes that marketers find that the lack of a single customer view is the biggest obstacle they face for cross-channel marketing. However, there are a variety of technology solutions that use analytics and cross-device identification to help create this single view. From your first interaction to the closed sale, customer visibility is a top priority. To improve your campaigns, you should do the following:

-Build on the foundation of a cross-device identification system to track your customers and their communications across every channel where possible, while also leveraging valuable marketing opportunities that don't rely on personally identifying a customer.

-Integrate touchpoints into a single customer view to help you develop a better understanding of your customers' unique behavioral patterns.

-Use cross-device identification to microtarget individual elements of the experience, by deepening customization for tablets, smartphones, and other devices.

Personalize the Experience: Target the Connected Customer
Brands are working toward the ability to identify individual customers and improve their targeting for a connected audience. For example, a data-driven cross-channel campaign for a restaurant chain might use a consumer's search history for vegetarian options or cocktails to display relevant ads or promotions on their mobile device. The campaign might also use point of sale system data to understand a customer's past buying behaviors and locally target them with a loyalty program for specific restaurant locations near them. It's important to understand which media are most effective in driving conversions. Here are some things brands that want to deepen their personalization efforts can do:

-Define criteria for personalization that includes location, stage of the buying cycle, demographic factors, and past buying behavior.

-Map the data relationships needed to achieve this, including how data from one system could influence content delivery on another.

-Investigate whether systems that integrate data from multiple sources to create a single customer view are the right fit for ongoing personalization campaign needs.
Understand that even when the ideal scenario doesn't exist, for example when you can't apply thirdy party tracking tags to campaigns, that you can still leverage data on what customers have done and what's happening within the context of their drive to deliver valuable personalization.

Build Internal Teams for Cross-Channel CampaignsGetting members from other teams on board across the organization is critical: Different departments must provide consistent messaging across channels and understand how their campaigns fit into the larger customer experience you're creating. When building your cross-channel campaign teams, consider how you onboard different departments. Media planners need to understand targeting for defining audience criteria for media buys, as well as channel selection. Your analytics team must design reporting and data collection strategies that gather the right information to measure campaign success. Sales and customer service reps need to understand what cross-channel campaigns are happening and where in-person interactions pick up and reinforce that messaging. Cross-channel teams should coordinate closely, with everyone understanding the central message and how individual roles reinforce that vision.

Cross-channel marketing is quickly becoming necessary, as consumers change the way they use devices. Build the technological foundation to increase visibility and improve analytical feedback loops to make the most of your cross-device campaigns.

≥≥ Need a Shortcut?
1. The majority of consumers will use multiple devices for a single task.
2. Integrated campaigns center on three technology needs: cross-device identification, the ability to personalize the customer experience across channels, and understanding which channels convert.
3. You should organize your campaign strategies and internal resources to support integrated, cross-channel campaigns.
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