How can I improve performance using multichannel engagement?

Only a few years ago digital was talked of in terms of being an alternative - or even a threat - to traditional retail models. Today there is a more mature environment where different channels increasingly support and complement each other.

Done properly, such an approach can improve a retailer’s marketing communication strategy, enabling individual channels to be effective in their own right but more so when used together.

Tim Williams, planning director at customer engagement agency Underwired.com, says: “Our experience has shown that an understanding of the profile, behaviours and motivations of your target audience lies at the heart of a successful multichannel strategy.”

Retailers need to know who they are talking to and how customers like to engage with brands - whether digital drives them to a physical store, or whether they only engage digitally after visiting or while in store. Retailers also need to know what shoppers are trying to achieve when using different touch points. Williams says: “Answers to all of the above will vary, both according to your customer and your category, but knowing the mix of potentially quite complex behaviours and motivations is key to informing how a retailer should respond and plan.”

He adds an effective multichannel engagement strategy comes from the blending of different touch points in a way that is appropriate to the target consumer.