8 min read

Why (and how to) add new channels to your marketing communications mix

Insights
Omnichannel marketing communications mix in action
Share to:

It’s an omnichannel world 

 

In 2023, having a brand presence on multiple channels should be a no-brainer for any business.   

Different customers have different communication preferences for different types of content — you already know this.  

Leveraging multiple channels allows you to cater to these preferences, making it more convenient for customers to access your content and reach out to you in the way that suits them. 

And you can’t afford to disappoint.

Research shows that customer expectations towards business communications have never been higher: 

  • 71% of customers expect companies to communicate with them in real time (Salesforce) 
  • 75% want to communicate with businesses the same way they communicate with friends and family (Meta) 
  • 88% say customer experience is as important as a company’s products and services (Salesforce) 
  • 50% regularly use more than four touchpoints with a brand before purchase (Marketing Week) 
Checklist explaining why an omnichannel marketing communications mix is essential

In other words, if your company isn’t delivering on customers' growing demand for accessibility, personalization, and valuable content, you’ll risk losing them to a competitor who is. 

But that's not all. There are many more reasons why you should consider incorporating new channels into your marketing communications mix.

The benefits of adding new channels to your marketing communications mix

 

Adopting an omnichannel marketing communication strategy pays off in many ways and can help your business stay ahead in today's hyper-competitive environment.  

Let’s take a closer look at the benefits you can expect from this approach:  

  • Improve customer experience:  

Providing multiple, connected communication options to meet customers on their own terms contributes to a positive, seamless experience, setting you apart from competitors who offer limited options or fragmented experiences.  

  • Expand your reach:  

By offering a variety of communication options, you can engage with a broader audience. This is particularly important for businesses targeting diverse demographics or operating in different regions where certain channels may be more popular.  

  • Enhance data collection and analytics:  

Different channels offer unique customer insights. With an omnichannel strategy, you’ll get a deeper understanding of your customer base and unlock new personalization opportunities (think online behavioral data and conversation history), resulting in more impactful campaigns.

  • Increase customer engagement: 

Giving your audience more options and opportunities to interact with your brand encourages them to engage more and take action and can help you increase engagement across the board.  

Take Maaco Midwest, a Sinch MessageMedia customer, for instance: By combining phone calls, email, and SMS, the auto repair franchise saw an increase in customer engagement on all channels!  

  • Send conversion rates through the roof: 

Research conducted by Braze found that combining email and messaging leads to a 6.6-time increase in purchases per user and a 46% increase in repeat buyers.  

A combined marketing strategy can also help you get customers who are disengaged on one channel to convert on another one, as explained by Greg Zakowicz, Sr. Ecommerce Expert at Omnisend during his session at Sinch Email Camp 2023

Quote explaining the value of an omnichannel marketing communications mix

If this doesn't convince you of the importance of a cross-channel marketing communications mix, maybe the results one of our largest customers achieved will. 

By strategically leveraging multiple communication channels, a leading U.S. telecom provider saw: 

  • a 400% increase in conversion rates when adding email to their existing SMS strategy 

  • a 260% increase in conversion rates when adding MMS (multimedia messaging service) 

  • a 20% decrease in opt-outs 

Talk about impact! 

Now this isn’t to say that you need to be present on every single channel out there. So which ones should you choose?   

Which channels are right for your business? 

 

Deciding which channels are right for your business can be tricky — but we’re here to help you make the right choice.   

Understand your customers 

The first step is to understand what your customers want and need. Ask yourself: Who are your current customers? What matters most to them in specific situations? How do they like to get information, make purchases, or seek assistance? What kind of content do they find useful? How can you ensure your communications deliver the value they expect? 

Once you’ve answered these questions, time to look into the strengths of the different channels available to you.  

 

Pick the right channels for your use cases 

Different channels provide unique opportunities for customer engagement: 

  • Urgent matters are best managed through direct, reliable channels that most people already use and trust like a phone call or a two-way SMS. 
  • Long-form content and complex marketing campaigns that aren’t time-sensitive will likely have the most impact via email. 
  • For time-limited promotional offers, SMS or rich messaging channels like MMS, RCS, or WhatsApp will be the smarter choice to get instant customer attention and allow users to browse and click your products directly within the channel. These channels also allow for real-time conversations with chatbots or live assistants. 
  • And remember that channel usage widely differs from one market to another, so do your research to pick the right ones for your different audiences! Check out our guide to conversational messaging channels for more information. 

 

Test, monitor, and fine-tune your strategy  

Once you’ve identified potential channels, pick one key use case and a (combination of) channel(s) to try it out on.  

Put the use case to work and track success with metrics like open rates, click-through rates, response times, opt-out rates, conversions, reduction of contact center calls, and customer feedback to understand what works best, and adjust accordingly. 

Once you’re done trialing your first use case, move on to the next, test other channels if needed, and pick the options that worked best for you! 

While adding new channels to your marketing communications mix is a great starting point, it won't yield the best results if you aren't orchestrating channels effectively and delivering a cohesive experience.   

Best practices for building an integrated marketing communications mix 

 

A solid omnichannel strategy isn’t only about having a presence on multiple channels. It’s also about integrating and leveraging channels strategically to maximize the impact and ROI of your efforts and maintain a seamless experience for customers as they jump from one channel to another.  

Here are our top tips to help you build a strong omnichannel marketing communications mix and get the most out of your campaigns: 

 

Maintain a consistent branding and storytelling

Ensure that your brand's tone of voice, visual identity, and messaging remain consistent across all channels. Consistency helps reinforce brand identity and build deeper connections with customers. 

 

Create smart omnichannel customer journeys

Figure out how your customers want to interact with your brand at each step of their journey. For instance, they might want to receive transactional messages and weekly newsletters via email, get notified about promotional offers via SMS, and seek support on WhatsApp.

By analyzing behavioral data across channels, you’ll get a clearer picture of where your audience engages or converts more in various situations and be able to adjust your strategy accordingly. If you’re not seeing satisfying results with a specific channel for some of your customer segments , consider reducing the frequency of your communications on that channel or only focusing on the ones where they’re more engaged. 

 

Make transitions seamless

Recent Sinch research conducted with 3,000 consumers worldwide found that 95% of them want to be able to switch instantly from messaging to voice. The right tools can help you deliver on this type of expectations. (Like Sinch’s omnichannel contact center!)

 

Use data from cross-channel interactions to personalize your communications

Use technology that allows you to leverage data from previous interactions with your brand across different channels. If a customer initiated a conversation via email and later continued it on social media, make sure your responses demonstrate continuity and understanding of the context. 

 

Be strategic about timing and channels

Leverage the strengths of each channel at the right time to maximize the impact of your campaigns.

For instance, you can announce new product launches via SMS to instantly grab attention, follow up with an email that explains the concept behind your collection and showcases your new products, and use RCS or MMS for abandoned cart reminders to show customers the items left in their carts.

And remember: Be mindful of time zones when scheduling your messaging campaigns. Nobody wants to be woken by a business SMS in the middle of the night, no matter how great your deals or products are! 

 

Get opt-in right for each channel and offer easy options to manage communication preferences

Obtaining explicit opt-in isn’t only best practice, it’s a must. Make sure you clearly communicate how customers can opt in or opt out of different communication channels and provide easy ways for them to do so and update their communication settings. 

 

Each channel has different rules — and for some channels, it goes beyond opt-in. Checking the regulations applicable to each channel is crucial. (We can help with this!)  

And make sure to keep an eye on emerging trends in communication channels. Stay informed about new features, tools, and best practices to ensure that your communication strategy remains current and effective. 

 

Build slowly

Start simple and gradually build up more complex strategies across multiple channels.   

Removing roadblocks on the path to omnichannel   

 

Going from email or SMS to true omnichannel communication can be a big leap for a business. To keep things simple, we recommend working with a single communications provider.  

The right one will help you eliminate channel silos, connecting the dots between customer interactions across all your channels and helping you deliver smooth, cohesive experiences. 

As your business grows and expands its reach to new customers, channels, and markets, your provider can also help you scale and quickly accommodate new communication needs, without having to manage multiple vendors.  

The right partner will also spare you the headache of having to figure out individual channel requirements and updates on your own. You’ll have confidence in the compliance and security protocols applied across all the communication channels your business uses.    

 

Choose the right partner for your omnichannel strategy  

At Sinch, we’re all about keeping it simple. We support all your communications needs through our CPaaS platform, the Customer Communications Cloud. Not to brag, but independent analysts say we’re a CPaaS leader!

  • Messaging:

We’re the largest SMS aggregator globally — and to make it extra easy, we also offer messaging capabilities across 13 different channels through a single API connection. (Ask us about our Conversation API!) 

  • Email:

Our email deliverability suite, Mailgun, is the most comprehensive email solution in the industry.

  • Voice:

Build the exact voice solution you need to connect with your audiences, with unmatched quality and reliability. We’ve got the most powerful independent voice network in the U.S.!

  • Turnkey applications:

For organizations looking for a pre-integrated solution, we have a whole range of SaaS applications with channels already built in, including an SAP-endorsed omnichannel contact center, powerful conversational marketing tools, and a Gartner-recognized conversational AI application

  • Integrations and connectors:

We also offer out-of-the-box integrations and connectors to the biggest technology providers out there, including Microsoft, Hubspot, Salesforce, SAP, Oracle, Adobe, Freshdesk, Hootsuite, Shopify, and more. This means you can more easily leverage your customer data to craft and manage personalized, contextual campaigns that enhance customer engagement and satisfaction.   

Ready to enhance your marketing communications mix? 

 

By incorporating new channels into your marketing communications mix, you can leverage their unique strengths to create more powerful campaigns that maximize customer engagement, revenue, and ROI.  

If you need help creating an effective strategy, get in touch with our team! We work with tons of businesses starting out on their omnichannel journey.