As consumer channel preferences shift and additional marketing touchpoints become available to marketers, reaching customers and prospects through the channels they prefer has become more difficult. Effective marketers need to employ programs that identify the best customers and prospects, identify their requests and ultimately deliver an appropriate message.
Trends in media consumption indicate shifts in consumer channel preferences, but good marketers look beyond the surface trends to truly customize their contact strategies. For example, email is the most preferred messaging channel across all age groups. Drilling down further, however, reveals that older groups continue to look to traditional media, such as television and newspapers, while younger consumers rely on mobile phones for receiving messages.
Today’s marketing has shifted from the use of one channel to the identification of nuanced consumer preferences and delivering messages to those customized channels. A single campaign might employ email across all age groups peppered with direct mail and television ads for older consumers and mobile messages to the younger demographic.
Customizing a cross-channel strategy to the preferences of particular consumer segments can improve loyalty and relationships, as well as return on marketing dollars. But the myriad channels available is challenging when it comes to navigating and coordinating a cross-channel strategy. Marketers can overcome these challenges by developing a deep understanding of consumers’ channel preferences and the unique regulatory environment surrounding each.
Finding and Implementing Preferences
Both consumer-provided data and in-depth market research can provide insights into likely channel preferences. Ask your customers how they want to be reached and pay attention to the touchpoints through which they engage with your company. In the absence of direct interaction with your target customers, a partnership with a market research or data company can provide insights into likely channel preferences on a geographic level.