Multichannel, cross-channel, omni-channel – new words for old ideas!
31st January 8 Comments
(by our guest author Wiljo Krechting)
One needs only to click clumsily around the web to stumble upon discussion after discussion over the importance of “multichannel” marketing, as well as its distinction from “cross-“, and “omni-channel” marketing. The greatest distinction I’ve found is that which lies between the various degrees of bullshit that cover this entire topic.
This raises the question, “Well then, why write ANOTHER article about it?”
Answer: I don’t intend to address the distinction between the terms, but rather the stinking bullshit that surrounds them.
The business world is like a big ocean, and marketing is like swimming. Some people see swimming as an activity to be done on the side, or even as a means of travel. Bullshit. Swimming is simply to keep from drowning. So is marketing.
The age of the term “marketing” as it is known today is debatable. Suffice to say, it’s pretty damn old. These new prefixes that have been applied to it: multi, cross and omni, are a new twist of another age-old concept…bullshit.
“Multichannel” marketing is not new. It’s virtually impossible NOT to market in more than one channel, and has been for decades, if not longer. “Cross-channel” marketing then, is the concept of sharing information between marketing strategies. I don’t believe that using information to its full potential can be considered a good idea, simply because it’s too firmly rooted in COMMON SENSE. Being able to reach customers equally across channels with shared information is the ultimate goal of any business with a will to survive. That goes without saying.
Check the statistics, any of them. It doesn’t matter. Nothing indicates that “cross-channel” marketing has any negative affect on business. The question of whether or not to market across channels is…
(wait for it) … bullshit!
The question remains then, “Why isn’t everyone cross-channeling?”
Answer: That question will be answered when you no longer need to ask it.
Not satisfied? Then think of it like this…
We take an ancient word like “marketing” and attach new prefixes to it, in order to try and adapt the word to include all of our wonderful new technologies. The truth is, once we as a society have adapted OURSELVES to these new technologies (once “cross-channel” marketing becomes the norm) it will simply be called “marketing” again. And no one will ask why.
What about “omni-channel”?
This is a somewhat redundant word (or bullshit word, if you prefer) which marketing consultants use, in order to market the word “marketing”. “Omni-channel marketing” is elastic in that it will always include every new channel that becomes available. As the same can also be said of good old “marketing”, I really don’t think we need to have both.
(Image by istockphoto/hoch2wo photo & design)
About the author
Wiljo Krechting is an e-commerce expert and spokesman for the shopware AG. As a manufacturer of highly innovative shop systems, Shopware serves online retailers of all sizes, but has focused on small and medium-sized merchants. With currently more than 10000 customers and 400 partners, shopware AG is one of the most successful manufacturers of shop software in Germany.