How Multichannel Marketing Strategies Win Over Modern Consumers

Did you know that today the average consumer goes through at least six channels before they make a decision to purchase a product or service? Or that customers are less likely to make impulse purchases now than before the pandemic? But why?

Well, it all comes down to the consumer buying and decision-making process. Think about it. As a buyer, do you just immediately click buy on every advertisement you see? Maybe sometimes, but probably not often. Before you purchase, you’ll most likely go look more in-depth at the brand's socials, read reviews, ask your friends for their opinions, research other options, etc.  These are critical parts of the modern consumer buying process, but this process actually isn’t “modern” at all. In fact, the stages of the consumer buying or decision-making process were established by philosopher John Dewey in the early 1900s and while some details of it have changed the stages have stayed exactly the same. 

Below we go through each of the 5 stages of the consumer buying process and how they apply to modern customers. Grasping the consumer's journey – from brand awareness to purchase – is critical to fully understanding why multichannel campaigns are so important today. 

  • Stage 1 – Consumer Recognizes Problem
    The first step in any consumer’s purchase journey is probably pretty self-explanatory – the consumer recognizes that they have a need for a certain product or service. However, how they realize they have this “need” is not as straightforward.

    The way people recognize the need for a particular product or service can come in a variety of different formats. Maybe they are watching TV or scrolling through Instagram and see a cool new kitchen gadget they think would be great for their home. Or maybe they are just making a favorite recipe wondering if there's a kitchen tool that would make the cooking process more efficient. Regardless if the need is prompted externally or internally the results are still the same – the consumer now has a desire for something new.

    When it comes to marketing to modern customers in stage 1 it’s all about creating brand awareness in order to show customers why they “need” your product or service. So, get your brand out there as much as you can! Paid social media ads or direct mail postcards can be great during this stage as they allow you to highly target audiences that are most likely to be interested in your product. All in all, the best way to generate first-time leads is to market in multiple ways in order to give your potential customers multiple options on how to discover your brand!

  • Stage 2 – Consumer Searches for More Information
    After the consumer acknowledges their own need, now they must find the product or service that will help resolve it. This second stage is where the consumer starts to research potential solutions to their problem. Historically when people wanted to search for information they would get it through mutual friends, family members, television, radio, newspaper, magazines, etc – but times have changed. Now, if people are looking for information, the first place they most likely go is the Internet.

    It may be pretty obvious, but in this stage SEO and paid search ads can be very important. To stick with the same example, if someone searches for “electric kitchen mixer”, you want the link to your product to be one of the first ones to pop up. However, while paid search ads and SEO is important, it can get expensive as a small business trying to beat out much larger competitors. That’s why it is also critical to focus on content marketing which includes blogs, social media posts, infographics, podcasts, videos, apps, etc.

    Content marketing is a form of inbound marketing – a business methodology that focuses on creating content that your target audience actively seeks out. With an inbound marketing strategy like content marketing, you are able to distribute information to your consumers that they truly want to see and engage with. This way, if a potential customer goes on your FaceBook to get more information on your brand, they are able to see native and organic content, not just advertisements that can often feel pushy and inauthentic. 


  • Stage 3 – Consumer Evaluates Alternatives
    Stage 3 in the consumer decision-making process is all about weighing potential options and alternatives. Some questions the consumer may be asking here include: What option fits in my budget best? Which is the best quality product? Which service will give me the best solution to my problem? During this stage, it is all about making sure your marketing channels make your product or service stand out above your competitors.

    Here, the potential customer is already heavily considering purchasing from your brand – but that does not mean this is where you stop marketing. If anything, here is where you kick it up a notch. Make sure you are focusing on providing an excellent customer experience. The modern customer is not just looking for a great product or service, they are also looking for a seamless experience with your brand. In fact, Today, 73% of people say that customer experience is an important factor in their buying decisions. However, only 49% of US consumers say that today’s companies provide that positive experience.

    So, how do you avoid being part of that 49%? Make your customer feel valued, appreciated, and a part of your brand. A great way to do this is through personalized marketing. Simply adding the first name of your recipient to your marketing email’s subject line can dramatically increase the likelihood of that customer choosing your brand. 

  • Stage 4 – Consumer Makes Purchase Decision
    Finally! The consumer has now gathered all the information they need to make the purchase that is right for them (hopefully that is you). Here, it is important to remember that you can generate hundreds of leads in the first three steps but if your marketing isn't strong enough to close the deal, you’ll have nothing to show for it.

    A great way to bring customers back around to your brand and close the sale is through retargeting ads. Retargeting ads have the power to re-engage customers who are most likely to buy. In fact, consumers are more than 70% more likely to convert with retargeting. So, make sure you are not neglecting stage 4 of the purchase process – closing the deal can never be an afterthought! 

  • Stage 5 – Consumer Evaluates Purchase Decision
    Think the purchase decision-making process ends after the customer decides on their ideal purchase? You’re wrong! Stage 5 is where the customer thinks “was this product really the best choice for me?” 

Not only is this stage when the customer reflects, but it is also when the brand reflects. What marketing strategies worked to close this sale? What strategies didn’t? How do I get this customer to become a loyal, lifetime one? 

Retaining existing customers is critical to the success of your business. In fact, companies have a 60-70% chance of selling to an existing customer vs. a 5-20% chance of selling to a new customer. Not to mention marketing to an existing customer is significantly cheaper than acquiring a new one. However, you still have to market to keep existing customers coming back! Keep them updated on all your social and make sure you distribute relevant and perhaps exclusive content to them. Post-purchase marketing is just as important as pre-purchase marketing!

As you can now see, the customer purchasing process is not a simple, one-step process. In today’s world, you must reach consumers at multiple touchpoints via multiple channels in order to have your brand come out on top – and the best way to do so is through multichannel marketing. Multichannel marketing allows you to connect, indirectly and directly, with your customers where they are and how they choose. It's also important to note that 72% of consumers actually want to connect with brands through multiple channels. Because of this, it’s no surprise that companies with integrated multi-channel marketing are 3x more effective than those with no integrated campaigns!

Now, we realize that multichannel campaigns can take a significant amount of time, energy, and effort which can cause brands to try to stray away from them out of fear.  In fact, 45% of marketers agree that they did not implement the multi-channel marketing strategies because they feel they lack the necessary talent, technology, and skills to create a strong campaign. If that’s how you feel too, we have the answer for you – Taradel. Taradel is an easy, all-in-one marketing solution that allows you to reach your target audience with direct mail, Google Ads, social media platforms, and more. And the best part, it takes only a few minutes and simple steps to set up your entire multichannel marketing campaign. So, if you’re ready to make the most out of your marketing dollars, start creating your first multichannel campaign with Taradel here. 

Back to Blog