The Rise Of Social Media In An Omnichannel World

Rushenka Perera

Why are omnichannel campaigns successful? Because modern consumers are omnichannel consumers.

In fact, according to the 2017 Australian Digital Experience Report, which surveyed 4,000 Australian consumers, almost half of consumers engage with brands on at least five channels. While these include traditional channels like websites and physical stores, more consumers are focusing their engagement through social media. Many brands have been acting on this engagement, with Green Hat’s recent BMR Report on B2B Marketing placing social media marketing spend above both online and print advertising.

Despite this, many voices in the omnichannel marketing community consider social media a fading trend. However, at SAP, we feel social media gives forward-thinking brands the tools to enhance their omnichannel experience. As an example, we’ve used social media to enhance our omnichannel campaigns for a part key part of our business. In addition to events and digital activity, we have leveraged different social media tactics on both Twitter and Linkedin to build the online brand of analytics evangelist Shailendra Kumar.

As well as producing videos, social media cards, and blogs, Shailendra conducts face-to-face interviews with clients who have adopted key innovation systems in their businesses. Filming this type of content creates an asset that can be shared on social media. Once it has been shared, Shailendra can help interviewees reconnect with him through the tagging software on social platforms. Similarly, brands can reinforce their marketing in all channels using social media.

Within three months of growing Shailendra’s presence, we had created more than 175K impressions on Twitter. His three customer video interviews had earned over 4000 views on LinkedIn, increasing his LinkedIn social selling index to 85.

Through such cross-channel efforts as promoting hashtags on out of home advertisements, brands can increase their cross-channel visibility and customer engagement.

Because of its ability to enhance omnichannel engagement, 79% of respondents to a recent survey of U.S. B2B marketing professionals named social media as their most commonly used marketing platform.

Of course, using social media to optimise the customer’s omnichannel experience can be difficult. With almost 8 in 10 Australians on social media, how can brands ensure each of their customers have an authentic, engaging experience on platforms like LinkedIn and Facebook?

The 2017 Australian Digital Experience Report shows us that while brands rush to develop innovative social tools (such as chatbots), social channels still rank the lowest for customer experience across channels used to interact with brands.

My belief is that brands need to get the basics right on their social media channels, creating engaging, useful content for customers that integrates with their everyday digital experience.

If you still feel social media’s impact is declining in our omnichannel world, consider the findings of the 2017 Australian Digital Experience Report. The report showed customers are demanding useful information in real-time. What channel but social media is better equipped to provide this? More importantly, satisfaction with social media currently sits at only 8%. This means companies need only master the basics of social media to stand out from their competitors and earn the loyalty of customers.

In conclusion, companies that invest in social platforms stand to make a big impact through genuine engagement and omnichannel enhancement.

For more on social media engagement, see E-Mail Marketing: Four Ways For Small Businesses To Leverage Social Media.

Rushenka Perera

About Rushenka Perera

Rushenka is Head of Marketing at SAP ANZ.