I am currently reading Cross-Media Marketing by James Michelson, principal and founder of VDP Web. I must say, it’s refreshing. Right up front, he made a point that I haven’t heard expressed as directly or succinctly, and frankly, it needs to be said.
What makes a campaign become cross media or cross channel is how the responses are funneled into a single data collection point, either systematically or manually, to generate a dialogue with the prospect. . . Anything else is just advertising.
Wahoo! Someone needed to say it, and thanks, James, for saying it well.
We’ve been talking a lot about cross-media and cross-channel marketing in this industry and too often it’s confused with multi-channel marketing.
Multi-channel simply means using multiple channels to reach the same prospect. It doesn’t say anything about integrating those channels or creating a dialog. Cross-channel marketing means just that — one marketing campaign operating across multiple channels.
The implication of cross-channel marketing, as Michelson points out, is a common data collection point that creates a two-way conversation and level of integration that tells the marketer something about that prospect. Otherwise, it’s just hitting customers from all angles with different media. That kind of media smash has its place, but cross-channel marketing is something specific and different.
This is an important distinction and something we need to talk about more. In fact, if we focused more on cross-channel marketing and less on multi-channel marketing, I wonder how that would affect our clients’ campaign ROIs?