Principles of Customer Closeness: Seamless Omnichannel communication

In a continuing series, Oliver Gwynne delves deeper into CX for brands and omnichannel communication. This provides a fabulous context for those who are conducting customer research and anyone interested in ensuring a brand’s voice and messaging remains uniform across multiple channels.

Whilst more channels have enabled more opportunities for businesses of all sizes to connect with their audience, for many large organisations this has come at a heavy cost. Not only has there been a challenge in communicating on different platforms in a consistent manner, but people now expect 24/7 support on every platform.

The same, but different

The first and perhaps most obvious challenge is creating a consistent look and feel in all customer touch points, including brick-and-mortar, face-to-face, desktop, mobile and on social media. The plethora of new channels has meant more time, consideration and cost goes into marketing materials. Brands have also had to find ways to balance their branding in relation to different mediums. Online brands are competing for attention and so many have adopted fewer colours, bolder visuals and snappy taglines, but this approach may not translate well to say, a retail setting. A good example of this would be the infamous Wendy’s twitter account which is known for replying in a snarky manner to other users. Whilst many people love this approach online, and it does a great job of cutting through the noise, they would not be so happy to receive this sort of treatment from a server in a real restaurant.

As such brands need to understand customer (both present and future) expectations, their current brand positioning, and adapt to different mediums. The timescale at which brands need to freshen up or rebrand their image seems to be becoming shorter and shorter and the only way to ensure they are in line with shifting expectations is to ensure they are actively listening.

Leverage Technology

Another issue with multiple channels is that they often become a silo. Whilst activity within each channel may be recorded, they are not always brought together to form a complete picture, or this must be done manually by copying notes to a centralised CRM. It is next to impossible to achieve a single customer vision, when your interactions with them are split but technology such as automation can be used to eliminate busywork, segment consumers and score their activity.


When we start to think about the many different ways in which we interact with our customers, its easy to see how customer closeness is an issue that affects every department in one way or another. In ensuring consistency of delivery, tone and messaging it is easy to identify that ongoing training at multiple levels is needed.

About the author:
Oliver Gwynne works for STRAT7, which turns market and customer data into real world knowledge, and knowledge into competitive advantage. We are a group of companies all dedicated to helping you get closer to your customers through cultural understanding, hybrid segmentation and insight communities.

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