SDL has released the final report of the “Five Truths for Future Marketers” series titled “Channels are Irrelevant,” that features results from SDL’s global survey of more than 1,800 millennials (ages 18-36). The data reveals that today’s consumers no longer care about where they are or what device they are on when interacting with a brand, as 58% of millennials polled said they expect to engage with a company whenever they choose and via whichever channel they elect.
The data highlights the critical need for brands to stop focusing on channels and instead apply what they know about their consumers to elevate the overall experience in the buying journey. Millennials are the “always on” and connected generation, demanding consistent and seamless interaction with brands wherever they are and from any device they choose. According to the data, millennials touch their smartphones 43 times per day, and 30% admit they touch more than four devices over the course of 24 hours.
Even through the myriad of platforms consumers use to interact with a business, 60 percent of millennials surveyed expect a consistent experience from brands whether they interact online, in store or via phone. SDL’s statistics indicate how critical it is for marketers to adapt to the rapidly changing range of consumer behaviors, preferences and expectations. Customers move effortlessly between on and offline touch points and they expect brands to travel with them, responding to and anticipating their needs.
“Consumers have drastically changed the way they engage and interact with companies, altering expectations and making it imperative for brands to quickly adapt,” says Paige O’Neill, chief marketing officer at SDL. “To keep pace, marketers should focus on the experiences customers want throughout the customer journey, and adjust company strategies to coincide. If you change the way you engage customers on one channel, it may only be one step in an overall strategy. It is vital for organizations to ensure channels are so connected that they become irrelevant, placing the focus on delivering true omnichannel engagement.”
Millennials are empowered by an overabundance of digital devices and can pick when, where and how they want to interact with brands, making the shift to omnichannel engagement even more daunting. However, if marketers focus on the behaviors, preferences and expectations throughout the customer journey and adjust strategies as needed, customer experience will remain a top priority, according to SDL (www.sdl.com).