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Come-TogetherThere is a very smart person at Dominos. The pizza chain that made its mark with quick delivery is now getting recognition for quick ordering. Their users who have already set up a Pizza Profile can reorder using an emoji — the pizza slice emoji of course. Yep, that cute little picture programmed into most smartphones is the newest and shortest character of shorthand.  Words are now too old and cumbersome. We can order pizza using a single picture.  And here’s the genius part: They have to do it in a tweet.  So Dominos is getting revenue and earned social media all in one cute little emoji. That’s omni-channel marketing at its finest.

Say hello to the new consumer.

Dominos is doing more than responding to this new form of interacting with a consumer. They are recruiting and creating digital-savvy customers and turning them into fans. Yes, there’s a new consumer in town. Notice I didn’t say user. While this new being can be a user, we are talking about this person in both online and real terms, so let’s stick with the term “consumer”.

With the new consumer, everything flows. They have devices that work seamlessly together. If they see something fun on their phone, they can share it. Not just on Instagram or Twitter but they can instantly broadcast it from their phone to their living room TV. They see no barriers between the online and actual world — and they want their brands to do the same. Now.

As financial institutions, we’re in luck.

We have a slight advantage compared to some of our other partners. We’ve been dealing with this blended and digital world for a while now. With direct deposit came the possibility that a customer could deposit a check, use the ATM or debit card and never step in a bank. They no longer even needed to carry around cash. With branches, ATMs, online banking, mobile banking and now Apple Pay — we’ve done a pretty good job making our customers’ money available to them in a way that fits their needs. That’s omni-channel service.

Now we just need to do the same with our marketing content.

They are not going to ask for control they already have.

The new consumer is beyond empowered. They have multiple devices and options when it comes to how they interact with brands. They will develop their own content and will not ask permission to be a part of the brand landscape. If you’re not part of their world, with a few clicks or swipes — or now emoji — they will find a brand that will.

How to Omni-channel

That’s why omni-channel marketing is perfect for capturing this new audience. We’re talking about something that’s much more than a campaign. It’s bigger than that; it’s a philosophy. Omni-channel is about an ongoing conversation using digital and traditional marketing that work together with the branch experience. The first step is to begin listening. Aggregate all the information on your consumer behavior. Then focus your efforts on their interaction with your brand. Use this information to create a Customer Journey or a projected path your consumer would take to not only reach a one time purchase decision but the path to an ongoing and meaningful relationship with your brand. Then align your marketing in all channels to fit that journey.

Why it’s worth the effort.

Studies have shown that the personalization inherent in an omni-channel marketing strategy can increase conversion rates by 70% and reduce the cost to capture and maintain a customer by 50%. Add these statistics to the news that 48% of consumers believe that companies need to do a better job coordinating their online and offline experiences and you can see that the need is there. Your communication must be relevant, targeted, and engaging. And it must deftly cross the multiple channels your consumer is using.

Start small but start

The change from your current marketing to omni-channel marketing doesn’t have to be abrupt or sweeping. You can begin with just a few insights and combine a few channels. Start with a promotion that tests the omni-channel waters. Then, through patience and persistence, fold one channel after another into this practice. Soon you’ll have a personalized, responsive, contextualized and dynamic offering that will sweep these new consumers off their collective feet.

Has this philosophy been a proven path to success? You tell me. In the last six months, shares of Dominos stock has risen 50%. That’s a lot of emoji.