It’s no secret that Southeast Asia has a strong preference for mobile devices and digital services – and with projections that the mobile audience across the region will increase by 300% by 2025, companies are working to become digitally ready in theory as well as practice.
As such, omnichannel marketing has become a major focal point for businesses in the region. There’s no denying the strategy’s appeal: it gives customers more choice over their experiences and grants brands access to personalised customer history and data instantly, providing for a universally seamless experience.
To gain a deeper understanding of how companies across Southeast Asia regard and leverage omnichannel marketing, Resulticks commissioned Econsultancy to conduct a survey on how prepared enterprise businesses in the region really are to implement omnichannel strategies.
According to the findings included in the report, ‘The Omnichannel Imperative,’ businesses throughout Southeast Asia are confident in their omnichannel marketing capabilities. Indeed, nearly 70 percent of enterprise companies surveyed believe they have achieved a level of proficiency with omnichannel approaches, with Malaysia and Thailand leading in confidence levels, and fewer than 20 percent disagreeing that they are proficient.
Though the survey provides a sunny outlook for omnichannel readiness in the region, it does not mean all businesses rate themselves equally capable, or that adopting omnichannel strategies is without complications. As omnichannel success is built on a holistic approach to customer engagement, data, technology, and processes must work in harmony to achieve the desired outcomes. This is where many companies – no matter how ready they may think they are to implement omnichannel strategies – begin to face challenges.
Often, these challenges arise because delivering a highly individualised level of customer experience requires companies to consolidate and integrate large amounts of disparate customer data into a single, unified view of the customer. Many businesses find this a major obstacle.
Indeed, the survey revealed the most commonly cited barriers to more effective omnichannel marketing included having too much data to manage, poor data integration, incomplete data and the inability to act on data. More than one in three of the respondents cited such obstacles. Tellingly, the most daunting obstacle was technology and software limitations, with 40 percent of respondents saying technical deficiencies are a key challenge.
Digging deeper into this tech challenge, the survey showed that many business in Southeast Asia are specifically frustrated with the omnichannel software platforms they use. The frustration seemingly concerns vendors inability to satisfactorily enable real-time, personalised campaigns across multiple channels – a necessity for omnichannel customer engagement. Nearly 60 percent of businesses said their needs in enabling multichannel campaign orchestration are not being fulfilled.
Though confidence in implementing omnichannel strategies appears relatively high across the region, many businesses still face significant challenges ranging from prioritising marketing strategies to consolidating data to investing in the right technology to delivering on the omnichannel promise. With the latest findings, businesses across Southeast Asia will not only have a view of some omnichannel learnings that can help preempt some challenges, but also a potential mid-to-long-term roadmap charting their own omnichannel journeys.