CANNES — Several years after the term was first coined, “omni-channel marketing” – the process through which brands reach customers in a unified fashion despite that being through multiple devices or places – is still far from ubiquitous

In this video interview with Beet.TV, Essence president Jason Harrison says the roll-out of the omni-channel approach is still a mixed bag.

“Some are really good at it, where there is an experience that is very connected between touch points,” Harrison says.

He says some brands which reach people through app, website, advertising and products are doing so effectively. But that is not the view across the board.

“You see a lot of companies where you’ve got a head of digital, you’ve got a head of traditional, you’ve got an e-commerce and the three report to different places and maybe they collaborate, maybe they don’t,” Harrison laments.

“You know, I just think you’re set up for a situation where those things are bound to be not connected to one another.”

So how can brands finally think holistically on behalf of their audiences? Harrison recommends:

  • Organizational alignment.
  • Shared understanding of marketing’s role in company success.
  • Common understanding for customers’ experience.

“Somebody could appear amazing in the advertising yet when you interact with that brand at a retail touch point or in a phone conversation or whatever, it’s a miserable experience, nothing, it doesn’t matter what happens in the advertising realm to over compensate for that,” he says.

This video is part of Beet.TV’s coverage of Cannes Lions 2018.  For more videos from Cannes, please visit this page.