November 05, 2007

Multichannel Experience And Pricing

Multichannel experts suggest that the look and feel of our marketing strategies should be the same across channels. We're told to offer the same prices across channels, same promotions across channels, same merchandise across channels. We're told that our customers demand this experience.

If you travel often, stop in a McDonalds restaurant in Boston, and then stop by a McDonalds restaurant in Topeka.

You're likely to find different pricing for similar items.

You're likely to find differences in the menu ... maybe a McRib sandwich is offered in Topeka but not in Boston.

Retailers have a long history of charging different prices in different regions. Retailers offer different merchandise in different regions. We accept this as a fact of life, in reality, it is necessary for the retailer to do this in order to run a profitable business.

If we accept that retail can/should be "different", why can't multichannel marketers offer different promotions, different offers, different merchandise, different contact strategies, different creative treatments by channel?

4 comments:

  1. One reason why they probably shouldn't offer different prices on different channels is that it makes the customer who paid the higher price mad. So mad that they may not buy again. Maybe there's a way to creatively structure different offers to different channels without having blatant pricing differences, but we still need to understand the importance of customer perception.

    And, I personally hate paying more for my Starbucks in some cities than in others. It really does make me mad at Starbucks!

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  2. You hate it, it makes you mad, and yet, you keep doing it!

    Product > Multichannel Strategy. You desire for the product trumps they way they execute their strategy across markets.

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  3. Anonymous2:43 PM

    Actually Kevin, if the pricing on Amazon.com is different for my business partner than it is for me because I just happened to pay more at one time and got branded, then I no longer trust Amazon.com to give me the best pricing.

    Customer perceptions are everything.

    And yes, I no longer shop at Amazon.com as often I is used to because I feel like I might get ripped off on book purchases.

    By the way. I consider these types of marketing techniques as part of the heart of the branding strategy. Not some irrelevant logo, tag line or graphic scheme. Branding is what the company stands for. Pricing behavior brands a company faster than just about any other marketing decision.

    Thanks for another great post.

    Ted

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  4. Yup, these things are more important than the color/size of a logo!

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