Marketers must be ever-vigilant about the integrity of their efforts. From mobile devices to traditional media, online and offline channels must work together to drive customer engagement and loyalty. When one or more channels are not operating within the bounds of reason, consumers are less likely to trust that their marketing spending is being used wisely.
Marketing 2.0 Conference states that marketing is a multi-billion dollar industry growing at an unprecedented pace. The cost of marketing has also been dropping, with competition for your budget the only thing increasing.
You must keep your business ahead of the curve to be competitive by understanding how your marketing can be more effective and efficient.
What is Multichannel Marketing?
Over the past few years, you’ve heard people talk about multichannel marketing extensively. It’s now a well-known concept that has become one of the most engaging and successful ways for businesses to reach their target audience.
As defined by Marketing 2.0 Conference, a multichannel marketing strategy involves using different channels to promote your brand and drive customer action. It could be using multiple websites, video platforms, or other advertising channels. It’s not just about reaching more people with your message; it’s also about creating diverse opportunities for your marketing dollars to work effectively. It is an approach to brand advertising that simultaneously uses different communication modes, such as media channels, mobile devices, and personal computer applications. It’s a form of advertising that has become widespread in the 21st century.
Even though digital marketing is a relatively new phenomenon, it has remained relevant by adopting many of the best practices used for decades in traditional media. The variety of mediums used in multichannel marketing campaigns is growing daily, and so are the opportunities for marketers looking to capitalize on them.
Beware Of The Frauds In Multichannel Marketing
When people think of fraud in marketing, they typically think of leads and sales. However, there are many other types of fraud in marketing as well. Every company has its own unique set of challenges when it comes to marketing. Some industries are more tech-savvy than others, while others struggle with fraud and other types of deception in their marketing. While using digital channels and multichannel strategies is common, most businesses must use these methods correctly, or they can backfire. Here are five common frauds reviewed at the Marketing 2.0 Conference in multichannel marketing and how you can avoid falling into these scams yourself.
- PPC Fraud
It occurs when someone posing as a real business offers to sell you products or services they don’t have the authorization to sell. In some cases, the fraudsters will use special PPC software to create ads that look like they’re coming from a legitimate business. Typically, these fraudsters will target people interested in products with a specific use. For example, a fraudster who poses as a real estate agent and is looking to sell your home might advertise on real estate websites without any listings.
- Lead Scam
Probably, it is one of the most common marketing fraud types. A lead scam typically happens when someone offers to sell you a product or service in exchange for money. This money could come from someone unaware they’re being scammed, or it could be a genuine offer from a real business.
- Phone Scam
Unlike lead scam fraud, where the target is typically someone in an adjacent industry, you might be targeted if you’re a business owner on the phone with customers all the time. Similar to lead scam fraud, the most common technique used by phone scammers is the “free” report scam. The scammers will claim to have a “free” report that they’re willing to give away but to get it, they’ll have to wire money. This scam usually happens by phone but can also occur in person. The scammer may even have a fake ID, such as a fake driver’s license, ready to use when they’re on the phone with you.
- Affiliate Fraud
It occurs when an affiliate marketer promotes a product or service with which they do not believe or have experience. It can be harmful to both the marketer and the consumer.
- Paid Review Scam
Paid review scams are another common marketing fraud type. This fraud happens when a business pays someone to write a review of its products or services. When someone pays for a review, they are compensated for the person’s opinion of the product or service.
Tips to Avoid Multichannel Marketing Fraud
Marketing fraud happens when companies send out false or misleading email messages. It can be as simple as a company making up its name in an email signature. Still, it can also be more sophisticated and involve using elements of psychology or hacking to trick users into making decisions they shouldn’t. Marketing 2.0 Conference reviews some red flags that might indicate a marketing campaign isn’t real; check out some tips for spotting marketing fraud.
- Don’t Respond to Unsolicited Invitations
Perhaps, one of the obvious signs that a company isn’t legitimate is if it can’t accept your invitation. If you get an email from a new business asking you to set up a meeting or send them an email, assume they aren’t who they say they are. Even if you didn’t ask them to set up an appointment, it’s still a red flag because you assume they are who they say they are and want to proceed anyway. If you don’t want to set up a meeting or you’ve already set one up, don’t respond. It allows the company to use your response as a chance to get closer to you.
- Look out for Social Media Marketing Frauds
It can happen in other industries where companies try to sell you something using deceptive tactics. The most common red flag in marketing fraud is the company’s attempt to use your social media accounts to invite you to join its network. Some companies use Facebook Ads to make you think they have more members than they do. Companies that do this are trying to make you join their network to sell you “friends” benefits, such as incentives to become a “plus one” or invitations to events where the gift card comes with free food or drinks.
- Try to Verify the Company
It’s good practice to look into a business’s background before getting involved with any products or services they claim to sell. And one of the ways to do this is to verify the integrity of business claims through website inspections. Another way to ascertain a company’s legitimacy is through social media. Many websites allow you to “flag” posts and comments on social media platforms as bribes or ads for other companies to check out. It can often lead to you discovering fraudulently-run companies who are willing to pay to have their posts and comments removed.
- Be Careful with Your Data
When you get involved with a new business, you’re handing over your data without due process. Enterprises are increasingly vulnerable to data breaches. If your data is at risk, the first step is to secure it. Lock down your passwords and take other steps to ensure that your account is secure so that no one but you has the means of your information. Another thing to be careful of is the practice of “info tapping.” It is when a business pretends to be you while monitoring your social media or phone calls to find out what you like, what you buy, and what events or services you use. If you are constantly being pestered by unknown callers or monitored by someone you don’t know, you may be giving away your information to the wrong people.
- Spend Carefully
It’s only natural for a business to invest as little money as possible to make as much money as possible. However, this is not a practical marketing approach. Suppose you try to use multichannel marketing without a proper understanding of the costs and benefits of each channel. In that case, you risk wasting your time and money on a track that is not right for your business or not getting the results you need out of the channels that are right for you, and you might attract scammers.
Multichannel marketing might seem a great way to reach new customers or grow your existing business, but risks are involved. Other frauds in marketing are similar in that they trick people into thinking they are from an honest company with a valid address or phone number. Shilling, lead scams, phone scammers, click fraud, and paid review scams are just a few examples of fraud in marketing. While each scam is different, they have something in common, deception.
Multichannel marketing is a competitive business. There are many frauds and cheats in this business. So it’s essential to know about these frauds and charlatans, and with this article, the Marketing 2.0 Conference has tried to spread awareness about these scams.