Multi-channel Marketing: Undertaking multi-channel campaigns is no longer what advertisers want. Multi-channel campaigns use a number of marketing channels at the same time. Each channel is a separate silo and organizations may use different agencies, marketing messages, key performance indicators and attribution for the channels in such campaigns. Marketers try to reach their target market through a marketing campaign that uses as many channels as practical.
Cross-channel Marketing: Contrast that to a cross-channel campaign that is customer centric. In integrated cross-channel campaigns the customer is followed as he or she switches among various channels. The intent is to engage them with the right content at the right time on the right channel. Advertisements on one or more channels may create awareness and possible interest while ads on other channels pick up where they left off. The channels are consistent and complementary.
To do cross-channel marketing, advertisers need to be able to track consumers as they interface with various channels and ads. The messaging among the various channels and ads should be consistent, i.e., using similar messaging. Similar messaging includes replicating elements such as theme, offers, keywords, imagery, terminology, etc.