15 March 2023 1195 words, 5 min. read

Cross-media: definition, strategy, and examples [Guide 2023]

By Pierre-Nicolas Schwab PhD in marketing, director of IntoTheMinds
Cross-media campaigns are becoming the norm for brand communication! This process consists of promoting a product/service on several media simultaneously. This way, companies combine their design efforts into a single thought process to promote customer conversion. This article helps you understand the concept […]

Cross-media campaigns are becoming the norm for brand communication! This process consists of promoting a product/service on several media simultaneously. This way, companies combine their design efforts into a single thought process to promote customer conversion. This article helps you understand the concept behind cross-media. We also explain how a good cross-media strategy works with two concrete cases!

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Some figures to understand cross-media better

  • 2.14: The number of Internet of Things (IoT) connected devices per Terran in 2023. This figure will rise to 3.46in 2030, a 61% increase in 7 years. Thus, tomorrow’s marketing campaigns must be adapted to all media types!
  • Omnichannel Marketing73%of users go through at least two channels before consuming a product/service
  • The customer lifetime value of “multi-channel” consumers is 30% higher than their single-channel counterparts.

What is cross-media?

With cross-media, we are dealing with a decidedly modern marketing approach. This type of campaign is carried out simultaneously on several communication channels to reach the marketing target better. Although the marketing message remains the same on these different media, these campaigns adapt to the codes of each channel. Thus, the cross-media includes as well:

  • traditional media (television, radio, billboards, etc.)
  • and digital media (social networks, blogs, SVOD, etc.)

A term popularized in the 1990s, cross-media is now the hallmark of the most effective marketing campaigns.

So why use this process? Beyond its adaptability, cross-media answers the marketing problems of our time. Indeed, users face more and more communication media today. And these media are increasingly digital: in 7 years, customers will own 1.61 times more connected devices than today!

On the benefits side, cross-media has many advantages. Thus, Sridhar et al., 2021 tell us that these marketing campaigns:

  • complement and simplify message delivery
  • allow reaching a wider audience
  • strengthen brands’ strategic Omnichannel Marketing practices

practices of cross-media

The 3 best practices of cross-media

How to properly apply the principles of cross-media in the design of such a campaign? We propose below a 3-point methodology strongly focused on the choice of media.

Determine the most appropriate channels for your marketing target

This is our first step toward a good cross-media strategy. The very conception of the message of your multi-channel campaign requires a particular choice of targeted media. You need to analyze the consumption habits of your target customers. Doing so will offer a seamless experience on all the platforms you choose.

Moreover, this method is reasonable for keeping expenses low. Indeed, cross-media requires only one time to think about the campaign’s design. Thus, brands improve their return on investment!

The management of advertising channels is more optimized thanks to cross-media strategies.


Ensure channel compatibility

Secondly, brands must find a way to select a few channels on the fly for their cross-media campaigns. Indeed, they must also guarantee that these media will not be a barrier to transmitting their message. As a result, the user will be more satisfied and feel stimulated by the multi-channel initiative of these innovative companies. Therefore, make sure to follow the following criteria in the ideation phase:

  • Value of your message: it should remain the same across channels. Your cross-media campaign fits the medium, not the other way around.
  • Visual elements: fonts, colors, etc., are thought out according to the media.
  • Design optimization: let’s take the example of a video ad. Think carefully about adapting your final production to new media (TikTok, Instagram Reels, YouTube Shorts, etc.) and their aesthetic standards.

Choose compatible media: essential to keep the nature of the message while adopting the codes of these channels.


Adding value through cross-media

Finally, we will end this roadmap with a “Value creation” axis. In this case, cross-media transforms the customer experience and promotes customer conversion. Here are some reasons why:

  • Immersive experience: involve and engage the user through consistent, homogeneous, and above all, original. Sensory marketing sets the pace with its precepts quite well suited to this type of campaign.
  • Target audiences: look for “niche” customer profiles or previously unexploited targets. To do this, surprisethese potential customers, and assert your presence on their preferred channels
  • Relationship marketing: surveys, polls, co-creation, the possibilities of interaction with your audience are unlimited. The cross-media mentality is optimal when it involves the customers. We will come back to this through the example of the movie Batman.

Cross-media creates a synergistic customer experience and increases customer loyalty.


cross-media cross-media campaigns

2 examples of successful cross-media campaigns

Let’s conclude this article by talking about 2 great cross-media campaigns. Here are examples of Game of Thrones and the Batman universe! They were both carried out by entertainment giants (HBO and Warner Bros).

Game of Thrones – Conquest

HBO distinguished itself with a novel cross-media strategy amid the Game of Thrones popularity boom. In anticipation of the launch of the video game “Conquest,” based on the universe of the series, the TV channel would like to engage its fans on several fronts:

  1. Integrate viewers’ positive emotions into the Game of Thrones universe. The network then ordered the creation of immersive exhibits to accompany fans into the world of Westeros, the imaginary land of the TV series.
  2. Second, HBO has launched several social mediaaccounts and hashtags proactively. In doing so, it encourages its enthusiasts to share their experiences with the world. Moreover, this strategy alone is a good example of viral marketing.
  3. The brand then launched “Conquest,” concluding a well-executed cross-media campaign. Indeed, customers now had all the cards in handto exploit the interactive possibilities of the game!

Watch HBO’s promotional video for their game “Conquest” below.

Batman – The Dark Knight

Let’s go from the small to the big screen with the example of the movie “The Dark Knight.” Warner Bros. and DC have not been idle in promoting the release of the new Batman movie. Indeed, their marketing teams have redoubled their imagination to arouse the public’s enthusiasm. Thus, several advertising channels were chosen to promote the film. The cross-media campaign then followed the following pattern:

  • Launching a website to invite users to collect information about the film in different cities. Thus, the producers of the blockbuster encourage fans to gather and talk about Christopher Nolan’s new project.
  • Meetings with fans and canvassing via SMSto help them in their quest for information about the trailer’s release.

cross-media Sources

Warner Bros. went through websites, content productions, and mobile to conclude a successful campaign (source: Pexels)



  • Hasan, M. (2022). State of IoT 2022: Number of connected IoT devices growing 18% to 14.4 billion globally. IoT Analytics.
  • Krueger, J. (2015). Omni-channel shoppers: An emerging retail reality. Think with Google.
  • Sopadjieva, E., Dholakia, U.M. & Benjamin, B. (2017). A Study of 46,000 Shoppers Shows That Omnichannel Retailing Works. Harvard Business Review.
  • Sridhar, K., Kumar, A. & Bezawada, R. (2022). Investigating cross-media effects in a multichannel marketing environment: the role of email, catalog, television, and radio. Marketing Letters, 33, 189–201.
  • Vailshery, L.S. (2022). Number of IoT connected devices worldwide 2019-2021, with forecasts to 2030. Statista

Posted in Strategy.

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