Integrated marketing is not just a catch phrase, but is a practice of creating a seamless experience for customers. It integrates all aspects of marketing communications (public relations, advertising, direct marketing, sales promotion and social media) so to allow all to work together as a unified brand.
Businesses are all about customers. Whether you sell a product or offer certain services, competition is extremely fierce. You may have observed your established competitors spending large sums of money on expensive marketing campaigns, like running a TV advertisement, or investing heavily in search engine marketing (SEM) that places their ads on the top of the SERPs –– Search Engine Page Results. If you are looking for a solution that can ease your worries without spending too much money, integrated marketing is the way to go.
What is Integrated Marketing?
Integrated marketing can be seen as a holistic and unified approach to a business’ communication channels. In integration marketing, businesses use traditional mediums –– TV and radio –– as well as modern mediums –– websites, blogs, and social media pages –– to deliver a consistent message. Consistency is necessary for making a noticeable impact on customers.
Suppose you have a business that offers HVAC installation and maintenance services, and you are actively searching for a modern solution to increase your clients. Increasing sales can include:
Doubling the business revenue.
Managing the time required for the marketing efforts to produce results.
Acquiring a specific segment of the audience.
After initial research and planning, an integrated marketing campaign (IMC) can include weekly blog posts. These blog posts can include useful tips for identifying any issue with HVAC systems. The integrated marketing campaign strategy supports promotion of such posts on social media platforms. The blog can be posted on platforms like Facebook, Twitter, etc., for spreading a unified and consistent message to multiple audiences. Likewise, the post can also be added into email marketing strategy where the blog can be marketed to the clientele.
In areas that have extremely hot weather and there is a greater demand for air conditioners, IMC strategy can use both online advertisements and TV ads for maximum impact. When the demand for HVAC services is low, discounts can be provided for encouraging customers to use these services. After the end of each year, a survey can be produced that lists the facts and figures related to HVAC. The survey can generate free coverage as prominent websites quote it for informing their viewers.
In this integrated marketing campaign, your business maintained a single message where seamless amalgamation assisted in an effective marketing strategy.
Benefits of Integrated Marketing
Integrated marketing helps in the reduction of marketing expenses. As the message is same, every communication manager has to collaborate on the same thing. As IMC streamlines the sharing of content across different channels, money and other resources are saved.
2. Expands Your Message Impact
When different messages are sent across all communication mediums, clients find it harder to resonate with the message. Integrated marketing deepens the impact of your message on customers. So, when the same message appears on different platforms, clients are made to think.
For instance, take Android’s example. Android has always marketed “customization” as one of its USPs in the mobile race against Apple. Android delivered this message across different platforms with remarkable consistency, so its target audience understood how it was an improvement over Apple.
3. Improves Brand Identity and Visibility
Sharing the same message in a recognizable and consistent format helps keep your brand at the top of your customers’ mind. That way, when they have need of the service you provide, yours will be the first name to cross their mind.
4. Better SEO and Improved Search Results
Integrated Marketing is highly useful for SEO purposes. Businesses that are involved in integrated marketing campaigns are far more reachable on search engine results pages (SERPs).
5. Consistent and Clear Messaging
It’s always best to building marketing campaigns, promotional materials and messaging that compliments and reinforces each other. This makes it easier for customers comprehend and saves you money in the long run.
6. Easier for Your Employees to Share the Message
One voice helps improve the opportunity to share the same message. Employees can be confident they portray the company brand when the message is consistent.
7. Builds Trust
Companies that focus their brand and marketing message to a specific strategic target are trusted more by customers. It eliminates confusion and leads to more real (or perceived) acceptance.
8. Expands your Marketing Mix
An integrated marketing strategy allows you to reach a much wider audience. This in turn can expand your customer base. Although you may not target the same people with your print advertising as your social media audience, there can be some cross over. This unintended exposures may lead to higher customer engagement and a revenue spike.
Now You Know the Benefits of a Successful Integrated Marketing Strategy
These are just a few of the benefits of implementing and an integrated marketing program. Here are few tactics to help you implement this strategy:
Mark sure your brand carries the same format in all areas. This includes logos, typefaces, sizing and colors. Develop a branding guide to help ensure you stay in synch across all channels such as print and digital.
Include a marketing communications strategy in your overall business plan. Your strategy should be clear to point out your values, objectives and approach to all your marketing communications.
Share the strategy with everyone in your organization. Make sure everyone understands it and pledges to share it in a unified and consistent manner.
Implementing an integrated marketing plan is not easy and takes a lot of work. The benefits, however, outweigh the costs.
Take this a step at a time and soon your plan will all come together. And, If you need help along the way, contact a marketing firm who has experience in this area. In the long run your business and bottom line will benefit from the strategy of integrated marketing.