What Is Integrated Marketing and Why Is It Important?
Integrated marketing takes into consideration all aspects of marketing and the many channels of marketing that you can use. Like most marketing plans you need to know what your goal is, who you plan to market to, and how you will do it.
Typically, the goal and the audience is the same. The integration comes in with how you will accomplish the goal while maintaining a cohesive brand image, a common theme and position regardless of channel.
To create an integrated marketing plan you will need to:
* Create a Realistic Goal – The goal has to be the same for all channels, be that create buzz, boost website traffic, increase email list subscribers or something else entirely. Goals should be something that you can measure to determine whether or not your campaigns are successful.
* Communicate a Consistent Brand Image – Don’t change your image for different marketing channels. Your company should be your company regardless of the channel, online or offline, social media or your website.
* Pass Along the Same Marketing Message – What is the message you want your audience to hear? What do you want them to do about the message? Ensure that every channel you use works together to distribute the same message in different formats appropriate for the channel.
* Ensure Sales, Marketing and Advertising Work Together – All parts of your business needs to be trained in the same message, ideals and values. If everyone is on the same page, it’s easier to run an integrated marketing campaign.
* Make Sure Human Resources Are Steeped in Your Brand – Anyone you hire, whether contractors or employees, outsourcing companies, or marketing firms, needs to understand what your brand stands for and what message you want your audience to hear.
* Develop Interconnected Campaigns – Billboards, TV ads, radio ads, online banners, blog content, email marketing content and even webinars should all have the same ultimate message to your audience with all campaigns leading to the goal.
* Engage the Audience – All channels need to excite and engage the audience that you’re trying to reach with the message so that they want to answer your call to action. If you run a TV ad, the viewer should be able to do a Google Search and find more information about your campaign easily.
* Practice Perseverance – Integrated marketing can take some time to produce results, but once it does it will snowball and become bigger and better, faster. Build up the online content such as blog posts, articles, email marketing messages and social media messages and finally the TV, radio and/or banner ads to complete the integration.
Integrated marketing is more important than ever. With all the different marketing channels available, it is easy to become splintered in your marketing efforts. If you want to be successful at marketing your business, you’ll become well versed in the integrated marketing method – because it works.