Marketing isn’t what it used to be. Over the last decade, our relationship with information has changed enormously in terms of both access and engagement. The most obvious contributing factor is social media, which has an increasingly large effect on how we discover, research and ultimately purchase a product or service.
Furthermore, thanks to the immediacy and two-way nature of social media, our love affair with brands goes way beyond the wham-bam moment of becoming a paying customer. More and more people are using Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and even Snapchat to provide commentary on their personal experiences of everything from utility suppliers to soft drinks. So the question is not so much how should we market, but rather how can we leverage this new form of interconnection to the benefit of both company and customer?
This is where integrated marketing comes in. A self-explanatory term, it’s the method of making all of your marketing and communications activity work in unison. Many businesses have one tone of voice for printed media, another for online, and yet another over the phone. This can be considered unpredictable and disingenuousness on the company’s part, and cause wariness and confusion for the consumer. If, on the other hand, all forms of public-facing activity is unified, the subsequent brand consistency will lead to benefits that can only be achieved through confidence and clarity.
For example, let’s say that a solicitors specialising in family law wishes to spread awareness of this particular service. Whilst tweeting a link and organising a feature in the newspaper might get some traction, it will surely become lost amongst the constant noise and fizzle out quite quickly. Alternatively, by investing a little extra time and creativity, an integrated campaign could be launched that really grabs attention.
This could take any kind of shape, but we’d suggest creating a special landing page, building a family blogger database, and then driving traffic through targeted HTML email marketing and one-to-one Twitter posts. By pinpointing and striking up conversations with relevant individuals, there’s a high chance that they’ll share your online resource with their followers. So if you’ve built a database of 500 mummy/daddy bloggers, each with 1,000 followers, then even a 10% conversion rate will mean that you’ll reach 50,000 people. We think you’ll agree that’s nothing to be sniffed at.
A similar approach can be applied to any type of company and campaign. The University of Hull recently sent branded sunglasses to new students during summertime, complete with a hashtag to encourage social media selfies. Then there are the multi-layered Compare the Meerkat and Share a Coke promotions, which gained monumental engagement due to relatively simple yet wonderfully quirky ideas that people were eager to get involved in.
Whatever it is that your organisation provides, from food to filing cabinets, healthcare to holidays, the opportunities for innovative and strategic integrated marketing are endless. The only thing that might get in your way is lack of time, in which case you can ring us on 01482 363005 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. After a friendly chat and a little brainstorming, we’ll take the pressure off aligning and enhancing your marketing channels, leaving you to enjoy an ROI that perfectly integrates with your sales targets.