As a public relations student with a business minor, I have the opportunity of taking some marketing classes to help broaden my perspective of strategic communications. This semester, I am taking a class that’s focused on integrated marketing communications and I would like to share some highlights and help explain why this is an important term for any
What is it? Integrated marketing communications can sound like a confusing term, but once you break it down the definition is quite simple. My textbook describes it as a process of integrating messages from a variety of sources about a company’s products or brands. Put simply, it means that all of the communications about a company have to be portraying the company in the same way. For example, a social media campaign has to go along with the overall brand image and other campaign materials put out about the company, it wouldn’t make sense to send your target audiences conflicting messages about your brand.
What does it mean for you? When done properly, integrated marketing communications can help to create a successful public relations or marketing campaign. This means that when creating a public relations campaign, it is important to first look at your company from a consumer’s perspective and assess the image that it has already established. Then, build your campaign with that knowledge in mind making sure that your plan in sending similar messages. Integration of all communications that your target audience receives helps to reinforce what they already know about a brand. In turn, this creates brand awareness where the consumer can begin to establish a relationship with your brand, and ultimately can be very effective.
All of the strongest and most recognizable brands and companies out there right now follow this simple marketing approach. Some of the brands that come to mind for me are Starbucks, Apple, Nike and Target. Can you think of any other brands that have great integrated marketing communications strategies?
This guest blog was written by PRowl staff member Kaitlyn Mashack.