What Are Integrated Marketing Communications?
Marketing departments often have more than one team working on messaging and communications at a time. The work they do involves promoting different products or services, connecting with customers, and planning events. This can sometimes lead to disparate messaging which can be confusing and disorienting to potential customers. Integrated marketing communications is the antidote to disorganized marketing, bringing it all together under a unified message.
Integrated marketing communications are communications that are coordinated across multiple teams, departments, and campaigns into one cohesive message. For example, integrated marketing communications involves using similar messaging across social media channels, digital advertising, email marketing, sales promotions, and more.
The goal of integrated marketing communications is to ensure that customers receive the same message when they interact with a company’s brand in various ways. If a potential customer views a social media post from a company that offers one message and then visits the website only to find a totally different marketing campaign, this can be disorienting for the customer, leading them to cut their journey short.
What are the benefits of integrated marketing communications?
Integrated marketing communications sounds straightforward, so what are the distinct benefits of creating cohesive messaging across your marketing department?
- Increased brand awareness and trust: Integrated marketing communications can increase brand awareness and trust. This is because customers know what to expect from the company and they are speaking with one voice and personality.
- Increased efficacy and efficiency: When a company creates integrated marketing communications that are used throughout the department and across multiple channels, these messages are easier for customers to remember and amplify themselves. This can cut down on the time marketing teams use to create different marketing messages, leading to increased efficacy and efficiency for the department.
- Increased brand awareness and sales: Integrated marketing communications also builds upon themselves when done well. For instance, integrated marketing communications that use slogans or hashtags backed up by a range of other marketing activities build brand awareness that will lead to increased sales.
Integrated marketing communications do have their drawbacks, though. Marketers can run into pushback from management teams reluctant to share budget resources or messaging authority with other teams. Integrated marketing campaigns may also require other campaigns to be paused for a period of time, which adds pressure for success.