Integrated marketing communication or IMC refers to the approach adopted in a business in order to create a seamless and unified brand experience for consumers across different channels. Through this method, brands and organizations can convey and co-ordinate their communication efforts conveniently.
The main objective of IMC is to cater to various needs of the consumers and create a seamless experience for them across various marketing channels. Before integrated marketing communication came into existence, advertising involved broadcast of the products and value propositions without considering the diversity in tastes, needs, preferences or values of consumers.
Integrated marketing communication ensures all aspects of marketing communication work in unison to boost sales and achieve maximum cost-effectiveness. The simple concept aims at the careful link of all forms of communication and integration of promotional tools to harmonize the process of marketing communication.
Integrated Marketing Communication involves following components:
- The Foundation Stage: It involves detailed analysis by the marketers of both the product as well as target market since it is crucial to understand the brand, its offerings, and end-users. The businessmen and marketers need to know the needs, attitudes, and expectations of the target customers, alongside the need to keep an eye on the competitor’s activities.
- The Corporate Culture: It is essential for the features of products and services to be in line with the work culture of the organization. The marketers need to make a note of the fact, that every organization has a vision before they design the products and services.
- Brand Focus, which represents the corporate identity of the brand, is an important element of IMC.
- Consumer Experience refers to what the customers feel about the product and this is what marketers need to focus on. Usually, a consumer will most probably opt for a product which appears to be attractive and has good packaging. Products need to meet and exceed customer expectations.
- Communication Tools include various modes of promoting a particular brand such as advertising, direct selling, promoting through social media such as Facebook, Twitter, Orkut etc.
- Various promotional tools are used for promotion of brands; such as trade promotions, personal selling etc. Organizations need to strengthen their relationship with customers and external clients.
- Integration Tools help organizations in keeping a regular track on customer feedbacks and reviews. Specific software like customer relationship management (CRM) is a must to determine the effectiveness of various integrated marketing communications tools.
Nowadays, most businesses opt for integrated marketing communication and who better than Eyecatchers, where IMC is a core part of marketing strategy!