What are integrated marketing communications?
Integrated Marketing Communications (IMC) blends together traditional and innovative communications techniques incorporating public relations, advertising, sales and marketing into one coherent and harmonious message. IMC creates an entirely new toolbox for companies to use when launching comprehensive marketing campaigns. By combining all of the communication elements, companies can keep costs down and profits up while delivering straightforward messaging that cuts through the clutter.
How Integrated Marketing Communications Work
All communications are in sync
Integrated marketing communications rely on campaign strategies that combine the elements of advertising, public relations, marketing and sales promotion into one clear and concise message. With the increase in online platforms, a shorter news cycle and an overload of distractions for potential customers; IMC just makes good sense. As a result, companies unify their message in a bolder way. It also helps customers navigate through the purchasing landscape to make better and easier choices. By scaling back the noise, IMC delivers happier customers poised for long-term commitment to a company’s brand. Just like in geometry, when IMC is used well, the whole is equal to or better than the sum of its parts.
Focused communications save time and money
Integrated marketing communications encourage companies to pull all of their communications together for simpler dissemination of ideas and fresher messaging. This reduces the cost of launching separate public relations, advertising, marketing, personal selling or other kinds of communications campaigns. By consolidating the promotional effort into one, large campaign; companies can save staff time, lower stress levels and keep confusion to a minimum. With one concise message, companies are poised to benefit from higher sales and profits. The idea of too many cooks spoiling the soup, does not happen as often with IMC.
Other effective communication strategies
Some integrated marketing communications campaigns are more effective if they are outsourced to external agencies. This can give client companies peace of mind in knowing that all their needs are being handled by outside experts at one comprehensive price. Another way that IMC is used at best advantage is when companies are rolling out products and look to their in-house employees to view them first. Internal campaigns create great buzz for new products before the campaign hits the public. Other companies incorporate a more organic way of collaborating on new product development before the promotional campaign gets underway. By encouraging in-house cooperation among groups like product development, distribution and accounting or finance; every member of the team fully understands the product and the role each team plays in the promotional campaign.
Why Integrated Marketing Communications Matter
It's efficient marketing
Integrated marketing streamlines large marketing campaigns, saving companies time, money and stress. With internal company resources collaborating on a campaign, the message comes across in a straightforward way on all platforms. The result is more customers and a polished brand.
It breaks through the noise
With all-news, fake news and non-stop headlines; customers can be easily confused about a company’s products and messaging. Integrated marketing communication helps focus distracted customers. Companies need to get their message out quickly and concisely. With an IMC methodology, customers can easily respond to a company’s product or message.
It has a variety of strategies
Some integrated marketing communications campaigns use outsourcing to outside agencies. This saves money and keeps a company’s staff fully responsive to ongoing, day to day business. New product launches can generate excitement when companies keep everything in house. During product development, many in-house departments may work together organically prior to an integrated marketing campaign.