4 Must-Haves for Getting Your Brand into the Integrated Marketing Game
Consider the path of purchase for any consumer as a labyrinth as opposed to a direct sprint. Just imagine, more than 70% of consumers use three or more channels when researching a purchase (Blue Nile Research, 2015)
Long gone are the days where consumers will see something they want in an advertisement on television or any other single channel and proceed to buy it.
Today’s consumer is using a wide range of channels/ avenues to discover, connect with, and purchase from a brand. Chances are, once they encounter your brand and its story on one channel, they’ll begin researching you on others to understand who you are, what you have to offer and how much they can truly trust you.
If there is inconsistency or absence, they may abandon that path and find another brand who’s delivering on complete and consistent experiences across channels! The consequence? Reduced revenue, smaller customer base and wavering brand loyalty.
Caribbean marketers, the era of siloed marketing has reached its end and there is a need to shift for your organization’s survival. Global brands are already adjusting their strategies to meet the modern consumer’s behaviour. In this article, we want to help you get in the game as well with a couple of must-haves.
But first, let’s take a glance at why this approach matters,
At Synapse, we advocate for its ability to connect with your consumers meaningfully and move them along the buyer’s cycle through online and offline channels in a way that’s seamless. Here’s a snippet of why we value this approach as an agency...
To help you understand the immense positive impact it can have on your organization, here are a couple of statistics:
- 75% of B2B buyers agreed that they use more sources to research and evaluate purchases while 77% of buyers agreed that they spend more time researching purchases. (Demand Gen 2017)
- Research shows that having one constant message across a multiple channel can improve a consumer's purchase intent by as much as 90% and brand perception by nearly 70%. (Media Post, 2017)
- On average, 36% of high-performing marketers dynamically coordinate channels (where their messages evolve across channels based on customer actions) versus 26% of underperformers. (Sales Force, 2019)
So, let’s jump right into the 4 must-haves to get you in the integrated marketing game
1. Choose Effective Brand Storytelling
Why storytelling? Paul Zak, Neuroscientist says
“A compelling story with an emotional trigger alters our brain chemistry, making us more trusting, understanding and open to ideas.”
For an integrated marketing strategy that works, brands need to instil the magic of storytelling into their marketing efforts to tap into people’s emotions. This storytelling should then be the foundation of every marketing and growth strategy. If you think about it, human beings from a very young age love listening to stories. As we age, we respond to tales and anecdotes.
Interestingly, the way companies can tell their stories has changed. Stories do not need to be static or tied to any one medium. Your brand can effectively tell its narrative through social media, television newspaper articles, and online blogs. The possibilities are endless.
2. Ensure your Messaging is Valuable and Interesting
A consistent, clear brand identity is built through interesting, valuable content. By providing consistent content, you will be able to build up your relationship with your customers. Your customers will see your brand as trustworthy and knowledgeable and will know that your brand's mission and values resonate with them.
Interesting messaging is foundational to an integrated marketing campaign. Let's consider the remarkable integrated marketing done by AirBNB. AirBNB is a peer-to-peer rental service. It's conducted completely online, but it is allowing physical rentals. As a disruptive technology, you'd expect AirBNB to conduct most of its advertising online.
But it hasn't.
In fact, it's launched AirBNB Magazine, a print magazine containing editorials and storytelling that is distributed to businesses within its most popular locations. By producing a physical magazine for an online platform, AirBNB has been able to approach demographics it otherwise wouldn't.
These are demographics that are interested in short-term rentals and timeshares, but who don't normally look for these types of services online.
3. Secure Multi-Channel Interactivity
To fully integrate your marketing, you must have control over your different marketing channels and content pipelines. Your "online" world needs to be able to interact with your "offline" world, often in a seamless way. More customers are becoming accustomed to shifting to apps and to their phones as needed, which allows them to interact with a brand on multiple levels.
Consider a toy company which wants to increase sales on items during the holiday season. Developing an integrated marketing strategy is a great method for a toy company to reach parents who actively do their shopping online, but a catchy commercial on television during a child’s most loved cartoon shows will catch the attention of children who are putting together their must-have lists.
The copy of the ad will be different on a billboard, online or in a television commercial as they will be aimed at children and adults of different age groups, but the brand’s personality, story, logo usage, complementary design, voice and attitude must remain consistent across platforms and marketing materials to be counted as a successful integrated marketing campaign.
Wherever people see the brand, it must be recognizable. This need for this interactivity must be front and centre in the minds of brand specialists and marketers when developing an integrated marketing campaign.
4. Data is king! Include On-Going Data and Analysis
Any type of marketing is nothing without data and analysis. During an integrated marketing campaign, a company needs to take data on a per channel, per content basis, comparing their online and their brick-and-mortar experiences.
A marketer should be able to review:
- Which items of digital content are performing best.
- Which physical mailer campaigns are performing best.
- Whether digital sales or physical sales are more popular among specific demographics.
- How frequently specific demographics may cross-over from digital to physical, or vice versa.
With the right software solutions, it's a trivial process to track users, and see whether they're clicking on links, and whether they're following through to the company's website (and, also, a sale). With the right point-of-sale system, brick-and-mortar data can be collected — though demographic information often requires the use of representative surveys.
At the beginning of an integrated marketing campaign, a business will need to sort out its primary metrics and objectives. These are the metrics that will be used to gauge campaign success.
As an example, a business may launch an online store purely to bring people into its brick-and-mortar business — alternatively, it could launch an online store to bring in customers that are not in its location. In the first example, traffic would be the best metric. In the second, sales.
- Integrated Marketing is all about creating connected and consistent experience across relevant channels so that your consumer has a unified experience.
- It’s a great strategy for connecting with consumers as well as securing your overall revenue target.
- Storytelling should be foundational in your integrated marketing strategy
- A consistent, clear brand identity will enable you to build up your relationship with your customers across channels
- Don’t forget channel interactivity! Your "online" world needs to be able to interact with your "offline" world, often in a seamless way.
- Finally, start with data and always continue with it. It will be a great driver of your success.
Are you ready to get started with integrated marketing? Download The Caribbean Marketing Manifesto 2019: 5 Trends That Regional Marketers Must Know and Master to Accelerate in 2019.