With so many delivery channels to think about today, how do you know which marketing channel works best? The straight answer is, you don’t. Your best shot at success today is having a multichannel marketing approach to ensure you are frequently where your customers are.
Insight: From social media platforms, paid ads, email marketing, today’s increasing number of channels have made marketing more complicated than ever.
Data: 50% of consumers use an average of six touchpoints when making a purchase. 52% of marketers now use 3 or 4 marketing channels in their strategy, and only 50% say they always hit their targets.
Key Action Point: Use an integrated marketing approach so you stay consistently on brand throughout different channels in targeting your customer base.
When thinking about your marketing strategy, there is a plethora of channels and campaigns you need to consider to find the best one that fits the needs of your business.
But over the past few years, the emergence of new digital marketing platforms has called for a need to integrate different marketing channels into one unified approach to drive business success.
Enter: integrated marketing communications.
What Is Integrated Marketing?
Many businesses find themselves on the lookout for the single most effective marketing strategy that drives the best ROI for the business.
But the truth is, no one single approach works today because of the diverse audience platforms and consumers jumping from one delivery channel to another, which impacts the customer journey.
No one single approach works today because of the diverse audience platforms and consumers jumping from one delivery channel to another.
As a result, businesses have a better chance of success in adapting a unified approach in their marketing efforts across multiple channels, also known as integrated marketing.
Integrated marketing is a strategic approach to combining communication channels and creating unified and interactive user experiences, which targets specific audiences to ensure all messaging and delivery strategies are consistent across all channels throughout a customer’s lifecycle.
Recommended reading: Learn what makes a great messaging and brand story here.
Integrated marketing aims to create a robust customer experience, one that answers customers’ needs and engages them throughout their lifecycle with your brand or business.
It also coordinates all aspects of creating a brand including paid media, owned media, and earned media.
To establish an integrated marketing strategy that works, here are the key points you need to consider.
- Consistency in messaging
- A blend of different channels
- A focused approach
Consistency in Messaging
The most important factor in creating a more integrated marketing is a cohesive strategy and one key message.
Once you know what this is, it is easier for you to craft a consistent message for all your marketing channels. This makes it easier for potential customers to get to know your brand. You get rid of the confusion and have a clear story to market no matter how multifaceted your campaigns may be.
A Blend of Different Channels
According to a report, 72% of consumers say they would rather connect with brands and businesses through multi-channel. This translates to a 24% greater return on investment compared to single channel solutions.
A Focused Approach
Even when you have multiple channels to work on, a key concept in integrated marketing is focus.
You need to be able to shift your focus into one initiative and use that to pull through all your marketing efforts. Market the message, and incorporate both online and print methods.
Why Is There a Need for Integrated Marketing?
Currently, only 14% of organisations are running integrated marketing campaigns across multiple channels.
Over time, there has been a need for businesses to offer a more user-centric and personalised experience to their customers. But for personalisation to be truly effective, you need to have access to valuable customer data so you can deliver the right content that resonates with your audience.
The only way to do this is by having the right user-centric infrastructure that combines integrated marketing technologies with rich customer data and having the ability to work on this real-time to inform their strategy. Marketing automation software like HubSpot is a great example, allowing you to create automated workflows so you can focus on growth rather than doing repetitive tasks.
Adobe reports that marketers can add the most value through the use of CRM data, real-time data from analytics, and by integrating analytics across channels.
Organisations focusing only on a single marketing channel to personalise the user experience will discover later on that they cannot make themselves fully relevant and top of mind to their customers. This is because today, we know it takes more than one single channel to give the customer a fully personalised digital experience.
Organisations focusing only on a single marketing channel to personalise the user experience will discover later on that they cannot make themselves fully relevant and top of mind to their customers.
Not having the right insight and collaborative data gathered from multiple channels will give you a limited view of what is needed to deliver the right strategy that makes a difference to the customers. Over time, not having the ability to provide a more personalised user experience across multiple channels will put you at a significant disadvantage against marketing leaders who already are.
Over time, not having the ability to provide a more personalised user experience across multiple channels will put you at a significant disadvantage against marketing leaders who already are.
Developing a Successful Integrated Marketing Strategy
Being successful in your marketing strategy today means putting the customer first and using data-driven insight through the power of technology to understand what needs to be done and take action.
This works so well because the key to relevance and keeping up with the times is having the right insight into what your customer needs. And in any business, this is crucial to your success.
You need to look into your current marketing strategy to check if you are keeping up with the changing times and, more importantly, matching the pace of your customers.
To do this, it helps to take a moment to consider the following.
- Am I segmenting my customer base and targeting the right audience for my campaigns?
- How am I engaging with my customers?
- What have I done to convert my customers throughout their customer journey?
- How am I measuring the success of my campaigns against goals?
- What technology am I using to augment my marketing efforts?
Answering all these questions will help give you an idea of what you need to do to create a more integrated marketing strategy. And the key to that is having the right data.
Identify the Right Metrics to Track
The best way to measure the success of your campaign is to first identify your goal so you can set the right metric. This speaks a little more to what you need to accomplish.
For example, if your goal is to increase brand awareness, start monitoring your page and site traffic. Track how much your audience is engaging through likes and interactions on your social media or marketing platforms. Set a target per week or per month.
Bulk Up Your Strategy with Marketing Automation
To ensure you have the best content put out at the right time, marketing automation gets you where you need to be across multiple channels so you can position yourself right where your audience is — helping you get more conversion.
Using the right technology helps you to simplify your marketing effort so you can focus your energy on the things that matter for the business and not waste precious time and resources on things that aren’t getting you closer to your business goals.
Improve the Customer Experience from Start to Finish
Forget about engaging with the customer only at specific touchpoints. To win, you have to own their experience the moment they engage and until they complete the customer lifecycle. Find every opportunity to connect with them before and even after the sale.
Step Change is a strategically led marketing agency. We’re facilitators and problem solvers who believe the best solutions in business start with marketing.
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