Advertising and Promotion:
Q1. Discuss the changing communications landscape and the need for integrated marketing communications Answer:
Branding is a term now commonly known i.e., giving a product a separate unique identity so that it can be differentiated from other products. Before branding came into existence, producers would produce the product and then try to directly sell it to the customers. Nowadays a product is produced and then given to different outlets so there is no direct interaction between producers and consumers, thus branding came into existence. There are 4 P's in the simplified version of the Marketing Mix namely; Product, Price, Place and Promotion. We will be discussing the 5 tools of promotion and the importance of an Integrated Marketing Communications. Integrated Marketing Communications is a simple concept. It ensures that all forms of communications and messages are carefully linked together. At its most basic level, Integrated Marketing Communications, or IMC is integrating all the promotional tools, so that they work together in harmony. These promotional tools include;
Advertising through Media
Public relations and Sponsorship
Because of the change of how media is used customers are now aware of the products and their features. It has also become easy for customers to give feedback on their purchase
It is driven by:
Continued academic inputs in the trade and academic literature The fact that from its earliest beginnings, the development was embraced and supported by 'gurus' in the generic marketing discipline The wide spread adoption of IMC by advertising agencies around the world, who were themselves driven by organizational exigency. Thus, ad- agencies are now integrated agencies. The apparent adaptation of IMC by major companies around the world, integrated approaches make sense to businesses, and to agencies who service their needs. The need to have 'promotion' appear to be consumer orientated and consumer driven, previously 'promotion' had been internally driven and by a philosophy of separatism where each promotion mix element had its own foci and dynamics The need to overcome the 'silo mentality' associated with promotion mix singularity.
Although IMC requires a lot of effort, it delivers many benefits. It can create competitive advantage and boost sales and profits, while saving time, money and stress. IMC can wrap communications around customers and help them move through the various stages of their buying process. The organization simultaneously consolidates its image, develops a dialogue and nurtures its relationship with its customers that can protect them from the inevitable onslaught of competition. The ability to keep a customer for life is a powerful competitive advantage. IMC also increases profits through increased effectiveness. At its most basic level, a unified message has more impact than a disjointed myriad of messages. In a busy world a consistent, consolidated and crystal-clear message has a better chance of cutting through the 'noise' of over 1,000 commercial message that bombard customers each and every day. IMC also makes messages more consistent and therefore more credible. This reduces risk in the mind of the buyer and, in turn, shortens the search process and helps to dictate the outcome of brand comparisons. However, despite its many benefits, IMC also has many barriers. In addition to the usual resistance to change and the special problems of communication with a wide variety of target audiences, there are many other obstacles that restrict IMC. These include functional silos, stifled creativity, timescale conflicts and a lack of management know-how. Sadly, some organizational structures isolate communications, data, and even managers from each other. For example, the PR department often doesn't report to marketing, the Salesforce rarely meet the advertising or sales promotion...
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