Chapter 17 Integrated Marketing Communications
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Integrated Marketing Communications |Marketing Communications Textbook">Integrated Marketing Communications : Chapter 16
SUMMARY: IMC can be defined as a process in which messages communicated by each of the promotional elements are harmonized, so that consumers will receive a consistent message regarding the brand or the company. It can be defined comprehensively as a process for managing the customer relationships that drive brand value. More specifically, it is a cross-functional process for creating and nourishing profitable relationships with customers and other stakeholders by strategically controlling or influencing all messages sent to these groups and encouraging data-driven, purposeful dialogue with them. The growing importance of IMC can be attributed to various factors. This include increasing competition, decline in effectiveness of mass advertising, more information sources for consumers and technological advances.
Implementing the IMC process in an organization is not
an easy task and it cannot be done at one go. The implementation of IMC in a company requires proper planning. The American Productivity & Quality Center has devised a four stage process to integrate the marketing communication function. The four stages are tactical coordination of marketing communication, redefining the scope of marketing communication, application of information technology and financial and strategic integration. Though the awareness about IMC is on the rise, implementation has been slow. This is because of three key barriers, namely lack of top management support, organizational barriers and cultural barriers.
To implement the IMC process effectively company needs to follow certain guidelines. It should adopt a flexible organizational structure and change the mindset of the employees. It should adopt a customer centric strategy to design communication campaigns from the consumer perspective. A collaborative strategy is needed, that enables coordination and cooperation between various departments in the organization. Entrusting all its creative activities to a single agency will help the company in reducing costs and increasing consistency in communication campaigns.
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