The importance of integration

Integrated marketing communications is essential in today’s multi-platform age, and for marketers, consistency and execution is key.

Having a coordinated communications schedule that outlines the direction you want to take over the coming year across a range of media, is an important feature of good integrated marketing communications.

Here are some tips to ensure that your next campaign is effectively integrated:

1. Websites

Integrating your website with social networking sites is an effective marketing and networking tool.

Use appropriate imagery that reflects the information you are trying to portray, and link from your website to other platforms, such as social networking sites and e-news updates.

2. Social media

Social media can be used effectively to boost your company’s online presence; however, with so many media platforms available, it is important to make sure your strategy is effectively integrated across all platforms.

Employing social media can help you to cross promote products or events, to source new clients and to redirect traffic to more informative sources such as your website.

While social media may not be for everyone, it is worthwhile investigating how to use platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and YouTube. There are many online guides that take an introductory and advanced approach to teaching new company’s or businesses how effective social media can be.

Social media is an interactive forum, where the site owner and site visitor together create the content of the medium. It is therefore a great opportunity to respond to clients, and to evaluate how effective your services and products are to clients.

Remember, when using social media it is better to use one platform well, as opposed to using many poorly.

3. E-news and magazines

A regular e-news update and a magazine are effective platforms to engage with members and stakeholders.

With e-news updates, consider the frequency of new information, including the time of day, week, and month. There is a fine line between information overload and information that is relevant and timely.

A well-produced magazine can also go a long way in communicating the work your company is doing. With varying content from news to views and in-depth analysis, magazines show the tangible benefits and outcomes of your work and its importance.

4. Branding

Your brand should be a platform all on its own and the importance of consistent and effective branding cannot be underestimated.

Spend time creating branding that effectively captures your company and back it up with information that sends a clear message about your values and aims.

Key messages are vital for articulating who, what and why your company exists. Branding should be simple and easily recognisable, with clear statements representing the company in a consistent yet compelling way.

5. Have a theme

Having a central theme for your next campaign, and applying it across all the mediums you plan to employ will ensure that your message with have the strongest effect on your target audience.

Your print advertisements should match your online presence, as well as your social media movements.

Remember, consistency is the key to effective integration, and using mediums that are complementary to one another will ensure your next campaign is integrated as best as possible.

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