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Integration: Commonly Misspelt & Undervalued

Carma Levene // 03rd September 2015
Some of you already place a value on making sure the marketing of your business is integrated, and by this we mean using consistent messaging and branding – but more than that; by making sure the types of marketing you do and platforms you use are supporting each other to maximum benefit. Integrating your marketing will help you in increasing your brand’s awareness, helping to build strong communities, and saving you time and money.

Awareness

We need to keep our brand elements and messaging consistent so people recognise what our business does and stands for, also making it easier for users to find us and subsequently buy our things and use our services. But just as importantly we need to make sure none of our marketing platforms operate in a vacuum.

It’s a waste of your time and money to fragment your marketing.

For example – if you have an amazing new glossy brochure of all your products, why wouldn’t you use it on your website too? Why not pin the items individually to your Pinterest boards, post on Facebook where people could get hold of your shiny masterpiece – or better yet, make a Facebook app to house it so people can see it from there too! You could target some advertising directly to it, and send the web link to your email subscribers. Then with the help of Google Analytics, your email software metrics and Facebook Insights you can track your views, clicks, etc to see what kind of impact it had.

This is just  a small example of how digital, social, print, and email marketing can all come together – and it might sound like more effort than just producing the brochure alone; but what’s the point spending time making a stunning brochure if you’re not going to make sure as many interested people see it as possible? That would be more of a waste for sure, because we all know we’re only as strong as our weakest link.

But this doesn’t mean you have to do all of this yourself! There are people who can help you in your business and outside of it. Having an integrated marketing strategy doesn’t mean you must have a huge marketing budget and a large team with endless resources. It just means you have a plan – and that plan is thought out to ensure all your channels speak the same language and support your messaging.

Having worked on many social media accounts in the past few years, The Chameleons know the difference between companies that do this well and those that struggle. We’ve seen many lost opportunities where businesses have had major events, sales or received awards and not communicated this to their teams, missing the chance to increase awareness – but more than that in the case of social; letting their audience feel part of their band at grass-roots level.

Growing Your Communities

Your social media communities (providing they have been built the right way)are interested in your business. They want to know about what’s happening in your world because they feel like they are friends with your brand. How would your friends feel if you went to a party without telling them? Or won an award without sharing it with them? Once they found out they might start to question your commitment to the friendship.

Email Marketing & Social Media can work hand in hand: with you being able to convert your customer database to social followers and vice versa. And don’t forget to upload your database to Facebook to use them to help your advertising targeting as mentioned in this previous blog post.

You can also use your offline efforts to promote your social communities. Make sure collateral like business cards and flyers contain your social icons, and use internal venue signage to encourage people to check in, review or follow you while they are in store.

Time Is Money

At the end of the day having an integrated strategy might take more time to come up with, but when you’re ready to roll out you’ll have all the necessary tools to make your efforts a success – without needing to resort to ad hoc methods that ultimately leave you further out-of-pocket.

Often marketing can be about playing a long game, building awareness and trust of your brand. Doing this consistently across all your channels will help you reach this goal more quickly than deciding on Wednesday to do a newspaper campaign that starts Thursday without giving your other channels the time to plan their part.

As the famous African proverb says “If you want to go fast, go alone. If you want to go far, go together”

 

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Carma Levene

Freelance Social Media Specialist at Carma The Social Chameleon
Carma is a Freelance Social Media Specialist, helping Perth businesses negotiate social media to achieve their goals. She is always reading, always learning and loves SMPerth events as a source of valuable information - with the added bonus of meeting cool people with common interests.

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