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The purpose of any given organizations in the globalised market place today is to create a connecting link with customer, and communicate their brands in the most feasible ways. Creating customer or to be precise building relationship with customers though is not an easy task. It calls for advancement in marketing medium and communication tactics. Organizational operation and their purpose are to create the value chain and build a relationship with consumer through communications and its forms. In such situation the importance of integrated marketing communication can be traced.
The primary aim of this report limits its research on the concepts of ‘Integrated marketing communication’. The concepts meaning of ‘integrated marketing communication or that which we can understands by any other word such as corporate communication tool or advertisement is aimed primarily at the public via a variety of interactive tools, such as corporate advertisings, its publicity, public affairs, governance besides the compounding management issues and public relations as well as corporate sponsorship.” (Luiz Moutinho, 2004, p. 179) These process combined together play an instrumental in today’s organization. In that essence, the structure of this report is limited to identify the issues encompassing IMC, as well as to define the idea as to where the object of IMC takes roots from. In doing so, understanding the meaning of marketing communication is important and relevant from a theoretical point of view, which this essay attempt to trace the implication if any through its discussion encompassing IMC concepts that are very much in practice today.
Marketing processes is corporation one focal point. Marketing helps corporations to sells their products and services or experts. We have come across the adage ‘all that glitters, isn’t gold’ as well as the saying ‘there is more to things than just meet the eyes’. These phrases have more philosophical meaning behind their originations. And when linked with marketing communication for examples there is an interrelated meaning as well, given that consumers today are more aware than ever before. Before deciding on any particular purchase they undertake a thorough outlook as to where the idea of corporation communication links with them. Add to it, we see reason enough that corporation are tying every possible measures to connect with consumers. The adage ‘consumer is king’ hold true in a sense that consumer does much of the talking; deciding, etc that goes into the making of their purchasing capacity. The better the communication marketing appeal, the greater is the scope for corporation to built relationship with consumers in the market.
The medium used in marketing is meant to reach consumer and communicate to them in the most feasible way. In every sphere of our life somewhat we have come across advertisements, e-mailer in our inbox that brief about a particular product, and all components of brandishing through billboards, etc. besides, we have also come across the point as corporate sponsorship. Corporate sponsorship to be precise is the frequent case that we see corporate logo in football grounds and amongst players. Somewhat we wonder also as to what is all about CSR concepts adopted by many corporations today? Question and counter question that we often presume also is that why does communication undertake all these at one go? We can understand that there is a marketing concept behind it all, but the question is why? In that assumption we can speculate that all factor encompassing the one as detailed above have a lot to do with the concepts of integrated marketing communication. But how, and what detrimental value does it communicate with consumers in the market? Why does it arise so? Does IMC in any instance provide a sense of belonging with consumers? Yes it does. Generally from our understanding it is considered that marketing itself is a fundamental organizational function. The best way that corporation in the current scenario are marketing their product is through the integration of effective marketing channels or tool to connect and build relationship with consumer in the market. Such mechanism and its concepts that have undergone a change of guards and making inroads in corporation marketing are the integrated marketing communication concepts. It is that branch of the overall marketing process that encompasses process such as planning product promotions, its advertising, corporate sponsorships and the likes. Most importantly the question that arises again is that does an IMC concept impact upon the purchasing power of consumers and their mindset? The answer is yes. There is a great many values attached to IMC concepts in the marketing realms, especially in today competitive environment, where only the fittest survives and where technology and different forms of media play a significant role.
When we emphasize on these points the importance of IMC can be traced. And it should be clarified herein that the primary focus of this work is to address these three main assumptions:-
What is Integrated Marketing Communication?
What is the reason behind Corporations favoring IMC Concepts at its Best for Promotional Purposes?
What Defines IMC and its Appeals as far as Advertisement and Promotional Objectives goes?
Does Embracing the Concepts of IMC is difficult for Corporation??
To come to this conclusion is rather hard. Thus, it could be prudent that each assumption is discussed separately, as detailed below.
1. WHAT IS INTEGRATED MARKETING COMMUNICATIONS?
We can define integrated marketing communication in the word of Terence A. Shimp, “as a communication process that entails the planning, integration, creation, and implementation of diverse forms of mass communication such as, advertising, sales promotions, publicity releases or press releases and events that are delivered overtime to a brand’s targeted customer and prospects. (Shimp, 2008) The goals thus are to influence the behavioral conditioning of consumer and their perceptions of things. To sum it up, integrated marketing communication takes an extensive formulation of covering every minute detail that bridges the gaps between consumer and producers in the market, where the media comes in handy to make the connecting links and channelize the same in the most feasible ways.” (Shimp, 2008, p. 10)
It also should be understood that marketing communications concepts arise from communication and its meaning. Communication as we can understand in simple language is that condition that “accumulates together the aspects wherein sharing or exchanging of information’s between two parties is made possible. Furthermore, it also links together the components of reaching to the means of communication for an end results, let say the mechanism or tools that are used for the same. Above all, communications in any given standards is not one way; assert learned men and scholars such as Paul Russell Smith and Jonathan Taylor.” (Paul Russell Smith, 2004, p. 72)
Besides, understanding the concepts of communication also directly register with us and a layman understanding of the same. The overall aspect of marketing communication also is one subset of the subject matter that concerns itself with the concepts of marketing. “Marketing communication is a set of purposive activities, linked and coordinated to some degree.” (Jain, 2008, p. 1) From this notion and when we come to the conceptualization of the idea behind marketing communication we can readily identify also the substance or the significance attached to it, which we assume organizations are banking heavily as a factor for sustenance and growth, given that “marketing processes and its activities in many forms and parts asserts scholars relies heavily on communication formats; wherein such marketing process and procedures is to directly informs potential customer of a product offering or factor such as in creating a brand image in the marketplace and any other process such as customer feedbacks in improving processes or products that marketers initiates. In that components accumulated and buildup together thus, marketing research also comes in handy and is effective,” (Guy Masterman, 2006, p. 4) and is often looked also as a typical tools for promotional and advertising activities and to connect with consumers.
Moreover, what has been the very discussed and augmented point on the subject matter and the very essence of marketing communication also often raises the question as to “how marketers communicate with their target markets? Simply put in what marketers actually do in essence is the fact that everything they do is communicates,” (Ludi Koekemoer, 2004, p. 1) through proper channels, and by using relevant marketing tools to their advantages for communications. Such a communication process take stage or come to fore because “it helps corporation in many ways to bridge the gap of communication with the market or consumers as the case is, and thus good communication is based on an orientation around a dominant, rational ‘big brand idea’ as corporations calls it, which acts as a tool or platform for creating, involving and sustaining customer engagement.” (Micael Dahlén, 2009, p. 2) Comprehending together these notion overall as can be laid emphasis upon we feel that every dynamic organizations today and in the current schemes of things takes an interested approach towards reaching the means to an end for their offering, be it products or services, and “marketing communication is thus the most visible of marketing functions” (Copley, 2004, p. 1) for reaching such an ends to the result oriented targeted activities, which is also the very salient object of marketing concepts itself and that which we will further evaluate and comprehend the very idea that erupts and that which we can lay out hands on the arguments that arises with ‘integrated marketing communications’ and its meaning overall as discussed below.
2. WHAT IS THE REASON BEHIND CORPORATIONS FAVORING IMC CONCEPTS AT ITS BEST FOR PROMOTIONAL PURPOSES?
There can be many reasons for this. As we can understand, the conceptual evaluation of the meaning ‘integrated marketing communication’ has a lot to do with marketing concepts as one bigger picture of it all. Often we begin to argue in that direction “considering a typical organization where advertising is controlled by the marketing department, where as selling is the responsibility of the sales department and the websites is controlled and maintained by IT services.” (Graeme Drummond, 2005, p. 149) This is really what composed the conditionality of today’s modern organizations. Often we wonder won’t such a process interfere with the overall concepts of marketing? “And how does things can be assured that consumer get or receives the right and correct message from the company concerned when marketing are integrated in departmental wise?
To put emphasis on this notion and this views that arises in that regard, the answer we feel lays in the objective of ‘integrated marketing communication’. Integrated marketing communications in all aspects attempts to use together the various communication message or tool used by the organization into one meaningful coherent message.” (Graeme Drummond, 2005, p. 149) Add to it, “Marketing in the current scheme of things also is in a state of transformation.” (Copley, 2004, p. 4) As we are aware, “a new era is unfolding in the fields of advertising, promotions, and marketing communications.” (Clow, 2007, p. 43) This is true, considering that the presence of media and its advancement have given abundant option available for marketers to bank and capitalize from. In that context, this is also where the very essence and substance of marketing communication comes into play in the overall picture that composed marketing and its principles.
3. WHAT DEFINES IMC AND ITS APPEALS AS FAR AS ADVERTISEMENT AND PROMOTIONAL OBJECTIVES GOES?
When we come to this part of the discussion, often the very first question that we encounter with is the importance attached to integrated marketing communication. Does the substantial element attached to integrated marketing communication assist managers and marketers in the promotional processes and its integration? The answer to this point as we can comprehend and build up our arguments and reasoning logically is, yes. As we have already defined the basis of integrated marketing management, we see reason enough that it components is linked to many befitting ends results as a means to an end that marketers emphasize upon.
To justify this view firstly, we should try and attempt to understand the role that integrated marketing communications plays in today’s organizations and their marketing prospects. The very “essence and meaningful conceptualization of the word advertising and its role in integrated marketing communication is looked upon from the broader element attached to it. Take for examples factor attached to advertising within the integrated marketing communication campaigns and its activities must have a consistent look and feel, even though brand advertising to consumers will generally be different from retails advertising from consumers. Yet all such campaigns have their own objectives and purpose.” (Percy, 2008, p. 83) This is all about what we can sum up as the very basis and objectives of strategic integrated marketing communications.
Scholars such as Peter Drucker said that “any business has two basic requirements, one is marketing, and the other is innovations.” (Varey, 2002, p. 1) This is true and applicable in today organizations environment as well. But what is innovation in that sense of the term? We feel that IMC concepts have much to be viewed in that point as well. Add to it, “consumer in today environment also are more interactive and swift, given that they accepts a wide variety of information from media in many forms and formats. Marketers in that situation have a fair control over what customer and prospects hear or learn about their products.” (Don E. Schultz, 1993, p. 43)
Thus, on the basis of these points we can emphasize also as to where to trace the significance of integrated marketing communication. The greater instance of the subject matter argument is that even in the current scheme of things “advertising agencies are still searching for the best way to incorporate the concepts and practice of integrated marketing communication. (Tom Duncan, 1996, p. 13) To top it all, the nature and scope of advertising in context of integrated marketing communication ‘is simply a means or a marketing tools that helps sells brands of products and help top build confidence in companies and institutions by conveying accurate and compelling information’s to customers about the brand, or anything in that regard.” (Ludi Koekemoer, 2004, p. 65)
4. DOES EMBRACING THE CONCEPTS OF IMC IS DIFFICULT FOR CORPORATION??
When debating to this point, the answer is yes and no, given that it depends greatly how the concepts is emulated for practical purpose. On the other hand, corporations with a scope to make a switch towards integrated marketing communication are posed with many barriers. It can be in the form of technological barriers, or cost factor and the likes. This point notwithstanding, it would prudent also that a scholastic point be observed as well to the difficulty as such if any.
What scholars have withhold in favor of integrated marketing communication can again be emphasized to the notion wherein it is held that integrated marketing communication plays a vital role in every aspects of marketing process. However, “developing and implementing an integrated marketing communication programs is usually a detailed and complex process, which involves many persons as well as extensive efforts.” (George E Belch, 2003, p. 69) Thus, such factor when encounter often comes and acts as a barrier when corporations for example are trying to embrace the features of integrated marketing communication. Fair enough, not only the cost factor also comes into play in such a strategic integration, but also the complexities of the process itself, which very often when not strategized systematically can be a dampener of sorts. This is what we can augment are some of the difficulty in embracing the overall features of integrated marketing communication in a standardized and symmetrical manner.
The methodology adopted in this report is primarily secondary in nature. There have been no specific methods or process evaluation undergone. As a discourse in theoretical terms, the best available secondary resources were dependent upon to emphasize the views and counter view of this paper assumptions and its argument.
On a greater note, view in favor of IMC concepts and is adoption is the concentrated focus to align into the assumption and its discourse overall. Thus, most of the resource used use for this research is secondary in nature, where IMC concepts and its literature have been the main source in feeding this project and regimenting the assumptions.
From our study and its analysis on the concepts of integrated marketing communication we can understand that the significance of the concepts cannot be brushed aside. It would be wrong to do away with IMC and its practical practices. The fact is that IMC assist corporation’s survival in many ways, and Helps Corporation building a good rapport with consumers in the market, through advertisements, billboards, corporate sponsorships, public relations and the likes of e-mailer. Effective communications are the building block between a manufacturer and consumers. Often the term consumer is king also very much also come into play in such a scenario. Corporations understand such scenarios, and are doing their best to format their communication and advertising process by initiating the practicality of IMC concepts.
Thus, the principle of marketing though make its claims, however, without any pictorial and effective communication marketing often lose its sheen and sheer factor to appeal the general consumer in the market. The presence of many competitors and identical product also greatly impact consumer perception and their purchasing power, we can speculate. Lapses in communication even hurt the relationship and its bounding. The concepts behind IMC and its integration is to bring into force the factor of communication in marketing mediums, so that firms communicates in its variety of forms with consumers, thus bridging the gap in communication as is the case with traditional marketing’s. Moreover, it also to bring into force the streamlined process, where marketing communication is fostered and facilitated in the most feasible ways and reaches its targeted destinations, and impact upon consumer perception and their connection with any given message that appeals their psychological nature of consumers. The better the marketing procedures and its communication, the better is the prospects of the organizational outcome. Besides, sustenance and growth of a corporation also is hugely influenced through the marketing processes that organizations undertake and it can be in many other forms or processes, although central to marketing objectives.
There is great much scope for research in this topic. Given the absence of primary methodology being employed, future research through the use of primary research tools, such as questionnaire, interview and the likes, as it can provide a great significant to the assumptions from an objectively view point. Lack of relevant material though have been the factor of this research and its weakness, yet the fragmented segmentation of the concepts meaning and its discourse have been arranged to get a glimpse of the theoretical point of the subject matter and its assimilation.
Taking the overall discussion and when we reflect back to the subject matter we can conclude that IMC concepts are significant to corporation in great many ways. Adopting the IMC concepts and emphasizing on its practicality can be the best ever things that corporation can initiates as a tool for mass appeal, and to get their brandishing and all factors of advertisements in their favor as well as providing consumers in the market a sense of relief to make difficult choices from available products.
Thus, building on these points and our understanding of the argument in details abovementioned, we can finally conclude that marketing have many dimensional foregrounds, yet without effective communication much of it is lost in translation. Hence, integration of marketing process with streamlined communication process can be the best ever thing that can mark the transformational change in the favor of marketers. Marketing strategy very often exploit the use of marketing tools, given that there are reasonable point to such integration. Yet, it should not be forgotten that the philosophical and strategic overtones for corporations growth and its sustenance also all depends and ride in direct links with marketing, wherein integrated marketing communication processes is one vital part of marketing principle that bridge the gap to connect with the general consumers in the market.
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