Integrated Marketing Communication (IMC)

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Integrated Marketing Communication (IMC)

2022-08-30 13:29:09

The practice of professional communication is extremely complex not only because of technology, social media, and the need to connect with a global audience but because "communication" means different things to different audiences. In addition, there is often confusion about the roles and responsibilities of modern communicators, as various aspects of communication overlap considerably. As a result, a clear understanding of communication roles and how they work can be difficult for communicators, customers, and listeners.

The concept of Integrated Marketing Communications (IMC) was introduced in the 1980s (Schultz and Schultz, p. 19) and has since transformed the way communicators and marketers interact and do business. The American Marketing Association defines IMC as "a planning process designed to ensure that all product, service, or brand exposure received by a customer or prospect of an organization is relevant to that individual and consistent over time. ” is defined.

Leigh Dow, his director of communications for his 48 West Group in Phoenix, said: “Today, PR teams are typically good at thinking outside the box when it comes to news strategy and analyzing how news stories are interpreted. This analysis permeates content strategy. And now that content is used in so many different ways, for example, social media, blog posts, posted content, PR and IMC strategies are increasingly interconnected.”

Adding to this confusion are many communication monikers, such as:

  • strategic communication
  • public relations
  • organizational communication
  • digital communication
  • promotion
  • advertisement
  • Media contact point
  • corporate communications
  • "Malcolm"
  • public relations
  • PR for investors

Some of these areas are specialties under the umbrella term “communication,” but most are focused on influencing, persuading, engaging, and educating audiences about a particular customer, topic, or brand. It is considered a general term for the process of The terms “public relations” and “strategic communication” are often confused today.

Dow continues: Just like media buying is a professional skill or digital media management. But I think the traditional definition of PR is pretty much gone. In our firm, we often tell people, `if your PR agency`s strategy starts with a press release, fire them.`”

In many organizations today, public relations, corporate communications, advertising, marketing, promotions and publicity function collaboratively as part of “the IMC mix.” What this means for organizations is consistency and unification of messaging, brand promotion, and audience engagement.

It`s important to note, however, that because PR is considered the “ethical compass” of the organization, it serves as the foundation upon which all other IMC elements are created, and it serves in a bit of a stand-alone capacity. That is, PR develops an organization`s key messages and then oversees the other IMC areas to ensure message authenticity, consistency, and truthfulness across all communication platforms (e.g. advertising, marketing collateral, internal memos, Web content, and so forth).

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