Marketing “brand value” with integrated communication strategies: It is more than just a product.

It has already become a norm for companies to combine different marketing communication strategies to help reinforce each other. This tactic of having a wide-ranging plan recognizes the importance of the different communication disciplines such as public relations, sales promotion, advertising, and personal selling, among others. By integrating all these aspects in the marketing plan, companies optimize the use of communication tools in increasing consistency, clarity, and communication impact to the audience.

Coca-Cola, for instance, has long been in competition with Pepsi. However, it still has maintained its marketing appeal all over the world due to the values the company promotes. In most of its marketing campaigns, Coca-Cola tries to be closer to consumers to the point of making them, the consumers, part of the marketing campaign. Additionally, Coke also fully promotes its corporate social responsibility activities, thus, further attracting more consumers (Lake, 2016). When it comes to a marketing campaign, Coca-Cola has contributed much to popular culture, yet, in all their campaigns, the message remains unchanged, that is, sharing, happiness, clean fun, and entertainment. Through the years, the theme has remained the same only increasing the target audience to include the whole global market (Zoeller, 2016).

What are the tools for integrated marketing communications?

Advertising. The advertisement may be in the form of print or television marketing, which helps in establishing the company’s brand worldwide and maintain brand awareness.

screen-shot-2016-10-23-at-11-25-55-pmSource: es.pinterest.com

Coke also used the “share a Coke” theme for some time that was consistent with its values of sharing and having fun.

screen-shot-2016-10-23-at-11-26-25-pmSource: shareacoke.com.au

Social Media and Interactive Marketing. To give their target audience something to look forward to, Coca-Cola launched some of their marketing strategies with the involvement of social media sites such as Facebook and Twitter. The 2015 campaign gave consumers the opportunity to have their names, or someone else’s name, printed on Coca Cola bottles, which they can share with their families and friends. Consumers were also encouraged to share their anecdotes on Twitter using the hashtag #ShareaCoke, and in turn, Coke featured their stories on the company’s website (Tarver, 2015).

screen-shot-2016-10-23-at-11-27-02-pmSource: www.sunpack.com

Direct Marketing. These are partnerships with hotels, restaurants, or other similar types of establishments. This also includes campaigns such as direct emails, texting/SMS, and sponsorships.

screen-shot-2016-10-23-at-11-27-15-pmSource: Promotion: Integrated Marketing Communication

Corporate Social Responsibility. Coke also engages heavily in corporate social awareness activities that ensure helping thousands of people all over the world. It always tries to encourage everyone to give back to others.

screen-shot-2016-10-23-at-11-27-25-pmSource: http://www.ndtv.com/supportmyschool

The key thing that the Coca-Cola campaign has is the unique and collective appeal in the perception of its targeted audience. Coke was able to capture the mood and interest of the people, thus, the company worked on this knowledge to its advantage. It used multiple platforms to reach various sectors and demographics in a society that is why it has a universal appeal.

When combining various marketing communication strategies, different types of mass media can be used, including print media and television advertising. Now, with the emergence and huge popularity of social media sites, these can also be used to reach all kinds of audiences all over the world. This is because studies have shown that much of the consumers now do not only engage in personal shopping but use online shopping means to purchase their needs (Olenski, 2013). The key when using these media types is to ensure that coherent, consistent, and complementary, messages are sent to the audience. Another important point is that audiences prefer a continuity and connectedness of the messages through time (Heaton, 2014). When these 4Cs are present in the marketing communications strategy, then it helps in building credible and convincing messages to the target audience.

References

Heaton, A. (2016). Incorporating the 4Cs of integrating digital marketing into marketing campaigns. Retrieved from http://www.smartinsights.com/traffic-building-strategy/integrated-marketing-communications/three-examples-integrated-campaigns/

Integrated marketing communications. Retrieved from http://multimediamarketing.com/mkc/marketingcommunications/

Lake, L. (2016). Beginner’s guide to integrated marketing communication. Retrieved from https://www.thebalance.com/integrated-marketing-communication-imc-2295501

Olenski, S. (2013). Why integrated marketing communications is more important than ever. Retrieved from http://www.forbes.com/sites/steveolenski/2013/09/16/why-integrated-marketing-communications-is-more-important-than-ever/#32c0c7572325

Tarver, E. (2015). What makes the ‘share a Coke’ campaign so successful?. Retrieved from http://www.investopedia.com/articles/markets/100715/what-makes-share-coke-campaign-so-successful.asp

Zoeller, S. (2016). Why use an integrated marketing communications approach. Retrieved from http://www.stephenzoeller.com/why-use-integrated-marketing-communications-approach/

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4 Responses to Marketing “brand value” with integrated communication strategies: It is more than just a product.

  1. Yarasette says:

    Hi Eunhye,

    This a great post and interesting topic. Coca-Cola is a company that used integrated marketing strategies, and also they have involved as marketing changes. They have a good social media outreach and they engaged their target audience. Coca-Cola is a worldwide brand due to its successful marketing, publicity and social responsibility campaigns.

  2. Christina says:

    Hi Eunhye,

    I think it’s very interesting how a lot of companies are putting more emphasis on social responsibility in their marketing. I am not certain that they are, in fact, more socially responsible than they were in the past, but the idea that they are makes them much more appealing to younger generations. Coca Cola is a good example because they are such masters at branding, and always have been.

    Best,
    Christina

  3. Mona says:

    Hi Eunhye,

    What a wonderful post especially about a brand that is so iconic and known all over the world. Coca-Cola easily integrates in marketing campaigns as you have noted and it is such a powerful brand that it has earned its name recognition. Coca-Cola uses emotional marketing tactics and provides social responsibility because of how iconic its brand is and how much loyalty its consumers entrust in the brand. Additionally, social media is another major factor with the integrated communication strategies it uses for the fact that it wants to be as close as possible to its consumers. The beauty about Coca-Cola is that it has been able to preserve its marketing appeal all over the world due to the values that the company advertises.

    Thanks,
    Mona Salama

  4. Jennifer Eting says:

    Hi Claire!

    Coke is a great example of a brand that has maintained clear brand positioning throughout the years, which is clear throughout its integrated communications, both print and digital. As you noted, “continuity and connectedness” strengthen the brand. Consumers have a strong connection with Coke likely because of the continuity across media and through time. Campaigns come and go, but the Coke brand is here to stay.

    Jennifer