Of course the campaign is integrated…

It’s a common question when the Marketing leader gets ready to listen to a campaign organized by the agency. Is the campaign integrated? To which the agency responds: Of course the campaign is integrated…

An integrated campaign as a reminder means that the campaign does not use any one single component of marketing-be it advertising, public relations, sales promotion, or social media but rather a combination of these to make sure that most audiences will be addressed via one media or another.

Putting all your money in one medium is likely to falter precisely because it is not supported by a full complement of marketing initiatives that must reinforce one another, producing exponential results such as 1+1=3.

One may ask, “Isn’t advertising in one medium only better than doing nothing at all?” That’s question misses the point. A wiser approach is to ask what can be done to support the investment in advertising so that you achieve the objectives you established at the outset.

What is preferred logically and in an efficient manner is an integrated set of marketing tools and initiatives carefully planned within the framework of a multifaceted marketing campaign.
To do that, you must create a media plan designed to make sure that all of your marketing tactics work together.
Lastly, getting marketing to generate Top Line revenues implies marketing initiatives that produce a significant return on the marketing dollars spent.
In order to give you some direction on ensuring that the campaign is (in fact) integrated, watch out for the following four pitfalls:

Common integrated campaign pitfalls.
Pitfall #1: Media that don’t reinforce each other
Pitfall #2: Create a budget first, metrics second.
Pitfall #3: Awareness vs. sales
Pitfall #4: Delegate and forget

For the purpose of brevity for today’s post let’s explore the second one:

Pitfall #2: Create a budget first, metrics second.

We’ll spend more time on metrics, analytics and ROI later but a common mistake is to set a budget first, then spend later on a variety of media.

The justification to coming up with a budget first could be:
a) Slow sales

b) Competitors are not advertising as much or,

c) The state of the economy.

In fact even if sales are slow during an economic downturn, they never stop altogether. And if everyone else is cutting back on spending during a recession, this is the worst time to cut back on marketing as is frequently the case. Studies show that businesses that continue marketing through a recession (http://www.renaud-investments.ro/five-steps-on-how-to-survive-in-a-recession-3) are the ones that come out ahead when the economy begins to turn (ex. Orange in Romania).

This could be an opportunity for you to gain market share by being aggressive.
But at the same time coming up with a budget figure out of the blue or out of thin air because sales are down, orders have declined and inventories are mounting is not rational thinking either.

You must consider the following instead:
1) Who’s the target of the marketing campaign?

2) Do these initiatives follow the marketing plan?

3) What goals will this campaign seek to achieve?

4) How these funds will to help sluggish sales?

5) The messages used to position your product as The customer solution

6) How the campaign will be measured?

7) How leads will be captured?

8) How are you going to monitor the results?

Committing to X million euros to a marketing budget in the blind implies that you will be spending big money without any clear plan for how it will generate additional revenues for the business.
This is certainly not the way to generate Top Line revenues with Marketing!

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