With all marketing, the key to success in today’s economy is integration and measurement. With today’s tools, integration and measurement has never been more vital, immediate or automated.

What is Integration?

Just as the name suggests, integrated marketing is focused on a consistent multi-dimensional consumer experience. So, every touchpoint – digital, broadcast, print, point-of-sale, website, social media, apps – all have the same overall objective and uniform message and style.

Consider the Sales Funnel

Your entire campaign should be built around one (or a select few) measurable, corporate objective(s). Do you need to drive more direct auto loans? Increase your core deposits? Generate more new customers? Once you’ve defined your objective – the one grading scale that will determine success or failure – you can identify the most logical product(s) to promote and determine if a special promotion is needed.

You rarely need to reach everyone in your market. Who is most likely to respond to your message? Who will have the most impact in sales?

By fully understanding your target – where they live, what life stages they are in, what pain they are experiencing, their attitude toward you and your product, how they view the competition, etc. – you can best determine how to reach them and what they will need to hear.

When you combine your knowledge of the target with your brand, corporate culture and differentiators, you can create the message that will resonate across all marketing channels. You can also identify the right channels to integrate. Should you create an app? Will they look to you for content? Will they apply online?

While marketing integration hinges on consistency, it is important to note that, while everything works towards a common corporate objective, each individual tactical element may have its own tactical objective to work towards the end goal.

This is where all marketing campaigns start and too many stop.  Obviously, we need to let the target know about our campaign.

While the awareness tactics may not deliver immediate applications, we can measure their effectiveness based on the call to action: clicks with digital, email, SEM, social media ads.  Calls or visits to dedicated phone numbers or URLs for broadcast, direct mail or outdoor.

Consider the individual items call to action when you’re writing and designing. You can’t simply take one message and resize it to every tactical item. Each media vehicle will have a different purpose. Some may have different sub-targets (new loans vs. refinance, for example). Treat each media vehicle separately while keeping the overall look and message consistent.

Indirect Engagement
How can you get the target to interact with you in a way that supports the campaign message?

You can provide blogs or brief informational materials that support the campaign. You can post helpful tips relating to your campaign on social media. Do you have an auto campaign? Post pix of people and their new cars.  You can create an app with a game related to your main message. Give car magnets or t-shirts that customers may show-off around town. Decorate the lobbies with the campaign theme. Each item should have a purpose: position you as the expert; prove an emotional brand promise like fun, smart or honest; continue to generate awareness or support the consumer’s purchase decision post-sale.

Again, each interactive idea will likely be measured by different criteria, but they should all lead to the same overall objective.

Direct Engagement
Now that people know about the promotion and have interacted with you, how do you move them closer to the sale?

In most campaigns, today, your website is the key. Consider a dedicated landing page for each of your campaigns. Don’t simply send prospects to your home page or to a generic product page. Dedicated landing pages provide a means to track traffic based on your other, interactive, tools. The page must, of course, reflect the ad messages.

Note I said “reflect” and not “mirror!”  You want the target to know that the page is obviously an extension of the media.  But, in most cases, the landing page should provide a little more detail. Consider a digital ad or billboard with very limited copy … the goal is simply to get attention and motive the click. It’s the web page’s job to provide the details. Use your advertising and web page as a one-two punch. Don’t try to tell the entire campaign story at EVERY touchpoint.

Aside from detail, the page has a few more important jobs:

  • An easy call-to-action that leads directly to the sale: Like an apply online button
  • Lead generation: If the prospect isn’t quite ready to buy, provide a lead generation form. They were interested enough to get this far down the sales funnel. Don’t lose them. Give them a chance to “learn more.” And give your team a chance to sell.
  • Through digital media, you can retarget those who visit your page, but do not act. Sometimes people simply need to sleep on it and be reminded a few times. If they go to your page, but don’t act, you can continue to hit them with digital messages.

They’ve seen a consistent message across multiple media vehicles. They have been given a chance to engage with the brand. They have acted and visited your web page. And they still haven’t bought? Don’t stop yet!

If you are successful with your lead generation form and/or know who clicks on your emails, you can follow-up with calls, more detailed emails or letters. I often joke that marketing is simply less-creepy stalking.  Keep trying until they buy or ask you to stop.

Interactive planning and in-depth measurement are what take a campaign from being simply an advertising expense to being profitable marketing. Remember to:

  1. Measure the overall campaign results
  2. Be creative in the ways you reach your target
  3. Be consistent across all touch points
  4. Measure the success of each tactical item
  5. Follow the sales funnel

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