Back in the 80s, Simple Minds performed the melancholy and memorable song “Don’t You (Forget About Me).” And I apologize in advance if you can’t shake off that tune today due to mentioning that song.
Anyway, the title of the song is appropriate for your primary small business marketing goal – you don’t want your prospects to forget about you.
During the era when that song came out, your choice of marketing instruments was simple: print, radio and television. With three marketing channels, it was easier to conduct an integrated, coherent message to potential customers.
Today, the choice of marketing channels can be mindboggling. And putting together a cohesive and harmonious message across all these channels seems as complex as conducting a symphony with dozens of musical instruments.
We now have websites and email plus a plethora of social media channels—Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, Pinterest, Tumblr, Foursquare, Yelp, etc.—at our disposal to broadcast our message. And we still have print, radio and television.
The Need for Integrated Marketing Communications (IMC)
With the choice of marketing channels increasing daily, an integrated approach to marketing is more critical than ever.
IMC unifies all your marketing channels with consistent branding, messaging and strategies. Instead of marketing silos, each channel can be used to reinforce and strengthen your message.
Quite simply, all communications are branded and messaged cohesively so that your customer and prospect that are exposed to all of the channels gets a consistent message…over and over.
With a consistent message, customers and prospects will have a firm understanding of what you do and how you can help them. And keep your business top of mind when the need arises for your services or products.
Small Businesses have an IMC Advantage
Actually, this complexity can be an advantage for small businesses.
Big businesses frequently have a manager for each marketing channel, which can complicate communicating a consistent message to the public.
On the other hand, small businesses usually have one person coordinating their message across multiple channels.
If a small business has a firm understanding of their customers’ personal interest and the marketing channels they frequent, creating an integrated marketing communications strategy can be a straightforward process.
We explored how to gather valuable information about your customers in last month’s marketing post. Last months post
Of course, while small businesses have a clear advantage in coordinating a consistent message, having the time to do so is clearly a disadvantage. That’s where delegating your IMC strategy and tasks to a marketing agency, like Business Solutions Unlimited, can be helpful.
Regardless how you do it—by yourself or with specialists—making sure that each marketing channel is in harmony will ensure that your customers and prospects hear what you want them to hear. And that they won’t forget about you when they need you.
Communicating a consistent theme and message will result in a consistent flow of customers, sales and revenue. And that should be music to your ears.