Marketing Communications Notes

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Unit 1
Introduction to IMC


In Unit 1 we introduce you to the study of integrated marketing communications. We begin by reviewing the basic communication model, looking at its component parts and applying them within a marketing context. We explore the key components of IMC, assess its value to marketers, and discuss how IMC can be applied in an international marketplace. We address the moral and ethical issues faced by marketers and look at the steps taken by governments and industry associations to regulate marketing practices. We finish the unit with a discussion of social responsibility and how and why marketers should engage in positive and socially responsible marketing activities. In this unit, you need to refer to: 1 2 3 Chapters 1, 13 and 14 in your Clow and Baack textbook; this study unit, Unit 1; and Readings 1.1–1.4: • ‘Marketing ethics and behavioural predispositions of Chinese managers of SMEs in Hong Kong’ by Au and Tse ‘Ethical issues across cultures: managing the differing perspectives of China and the USA’ by Pitta, Fung and Isberg ‘The myth of the ethical consumer — do ethics matter in purchase behaviour?’ by Carrigan and Attalla ‘Press release’, Hong Kong Consumer Council.

Please note that in this course, unless otherwise indicated, ‘product’ and ‘product category’ should be interpreted as ‘product/service’ and ‘product/service category’.


MKT B366 Marketing Communications

By the end of Unit 1, you should be able to: 1 Illustrate the communication process, using a diagram, and apply it in a given marketing situation. Define integrated marketing communications, and discuss how it applies specifically to the development of promotional strategies. Describe, with pertinent Hong Kong examples, the major components of the promotional mix. Explain the role played by the promotion mix in the overall marketing mix. Outline the key components of integrated marketing communications. Evaluate the impact of information technology, changes in channel power, increases in competition, brand parity, consumer information integration and declining effectiveness of mass-media advertising on the value placed on IMC programmes, providing Hong Kong specific examples. Discuss the phrase ‘think globally, act locally’ as it applies to globally integrated marketing communications programmes and illustrate using Hong Kong specific examples. Evaluate critically the moral and ethical criticisms of marketing communications. Explore the role to be played by governments in regulating marketing practices, providing Hong Kong specific examples.









10 Argue the case for a company adopting positive and socially responsible marketing activities and illustrate using Hong Kong examples.

Unit 1


Think about this: Anyone can sell something once (as P T Barnum of the Barnum and Bailey Circus said ‘there’s a sucker born every minute’). A persistent salesperson can sell something twice (it may take them a while, but they will find the second ‘sucker’). But only a marketer can sell something twice … to the same person! (because it satisfies the consumer and delivers what it promised). (M Jan Charbonneau ©2001. Used with Permission)

If you have ever watched an infomercial, especially late at night, you realize how seductive marketing messages can be. How can you not purchase the electric exercise machine that promises to pulse away fat and build washboard abdominals while you sleep, watch tv or sit at your desk … all for today’s special low price of five easy payments of $300 HK … but wait, there’s more … if you are one of the first 50 callers, you also get not one, not two, but three sets of samurai steak knives so sharp that they can cut through shoe leather, the amazing astronaut pen that writes upside down, and not one but two giant bottles of industrial strength stain remover guaranteed to remove any stain (retail value...
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