Gaining the competitive edge with Integrated Marketing Communications (IMC)
Over the years, the traditional face of marketing has changed. Whilst organizations recognize that they can no longer take their customers’ loyalty for granted, and need to adopt ongoing marketing strategies to stay ahead of their competitors, the design and content of there strategies continue to evolve. Research shows that 20 years ago, 75 percent of marketing budgets in the USA were injected into mass advertising campaigns. Today, 50 percent goes into trade promotions, 25 percent into consumer promotions and less than 25 percent into advertising (Kitchen, 2003).
The impact of new technology
A key factor in the changing marketing landscape is the emergence of IT. As IT continues to develop, consumer demands and priorities change. The emergence of the Internet, and a wide variety of on-line tools, has vastly increased the extensive portfolio of marketing and communication tools available for organizations to reach their target audiences. A key change that new IT and the growth of the Internet has brought is that many companies have moved away from quality, features and services as key competitive differentiators, and are now driven by price. The impact that new technology has had on marketing is clearly identiﬁed in research carried out by Porter in 2001. Findings revealed by this survey include: B B B B B
differences among competitors are reduced; competition migrates to price; geographic market widens, increasing the number of competitors; reduced barriers to entry shifts power to suppliers; and end-users’ bargaining power is increased through reduced switching costs.
Integrated marketing communications (IMC)
Alongside the growth of IT-based marketing and the move away from previously traditional marketing tools such as advertising, has been the emergence of Integrated Marketing Communications (IMC). IMC demands a more...