IMC and the use of social media platforms

Topics: Twitter, Social media, Marketing Pages: 6 (3378 words) Published: November 1, 2014

This paper analyzes the use of social media to engage with consumers in an IMC campaign. It cannot be denied some benefits of social networks such as the fast transmission, globalization, and cost saving but it also have the drawbacks. Hence, it is necessary to study why and how marketers choose to use them (especially Twitter and to give an objective view on the establishing of social media in an IMC program. This paper includes the importance of engaging consumers before moving to some background information about Twitter and Finally, it displays how social media affects consumers’ decision making process and its challenges in an IMC campaign. Introduction

In recent years, marketers have many communication platforms used to engage with consumers. These mediums are listed as follows: traditional (print/broadcast media) and digital (the internet). Traditional media such as TV have served as cost-effective tools in reaching regional audiences with influential messages while the Internet has provided immediate, informative and interactive platforms for audiences in discussing and debating, globally. The objective of an IMC campaign is to understand pros and cons of those various medium and integrate them “to create synergies so that the consumers’ interest for the brand can be compounded” CITATION Law141 \p 341 \l 1033 (Ang, 2014, p. 341). IMC is about developing a single message across multiple media vehicles to create a greater effect on the target audience. However, due to the globalization, Internet has been used as a main entrance to get into the world of information, entertainment, communicating, and trading. Within it, social media has become a popular phenomenon. It is defined as “a group of internet-based applications that build on the ideological and technological foundations of web 2.0 and that allow the creation and exchange of user-generated content” CITATION And10 \l 1033 (Kaplan & Haenlein, 2010). People now are using various social platforms suchlike Facebook, Twitter, YouTube to communicate with each other. They are regarded as an extension of the interaction among people paralleling with phone calls and mobile messages. A research has proven that “adolescents who engage in online social networking feel closer to friends compared with those who do not participate on social networking” CITATION Sub081 \l 1033 (Subrahmanyam & Greenfield, 2008). Hence, the line between reality and virtual life is getting to fade. Engaging with Consumers

Not only being a communication tool among individuals, many companies are adopting social networks into their marketing, public relation, and customer service. Engaging is a process that encourages consumers to take part in the development of a brand. Brodie describes consumer engagement as “a psychological state that occurs by virtue of interactive, co-creative customer experiences with a focal agent/object (a brand) in focal service relationships” CITATION Rod11 \p 260 \l 1033 (Brodie et al., 2011, p. 260). It plays a central role in developing involvement and building brand loyalty that lead to the iterative in consumers' decision making processes. In the business-to-consumer relationship, “the terms “engagement” are linked to customer or brand experience, emotion, creativity, collaboration, learning or brand community interactions” CITATION Rod11 \p 254 \l 1033 (Brodie et al., 2011, p. 254). Besides, Van Doorn claims that “word-of-mouth developing from customer-to-customer is a result of consumer engagement behaviors” CITATION Van101 \p 254 \l 1033 (Van Doorn et al., 2010, p. 254). Consumer-to-business relationship is also developing since consumers have more opportunities to share feedbacks creating a strong bond to brands. The tighter among these relationships, the more satisfied consumers feel when they have a consistent...

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