Jenny Rennocks recently joined the family here at ClientsFirst as a marketing consultant. Jenny has held senior marketing roles, predominantly within the professional services sector, for over seventeen years. On one of her very first days in the office, we set her a challenge: define integrated marketing.
Enthusiastically, Jenny embraced our challenge.
“The term takes me back to the days I was studying for my Chartered Institute of Marketing Diploma, back in 1999 - far too many years ago for me to want to think about! It was the core theme of the programme and I can safely say it is a phrase that has stayed with me throughout my career as a marketer.
My 10 year old son recently asked me, ‘What do you do Mum - what is marketing?’ After briefly highlighting some of the elements of the marketing mix – advertising, PR, seminars, communications, website etc, I explained that marketing is how to promote a company, organisation, service or product to the audience via lots of different channels. You have to use lots of different methods to convey the same message, I said, as everyone likes to be communicated with in different ways; it has to be integrated. This is where I lost him to the world of X-box!
But it made me look back on my career as an in house marketer and how the marketing channels have changed over the years. A core part of my marketing campaigns used to be by fax (how old?!) and trawling through paper business directories to create a mailing list. Now there are so many more opportunities to reach your audience it can sometimes be daunting. But in both situations, creativity has always been paramount as you have to do something that stands out and attracts the attention of your audience.
I believe that integrated marketing has become even more important than when I was first introduced to the phrase back in 1999. There are now so many clever ways to talk to your audience you must ensure you are using a mix in your marketing plan but make sure that the overall message is the same and consistent across the channels.
As an in house marketer, this is most certainly a challenge – time is precious and there are only so many channels you can manage yourself.
I have recently made a change and become a marketing consultant in the ClientsFirst team. 2017 has been an exciting year for me so far and I am delighted to now have the best of both worlds and the opportunity to help businesses run effective integrated marketing communication campaigns with all the technology at my fingertips!
So going back to my son’s question, ‘What is marketing?’ I suppose we could say it is an exciting juggling act – a job that lets you use lots of different methods to communicate with your target audience for your product, service and business.