I was talking to a potential client who was looking to get some help with her website – she is owner of a facial and body massage spa in Alexandria, Virginia. I told her that one of our services is full-service digital marketing management for small businesses and that part of it is social media management. She told me that she’s been posting on Facebook for a while but it hasn’t helped at all with her business. Now, that is all too common story I hear from many small business owners.
Now, there is nothing wrong with being active on social media. In fact, those owners who are engaging on social media are surely one step ahead of those who are not. But what is missing in order to have greater impact, better results, and reduce costs is producing consistent messaging through what’s called integrated marketing communications (IMC).
According to the American Association of Advertising Agencies, Integrated Marketing Communications “…recognizes the value of a comprehensive plan that evaluates the strategic roles of a variety of communication disciplines advertising, public relations, personal selling, and sales promotion and combines them to provide clarity, consistency, and maximum communication impact.”
So what the beauty spa owner was doing with Facebook wasn’t anything wrong – it’s just that whatever message she was putting out, she should have:
- Clearly identified target audience (maybe not all her potential customers are same)
- Determined purpose and objective of each message
- Prioritized messages (maybe not all messages/updates are same in importance)
- Define the message
- Select marketing communication methods and tools – target all channels including social media, website, in-store promotion, direct marketing, and advertising
- Measure results & refine approach as needed
I understand that small business owners do not necessarily have the time and knowledge to plan and execute integrated marketing campaigns. Can they do it if they put time and effort in it? Maybe. Or they can reach out to professional marketers like myself and we can help maximize their marketing reach.
Now, there is a great marketing event coming up where my good colleague Monica Archondo of Sweet Signature is participating as a panelist. The event is titled “Harness the Power of Integrated Marketing” and it’s being held on June 14, 2017, in Tyson, Virginia. I think it’s going to be a great event where you can hear from a panel of leading marketers fro DC area on integrated marketing communications. If you are interested, you can register from this page.