Last month I was lucky enough to attend a free event organised by the PRCA in London called ‘Expert Briefing: Integrated Marketing’, hosted by Ketchum Pleon. The speakers at the event were Richard Parkinson, CEO of IncrediBull (London PR Agency) and Kerry Gaffney (@kerrymg), Head of Digital at Porter Novelli UK.
The event promised to take a holistic approach to marketing communications, exploring the role of PR within the wider marketing mix to analyse how PR can work with the various marketing disciplines of advertising, sales promotion and direct marketing, to optimise results for the client or brand. The event also promised to address the integration of digital in the wider communications strategy, review what makes successful blogger relations and how to go about identifying key influencers in a community.
Richard Parkinson started off the session by asking the question ‘What is integrated marketing?’ After all suggestions by the audience, the following list was formulated:
• Public Relations
• Direct Marketing
• Event management
• Sales promotion
• Social media
• Experiential (face-to-face), and
Richard then summarised the dilemma of marketing and brand managers worldwide – the question of ‘where to put your money’. With so many outlets for possible investment and return, how should brand and marketing managers split their allocated budget to promote their brand/product/event effectively?
In Richard’s opinion, PR has to be the driving and controlling factor of any campaign or launch, however he also stresses that agencies need to diversify in their talents and methods if they are to reach all audiences, and that the time to do it is now.
Whilst a combination of the marketing methods listed above may raise awareness/page views etc., Richard also stressed that the bottom line, when it comes to measuring the success of a campaign, has to be in terms of actual sales – the proof that the messages sent have been properly received.
Like Richard, Kerry was keen to stress that effective marketing could not be reduced to just one method i.e. online only. Using an article conveniently published in the morning’s paper (highlighting the relevance of this event’s discussion), Kerry revealed statistics by Ofcom which showed the diverse channels through which today’s consumers receive information.
According to this research, half our lives are now spent on media with 45% of our waking hours spent absorbing media from gadgets such as mobile phones and by watching television. We spend 25% of our day on the internet and social networking sites and are also becoming experts at multi-tasking when it comes to media (how many of you use your laptop whilst watching TV?).
The Integrated Triangle
Kerry then introduced us to Porter Novelli’s answer to effective integrated marketing – The Integrated Triangle. The Integrated Triangle is the base upon which Porter Novelli build their creative campaigns, and indeed, if you’ve ever been given an overview of Social Media by Cohn & Wolfe’s Digital PR Planner, Tim Hoang (ex-Porter Novelli employee), then you will have been drawn countless triangles.
At each corner of the triangle is a channel of communication: Mainstream Media (declining but still huge), Digital (as in online), and Real World (more impactful than ‘liking’ on Facebook). For a far-reaching campaign, Kerry stresses that each of these channels must be targeted and that the actions must all be linked.
Referring to this structure, Kerry then gave a number of examples of campaigns or stunts that generated discussion, awareness and/or sales by utilising and integrating all three of these channels effectively and seamlessly.
The BBC planted Top Gear’s illusive Stig (prior to his identity being revealed) on Google maps and then generated digital and mainstream media discussion about the real-world event.
Old Spice launched a social media campaign which was designed to raise awareness of the brand in women – ‘The Man Your Man Could Smell Like’. The adverts and YouTube videos led to real world spoofs which then went back into media and digital channels such as Facebook. The result was that sales doubled.
P&G Pampers launched a campaign in China where Mainstream Media was targeted with new statistics around the ‘golden sleeping hour’ for children. Consumers were then asked to submit photos of their sleeping babies online which were then used to create the largest ever real-life mosaic of photos. Many of the proud parents of the babies pictured attended the event when the mosaic was unveiled in Shanghai. Pictures of the world record-breaking mosaic were then sold back to the press, creating a cyclical campaign.
That brings me to the end of this event summary, so I’d like to extend my thanks to both Kerry and Richard for their helpful PR insights. If you found this useful, look out for next week’s review of PRCA’s ‘How Not to Piss Off a Journalist’ event! Looks to be a corker. As always, any comments on the above welcome below!
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