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Reaching customers may require using a variety of promotional tactics, among them traditional advertising, public relations, promotions, digital marketing, community involvement and partnerships. All these functions work together to comprise a unified marketing promotion plan.
In this article, we will focus on four basic tactics: advertising, public relations, in-store promotions and digital marketing. The integration of these tactics should result in a higher return on investment for your marketing dollars.
Start by planning your overall marketing program. Buyers receive information in a variety of ways, with each having their own preferences. Therefore, integrated marketing is critical.
For example, one buyer may be digital-savvy and prefer surfing the Internet for information about product availability, features, benefits, etc. Another may get primary information via television and newspaper advertising. If your marketing promotion tactics are not unified – meaning that you use a variety of techniques – you could miss an audience segment critical to your success.
Secondly, unified marketing promotion tactics can facilitate better understanding of your company and product lines. This factor will make it easier for consumers to receive more information. In unified marketing, the key is to cross-promote your communications media.
For example, list your website in a newspaper ad. Send a news release promoting a contest on your Facebook page. Promote a Twitter hashtag in your television commercials. Post video to your YouTube channel and website.
Advertising includes any paid method of spreading the word about your company: print ads, television ads, radio spots, web advertising, direct mail, etc. This promotional tactic has some real benefits:
But advertising has its downside, too:
In this form of promotion, you can add websites, social media, content marketing such as blogging, columns and white papers, pay-per-click ads, email marketing and other online tools to your portfolio of tactics. Among the benefits:
But there are weaknesses, as well:
Public relations activities include issuing media releases, getting media attention, participating in charitable or community efforts, etc. Some public relations efforts are relatively low-cost or even free – for instance, a local television interview provides cost-free exposure. Other strengths include:
Not every outcome is a strength, though:
While most marketing efforts strive to attract customers into your business, marketing does not stop at the entrance. In-store sales, loyalty programs, and promotions can generate additional revenue and turn casual customers into long-term clientele. Here are additional benefits:
Of course, as with other promotional tactics, a downside does exist:
Finally, advertising, digital marketing and in-store promotions should work together to drive business and revenue. As a unified marketing promotion plan, they likewise will enhance the image and brand of your business.