Thanks to technology, your customers and prospects are taking
control of communication.
And they are doing it with a tenacity not seen since Paul
Prudhomme attempted to tie his own shoelaces.
As a result, they now define
when, where, how, how much and what kind of information they want.
The future's not what it used
At the same time, messages, brand promises and even brands themselves are being
segmented, fragmented and pulverized until they disappear. All because there
are now more choices of how to get information than there are coffee nomenclatures
(And by the way, don't you just want to slap anybody
who takes more than six words to order a cup of coffee?)
As a result, products and services are no longer sold. They
In fact, they're no longer just products or services.
They're hybrids oriented to stated customer
and prospect needs.
All this may seem bleaker than Ingmar Bergman listening to
an acoustic set performed by Leonard Cohen.
But cheer up, frappucino-breath
This shifting world creates all sorts of opportunities for communications to
play a much more effective and efficient role in delivering measurable business
It can move your prospects through each stage of the purchase
process and beyond to not only create sales, customers, more profitable relationships,
but also brand advocates.
If your communications is not doing that for you, then you
should look closely at giving it direction by integrating all of it.
Test your integration
If you think you're already integrating what's being communicated
in your markets, then you should look closely to be sure that it's reaching
its full potential. (In fact, you might be interested in a little diagnostic
exercise we've developed to test your program's
true integration quotient.)
We say look closely because there are now more permutations
of integrated business communications then there are of Michael Jackson's
Integration isn't what it used
to be, either
In addition, integrated communications has evolved from the '90s version
of truth management: reality styling and fact reconstruction foisted off by
dinosaur ad agencies to generate income to their holding companies' independent
Doesn't sound very integrated does it? Well, don't
kid yourself. It's not.
True integrated communications is a strategic process that
permeates the entire organization, rather than a campaign from the marketing
or advertising department. Every point of contact with customers, prospects
and other stakeholders must be identified, analyzed and integrated through communications
to build profitable relationships.
This kind of integration is about as much like the packaging
and transmitting of one-way marketing monologues that speak in "one voice"
as a Tiffany's bracelet is to a cubic zirconium from Fred's Mattress
City, Home Center and Leisure World.
No longer monologue management
Instead of surface-level communications spin and creative misdirection, true
integrated communications is a process of dialogue, interaction and learning
with the purpose of providing value to customers and prospects and cultivating
long-term, reciprocal relationships with them.
True integration drives sales, brand value and repeat purchases,
and builds and enhances long-term customer relationships and lifetime customer