Mastering Integrated Marketing Communications for a Successful Career

The role of marketing communications is constantly evolving. In 2022, marketing executives are expected to execute integrated marketing communications (IMC) to attract, engage and delight customers across all digital touchpoints – web, social, mobile and more.

This will demand a complete understanding of marketing analytics, customer journey mapping and channel optimization – all while taking into consideration the diverse interests and preferences of different consumers.

If you’re looking for a lucrative career in marketing, you’ve probably considered a move to New York City or some other major marketing hub. But before you pack your bags, you ought to think about alternative options. Perhaps you could find a smaller city or even suburb that is rich in opportunities and, more importantly, happy residents. Like most large cities, the demand for living in Brooklyn or Manhattan is high, and real estate prices are rising. But the cost of living is also through the roof, and many working professionals are unable to easily afford a place in the city.

The Rise of the Digital Native

To keep up with the evolving expectations of customers and industry leaders, many brands and marketing agencies have pivoted to aligning with digital natives. If you’re a millennial or Gen Z-er who grew up with technology at their fingertips, marketing isn’t something you have to learn about as you go through life – it’s something you already know how to do.

With the growing influence of social media in our society, the ability to engage with customers directly has become much more accessible. This presents an opportunity for marketers to evolve their strategies and methods to engage with consumers and build lasting relationships.

The Demographics Of Future Marketers

In 2022, the population of Gen Z will surpass millennials in size for the first time, making them the largest generation in history. Naturally, marketers have paid close attention to this demographic and have introduced new tactics and strategies to engage with them.

According to Future Marketers, a global research firm that specializes in marketing and media research, Gen Z consumers are driving the future of marketing. In fact, the demographics are so influential that marketing and media planners must now take into consideration Gen Z’s interests, behaviors and motivations when crafting marketing campaigns and marketing plans.

Based on extensive interviews with over 500 marketing directors from all over the world, here are some telling stats about the future of marketing and media.

The Importance Of Gen Z In The Future of Marketing

According to the 2020 Vision for Marketing Analytics and Planning, 83% of global marketers plan to increase their investment in digital marketing and media.

But fear not, traditional marketers – that is, those who adhere to the principles of marketing as it was practiced in the early 20th century – social media isn’t taking over the world. In fact, it’s the other way around. As the world becomes more digital, social media is keeping things real by providing a space for people to connect, share and discuss issues that matter to them.

Gen Z isn’t your average consumer. They’ve grown up in a digital world, and many marketers have found that getting on social media – whether that’s Facebook or Instagram – to connect with this audience is much easier said than done.

Why Don’t Brands Have Instagram Accounts For Dogs?

While many brands have managed to secure Instagram accounts for cats, dogs and other animal-related businesses, content celebrating pets is often overlooked. This largely stems from the fact that most people aren’t that interested in sharing photos of their friends’ pets. In fact, only 2.7% of people globally reported that they would be interested in seeing photos of other people’s dogs on social media.

But that’s likely to change. As we’ve learned from the success of influencer marketing, pets can be fascinating subjects for content creators to explore.

Why? People are naturally inclined to be more open and friendly around their furry friends. This means that, as a pet owner, you have the potential to reach a much larger audience than usual with your photos. After all, everyone loves a puppy.

If you’re a pet photographer looking to break into the field, consider exploring the fascinating world of pets. You can start by creating a small Instagram account for dogs, or cats, or other animal-related businesses. From there, you can branch into inviting some of your furry friends for a photoshoot. This can be a fun way to expose your audience to new experiences, while also strengthening your bond with your companions.

The Changing Face of Influencer Marketing

While 83% of marketers plan to increase their investment in digital marketing and media, 86% of them are also planning to work with celebrity influencers.

But this isn’t exactly a bad thing. After all, having influence in today’s society means you have the ability to reach many people. And while this might mean less money for you, as a brand or business, you’d be willing to shell out for the chance to connect with more customers and potential buyers.

According to HubSpot Blogs research, 92% of consumers trust the advice of celebrities or notable figures within the community when it comes to marketing and advertising. And these figures are more influential than your standard web content or social media celebrity. This trend is likely to continue as brands recognize the power of influencers to create authentic content that resonates with audiences.

If you’re a marketer who’s looking to expand your reach and engagement with influential figures, consider working with a celebrity influencer. The opportunity to connect with a wide audience is appealing, and many businesses choose to work with influencers to stay relevant and engage with consumers.

Digital Marketing Is About To Get Really Interesting

With the way things are going, traditional marketing might not even exist in its current form in the near future. According to HubSpot Blogs research, 82% of marketers see the future of marketing as including both digital and traditional methods.

This is good news for marketers who want to master the craft, as the two usually conflict with each other. Traditionally, marketers have been very much in favor of advertising in newspapers and magazines, while digital marketers are more focused on search engines and social media. And while these are both incredibly important, they’re also different beasts.

With search engines and social media, marketers are attempting to reach potential customers who are actively seeking their products and services. In other words, these platforms aren’t passive – consumers are engaging with your content for the sake of engaging with your content.

As a marketer, you shouldn’t feel bad about shifting your focus to the digital world. This is where the vast majority of consumers are today, and it’s only getting more popular. By understanding the digital side of marketing, you will be able to evolve and prepare yourself for the changing face of advertising and marketing.

So, what is IMC?

In 2022, marketing will evolve from a silo’d function to a more integrated function, connecting consumers with brands and businesses across different platforms and devices. For marketing to succeed in this new era, they will need to move beyond simply advertising on social media and websites. They will need to understand how to communicate across platforms – whether that’s web, mobile or social media – and across different devices – whether that’s a laptop, tablet or smartphone.

To that end, integrated marketing communications (IMC) will emerge.

IMC integrates marketing activities including advertising, public relations, social media, direct marketing and digital analytics into a single effort – often across all digital channels – to drive profitable growth and brand awareness.

Why is IMC important?

Brands, agencies and managers of corporate marketing communications departments must understand the importance of cross-platform measurement, content creation, distribution and activation to ensure their marketing dollars are delivered effectively. The success of an IMC program will be measured by its ability to generate measurable results in terms of brand awareness, lead generation, and sales. This is much different than the superficial ‘click-throughs’ or ‘likes’ metrics used by many social media platforms. It relies more on the quality of integrated efforts rather than the sheer number of digital actions taken.