The Power of a Truly Integrated Marketing Campaign

  • Categories:

    Brand Strategy

  • Date:

    November 29, 2021

The Power of a Truly Integrated Marketing Campaign

Brand Strategy

Back in the beforetimes, I had a monthly lunch date to nosh Indian food with a colleague, who shares my love of the cuisine’s complex spice combinations and tangy, pillow-like naan. We recently grabbed takeout from our go-to Indian restaurant here in Charlotte, and as I savored my palak paneer, I was suddenly struck by the similarities of Indian cuisine and integrated marketing campaigns.

Like any good curry that combines a half dozen spices, integrated campaigns rely on a variety of tactics working in harmony. And, as any connoisseur of the subcontinent’s dals and curries knows, recipes differ by region. Similarly, marketing pros know that the best integrated campaigns are based on data and research unique to the target market and audience.

When all the elements come together, it’s magical. Join me and my Wray Ward colleagues, John Roberts, executive creative director; Dana Haydock, public relations/content lead; and Jenny Duncan, insights strategist, for a conversation about the key ingredients in a successful integrated campaign.

At the most basic level, what is the meaning of an integrated marketing campaign?

Jen: For me, integration means all marketing tactics working together to serve a common strategy. What’s in the mix will be different from brand to brand, so let’s take VELUX skylights as an example. The VELUX marketing communications plan includes a lot of what we do at Wray Ward: television spots (traditional, OTT and digital), programmatic display, paid and organic social media, content, influencer marketing, public relations, paid publisher email, content amplification and paid search.

With the continued rise of digital marketing, the VELUX program has become increasingly integrated and capable of retargeting consumers with new messages to move them toward a purchase.

What mindset do you need to make an integrated campaign work?

John: This is where account leadership really matters. Jen, you have an integrated mindset from the day we start planning through execution, measurement and optimization.

Dana: And, you insist on that mindset for the whole team, so we’re always thinking about how our programs can work better together. The photography from the influencer marketing program is a good example. It supports our content marketing and social media programs, infusing both with fresh imagery and the latest interior designs.

John: And, learning from the engagements with that content is so important. When the Social Media team created weekly This or That Instagram Stories, they compiled data on which images received the most votes. This not only influenced photo selects for future social posts, but it also resulted in updated imagery for our banner ads.

I love to see those learnings create actionable feedback that we can implement throughout the year.

How do you know what to add to an integrated campaign?

Jenny: As an agency, Wray Ward bases its recommendations in research and insights, and VELUX totally embraces today’s data-driven world. We recommend omnichannel tactics based on insights about where our audiences look for home renovation information and their perceptions of skylights.

Jen: We also work with a client who is willing to try new things and take risks. VELUX encourages us to fail, and that means we can do tests to see what might be a better fit for the marketing mix.

How do you know if everything works together?

Jen: I love our monthly internal analytics meeting. I think that’s where many of our best ideas are generated. That’s where I heard our Social Media team reporting on the This or That content and how they used it to influence photo selection for social. A lightbulb went off in my brain: Why can’t we take the same lesson and apply it to our banner ads and — boom! — we have refreshed banner ads that tap into consumer design and style preferences.

Dana: It’s so exciting to see our approach to influencer marketing roll out to its fullest. In addition to reaching new audiences, it powers social media, content, website testimonials, and digital and printed brochures. Now, we’re using the photography to help make our digital creative work smarter.

John: The HGTV partnership is another great example. The television ad buy gets us the reach, but we make it work hard with a product integration, so people can experience skylights to move them toward installation more quickly. Then, we maximize the use of photo assets across many channels.

What are the most important elements of an integrated campaign?

Jen: It starts with integrated planning and naturally builds to ongoing measurement that includes the whole team effort. Add testing new creative, new tactics and taking what you see happening in the data and iterating on it.

John: It’s about breaking down silos. We encourage our people to work outside their teams, but we don’t force the campaign into channels. It’s a consumer-first mentality.

Dana: All team members feel empowered to contribute and question everything. A good idea can come from anyone.

Jen: There’s power in having one team under a single roof at Wray Ward. Our culture is collaborative, and our people are used to reaching out to each other. But it’s also about integration with the client. Chan Hoyle, director of national marketing communications with VELUX, is as much of a stakeholder as we are. Chan is essential in socializing the integrated ethos within his organization.

The VELUX team participates in ideation sessions, and our teams work collaboratively to ensure true integration. Everyone is more invested when they’re included. We’re after the same goal.

Interested in learning more about how integrated marketing can work for your brand? Shoot me an email with your ideas.

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