To explain synchronised marketing we need to start with its evolution from integrated marketing.
When integrated marketing was first used is difficult to ascertain, but we can say it grew in popularity as media became increasingly fragmented and traditional marketing experts, largely ad agencies, looked for ways to leverage their expertise across the growing media landscape in return for a greater share of limited marketing dollars. What has always been missing from the integrated marketing model is a committed brand focus. It was largely centred on an advertising idea applied across other platforms, eventually including interactive sites. If the model was out of step then, it is clearly old school now that social media has upped the ante, turning marketing into an ongoing conversation whose location, start or finish is impossible to control.
So what is synchronised marketing?
Liquid Catalyst believes that in todayâ€™s connected marketing environment the conversation never ends and every message can link across platforms. Therefore the static integrated marketing model that has guided marketers for nearly 20 years needs an upgrade to a less linear approach.
We believe that marketers with high stakes riding on the success of their singular brand message reaching customers at all touch points ought to synchronise, not integrate, their marketing plans.
For example, if you think of synchronised swimming in the Olympics, all the swimmers orchestrate their moves simultaneously to create a much larger and more important image than any individual stroke.
In our opinion, in todayâ€™s marketing environment with easy access to information and all sorts of opinions, corporations donâ€™t control exactly where or when customers or prospective customers encounter their brand. The old model sequence (it assumed first your target saw the print ad in places like Fortune or Businessweek; then they saw the website; and then the sales presentation) no longer works when the first encounter a prospect has with a brand could be a Twitter feed, a mobile app or a diorama in the airport.
At Liquid Catalyst our synchronised marketing approach goes beyond integration, allowing the voice of the brand to speak to every target, through every relevant discipline (advertising, public relations, promotion, marketing literature, sales force presentations, outdoor, event marketing, design, etc.) at every touch point. It is driven by a singular brand idea, not an advertising concept. It is collaborative. Its cross-discipline thinking is simultaneous not sequential. It doesnâ€™t start with an advertising execution, which is homogenised and rolled out to be translated to other platforms. Each discipline draws from its own strengths. Synchronization allows the marketing plan to be continually fine-tuned based on real-time customer feedback and customer buzz from microsites, mobile technology and social networks. Done right, our synchronized marketing approach connects the individual touch points on their own terms, strengthens them and will ultimately energise your brand.