Lee Odden

Integrated Marketing Communications Client-Agency Tango

Lee Odden     Online Marketing

The “Client Agency Tango: IMC-Style” session presents the often complicated task of coordinating integrated marketing communications between multiple internal teams, outside agencies and vendors and also had nearly as many panel speakers as participants.

Underwriter’s Laboratories (UL) was in a unique situation with UL as a 110 year old company that just started marketing 5 years ago. A rebranding effort was handled by Slack Barshinger.

American Airlines offered an overview of their strategic positioning initiative handled by TM Advertising. The objective was to position American brand against low cost carriers by creating an emotional, human aspect to the AA brand. “We know why you fly” was incorporated into several channel promotions: TV, print, online, out-of-home and whyyoufly.com.

Challenged by many new product innovations, Kitchen Aid worked with Digitas to put products in the context of how they would be used via an interactive web based “experience”.

Jim Beam worked with Zipatoni to become a know brand within racing. Everyone’s attention was quickly gained with a unique offer: “How many of you are ready for cocktail hour!”. The interactive campaign drove offline traffic to the web and from the web back offline all under the overall theme of “The spirit of racing”. The online component opened up new opportunities and as a result, Jim Bean will continue to explore more interactive campaigns.

The agencies and clients offered great nuggets of wisdom when it came to describing how to work together across teams. Organization, clear definition of roles and responsibilities as well as finding the right people make a successful relationship. Communications are also key to successful IMC programs. Kitchen Aid holds a conference call every 2 weeks with their interactive partners. They also engage in a interactive summit every quarter to discuss strategy.

Even so, TM Advertising continued the session title analogy and said, “there’s still a lot of bad dancing going on” so there’s still work to do for improved IMC between clients and multiple agencies. It’s important that everyone needs to work off the same brand position. A clear vision, proper planning and effective communications are all key for effective integrated marketing communications.

Also covered on the ad:tech blog “Do the IMC Tango”

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About Lee Odden

@LeeOdden is the CEO of TopRank Marketing and editor of Online Marketing Blog. Cited for his expertise by The Economist, Forbes and the Wall Street Journal, he's the author of the book Optimize and presents internationally on integrated content, search, social media and influencer marketing. When not at conferences, consulting, or working with his talented team, he's likely on a beach somewhere doing absolutely nothing.