Getting CMOs on the IMC train ASAP

Over the past weeks we have delved deep into the world of integrated marketing communication. The point of an IMC is to combine strategy, online marketing and offline marketing to reach your target audience in an effective manner with a consistent tone and message. This relatively new type of marketing (references about integration go all the way back to the 1990’s) is becoming the standard by which all new marketing plans are being measured. However according to Steve Olenski a contributor to Forbes Magazine and marketing guru, CMOs are still not doing it correctly.

‘“The need to strive for greater integration is considered inevitable by many, although the means by which such integration may be achieved is uncertain.” Inevitable by many indeed yet so many, far too many, have yet to figure out the means to achieve it.’     –Steve Olenski

So what are these CMO’s missing? According to David Aldridge a writer in Direct Marketing News, “Integration is not a dreamland of endless possibilities with revolutionary marketing results at the end of a rainbow. It’s an ongoing process made up of many discrete but valuable steps, each contributing to the greater cause.” He effectively called integration a fantasy land. What is causing this disconnect?

It seems that some people are stuck in the past. Many older people especially higher ups in smaller companies view Integrated Marketing as a space they just can’t understand. A solution to this misinformation is simply education. There are many IMC and Social media experts around the country teaching seminars to these businesses so they don’t get left behind. Some examples are

With an ever increasing number of CEOs and CMOs starting to “get it” I have to wonder if  the online marketing will start to become white noise.

Michael Park



How Does Advertisement Affect on Consumers

By menglin liu
twitter@ emmaliiu

doritos-logoNowadays the merchants use a lot of advertisements to attract consumers. A great advertisement will make merchants get success in the competition. There are lots of different kinds of advertisements, and the common advertisements’ themes are funny stories, super stars’ influence and so on. I watched the advertisement of Doritos, and the method they choose is to use some funny stories, that after watching the advertisement, people will get an impression that no matter children or the seniors, even the pets, they love eating Doritos products. It is the function of this kind of advertisement, that people will laugh, and think it is funny, which will help merchants to leave deep impression in people’s minds.

Another method is the super stars’ effects. For me, I love super stars, and I will follow their steps. People love the super stars because they have some different characters. For example, they have beautiful faces, or they have great fit figure, or they have long and bright hair. The merchants will use these characters in their advertisements. For example, Bingbing Fan in China is very famous for her great skin, and Loreal hires her to make advertisements for their skin care products. When the super star appears in the advertisement, and says that she has such young and silk skin because she uses their products. The customers will follow her steps and her words to purchase the products that they think if they use them, their skin will be young and silk as Bingbing Fan’s. It is the effect of super stars that they will give consumers an impression that why she looks so pretty is that she uses the products. These two examples show people the success of advertisements, which attracts consumers more, and the consumers will trust the merchants.


Green is the new Black

Jordan Kosmecki



Since the beginning of time, humans have been at the mercy of the Earth and its resources. Today, as these resources become scarcer, companies are facing enormous amounts of pressure to develop sustainable business practices. However, despite the pressure companies face the challenge of living up to the general public’s expectations. Society wants to be able to buy goods at a lower price, choose between how they are green, and for companies to be genuine in their sustainability efforts.

The following video touches on the idea of how companies can present their “greenness” to consumers in a way where they will be more perceptive.

This video suggests that companies need to not bombard consumers with the fact that they are practicing green innovation, but rather create a dialogue. Today, there are many different social media sites like Facebook, Twitter, Linkedin, and various site that host blogs where companies can interact with their consumers. This interaction allows for consumers to know about their green practices, but also makes consumers feel like a company is being sincere in their green efforts, which translates into more trust and a stronger connection to a company. This idea is reinforced though Ottoman’s, The New Rules of Green Marketing. Here she says that “The brand consumers buy and trust today educate and engage them in meaningful conversation through a variety of media, especially via websites and online social networks”. Creating this relationship and feeling like a company is being sincere in its efforts will not only make consumers see the company in a most positive light, but those who can afford to live greener lifestyles will be more willing to pay a price premium for goods they think are good for the environment.

However, not everyone is willing to pay a price premium for goods. This video shows that in the end, non-organic or organic food will be bought by those who feel they fit their lifestyles, respectively.

Even though not every consumer is willing to pay a price premium or live a completely organic life style, many still think it is important for companies to be green. This is because companies do things on a much larger scale than the individual consumer.

As an increasing amount of companies turn to green practices, more and more will jump on the bandwagon as being green becomes the norm for corporations.

Coca Cola Created Santa Claus?

Kristopher Krupke

Twitter: @KrisKrupke

LinkedIn: Kristopher Krupke


 Was Santa Claus created by Coca Cola? A previous professor of mine had me read a book with a very negative outlook on consumerism and marketing within our American culture. It was called “Perspectives On Contemporary Issues” by Katherine Ackley. The book referenced a man named James Twitchell. This man claimed that Santa Claus was created by Coca Cola.

“The jolly old St. Nick that we know from countless images did not come from folklore, nor did he originate in the imaginations of Moore and Nast. He comes from the yearly advertisements of the Coca Cola Company. He wears the corporate colors – the famous red and white – for a reason: he is working out of Atlanta, not out of the North Pole,” (Twitchell).

 When I first read this book I was blown away that Coca Cola could really create such an influential figure within our society and it almost ruined the tradition for me. Now that I am taking marketing 420 I thought it would be a good time to get to the bottom of this dispute.

Coca Cola reassures us that they did not create the story of Santa Claus, but they did help shape the modern image that we all know and love. During the 1920’s there were many different images of Santa Claus because he represented a number of different stories from different countries. Back then Santa was seen wearing a variation of colors from red to green and even brown. Santa also ranged in sizes from big to small. The modern day image of Santa was created in 1931 for a coke advertisement in order to boost sales during the winter months. This image stuck with consumers and created the modern day image we see today. From then on Santa Claus has become a huge part of Coke’s brand. Some people argue that it was one of the most successful brand promotions in history.

It is interesting to me how a short term sales promotion idea can turn into one of the most well-known brand promotions we’ve seen. We can all rest assured that Santa was not made up so that we would buy Coca Cola, but the simple fact that brands truly do help shape our culture just shows us how important and influential marketing really is.


Ackley, Katherine A. “You Are What You Buy.” Perspectives On Contemporary Issues. 5th Ed. Ed Maureen Staudt, Michael Stranz. Mason, Ohio, 2009.

Twitchell, James B. “Twenty Ads That Shook the World.” New York: Crown Publishers, 2000.

Apple: The Master of Product Placement

Collin Smith

Twitter: @Real_CSmith



From the early days of its colorful iMacs to the new age of the iPad, Apple has been dominating product placement across hit television shows and blockbuster movies for well over a decade. It was reported that in 2011, Apple products were in 40% of movie box office hits. It was also reported that Apple products appeared in 891 TV shows that same year. While those are both staggering numbers, it is the cost Apple pays to have product placement in those shows that is even more staggering.

One of Apples big marketing secrets is that it pays nothing to have product placement across those TV shows and movies. Apple has one designated employee who is in constant contact with Hollywood executives to place its products in their productions. Instead of paying a a base fee, Apple simply distributes large amounts of their products such as iPads, iPhones and even MacBook laptops to be used in scenes. Apple ends up paying the base costs of those devices for their product to reach the eyes of million’s of viewers while positioning their products in a positive and cool way. One would believe that those product placements should be worth a significantly larger value and below is the estimated value of a few of their product placements in hit blockbuster films.


As you can see above the estimated value reaches close to $50 million dollars for just eight movies alone. It is fair to assume that over many years that Apple is avoiding billions of dollars in product placement costs. Probably the key behind avoiding costs is the authenticity of their product placements. Authenticity is defined as quality of genuineness or naturalness. Their products feel natural in the scenes they are in and never seemed forced. They don’t usually demand the spotlight and are highlighted by the action of a character in the scene. An example can be seen in this clip from Modern Family below

Not once in that clip is the product mentioned or highlighted on its own. It is shown in a humorous manner and one we as consumers can identify with. Apple is writing the rule book in the sense that product placements need to be moved away from shameless plugs and towards natural uses in Hollywood. Once brands begin to adopt a similar approach that they can also enjoy the similar benefits of “free” product placement.


The Effectiveness of Sales Promotion

Brittany Snyder

Twitter:       @britsnyder3



When I think of the phrase “Sales Promotion” my mind instantly shifts to Starbucks Coffee Company. As a former barista who managed every store promotion at my store, it seemed almost every other week we were launching a new product or promotion. Aside from the required daily sampling of new pastries and beverages, we were almost always advertising for in store giveaways and discounts. I cannot count the number of  t-shirts in my closet I still have from working there- whether they were to promote “Frappy (or Happy) Hour”, VIA® Instant Coffee, Refreshers™, new or seasonal coffee beans such as the Tribute Anniversary Blend™, “Buy One Get One Free Holiday Drinks”, “Treat Receipts”, the Gold Card Rewards system (encouragement of repeat purchase)- the list goes on.

Starbucks does marketing differently from their competitors. While the company was founded in 1971, their first advertising campaign on television took place in 2007. Television advertisement is not a primary focus for the company’s marketing strategy, as Starbucks “does not stress about aggressive advertising in order to win customer sales”.  Instead they utilize sales promotion, which is “less expensive and more controllable, to push immediate turnovers”.  Through sales promotions, Starbucks is able to build a strong brand loyalty among their consumers because they are able to give them a short-term incentive, which motivates them to purchase Starbucks products immediately. Currently, Starbucks is promoting their cold beverage line of drinks through the “Treat Receipt” campaign. Through this campaign, customers are encouraged to come back after 2pm with the receipt from their morning coffee in order to receive any grande sized beverage for only $2, no matter how special the customization of the drink is- stimulating trial purchase. (Typically extra shots and soy milk are an additional fee.) The “Treat Receipt” brings back the same traffic from the morning crowd and allows the consumer to try something they normally wouldn’t purchase at a discounted price.

CEO Howard Schultz stated that the company does not believe that brand sustainability can be achieved through only advertising and sales promotion, however, and that the key is to build a personal relationship with each customer. Nevertheless, this marketing strategy has led the company to its current success.

This video commercial launched in the U.K. exemplifies perfectly the Starbucks strategy of integrating sales promotion and building individual customer relationships.

Risks of Sales Promotion

Justin Sorensen




With constant competition in the industry of apparel, companies battle it out for your attention and money. One way to stand out is sales promotion and many companies big and small relay on this tactic to get you through the door. A risk in sales promotion is creating a price orientation with customers. For example, when brands position themselves as having  high value products, but push an emphases on price sales promotion it can send mixed signals to what the brand is. Is it high value or cheap?

Jos. A. Bank 2 Day Sale

Jos. A. Bank is a great example of a company that has been know to send mixed messages about their position through sales promotion. Take a closer look at the sales ad above and the commercial video below. These are common ads placed by Jos. A. Bank and the word “sale” has now been branded to their image. As mentioned earlier, creating a price orientation on a high value product creates a misinterpretation of what the product or brand represents. By offering such overwhelming sales promotions in respect to their competitors, they have caught consumers attention, but at what cost? To buy a suit at full price here would be plain stupid, and consumers are far from it. Their solution is to have such frequent sales promotions that almost every day has a sale; therefore you don’t have to wait for a great deal.

The risk they face is changing their brand image and positioning themselves as cheap. When done correctly, you can balance the amount of sales promotion to entice consumer spending while retaining your brand image. The issue with Jos. A Bank is they may have crossed the line; now when people think Jos A. Bank, they think of the ads of over the top sales. Long term Jos. A. Bank has preformed well as a business, but currently there numbers have been declining. They might have found a niche market of males that but 7 suits at a time, but judging by their recent numbers they may have created a situation for themselves with one of the risks of sales promotion.

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