What is fusion marketing and how can it help Australian business?
Businesses can save time and money by proactively evaluating important customer needs from their online presence/offerings. Their web-presence and the overall marketing plan should be cohesively integrated to complement each other to meet organizational goals cost-effectively. Every marketing initiative needs to support and enhance the other – seamlessly.
Small & medium sized enterprises (SMEs) that lack the marketing budgets of their larger competitors are amongst the greatest gainers from internet marketing and online customer services. Internet marketing is highly adaptive; thanks to its ability to monitor ongoing results accurately and quickly change ongoing campaigns in real time for best possible results and return on investment.
Online promotions can greatly benefit from proven traditional/offline marketing initiatives like yellow pages advertisements, direct mail and display advertisements. Similarly brick-and-mortar businesses need to effectively leverage the Internet to promote themselves and get more business online. Leveraging the synergies of online and offline marketing innovations together can help a business maximise the impact of even a shoestring marketing budget.
Follow the customer
‘Customer is the king’ and marketing’s primary motive is to serve the information needs of the targeted customers. As it is expensive and risky to change consumer habits, integrated marketing strategies need to follow customer preferences rather than creating them where traditional marketing methods are firmly entrenched. For example, in the case of popular sports events, television is the primary means of viewing them.
Online marketing needs to compliment the offline viewing through innovative contests and co-branded (with the sports event brand) informative advertisements and memorabilia. At the same time smart TV advertisement placements can drive traffic to the web based advertisement for special promotional sales related to the sporting event. A well planned media plan creates the required customer attention. Significantly it also generates useful leads with word of mouth /viral advertising as interested fans spread the word around of compelling campaigns.
The brand promotional synergies these online-offline commercials generate build a sustainable brand salience, provided it makes a tangible difference to a consumer’s life.
While TV advertisements en-cash the mass appeal of sporting events; the online promotions leverage the convenience and interactivity of the web medium. The increased time consumers spend engaging with the online and offline advertisements of these brands in positive ways allows smart marketers to build higher awareness and brand preference.
Integrated Marketing / Fusion Marketing
According to a recent Forrester Research Report, online advertising boosts brand impact at 60% less cost than piling on more offline advertisements in the right conditions. Marketers need not abandon traditional, offline efforts entirely; but should add better researched online promotions to current campaigns. Media combinations grab greater attention as multiple media together has greater impact than an individual medium on its own.
The fusion marketing approach is here to stay:
Momentum boosts conversion- Consumers today prefer to gather comparative information about products / services from online and offline sources to make a better informed decision. Each media exposure builds on the other by helping the consumer in its unique way, at different stages in the buying cycle. If the brand messaging is consistent across various online and offline media, the repetition captures and retains the consumer’s attention more effectively. This increases chances of higher conversions.
Sustained relationship-building increases repeat business – Integrating offline and online mediums increases customer touch-points leading to a stronger relationship. Email fulfillment / event invitations to offline customers are cost effective and user friendly as their readership can be tracked (click-throughs). Similarly an offline event can build an online learning community of loyal customers.
Interactivity increases marketing efficiency – Internet Marketing offers the unique opportunity to engage customers in a convenient manner that can supplement offline initiatives. Offline businesses can register participants online for a special promotional scheme and then interact with consumers to even gauge their preferences. Intelligent tracking of the overall campaign performance with coordinated online and offline campaigns effectively eliminate waste.
Intelligently executed online-offline commercials build brand impact with the target audience much better than expensive commercials with beautiful celebrities. Real people love authenticity conveyed to them in a convenient manner.