A Salute to the Champions of Integrated Marketing Communications

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In the digital age, how well information is used may determine the commercial success of products and services. Converting legacy thinking, skills and business practices – along with legacy systems (both back office and front office) – to react to the new digital reality can determine how competitive legacy businesses can be – especially versus companies that were born digital. (Source)

The ability to bridge traditional with the new is paramount for success in today’s new era of marketing and communications. Channel orchestration and holistic messaging are the components of a lasting brand messaging approach. Many individuals and organizations from brands to NGO’s are experimenting with the multiple facets of Integrated Marketing Communications (IMC). However, there’s a big disparity between what happens offline and what happens online. Some might call this a disconnect. But let’s not blame the practitioner but rather the fast pace of technology change and external environmental constraints.

IMC is really for the brave of heart and those that are seeking to develop a certain set of skills relevant for global amplification.  Can we deny that consumers are inundated with sales tactics and strong advertising pitches? Of course not. At the heart of IMC, lies a special appreciation for the plethora of components that comprise the field of marketing and communications. As students and stakeholders of the WVU IMC program, I salute you. Give yourselves a pat on the back. You really are a collective of influential and dynamic practitioners of a communications toolbox that has and will enable you to craft meaningful change and global impact.

IMC provides its students with a collection of diverse skill sets and unique knowledge across a vast field of subjects including:

  • Digital Storytelling
  • Multicultural Marketing
  • Direct Marketing
  • Public Relations
  • Social Media Marketing
  • Brand Architecture
  • Creative Strategy and Advertising
  • Visual Information Design
  • Cause Marketing
  • Mobile Marketing
  • Marketing Research & Analysis

Talk about a prolific collective of valuable skills spanning some of the most critical elements of reaching consumers across a multitude of touchpoints. As technology continues to increase, sometimes starting with a digital first mindset makes plenty of sense. Especially, in an arena where mobile phones out-ship desktop PCs.

“A successful digital strategy requires a holistic approach, involving Web, mobile, social and traditional platforms.”

As the founder of Hub 81, an integrated marketing communications startup now garnering some good traction, please allow me to reiterate the importance of cohesive messaging. Yes, there are some (Actually, many!) who have yet to grasp the concept of bridging the gap between traditional marketing methods and new media. That’s where you come in. As champions of IMC, you have the ability to drive the conversation and help build the importance of channel synergy.

What we’re talking about are champions of reach across platforms, devices, and experiences.

I salute all of you. Not that it means much but it’s a demonstration of my appreciation for your efforts in increasing the spotlight placed on the field of IMC. It’s been a fantastic ride as an IMC Ambassador and to those who’ve made my experience a rich one, I thank you!

About José Huitron

Jose  is a recent Graduate of the Integrated Marketing Communications Online Master’s program at WVU. He is a champion of bold possibility and global communications impact. As the founder of Vista Hispano and Hub 81, he is focused on offering clients solutions to holistic brand strategy that spans the fields of new media, multicultural marketing, and meaningful experiences. Feel free to connect with Jose on Twitter at @josehuitron or on LinkedIn.

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