Define what external integration is versus what it is not, and its importance to the customer experience.
- [Voiceover] I want you to imagine all your brand's external marketing pinned up on a wall. If everything looked exactly the same, customers would start to tune out. They wouldn't feel the need to engage with your brand's communications. Why? Because they would feel that they already heard the brand's message. So, to create integrated messaging across external touchpoints, don't just duplicate the exact same message like identical twins. Think of integration like a family resemblance. Kind of like an extended family; grandparents, cousins, a sister or brother, children, or parents.
That marketing would all feel like it's coming from the same brand and will engage customers because they'll want to hear those messages. So, external integration is creating a seamless experience across external touchpoints, such as in-store signage, the website, brochures, social media sites, direct mail, videos, or print ads. External integration engages your customers. If you're brand is inconsistent across touchpoints, customers won't know what your brand stands for, how it's different from competition, or what to expect from the brand.
Integrating your brand across touchpoints makes your marketing campaigns more efficient. Instead of creating a whole new look and feel for every campaign, you can use similar assets such as colors, fonts, or imagery. You can write copy that has a similar tone of voice. And most importantly, each integrated tactical message will align with the brand positioning. Use data and insight to create a consistent, sustained, superior customer experience.
For example, the Ritz Carlton uses data and analytics to benefit customers. They track special requests to anticipate a customer's needs during their next stay. And that drives loyalty and advocacy. Let's try something. Take a moment, close your eyes, and envision your favorite brand. Think about that brand's communications and your interactions with the brand. What's that brand like in social media? What was the brand like in online chat or customer service? Most likely, that brand's experience is integrated.
Use this reference point as you integrate your own brand's marketing. Another great way to see integration at work is to revisit brands you've recently interacted with. Maybe you bought something at the Apple Store. Did you notice a theme at their store? Or maybe you're thinking about buying an electric car, like a Tesla. Do you see any themes between the look of the car, the website, and the brochure? Or maybe you booked a flight online recently. Was the confirmation email you received similar to the website experience? When you successfully integrate your external messaging, look and feel, you'll create a superior customer experience.
- Thinking about integration more holistically
- Investing in integration
- Integrating vertically to align with purpose, mission, and values
- Creating a vertical framework
- Integrating horizontally
- Integrating externally across all marketing communications touchpoints
- Learning from world-class marketers
- Integrating internally across employee communications
- Creating one brand
- Leveraging and engaging employees
- Overcoming cultural and process integration obstacles