According to Ms. Linda Hall and Dr. Mark Wickham of the University of Tasmania, there is a lot of homogeneity in products, services, and prices, the concept of integrated marketing communication has become the ‘new frontier’ to enable organizations to differentiate themselves, their products and services from other. (Hall and Wickam). IMC is the transformation of business messages to the consumer group on an integrated basis “IMC is defined as a management concept that is designed to make all aspects of marketing communication such as advertising, sales promotion, public relations, and direct marketing work together as a unified force rather than permitting each to work in isolation.” (Lake 2009).
There are several primary reasons why organizations need to change their isolated marketing communication approach to an integrated one. They are changes in society, changes in the economy, and changes in technology. (Varey 2001, p.254).
Changes in society: The behavior and pattern of buying among consumers have undergone a sea change when compared to a few decades back. The concept of a brand loyal market has changed to a repertoire market. An article titled ‘Mistakes Marketers Make’ that appeared in eh Wall Street Journal states that marketers focus on building brand-loyal customers, while in reality, this concept is fast disappearing. This is truer in the case of consumer goods.
“Most frequently purchased consumer goods are in repertoire markets, though many consumers don’t realize it.” (Corkindale 2008). The feature of a repertoire market is that customers will have a basket of goods of the same type of product which he or she will alternatively buy. “In a repertoire market, the customer will buy from a repertoire of brands (more than one brand).” (Marketing Wisdom for 2004: 99 Marketers and Agencies Share Real-Life Tips). The Wall Street Journal Article mentioned earlier states that in such a case marketers need to reach a larger audience and hence resorting to an integrated marketing approach will be more practical.