Why Integrated Marketing Matters: Reconciling Digital and Analog

It’s not hard to extoll the virtues of digital media and their accompanying analytics. Things like programmatic, automation and geotargeting offer huge advantages for marketers — more than enough to justify their buzz. And mobile marketing adds a new dimension to the game. Even experiential marketing is taking on a digital outlook with virtual reality tools. So what place, if any, does analog marketing have in an apparently digital future?

 

To answer that question, American Greetings rolled out a unique campaign during this year’s SXSW. The greeting card company, contrary the festival’s digital inclinations, offered a three-day experiential station, appropriately titled “Analog”, that focused on printmaking, “paper engineering” and vinyl. And it’s not without cause: people really like greeting cards. That interest shows — business is stable.

 

As executive director of marketing Alex Ho summarized for Co.Create, “…people are looking for ways to differentiate from today’s everyday digital communications…The point we wanted to make overall is that analog communication and personalization really matter to people, and they’re complementary to digital…”

 

The takeaway for marketers: a cohesive brand experience is a memorable one — and a memorable brand experience is detailed enough to meet the customer at each touchpoint and decision.

 

This is something that Apple accomplishes well. It’s no secret that the tech giant is painfully meticulous about its packaging; and by guiding its consumers’ initial tactile experience, it reinforces its brand positioning. It rounds out the purchasing experience and is a longer investment on customer loyalty.

 

Google Cardboard has made virtual reality a more accessible technology for the average consumer. Brands with the imagination and bandwidth to build out VR apps can further solidify their campaigns with custom Google Cardboard headsets, tying a digital experiential campaign with a useful and reusable branded product. And it’s not hard to take these promotional products to the next level — they can be made of more premium materials than just cardboard.

 

Whether your approach to marketing is more agile or campaign-focused, it’s imperative to keep in mind your customers’ experiences as they explore your brand. Work with your integrated marketing partner to identify the gaps in your branding and messaging. And it’s always worth asking: how do your customers remember you?

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