Integrating Marketing Communications to Build Brand Equity
This chapter describes the new media environment and role of marketing
communications in building brand equity. Advertising, promotions, direct marketing,
event sponsorship, personal selling, publicity and public relations and other forms of
marketing communications are the means by which firms stay in touch with consumers
and form relationships with them. They can help build customer-based brand equity by
affecting brand awareness; by creating, reinforcing or strengthening favorable and unique
band associations; by eliciting positive brand judgements or feelings; and facilitating
brand resonance. A communications campaign should contain a mix of options, each
selected based on its ability to achieve specific objectives and to integrate with other
options to maximize brand equity.
The options included in a mix should, through their complementarity, produce results that
are greater than the sum of their individual effects. Whenever possible, options should be
linked to one another through the use of common visual or verbal information. Such
links, or cues, enhance consumer motivation, ability, and opportunity to process and
retrieve brand-related information. Hence, they facilitate the formation of strong,
favorable, and unique associations.
Components of a communication strategy can be judged for their ability to achieve the
desired brand knowledge structures and elicit the differential response from consumers
that creates brand equity. Six success factors for advertising are identified: consumer
targeting, ad creative, consumer understanding, brand positioning, consumer motivation,
and ad memorability. A flexible marketing program is one that contributes to brand
equity in a number of different ways.
Each type of marketing communication tool is evaluated in the chapter. These include all
advertising, in the form of television, radio, print, direct response, on-line, place
(billboard, poster, movie, airport, product placement). Also included are promotions –
sales promotions, consumer promotions, and trade promotions; event marketing and
sponsorship; public relations and publicity; and personal selling.
The chapter discusses the importance of integrated marketing communication for
maximizing the contribution to brand equity of a brand’s marketing program. An