Integrated marketing communication is an important part of a company's overall marketing strategy. The goal of an integrated marketing communication strategy is to ensure that all communications remain consistent and convey the company's message in a way that adheres to its values, image and goals. Ensuring an integrated marketing strategy is often the responsibility of the chief marketing officer of an organization or its director of marketing communication.
When a single person does all the marketing for an organization, it's fairly certain that all marketing communications will be consistent with each other and present the same brand image. However, at larger organizations, several different departments can be responsible for marketing messages, in addition to messages coming from sales and communications created by outside agencies. The possibility of confusion, or at least different styles of communication going out on different channels, without intent, are great without an integrated communication strategy.
The pitfalls of not having an integrated marketing strategy are great. Inconsistent messages can lead to consumer confusion. They can also make the brand's image fragmented. Serious problems, such as contradictory promotions going out, are also possible.
The proliferation of channels for marketing, ranging from social media to email, broadcast advertising to direct mail, makes it even more important to have an integrated marketing communication strategy in place. More channels can increase the odds of an inconsistent message going out if a central directing strategy in not in place.
Consistent communication is important within an organization as well. Ensuring that all employees receive consistent messaging ensures that they can convey the right messages to customers at all times.