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By September last year, I had begun to work on video content to quickly balance out the articles and infographics side. As a digital marketer, I knew then the importance of keeping with the trends and moved to video to enhance the value for my clients.
This was emphasised further with a video interview I did with Shahida Azad Jamaluddin, Suria FM’s Head of Digital and Branding at the time (she has now moved on to other opportunities). The 14 minutes video has been shared by hundreds of visitors on LinkedIn and Facebook respectively.
We spoke on various activities of Suria FM at the time, and I learned a lot from that particular conversation with her. However, one particular sentence triggered my interest:
“Yes, continuously creating digital content is important but it is critical for us to bring the content created to our audience out there. We have to go out to the field, reach out to them and bring the content to them.”
That’s Suria FM. And they have taken an integrated marketing approach.
I also had an interview with Zuhaila Sedek, MATRADE’s Head of Corporate Communications. MATRADE, or Malaysia’s External Trade Development Corporation in its full form, is an agency under the purview of the Ministry of International Trade and Industry Malaysia.
Somehow in the course of conversation, she too keeps on highlighting that “Digital marketing is important, yes. However we spend more time also in getting the information out by distributing them via public relations or PR and our global offices through the business networking sessions using the traditional marketing materials.” Again, integrated marketing is being emphasised at MATRADE.
A few weeks later, I had the privilege to meet and speak with Faz Kamaruddin, AirAsia’s Head of Talent at the time and her assistant Aisyah at RedQ (RedQ is a code name given to AirAsia’s headquarters in Sepang).
I told Faz that I’d been following the AirAsia brand for quite a number of years now and closely observing how they manage to brainwash people to think of AirAsia first when they think about which airplane to book for their getaway. I shared about how creative their digital marketing and branding games are, but my observation was that it’s their offline-online integrated marketing that I really admire the most. They’re playing them in balance.
“I can smell that most of the conversions are coming from the offline than the online,” I said to Aisyah and Faz.
So why is integrated marketing so important?
Because today, no single channel can win out any more. Today, it’s about being wherever customers are, giving them relevant messages, and making sure that each interaction is intelligently connected to the next. Which means delivering great customer experience and truly integrated marketing, across any and every channel: web, social, mobile, broadcast, email, in-store, outdoor and beyond. And that means re-engineering processes, investing in new technology, and creating entirely new, integrated strategies.
My eyes open wide when suddenly I realised that in Malaysia, one similar Marketing pattern surfaces right after those interviews. Despite the fact that these three well known brands are very active playing their online marketing game, they still rely heavily on traditional methods for conversions. Yes, they all agreed that digital marketing plays a great role in getting the awareness out quick, reaching out more and more people with just a fraction of cost, yet this method is primarily meant for just building awareness to make their brands easily remembered. Conversions is not the key aim. It’s still the traditional ways that really move people to consider the purchase.
Now let’s ponder about that for a minute.
Azleen Abdul Rahim is the co-founder and editor of Marketing in Asia, a resource centre for all things marketing. Our peers in the online magazine world, the site hosts experts in marketing who have influenced and inspired powerful marketing concepts and ideas that are both shareable and immediately applicable. SME Assist is proud to collaborate with Azleen in bringing you thought pieces of experts in their field as well as the best approaches you can take to upgrade your marketing. You can visit the Marketing in Asia site at www.marketinginasia.com, and follow Azleen on LinkedIn (https://www.linkedin.com/in/azleenabdrahim).