Back in the good old days, marketing and campaigns were synonymous. You developed creative, purchased ad space and hoped for the best. In true Draper fashion, creative and “the idea” were the center of your world, while placement options were relatively limited and straightforward.

Today, with new digital channels creating a “24 hour marketing cycle”, it’s easy to feel like you need to be in constant communication with your audience. Because you can connect with people anytime and anywhere, and because marketers now have to manage multiple roles and areas of expertise, the focus often shifts to the channel – the Facebook post, the free download, the email blast – seeing it as the end rather than the means.

Call us old fashioned, but we still believe in the power of the campaign – perhaps more than ever. A targeted message to a targeted audience with a clear call to action and consistent visuals is, in our opinion, the only way to truly cut through the clutter created by advertising overload. Here are three reasons why marketing campaigns are critical to success.

Integration

Isolated marketing messages can be effective, but only in isolated scenarios. Someone sees your ad and makes a purchase, or Likes your Facebook page and gives you a call. But if you want to make a wide and lasting impact, you need integration.

Because audiences are bombarded with more marketing messages than ever, drip marketing is easily forgotten. To keep up with the pace of information, audiences need to be seeing your message across multiple touch points and through every interaction with you. There is nothing more powerful than mail, email, your website, your social media and your advertising working together to make a memorable impression.  A campaign helps you streamline your efforts and creates a messaging “home base” that informs each individual tactic and channel – helping you better reach your audience AND saving you tons of time.

Consistency

According to the old marketing “rule of seven,” a prospect needs to hear a message at least seven times before they will take action. With that theory developed in the 1930s, it’s likely that the number has increased due to the constant clutter presented to audiences. If you’re sending a different message with every piece of communication you release, it’s going to be much more difficult to truly make an impression on your audience.

Brand awareness is one of the primary factors in audience behavior and purchasing decisions, and it takes repetition and consistency to build awareness. When you’re getting sick of your message or art, your audience is just starting to recognize it. A campaign helps you stay consistent in your visuals and messaging, ensuring that you’re making multiple impressions on your audience, building brand awareness and inspiring action.

Measurement

Because campaigns are contained by theme and timing, it’s easy to measure how different efforts perform to reach your goals. Rather than just look to your overall bottom line as a gauge of marketing success, measuring campaigns – and each distribution channel within them – can provide us with a wealth of information and keep us agile. Measuring campaign performance allows us to test how different messages perform and which audiences are most engaged, while data from each channel can help us determine the best way to reach those audiences and the best places to put our dollars.

The best part? The real-time nature of digital marketing gives us data fast, meaning we can adjust efforts, move budgets and tweak messages as we go – saving money and maximizing opportunity.

The next time you’re struggling to keep up with the pace of marketing or feel like your efforts are all happening in a vacuum, take a breather, channel your inner Mad Man and think in terms of campaigns rather than channels. A great message backed by consistent visuals and strategically distributed to reach your target audience beats out clutter every time. 

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