Business Influence Through Marketing Communications

Communications is the unique tool that marketers use to persuade consumers to act in a desired way. It can be verbal, either written or spoken, it can be visual or a combination of the two. Communication is the bridge between marketers and consumers, and between consumers and their sociological environments.

Communication is defined as the transmission of a message from a sender to a receiver by means of a signal of some sort sent through a channel of some sort.

How the communication message is received
The mass audience as individual receivers: A mass audience is simply a great number of individual receiver's, each with his or her own interest, experiences, needs, wants, desires.

Market segmentation strategies divide the total audience into smaller audiences, each of which is homogenous in relation to characteristics relevant to the product. Specific advertising messages can be designed for each segment, and run in the media that appeals to that segment. Each individual thus feels that the message is specifically addressed to his interest and needs.

Multiple audiences: The ultimate success of an organization depends on its ability to persuade many different audiences as the nature of their products or services. Companies with diverse audiences develop an overall communication message to all of their audiences, from which they spin off a series of related messages targeted directly at the specific interest of each individual audience. i.e. The BP opposite advert - winter, summer - black, white - beyond petroleum, BP.

Selling intermediaries: In addition to advertising to the ultimate consumer (nation advertising), manufactures usually direct advertising messages to each functional level of their distribution channels. The people who sell their products must stock them.

Trade advertising is directed to product re-sellers (distributors, wholesalers and retailers) and appeals to high profits, fast turnover, and increased store traffic. i.e. A paint manufacture stocks extra product in a hardware shop in anticipation of increased turnover due to the advertising campaign

Industrial advertising is directed from one manufacturer to other manufacturer to get them to use their advertised product in manufacturing their own products. i.e. A supplier of raw materials supplies the product to an injection moulding company to manufacture confectionery tubs.

Professional advertising is used to persuade the professional to prescribe or recommend the advertised product to their clients or patients. i.e. A pharmacist recommending Sinutab or a supplier of analytical equipment closing a deal to a laboratory.

Retail advertising is directed to getting consumers into the store - it is not important what they buy, so as long as they buy from the store concerned. i.e. Pick 'n Pay end of the month inserts and ads in the local newspapers showing what great bargains they have in food and household goods.

There are two types of communications interpersonal and impersonal
Interpersonal
Informal: The sender speaks as one friend to another. Word-of-mouth communication tends to be highly persuasive as the sender apparently has nothing to gain from the receiver's later actions.

Formal: Between a salesperson and a customer. Face-to-face communication can be verbal or non-verbal e.g.. applause, facial expression, bodily movements.

Impersonal
There is no direct contact between the sender and the receiver. These communications are carried out by the mass media such as television, radio, newspapers, magazines and billboards.
The sender indicates how the persuasive the message has been by resulting action or lack of action.

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