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Marketing Communications 101

Posted: Mar 20, 2015, By: Brandi Welk

We have all heard of Marketing Communications, but what is it? 
Marketing Communications, also known as MarComm, is the integration and coordination of a company’s multiple communication channels to deliver a clear, consistent and compelling message about the organization and its products or services. This can include advertising, direct marketing, branding, online presence, PR activities, etc. In the past, marketing and communications have been considered two different entities. In fact, many would say that public relations is a branch of marketing. 
According to Ryan Gerds, APR, CPRC, our guest speaker for March’s chapter meeting, “This is furthest from the truth. At the end of the day, we are all communicators.” Gerds has successfully married marketing and communications within his company, RTI Surgical. His company operates under the structure of having “one company and one voice.” Conflicting messages from different sources or promotional approaches can confuse company of brand images. Building a Marketing Communications department within your organization can be extremely beneficial, but it does come with some opposition. Employees might feel threatened by managerial power and resist outside suppliers. Fears could include the thoughts of budget cutbacks, loss of power, and loss of revenue.
With any change comes concerns, but there are vital keys to success to overcome these challenges. “Find talented people and build your team the way you envision YOUR department,” said Gerds. You should work in collaboration with each business unit, as well as, with your entire communications division. Your team should stick to timelines and established rules. If you bend them once, you will be asked to bend them once again. Avoid the trouble and realize that “it’s okay to say no.” Other keys to success include establishing solid standard operating procedures, explore fixed costs when working with ad agencies, keep your CEO in the loop, have REALLY thick skin and embrace the challenge.


At the end of the day, it is important to remember that “we are all communicators.” Our job is to be a consultant for our company. By integrating a Marketing Communications department, we can save money and time, gain control, and establish a solid structure. Sounds like a win-win to us!


To learn more about Gerds’ success and expertise on this topic, click here to view his full presentation.