Describe how would you plan Integrated Communication Process for launching a Product


CSS Solved Business Administration Past Paper 2020 | Describe how would you plan Integrated Communication Process for launching a Product

The following question is attempted by Miss Nimra Masood, the top scorer in CSS Business Administration papers. Moreover, the answer is written on the same pattern, taught by Sir to his students, scoring the highest marks in compulsory subjects for years. This solved past paper question is uploaded to help aspirants understand how to crack a topic or question, how to write relevantly, what coherence is, and how to include and connect ideas, opinions, and suggestions to score the maximum.

Topic Breakdown:
Topic: Promotion
Subject: Marketing

Business Management is incomplete without an effective marketing strategy; therefore, an in-depth study of marketing concepts is key to scoring a good grade on this paper.


Among all other integral elements of marketing, promotion is one crucial part of a successful marketing strategy. Before launching a new product, it is necessary to build strong communication with expected consumers. Integrated communication is a part of the promotion mix that helps to persuade people towards the new product. Integrated communication is a comprehensive six-step process that provides a detailed insight into the customer, effective means to achieve them and the associated costs.

Integrated Communication Process:

The main purpose of this process is to gain maximum profits by taking a customer-centric approach. It links marketing objectives and goals with that of business. In this approach, all marketing strategies are linked to each other instead of working in seclusion.

  • Key Factors in Integrated Marketing Communication:
  1. It is a continuous process, including strategizing, evaluating and taking corrective steps.
  2. Its main purpose is to gain maximum revenue.
  3. It is customer-centric with the whole process revolving around them
  4. It replaces the old marketing model by aligning goals with objectives.

Planning an Integrated Communication Process for New Product:

It is a six-step process explaining in detail the target customer, promotion strategy and budgets involved.

  • Identify the Target Audience:

The initial thing to start with is the identification of a potential audience. There are two ways of defining a target audience: Mass marketing and segmentation. On most occasions, it is difficult to follow the mass marketing strategy. Segmentation is the most sought strategy in marketing. The behavioural data provides insight into the customer: history, actions and consumption rates etc. the demographic data is the other part of informing about the customers’ age, gender, location and income etc.

  • Develop Contextual or Situational Analysis:

It is an analysis of the internal and external environment that could affect the brand. There are two different analyses, SWOT and PEST, that provide comprehensive insight into the environmental factors.

A. SWOT Analysis:
This is the analysis of factors within the industry that could affect the performance of a product.

  1. Strengths:
    These are the core competencies that will benefit the company.
  2. Weaknesses:
    These are the loopholes in the company or product that could be exploited by competitors.
  3. Opportunities:
    These are the loopholes of competitors or un-serviced areas, which could benefit the company.
  4. Threats:
    These are the core competencies of competitors that could become a risk for the company in future.

B. PEST Analysis:
These are factors outside the industry that could affect the performance of a Product

  1. Political:
    Any possible change in the politico-legal standing of the country that could have an impact on the product.
  2. Economic:
    This is the most crucial, relevant and dynamic part of the environment that needs to be closely monitored to evaluate product performance.
  3. Social and Cultural:
    Sometimes sociocultural factors also influence the product.
  4. Technological:
    The introduction of new technology can impact product demand.
  • Develop Marketing Objectives:

The purpose of communication must be clear and precise. Unless the objective is known, it becomes difficult to devise an effective strategy. There can be many objectives, such as creating brand awareness, improving brand image, improving sales and reinforcing customer decisions. Once the objective is clearly defined, then it becomes easier to formulate a strategy in accordance with it. The target audience can be at any stage of the Buyer-readiness cycle. Starting from awareness, liking, preference, conviction and purchase, customers could be at any stage. The real marketing objective is to move the target customer through the buying process.

  • Establish Budget:

The next step is to determine the budget needs. Allocating financial resources is the first step in developing a promotional plan. There are many different methods in which the budget may be allocated:

  1. Affordable Method:
    Setting the promotion budget at a level the management deems affordable.
  2. Percentage of Sales Budget:
    Setting the promotion budget at a certain level of current or forecasted sales.
  3. Competitive-Parity Method:
    Setting the budget level in accordance with that of competitors.
  4. Objective and Task Method:
    Setting certain objectives of marketing and then defining the tasks needed to accomplish those objectives. At last, assessing the costs required to accomplish those tasks.
  • Define Strategies and Tactics:

The most elaborate and technical part of this whole process is defining a strategy to achieve the promotion mix.  Designing the message, choosing appeal, and the medium of communication are three pillars in defining the communication strategy.

  1. Designing the Message:
    The AIDA model is the best way to design an attractive and comprehensive strategy.
    A: The awareness. It is the ability to gain customer attention
    I: It is the ability to raise customer interest, especially by focusing on features.
    D: Advertising is a means to arouse desire among customers to satisfy their needs.
    A: The action customer takes by purchasing the product or service.
  2. Choosing the Appeal:
    There are several different types of appeal that could be deployed according to the target audience and product usage. While the emotional appeal may give a quicker response but on some occasions, it does not fit the marketing mix. Other appeals like rational, comedy and usage are also useful according to product type.
  3. Medium of Communication:
    There are many different types of communication channels. The target audience and demographic factors assist in deciding the mode of communication. From electronic to social media, personal selling and viral marketing are all effective sources of communication. Companies may use more than one mode of communication according to the purpose and scope.
  • Evaluation and Feedback:

The last step in the evaluation phase is the evaluation and measurement of the whole communication process. This measurement can be done from the change in sales or social media following. This step gives the final judgment about the degree of success of the whole integrated communication process.


The integrated communication process is the core of the promotion strategy. It provides the pathway to interact with the potential consumer. Each of the six steps in the process explains how the product could perform better in the competitive environment.

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