Difference Between IMC and Marketing

Edited by Diffzy | Updated on: September 22, 2022


Difference Between IMC and Marketing Difference Between IMC and Marketing

Why read @ Diffzy

Our articles are well-researched

We make unbiased comparisons

Our content is free to access

We are a one-stop platform for finding differences and comparisons

We compare similar terms in both tabular forms as well as in points


To be successful, a business must have strong pillars such as advertising, marketing, and promotion. These steps are often more important than the product being promoted. These terms may be confusing to laymen. Marketing and IMC seem very similar, but they are fundamentally different. Let’s discuss the Difference Between IMC and Marketing.

When developing a company's marketing strategy, IMC and marketing are terms often used. Companies use marketing to sell their products and services to ensure that customers are satisfied. IMC stands for "Integrated Marketing Communications", and it is a combination of all marketing methods, tools, and approaches that companies use to present a cohesive message to customers. This ensures that customers have the most impact on their minds.

Market competition is fierce in today's market. It is crucial for a company's marketing department to create a promotional mix and also to ensure that an integrated marketing communication plan is developed. In essence, the IMC coordinates all promotional messages for a product in order to maintain consistency and coherence.

This article will cover the definitions of integrated marketing communications and marketing. We will then discuss the Difference Between IMC and Marketing.

IMC vs. Marketing

Marketing and IMC are two different things. IMC stands for Integrated Marketing Communications. It is a management system that includes all the steps necessary to promote a product successfully. On the other hand, marketing is a single action that promotes the product.

IMC, or Integrated Marketing Communications, consists of a series of steps that include Marketing, Advertising, and Sales Promotions. This includes all aspects of marketing and promotion. It also involves customer relationship management through active communication with customers. As the name implies, IMC integrates all aspects of promotion and marketing and presents it to consumers as a complete package.

On the other hand, marketing is a single strategy or action that promotes a product. All businesses, large and small, use marketing. It helps in developing new markets and formulating strategies. Marketing is based on the principle that consumers should be satisfied with the purchased product.

Difference Between IMC and Marketing in Tabular Form

Table: IMC vs. Marketing
Parameters for Comparison
Defined as
Combination of different Marketing Channels
The act of selling and promoting a product
4Ps- Product, Price, Place, Promotion.
Use various Marketing Strategies to reach people
Generating Sales
Focus on
Sending powerful messages to consumers
Create Awareness About the Brand
Coordinating Tools, Avenues, and Sources
Analyzing consumer needs, Promotion, Sales, etc.

What is IMC?

IMC, which stands for Integrated Marketing Communications, is a term that encompasses all aspects of marketing and communication. IMC is not a standalone concept. It's a group of all marketing concepts.

Once a company has a product, the next step is often promotion and marketing. IMC is one strategy that can be used to promote a product. IMC is the modern-day marketing strategy. IMC, as the name implies, combines a variety of communication methods to communicate the message to customers and invite them to the product.

These methods include direct marketing, public relations, and advertising. IMC's sole purpose is to build a strong brand and consumer relationship. The IMC sometimes allows the brand to modify the product through customer feedback.

IMC's mission is to identify and listen to the needs of consumers and then approach brands with their requirements. Finally, the brand will provide the customer with what they require. This creates and manages hassle-free public relations.

IMC can also be described as a business action that includes all marketing strategies that aim to connect people and places. It involves the integration of communication tools, sales avenues, sources, and channels of a specific brand/organization. IMC tools include Brand Management, Advertising Design and Advertising Management, Consumer Promotion, and others. IMC now actively includes Internet Marketing/Digital Marketing to increase its impact on consumers.

The IMC (Integrated Marketing Communication Plan) features

1. The shift in promotional expenditure from traditional media to non-traditional media:

Traditional media is less targeted and more costly than the new tools for promotion. Traditional media advertising is less popular with consumers. They may avoid traditional media advertising by speed-forwarding recorded shows and changing channels during commercial breaks. Integrating the brand into movies, shows, or events is the best way to communicate effectively with your target audience. This characteristic is very different from traditional marketing tools.

2. Use of social media and the internet to communicate:

The Internet revolution is here and millions of people are surfing the web every second. Social media has seen rapid growth and development. People use it to share their experiences, content, information, and suggestions about products that they have used. Marketing communication today is defined by social media, which allows for regular and close interaction between consumers.

3. The growth of database marketing:

Modern companies have large databases that contain customer names, geographical profiles, demographic profiles, psychographic profiles, as well as their psychographic profiles. Companies also have databases that contain information about customers' purchasing habits, financial resources, and media preferences.

This allows them to target customers using a variety of direct marketing methods, such as e-mails and direct mail. Customers are encouraged to take up Customer Relationship Management (CRM), which involves regular and systematic monitoring of their preferences and behaviours, and then modifying products or services to suit them.

4. Market Place Power in the Retail Industry

A major shift has occurred in the marketplace power, from retailers to manufacturers. Small and medium-sized local retailers are being replaced by national, regional and international chains, such as Walmart, More, Reliance and More. These retailers often demand promotional fees from manufacturers which can sometimes siphon money from advertising.

Technology such as -check-out scanners gives retailers all the information they need about the effectiveness and efficiency of manufacturers' promotional programs. Marketers are now spending more money on promotional tools. This tool is more used than any other.

5. Advertising Agencies are required to be more accountable

Producers are asking for greater accountability from the advertising agencies and requiring them to deliver immediate results. Marketers are offering incentives to advertising agencies in order to increase their profitability. Companies are now looking beyond traditional advertising agencies to find other marketing communication firms that can help them develop integrated marketing programs.

There are more agencies that specialize in internet marketing, public relations, media planning, social media, and direct marketing. They realize that the success of their clients' marketing programs will determine their future.

What is marketing?

Marketing, as mentioned above is the act of selling a product and active promotion. Marketing is not just about encouraging consumers to purchase the product, but also about maintaining a relationship with loyal customers.

Although marketing strategies may vary from one brand to the next, they are the same. The strategy includes identifying a target market for the product. Some brands target a specific market, while others target all markets. This increases the potential and market space for the product.

The next step is for the brand to modify the product and place it before the target market. This is called product placement. It primarily involves satisfying the target market by offering a logical solution for their problems.

Marketing can be used by any business, from small-scale handicrafts companies to large-scale footwear companies. Marketing is a way to show the value of the brand and establish a relationship between the Brand and the Consumer. Marketing ensures that consumers who arrive for a brand's products are not restricted to one brand. It is essential that marketing be done well to develop new markets for a brand.

The 4Ps of Marketing Strategy are Product, Place Price, Promotion and Promotion. These are the four wheels of the car. If one of these doesn't work with the others, the message won't be delivered effectively to consumers and product sales will suffer greatly.

Marketing Essentials Features

1. Both need and want:

Marketing is about satisfying the wants and needs of consumers. This is how people are attracted to marketing.

Although everyone has similar needs, their wants can be quite different. For example, feeling hungry is an instinctive need, but eating only dosa and sambhar is a way to satisfy it. The seller attempts to determine the needs of the consumer and what they want.

2. How to create a market offering

Marketing is second in creating a market offering. This refers to giving complete information about products and services. For example, the name and price of the product or service, as well as details about its availability and location. Good market offers are always ready to meet the customer's needs and prioritize their interests.

3. Customer Value

Before buying a product, a buyer evaluates its cost and the level of satisfaction it provides. Only then will he/she purchase it if the satisfaction it offers exceeds its cost.

This customer's tendency should be considered by the seller when the product is being manufactured. If a seller doesn't pay attention to what a buyer thinks of a product, he or she will be in the backseat of the competition.

4. Exchange Mechanism

Marketing is all about exchange. Marketing is the act of exchanging goods. Marketing involves two sides: the buyer and the seller. Only through the exchange between them can marketing be made possible.

In exchange for goods or services, the seller may give money to the buyer. Nowadays, the distance between the production site and the consumption location has increased.

Many intermediaries, such as agents, wholesalers and retailers, can be used to reduce this distance. This distance can be reduced by marketing. Marketing is all about exchange.

(a) Two sides, the seller and the buyer.

(b) Both parties should be able to trade something, e.g. money for a product.

(c) Both parties must be able to communicate. Without communication, there is no way to buy or sell.

(d) Each party does the transaction independently, without pressure.

Marketing and integrated marketing communications (IMC) are two different things

Below are some key Difference Between IMC and Marketing

1. Significance

Marketing is the process of identifying a market and promoting products and services there. Integrated marketing communications is the combination of all promotional messages and activities by a company to deliver a consistent message to customers.

2. Scope

Marketing is a whole field. The marketing mix includes four key elements known as the 4Ps. Product, price, promotion and place are the key elements of marketing. However, integrated marketing communications refers to the entire promotional mix. It can therefore be said that integrated market communications is one element of marketing.

3. Objective

Marketing is designed to increase awareness and sales. IMC, on other hand, integrates the different promotional tools and approaches of a company to create a stronger impact on consumers' minds.

Main Difference Between IMC and Marketing in Points

  1. IMC's main goal is to combine different marketing and communication strategies to convey a consistent message to consumers. Marketing, however, is primarily about promoting the sale of products and services in a specific market.
  2. IMC is primarily focused on promotion while marketing focuses mainly on the 4Ps - Product, Price and Place.
  3. IMC's primary goal is to combine different aspects to make a strong impression on consumers. Marketing, on the other side, is to generate large sales for the product.
  4. Marketing, on the other hand, has a wider range of activities and has IMC's narrower focus.
  5. IMC creates a strong consumer-brand relationship. Marketing, however, not only establishes that relationship but strives to keep it.
  6. IMC's main tools and components include brand management, design, and internet marketing. Marketing is about understanding a market and then promoting that market.


It is evident that IMC and Marketing appear to overlap, but they have subtle differences which make them different. Both IMC and Marketing are essential for any business in today's competitive market. Marketing and IMC work together to achieve the best results in a business.

IMC is becoming more popular due to increased Internet Marketing, better public relations and IMC. However, IMC is still vital for large-scale businesses. IMC and Marketing are often used in tandem within a company. IMC is often considered the sub-element of Marketing.


  1. https://www.emerald.com/insight/content/doi/10.1108/13563280610643525/full/htmlfullSc=1&fullSc=1&mbSc=1&fullSc=1
  2. https://api.taylorfrancis.com/content/books/mono/downloadidentifierName=doi&identifierValue=10.4324/9781315890005&type=googlepdf


Cite this article

Use the citation below to add this article to your bibliography:



MLA Style Citation

"Difference Between IMC and Marketing." Diffzy.com, 2023. Mon. 20 Mar. 2023. <https://www.diffzy.com/article/difference-between-imc-and-marketing-293>.

Edited by

Share this article