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In Task 1 the focus is to conduct a brief IMC situation analysis. In this task you will develop an IMC program for one organisation.

You are to assume you are a senior account executive with M&C Saatchi (Australia) and you are pitching your approach to a potential client organisation below.

Your ultimate task throughout this subject by Assessment 4 is to develop a new IMC pitch for only one of the following cases:

(a) Commonwealth Bank of Australia - to address the adverse publicity and reputational damage from the Banking Royal Commission in 2018 or;

(b) The Australian Medical Association – to seek to ban the advertising of junk food and sugary drinks to children and to introduce a tax on sugar or;

(c) AMP – to address the adverse publicity and reputational damage from the Banking Royal Commission in 2018.

Alternatively, you can choose an organisation you work for. However, you must be able to identify an important IMC marketing related issue faced by that organisation that could affect the strategic positioning of that organisation in the marketplace.

So, choose either the Commonwealth Bank or the AMA or AMP or your own organisation and address the following topics:

Find out as much as you can about the issues faced and the organisation and then undertake a brief IMC situation analysis of the issues surrounding your chosen case, considering the major stakeholders (e.g. influence on customers, employees, supply chain (i.e. say in the case of AMP this would include financial advisors)), government, etc.);


What factors have contributed to the present situation?
What concerns are likely to be driving each of the stakeholders that would need to be considered for an IMC program?
Briefly discuss how IMC has been utilised to date in dealing with this issue.

Ensure you define IMC using theory and research (to support your opinion) and then discuss its application using the organisation chosen and explaining how it has worked in your own words. Remember, this is an academic writing exercise. It is essential that your work is strongly underpinned by solid research, demonstrated understanding and application of marketing communications concepts.

Potential Utilization of IMC Plan and Recommendation

The Commonwealth Bank of Australia (CBA) is considered as one of the biggest banks in Australia. The bank is also a multinational bank with branches in other regions such as the United States, Asia, United Kingdom, and others (Worthington, 2016). According to the 2017 financial report, CBA reported a revenue income of approximately 26 billion dollars which is an increase in its annual revenue generation. The bank is considered as one of the best banks in Australia in leading financial assistance to both institutions and individual customers (Pearson, 2009). In the wake of Banking Royal commission in 2018, CBA has continued to face a series of allegation such as fraud that has led its investors to lose billions through reckless investments. Prior to the last year performance, the CBA positioning in the market has continued to be affected and thus also losing its competitive advantages.

Stakeholders Issues/Concerns and Factors that have Contributed Present Situation With the recent troubles, the CBA shareholders have been affected dearly. According to the recent Banking Royal Commission statement, CBA is considered almost unfit to offer bank loans and/or any leading financial assistance due to the incurred high losses (Cranston, 2018). The Royal Commission scandal has affected several major banks which have portrayed the struggle to remedy the tarnished public image, unlike CBA which continues to refuse to point out leadership mistakes and steps taken to correct the situation. Through this, CBA market stand is considered to be in a very critical condition where investors and customers have continued to decline any further transactions with the bank. This can be perceived by the decline of the company performance in the Australian Securities Exchange. According to economy analysists, the CBA down rate performance is majorly categorized as a result of its poor marketing strategies in controlling major issues such as the current fraud probe (Macdonald, Burke, & Stewart, 2017).

Through the reckless investment scandal, one of the main issues that have raised concerns in the entire stakeholder structure is the bank transparency. In line with integrated marketing communications (IMC), CBA has mainly failed to account for its activities through the lack of exchange and accessibility of information to the investors (Low, Davey, & Hooper, 2008). The government has also raised its concerns about the scandals that continue to arise in banks. This has led to the expansion of the investigation to determine what are the triggers or causes of the current situation (Cranston, 2018). Through this, CBA can majorly be characterized to have lost the control of public relation and thus also the ability to maintain good customer relation and insights that assures its capability to the stakeholder. Another main attribute to the current situation and sudden poor performance is the cost-effectiveness of the entire marketing effort in maintaining a positive image of the bank (Luxton, Reid, & Mavondo, 2015). In accordance to the recent school scandal, employees have also been affected in their performance especially on online transaction services which plays a vital role in CBA main operations.

Situational Analysis

Prior to the already known feature of IMC utilization in demonstrating effective different communication options, it has also been demonstrated by other companies such as Walmart to be effective in the remedy of such situation CBA is currently facing (Worthington, 2016). The IMC campaign utilization will emphasis on increasing the brand awareness of the bank, brand attitude, and its strategic market position.
Situational Analysis

Strength    Weaknesses

1.CBA has significant wide distribution customer base in Australia, UK, US, and Asia. This one its major competitive advantage that CBA has against its competitors in the banking market. 


2.CBA is considered to have one of the best banking systems, especially in online transactions and services. This majorly portrays the bank with more brand recognition (Shimp, 2010).


3.Prior to the scandal losses, CBA has enjoyed economic stability over previous years through the increase of its financial investment profit ratio.    1.The organization has a sign of inability in dealing with critical matters such as the ongoing fraud probe.


2.Like any other banking organization, the bank has a weak customer relation which is also aligned by the poor leadership system in administration and marketing.
3.With respect to the recent issues, CBA has almost no transparency between the shareholders in regards to the exchanges of sensitive information (Pearson, 2009).

Opportunity    Threats

1.One of the main advantages of the CBA is its current market dominance. Through this, CBA has the ability to re-establish its normal functionality through the application of proper marketing strategies (Low et al., 2008).
2.CBA has also significant brand image across all its operational regions with a high number of loyal customers. 
3.Expansion of the bank into emerging market and especially Asian market.    1.One of the main threat of CBA in its current situation is the competition from its rivals and the loss of its competitive advantages.
2.With continuous issues in misconduct and frauds, CBA might face harsh legal strikes which might also tarnish more the bank image and increase losses (Paul & Kourouche, 2008).

IMC Objectives

As a marketing consultant for the company, the main approach of the IMC that the bank should consider to undertake is a rebranding of its public image and brand. This essentially can be attained through effective stakeholder communications with the bank in identifying a remedy of the current situation. At the end of the IMC process, the bank should be able to increase its customer base in the market and in line enhance its communication channels for better service provision and transparency (Caemmerer, 2009). The other main objective of IMC is the maintenance of the continuous increase in profit. Although it might be difficult for the bank to reach last year 8.2% profit increase, through proper IMC plan application, the bank should be able to regain its bargaining power by regaining the incurred losses.
IMC Methodologies/Tools

One of the main approach CBA should emphasize is a public relation (PR) tool. This is mainly to restore the image of the bank in line with the entire stakeholder trust. Through the PR, CBA should be able to account for the required shareholder communications and identifying the gaps in the market that the scandal reputation may have damaged. Also, PR will also help in strengthening the “continuous disclosure policy” which will act as a guarantee to the shareholders that the current situation will not likely occur again (Paul & Kourouche, 2008).

SWOT Analysis

Advertising is another significant tool that will be able to effective in the bank situation. The main use of advertising as the tool is to be able to reach effectively all target market by launching a series of specific media marketing strategies (Andrews & Shimp, 2017). The main theme of advertising will be to restore the bank brand “As a friend to all its customers and staffs in safeguarding their well-being and resources”. The other significant feature that advertising will emphasis on is the restoration of its ethics and responsibility to shareholders and the society needs as its main priority (Pearson, 2009).
Measuring and Evaluating the Planning Process


After the implementation IMC plans, for a duration of 5 months, the statistics number of customers should increase by the at least 2%. This is generally in the entire target market where IMC focus will be majorly emphasized in the recapture of the market share. Also, the effectiveness of the tool should also be portrayed in an annual report where the bank should be able to regain the incurred losses earlier in the year and 3% profit gain. The profit increase is mainly targeted by the emphasis on customer base increase and the ability to convince potential investors to continue investing through assuring CBA profitability position (Andrews & Shimp, 2017).

Conclusion

In conclusion, the recent royal commission scandals have significantly affected CBA performance and generally its market structure. Despite the bank continuous incredible performance in the past few years, the reputation damage is considered to continue to cause major losses especially with how the bank has continued to handle the scandal situation (Luxton et al., 2015). Through IMC planning, CBA can easily restore its customer faith and trust in the banking industry in its capability to continue to offer effective financial services and solutions. One of the advantages of CBA in the market structure is its broad base of loyal customers. With this, the IMC planning and implementation process are estimated to be very effective and one of the main competitive advantage of the CBA against its rival competitors (Caemmerer, 2009).

References

Andrews, J. C., & Shimp, T. A. (2017). Advertising, promotion, and other aspects of integrated marketing communications. Nelson Education.
Caemmerer, B. (2009). The planning and implementation of integrated marketing communications. Marketing Intelligence & Planning, 27(4), 524-538.
Cranston, R. (2018). Principles of banking law. Oxford University Press.
Low, M., Davey, H., & Hooper, K. (2008). Accounting scandals, ethical dilemmas, and educational challenges. Critical Perspectives on Accounting, 19(2), 222-254.
Luxton, S., Reid, M., & Mavondo, F. (2015). Integrated marketing communication capability and brand performance. Journal of Advertising, 44(1), 37-46.
Macdonald, I., Burke, C., & Stewart, K. (2017). Systems leadership: Creating positive organizations. Routledge.
Paul, S., & Kourouche, K. (2008). Regulatory policy and the efficiency of the banking sector in Australia. Australian economic review, 41(3), 260-271.
Pearson, G. (2009). Financial Services Law and Compliance in Australia. Cambridge University Press.
Shimp, T. A. (2010). Integrated Marketing Communication in Advertising and Promotion/or Terence A Shimp (No. 658.8 S45.).
Worthington, A. C. (2016). Financial literacy and financial literacy programmes in Australia. In Financial Literacy and the Limits of Financial Decision-Making (pp. 281-301). Palgrave Macmillan, Cham.

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