Business Studies Journal (Print ISSN: 1944-656X; Online ISSN: 1944-6578)

Research Article: 2023 Vol: 15 Issue: 3

The Advertising & Promotion an Integrated Marketing Communications Perspective Scientific Literature Review

Alemayehu Bakalo, Mizan Tepi University

Chalchissa Amantie, Jimma university

Citation Information: Bakalo. A(2023). The advertising & promotion an integrated marketing communications perspective scientific literature review. Business Studies Journal, 15(S3), 1-13.


The key objective of this study is to assess advertising and promotion from an integrated marketing communications perspective. This study used a scientific literature review methodology with 50 existing articles completed in advertising and promotion and integrated marketing communications based on an inclusion/exclusion criterion. The findings of this study were collected by developing a thematic method, which involved extracting previous researchers' findings from the literature, classifying similar themes and findings, and drawing conclusions. According to the findings of this review, integrated marketing communication means using multiple modes of communication, including advertising, personal selling, sales promotions, direct marketing, interactive marketing, publicity, and public relations. Finally, future researchers should integrate marketing communication into the regeneration of concepts and the reconstruction of models and concepts to adapt to the new round of technological revolution and the changes carried about by user experience innovation. Bearing in mind the regular pattern of integrated marketing communications concept change and comparing the evolution of integrated marketing communications concepts and research topics in different periods.


Integrated marketing communication, Promotion, Advertising, Communication elements.


Integrated marketing saw its crisis in the 1980s when many companies realized they needed to strategically integrate their promotional element more. These companies began using integrated marketing communications (IMC), a technique that requires synchronizing various promotional elements with other client-facing marketing initiatives (Belch, 2003). IMC has been in existence since then. Additionally, it has expanded in prominence and importance to become one of the most significant managing frameworks worldwide. In the past, IMC was basic managerial task that involved aligning and coordinating message across four different business functions: sales promotion, direct marketing communications, public relations, and advertising. Delivering a coherent, consistent message that affects customers' communication and purchasing decisions is a company's main goal (Kitchen & Burgmann 2010, Schultz, Patti, & Kitchen 2013, Percy 2008). IMC is defined by Schultz in 1991 as "the course of managing all sources of information about a product or a service.

The innovative MIMC approach of information sharing across many platforms enables messages to reach both current and future customers in a matter of seconds (Kitchen et al., 2008).Evaluation and monitoring of the second stage's communication techniques included consideration of the client's needs, wishes, and feedback (Owusu et al., 2021).

The third stage monitors the regular information flow, and the fourth stage strategically implements MIMC at the organizational level and ensures that all departments work together to present an unwavering organization's brand image (Kushwaha, 2020).

The formal distinction between coordination and integration has mostly been omitted from e formal distinction between integration and coordination has mostly been missed by IMC research to date. Most of IMC research was related on the above mentioned. So far, no scientific review has been conducted that is aimed at establishing insight into advertising and promotion as integrated marketing communications by considering elements of the promotional elements. In order to fill the gap, this paper identifies and examines the main findings on advertising and promotion from an integrated perspective in existing literature.

Research Methodology

Scientific reviews examine emerging studies results and identify research gaps in the existing literature while maintaining the same methodological rigor as systematic reviews. (Martn et al., 2018).

Identification and Selection of Articles

Search databases (based on articles published in databases in English from 2000 to 2023) include the Web of Science, Scopus, and Google Scholar. Advertisement, sales promotion, personal selling, direct marketing, and public relations were all examples of integrated marketing communications, or the integration of the promotional elements. Inclusion criteria include all types of records, including reviews, reports, and research (both qualitative and quantitative) published in the English language, available as full texts, and conducted among integrated marketing communications. Exclusion criteria also include search terms in a different context than the research question records that were not relevant to the aim of the scientific review.

Data Analysis

In analyzing the terms for analysis of countries, journals, authors, and findings, using data from Scopus, WoS, and Research Gate, Figure 1.

Figure 1 Prisma–Scr Flow Diagram Indicating the Selection Process of Publication

The Number of journals, advertising and promotion, integrated perspective. Publications published after 2010 and 2022 were shown in the graph. Further, the distribution of the identified 50 publications stratified by countries and the number of citations received per article in each country were obtained. The results indicated that IMC, with a lower volume of publications, is responsible for many cited articles Figure 2, 3.

Figure 2 Year of Selected Article Publication

Figure 3 Country Per Publication Selected

Conceptual and Theoretical Background

According to Schultz and Schultz, (2003) IMC emerged in the 1980s and has since changed the way communicators and marketers interact and conduct business.

The AMS defined integrated marketing communication of the organization process that is designed to assure that all brand contacts received by a customer or prospect for a product, service, or organization were relevant to that person and consistent over time. So far, out of all the major communications growths, IMC has undoubtedly been the most significant in the last decade of the 20th century (Kitchen et al. 2004).

Theoretical Development of Integrated Marketing Communications

Integrated marketing communications and marketing communication differ in how a business chooses to use these channels. Integrated marketing communication assists with the direction and direction of the current networks, whereas marketing communication is only a framework that helps a company get familiar with the marketing communication channels they have available (Abubaker, 2014). The following is the theory behind integrated marketing:

According to AAAA (1986) defined as marketing communications planning which is recognizes the added value of a comprehensive plan, is able to evaluate the strategic role of highly diverse communication tools like advertising in general, direct response, sales promotion, and public relations, and combines these tools to ensure clarity unified structure.

Dunlan and Everett (1993) defined strategic management as the coordination of all messages and media used by an organization in order to influence the perception of the significance of a brand.

Schultz (1996) defined IMC as the drafting and implementation process of future programs of communication with current and potential customers.

According to Pickton, D., and Broderick (2001) IMC is the process that involves managing and organizing all elements in the analysis, planning, implementation, and control of business communication components, namely contacts, messages, and promotional tools gewered towards a target audience selected so as to obtain the largest economy, efficiency, effectiveness, and consistency of the communication.

Tom Duncan (2002) IMC is the process of managing customer relationships that lead to the creation of a brand value cross-functional process used for creating and maintaining profitable relationships with customers and stakeholders through strategic control these groups have sent messages and the encouragement based on factual data, of a dialogue.

IMC is considered as the concept which company participates and coordinates multiple channels of communication to send a clear, consistent and compelling message about the organization and its products (Kotler, 2003).

Kenneth and Baack, (2007) IMC is association and integration of all communications tools in an on-going program in order to maximize their impact on consumers.

(Christensen et al., 2008) A company's ability to communicate clearly, consistently, and continuously both inside and outside of formal organizational boundaries requires the notion and practice of aligning symbols, messages, procedures, and behaviours.

A communicating and systemic planning process and cross-functional optimization of posts, in order to communicate with consistency and to achieve synergies and encourage money-making relationships on short, medium and long term (Porcu et al., 2012).

An integrated marketing communication is run through of public relations tools can ensure complex level of transparency in internal and external organizational communications and thus can confirm effective marketing communication. The theoretic research is maintained with qualitative research of business section by conducting a detailed talk for the marketing communication practice (Naumovska & Blazeska, 2016).

Integrated marketing communications (IMC) involves coordinating several systems of promotional elements, such as social media, public relations and direct marketing, to communicate the value of a company to their customer (Dixit, 2018).

According to Suprapto et al., (2020) IMC was the process of transporting together all aspects of promoting communications such as advertising, PR, and social media and using a elements of individual media, channels, and tactics to deliver a seamless, customer-centric experience.

The integration of effective and well-organized and appropriate Integrated marketing communications accomplishments was affect many aspects of the company and the products being marketed (Pahlevi et al., 2022).

Meta-analysis of IMC Literature Review

Meta-analysis was designed to deal with many amounts of empirical studies often provided that conflicting result and helps to increasing framework of research result in social science (Wagner, 2006).

In order to conduct a meta-analysis, papers researching a topic of interest were collected in a systematic manner and necessary to make assumptions in order to overcome the lack of information.


Empirical Finding

This paper expected to understand advertising and promotion integrated marketing communications perspective included publications identified five research clusters: personal selling, sales promotion direct marketing, advertising, and public relation as integrated marketing communication effectiveness.

Integration of marketing communication honestly was attempt to homogeneity/ homogenization of numerous diverse styled things into only one like or integrated thing. In the prospective of marketing, therefore, either communicators or marketing managers provide facilitation to consumers by showing messages in an integrated way; a variety of messages written, spoken or released, but conveying the same core theme. This is to reply to the different needs and wants of different consumer via the marketing elements including advertising, sales promotion, sponsorship, argument of acquisition communications, exhibitions and trade fairs, straight marketing communications, personal selling, interactive marketing, and, unforgettable, public relations (Satawedin, 2010).

According to Nadube, (2019) IMC is method in the field of marketing which saw the quantity of published theoretic work as well as the occurrence of the notion in advertising and other agencies. On the other hand, the opportunity of integrated marketing communication is still seen as a new field. This type of interpretation is addressing the question of the conceptual definition of the study of integrated marketing communications.

Investigation growth related to the in integrated marketing communications activities has been carried out by several experts, for example made a research on interactive combined marketing communication by combining the strengths of integrated marketing communications advertising; sales promotions; personal selling; public relations and direct (Ahmad et al., 2019; Kendi & Wanjira, 2018; Lubis & Sulviawati, 2017; Rahayu & Hendrayati, 2021; Srikanth & Singh, 2017).

(Porcu et al., 2019) All contemporary organizations, whether commercial or not-for-profit, use various forms of marketing communications to promote what they offer and achieve financial and non-financial goals.

According to Esa, (2019) Studies focused on examination of advertising, sales promotion, personal selling, and direct marketing on acquisition intention of vegetable in retail indicated that the integration of communicational elements was advertising has a positive influence on the intention to purchase organic vegetables. This states that a customer has the intention to buy organic vegetables if given information by the store finished both print and electronic advertisements. In addition, the result shows that the advertisement element is the first important factor that influences consumers' intention to buy organic vegetables. Whereas direct selling has a positive influence with the intention to purchase organic vegetables. This implies that if consumers have more information about organic vegetable products by retail stores through price lists and online, it influences the increase in consumers' intention to buy organic vegetables.

The studies shows that integration of actual, well-organized, and appropriate integrated marketing communications activities was affect many aspects of the company and the products being marketed. Consequently that the preparation of integrated marketing communications activities requires preparation and is controlled by people who have high competence in this field (Pahlevi et al., 2022).

Nevertheless, to work in the best way and enhance hotels’ marketing enactment, IMCs need the whole cooperation of all business partners and customers. This occurs through implementing effective IMCs in which customers can participate through providing opinions and feedback (Al, 2021).

Theodora, (2021) drive of any integrated marketing communication process is to create brand awareness’, convey brand information, and improve the positive image of brands and associations of brand and product. IMC also a drama a character in building brand loyalty and plays a major role in persuading customers to purchase products or services from specific companies.

The result of present studies indicate that integrating marketing communications, health and medical providers were able to create synergies between and among selected conveyance mechanisms amplifying performance and increasing the likelihood of reaching communicative goals (Elrod & Jr, 2020).

According to Wachira, 2018 Integrated marketing communication is a plan in which different tools of business communication work together to maximize the impact they were having on the target audience.

Studies conducted on Clow, & Baack, 2014) Advertising is constructing a brand awareness’; moreover it can construct strong brand association, perceived quality, and brand loyalty. That’s why using advertisers is believed to be good in helping brands build equity.

In according to Issue et al., (2016) Marketers know that consumers receive many sorts of communications. They know they need to compete for your attention, so they look for ways to reach you in a coordinated manner through integrated marketing communication.

Studies conducted on (Wachdaniyah et al,.2019)Marketing communication used by hospitals in an effort to inform and remind consumers directly about the existence of the hospital and the products they offers. Integrated Marketing Communication (IMC) has great potential in influencing business performance, to give hospitals a competitive advantage, to increase brand equity, and to ensure communication effectiveness and consistency by facilitating the achievement of communication and marketing objectives.

Integrated marketing communication helps many persons who work in advertising, sales promotion, direct marketing, or public relations tend to approach marketing communications problems from the perspective of their particular specialty of the goods and services (Chaudhary et al., 2017; Rehman et al., 2022; Selvakumar, 2014).

(Rahayu & Hendrayati, 2021) advertising and promotion is important to focus on the company which continues to take strategic actions related to the Integrated Marketing Communication (IMC), so that the company's Brand Equity is increasingly in the minds of consumers, which can improve the company's performance that is reflected in the optimization of sales, profits, and wealth to value.

According to (Murtiasih et al., 2021) the effect of marketing communication; Advertising and word of mouth have significantly positive effects on brand image. However, sales promotion has no effect on brand image.

Integrated marketing communication is being considered as business strategy that is used to get maximum positive impact on the business. Usually it is the combination of different promotion elements, which is used in same way to produce seamless message to make maximum impact on the customer (Bilal et al, 2013).

Jafari, (2022) IMC is effective marketing rehearsal in the age of social media. Integrated marketing communications builds customers relations and enhances brand value by integrating information from multiple channels and strengthening user interaction. Integrated marketing communications has been a significant development in marketing communications for times.

According to Mihaela, (2015) five rudiments of integrated marketing communication consisting of; advertising sales promotions; personal selling; public relations (public relations); and direct marketing where.

Assael, (2010) the basic concept of IMC is synergism, sense the individual efforts were mutually reinforcing with the resultant effect being greater than if each useful which had designated its own targets, selected its own message strategy, and agreed its own media schedule and timing there is positive relationship between interaction in message and planning and application of integrated marketing.

(Raja, 2020) Integrated Marketing Communication is the planned process of achieving the firm’s objectives through a motivational message using various digital and non-digital platforms to persuade the end customers.

Endang et al, 2019) Advertising and direct selling affected the acquisition intention of organic vegetables, while sales promotion and personal selling did not affect the intention to purchase organic vegetables. The implication for managers is to recover promotion through advertising both print and electronic media because of the two dimensions of integrated marketing communication. For direct selling, increased so that prospective consumers and consumers of organic vegetables have an increased purchase intention and is important that advertising is enhanced to inform consumers about the benefits of organic food.

(Rahayu & Hendrayati, 2021) Integrated Marketing Communications (IMC) has appositive and significant effect brand equity). It is significant to focus on the company that endures to take strategic actions related to the (IMC), so that the company's Brand Equity is gradually in the minds of consumers, which can improve the company's performance that is reflected in the optimization of sales, profits, and wealth to value.

According to Chaudhary et al., (2017) internet marketing, public relations, advertising, sales promotion and direct marketing positively influence consumer buying decision.

According to (Rehman et al., 2022; Widjaja, 2022) Integrated Marketing communications can be used in harmony with the five main communication tools. These were advertising, direct marketing, internet marketing, sales promotion, and public relations. Experts say the core of our findings is how marketing communication achieved with the help of the internet or digital communication promoting while selling at a slightly tilted price than usual.

Ofosu-boateng, (2020) IMC is significant relationship between sales promotion and customers’ retention. Based on the result of that the use of bonuses, sweepstakes and contest as methods of sales promotion should be encouraged since its potency in influencing retention is high whist reducing price and avoiding the use of sample since its retention capability is not realized in the industry.

Faridah et al., (2022) IMC provide fresh insights, by observing that the firm-level communication plans, though in some cases in their infancy, integrated, in the sense that a combination of marketing and corporate marketing communication tools and methods were efficient. The principal insight related to our research question is the recognition that the firms investigated use a hybrid communications strategy, namely integrated hybrid message which durations.

According to Estaswara, (2016)IMC understanding in communicating the internal function of IMC and its potential to establish relationships with all shareholders in order to generating brand equity and Internal role of IMC is still limited to dated marketing communication function and brand has not perceived as an internal matter.

(Kushwaha et al., 2020) Sales promotion has positive effect on building, modern integrated marketing communication. IMC digital marketing aspect has positive impact on building Modern Integrated Marketing Communication. Public relation has positive impact on building whereas modern integrated marketing communication. Advertising has positive impact on building Modern integrated marketing communications. Direct marketing has positive impact on building modern integrated marketing communication

Study conducted on (Diaconu & Oancea, 2016) IMC measured an economy with a strong competitive feature; organizations need to capitalize the integrated marketing communication in a most effective manner, to safeguard the creation and maintenance of long-term relationships with current and potential customers. By approaching the integrated marketing communication, the companies "speak with one voice" and the impact of messages sent is a maximum one.

Research conducted on (Bilal, 2013) regarding to integrate marketing communication he found that customer oriented approach rather than organizational oriented that focuses on organizational needs. IMC is performed in a manner of synergy rather than in isolation. IMC is associated with some positive results like brand awareness’, customer satisfaction, brand loyalty, positive brand image, unique brand association, greater profitability, increased sales and cost savings.


In relation to this, review the majority of nominated studies explored the practice-integrated marketing from organizations perspective. Accordingly, it is better use multi-dimensional perspective because IMC has tremendous benefit.

Further researcher should conduct on the integration of marketing message instruments, to measure how IMC is efficiency of each variable advertising, sales promotion, personnel selling direct marketing and public relation to the completely marketing communication practices, and integrated marketing communications.

Numerous imperative managerial implications derived after this study. Though advertisers were increasing their efforts in several communication tools in order to reinforce their advertising strategies, they still have many practical doubts about how to use these communication options by an integrated perspective. This study offers some evidence that might be helpful when developing IMC campaigns. Results showed in our research suggest that integrating communication tools with a criterion of strategic consistency is more effective to have positive effects on consumer’s information processing and persuasion.

Specifically, the combination between advertising and sponsorship seems to be a most effective communication strategy than advertising repetition strategy.

The competence of the integrated marketing communication was be especially relevant when integrating interactive and traditional media. As consumers, gain more control of the flow of information. In adding, companies need to consider the importance that a promotion and advertising -based integration strategy may represent on company’s brand strategy elements as trust and brand image. From perspective integration majority of studies focused on advertising sales promotion, direct marketing whereas studies on personal selling and public relation were small in number. Consequently, it is better to include all communication elements the message that a communicates among different communication tools is extremely vital in developing trust because it helps to form correct prospects regarding as well as to create or reinforce the positioning of this brand in consumers’ mind by ensuring a consistent and cohesive image of company products.

Limitation of study and direction for further research

Future studies would to accept a longitudinal research design that should allow investigating how interactions between IMC and marketing strategies change over time.

Future studies should investigate the mediatory characters of other extraneous factors between stimulus organism IMC and consumers between consumer-responses.

Relation to number of publication in Database and journal limited amount of published data advertising and promotion an integrated viewpoint. Consequently, future researchers and scholars should conduct an integrated aspect of integrated marketing communication.

Future researcher should, integrated marketing communication was associated regeneration of concepts and the reform of models and concepts to adapt to the new round of technological revolution and changes carried about by user experience innovation. Considering the regular pattern of integrated marketing communications concept change and comparing the evolution of integrated marketing communications concepts and research topics in different periods. Future researchers could use more data sources and retrieve literature from non-English speaking countries. In addition, future studies could specifically target some countries where integrated marketing communication is developing faster to obtain more results that were comprehensive. Hot research evolutionary process showed that IMC theory and models, marketing strategy were the five hot research topics of IMC research.


This studies' goal is to conduct a methodical evaluation of the body of research and combine the available data to demonstrate the IMC and support promotion and advertising. The combined review of information on IMC provided by this study adds greatly to the body of IMC literature. The papers also offer interesting directions for future IMC research based on the current state of the field. The following conclusions made and proposed in light of the findings of the scientific literature review:

As a result, viewpoints on publishing advertising, promotion, and integrated marketing communication were identified; one of the five key components of marketing is promotion. Advertising, personal selling, sales promotions, direct marketing, interactive marketing, publicity, and public relations are all examples of integrated marketing communication. These marketing tactics increase interest in a company's goods or services, educate consumers on their features and advantages, and persuade them to buy.

Print advertising, broadcast advertising, digital or mobile advertising, outdoor advertising, and other forms of advertising were available.

Targeting specific market segments, including intermediaries, is the goal of personal selling. The best salespeople were customer-centric and flexible in how they presented their products to clients.

Direct marketing is to develop individualized, one-on-one connections with customers. The sophisticated databases were increasingly enabling many businesses to communicate directly with consumers through a variety of media, including electronic newsletters, mobile messaging apps, websites, online advertisements, fliers, online and offline catalogues, promotional letters, and targeted advertisements.

Building relationships that are mutually beneficial and gaining the public's understanding and acceptance are key to public relations. Therefore, it is a very helpful tool that, when utilized properly, may assist to enhance the corporate image of the enterprises, promote reputation, and generate demand. Public service initiatives, CEO speeches, and news releases are all examples of PR tools. PR uses unpaid channels, in contrast to other forms of communication. As a result, firms can have less influence on the results of their PR initiatives. Publicity also has the considerable advantage of reaching out to audience members who might normally resist other promotional tools. An advantage of publicity, including online reviews, is that customers often perceive the word-of-mouth marketing (and referrals) as being more credible than other forms of promotion. However, as in the case of PR, the businesses cannot control the favourable or unfavourable messages about products or services, particularly those that may appear in online reviews.

IMC strategies that were successful focused on sending customers communications that were pertinent, consistent, and complementing. As a result, the goal of marketing communications is to raise awareness, impart knowledge, and foster positive impressions in order to gain a preferred position in the eyes of the target audience. In the end, they were designed to advance prospects through the sales process and clinch the deal. Targeted versus dispersed and one-way versus two-way communication vehicles can be thought of as usefully being thought of along two dimensions. Consider the stage of the buying process at which potential clients were when selecting communication channels.

Summary of literature review with meta-analysis

Name &Year of Publication Title publication Key concept Method used Relevance vs non relevance
(Murtiasih et al., 2021) The effect  of Marketing Communication on Brand Equity with Brand Image, Brand
Marketing Communication, Advertising, Sales
Quantitative method/SEM IMC has significant positive effect on the brand equity
(Greg, 2021) Combined Marketing Communication
Case Study Report
Theoretical concept of IMC. Case study IMC increases,
Automatically and develop and immigrate.
(Rowe, 2019) Social Synergy: How Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram Use IMC Social Synergy Theoretical review Theories and idea behind integrated marketing communications with social media particularly in mind
(Bruhn & Schnebelen, 2015) Integrated marketing
Communication from an instrumental to a customer-centric perspective
Integrated marketing communications, Customer-centric IMC. Theoretical review most important new lines of thinking
(Seri, 2020) Building brand equity through
communication consistency
in luxury hotels
Integrated marketing communications, brand equity. SEM ICM has strong positive impact on all brand equity
(Faridah et al., 2022) Introducing integrated hybrid
communication: the nexus
linking marketing
Marketing communication, Corporate brand, Corporate communication. qualitative research method ICM Has positive impact on CCC
(Dixit, 2018) Role of Integrated Marketing Communication For The In notational Development IMC, Traditional Marketing tools, Online Marketing. Qualitative effective and efficient to company
(Bilal, 2013) Integrated Marketing Communication ICM Review paper IMC has
positive brand image
Esa, (2019) analysis advertising, sales promotion, personal selling and
direct selling on purchase
Advertising, Sales Promotion, Personal
Selling, Direct Selling, Purchase Intentions.
Quantitative advertising and direct selling affect consumer
(Selvakumar, 2014) Dimensions of Integrated Marketing Communication (IMC) and Their Impact in Creating Brand Equity Advertising, publicity, Word of Mouth, Public relations. Elementsed approach Element of IMC has positive effect on  effect on Brand
(Porcu et al., 2012) How Integrated Marketing Communications (IMC) works? Integrated Marketing
Communication, Drivers, Effects.
Conceptual model IMC positively influences customer attitudes.
(Rehman et al., 2022) Developing the Integrated Marketing Communication (IMC) through Social Media IMC, SM, consumer-generated media, promotion, relationship, systematic review Positive effect
(Ahmad et al., 2019) Years of  Integrated Marketing Communication IMC systematic review Positive effect
(Widjaja, 2022) What Experts Tell About Integrated Marketing Communication For Effective Business Promotion And Sale Strategy Marketing, Communication, Promotion. Systematic review Adapt the message to suit supporting media channels.
(Raja, 2020) Digital Integrated Marketing Communication  And It’s Logical Relationship Digital-IMC, Brand Equity. Model development Positive effect on brand equity
(Issue et al., 2016) Integrated Marketing Communication in Building Customer Based Brand equity Integrated marketing communication, building. Review paper IMC has Positive effect on brand equity


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Received: 20-May-2023, Manuscript No. BSJ-23-13616; Editor assigned: 25-May-2023, Pre QC No. BSJ-23-13616 (PQ); Reviewed: 03- Jun-2023, QC No. BSJ-23-13616; Revised: 12-Jun-2023, Manuscript No. BSJ-23-13616(R); Published: 16-Jun-2023

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