Integrated Marketing Rules to Surviving the Zombie Apocalypse


Whether you believe it or not zombies are coming. Okay, so maybe not the real thing yet, but with Halloween just a night away and World’s Zombie Day earlier this month, let us keep with the theme of the undead. In the past there has been a lot of talk and some marketers claiming that marketing is dying or for some, already dead. But marketing is not dead yet, it has however, entered the zombie apocalypse so you better gear up because you do not want zombies munching on your integrated marketing plan.

Here are some rules to help you get by:

Rule 1: You are not safe. EVER

Do not settle, even if you are on top. Keep up with trends. Society evolves and so must you.  Look at Blockbuster as an example. Blockbuster was able to survive the transition between VHS to DVD, but when it came to getting digital it was overtaken by digital rental company Netflix. It failed despite the fact that Blockbuster seemed to be at the top of its game with the company being valued at $8 billion in 2005. It soon after filed for bankruptcy.

The key is to keep your team dynamic and current, hire people with new and innovative minds, and make sure that your team continues to train in their skills. Look out for conferences and events that might be suited for your business. Why not reserve 5% of your budget for New Marketing ‘research and development’? Why not partner with academic research or start-ups to pilot new programs and skills? You can do anything but stand still….

Rule 2: Cardio – Be able to run for an extended period of time 

If we are indeed in the zombie apocalypse you do not want to be the unfit who dies first. Stay fit; stay alive. This means keeping your skills sharp. But in modern marketing, this does not necessarily mean chase the trend or chase your consumer, you need to be aware of facts (like that 65% of time spent on social networks happens on mobiles).  Smart technology is allowing brands to give consumers what they want, where they want it, how they want it.  In particular, Smartphones, which are giving rise to targeted behavioural marketing which can become the lifeline between consumers and brands. Intrigued? Read more on mobile marketing, click here

Rule 3: Always carry a minimum of 3 reliable, lethal weapons 


“The point of integration is to have a consistent voice while maximizing the strength of each medium. True integration delivers the brand statement from mass to grass, from mass marketing to grass root activities, with the Internet residing firmly in the middle as both a mass and one to one marketing weapon.” – Unknown

Many companies spend money acquiring new technologies and mediums to communicate with their costumers, but no time learning how to use them or implement them in their work environments. This leads to wasted technologies that never achieve what they were intended to obtain. It also leads to lower marketing effectiveness and ultimately to unsatisfied, uninformed consumers.  All this is made worse by the rising speed at which new technologies are becoming available to the public, making it more challenging to reach them in one consistent, effective way.

Solution: Learn to integrate the different technologies in your company to the different parts of your ecosystem. With some honest self-analysis and marketing metrics you should be able to determine whether or not your business is as integrated as you think. With a well integrated marketing message, system, strategy, and team you will be able to overcome the challenges of technology fragmentation.

At Flock we offer an Integration benchmarking service, whereby having your teams take an on-line survey, and a series of face to face interviews we can tell you how well integrated you are, to help you plan for success.

Rule 4: Know your environment, use it to your advantage 

In trying to keep up with trend, companies forget the people that they are trying to reach; the consumer should always be at the heart of any marketing strategy. The popular business term ‘target audience’ is antiquated; a surviving marketing strategy should aim to create a community rather than an audience. Again, know how best to reach your consumer, which technology, which message, but also remember the importance of knowing your environment and events happening in your community that can benefit your brand.

A great example of taking advantage of your environment is the Immortal Fans integrated campaign done by Recife Football Club in Brazil. Watch this inspiring campaign that used the dedication and passion of its fans to encourage people to get organ donation cards (not intended for zombie apocalypse!).


Why not bring all your agencies and research together to really define your consumer communities, get just one picture of them and their lives? Too often we find that every department or agency has their own view on the target, which wastes time, money and does not help integration.


Rule 5: Better safe than stupid (Use your head; cut off theirs) 

Refer to rules 1 to 4

So let us be clear with something, zombies might make for a great costume for Halloween, scary movie characters, and even good drinking buddies for a fun Halloween night-out, but you do not want them around your business or marketing plan.  Stay safe and look again at points 1-4, how many are you following? Can you get them all done by next Halloween? If you need help wielding a chainsaw and some holy water, then call Flock – your friendly Zombie marketing killers! Contact us here

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