Institutional advertising, unlike product marketing, focuses on promoting the company or brand as a whole. Product marketing, on the other hand, entails advertising efforts geared towards the promotion of a particular product that the company is selling. Institutional advertising does not seek to sell a particular product directly to the target market.
Another difference between the institutional and product advertising is the fact that the latter entails enhancing the perception of the value of the product being promoted. On the other hand, institutional advertising helps to improve the perception of the value of the organization or even an entire industry in the eyes of the public.
The most important benefit of this form of advertising is that it develops a strong brand reputation, and makes the public more receptive to the company’s offerings. It is closely connected to public relations as both seek to enhance the relationship between the company or institution, and the members of the public.
Purpose of Institutional Advertising
Institutional advertising serves numerous purposes in a company, all of which can help promote the company or brand to the market. These purposes include the following:
a. Creating brand image
One of the hardest challenges that companies face is overcoming barriers to entry, and entering the market comfortably. When a company is new to the market, this form of advertising is critical in laying the groundwork for the company to capture the market. At its entry stage, institutional advertising helps shape the perception of the target audience in regards to the company. With the right perception, the individuals in the market are more responsive to the company and its initial offerings. This makes it easier for the company to slide into the market and begin to capture it.
b. Maintaining market share
Consistent institutional advertising can help the company maintain its share of the market even during turbulent times in the market. This form of advertising is usually what gives a company or brand legitimate staying power in the market. It is able to do this because it helps to build and maintain interest in the brand as well as brand loyalty.
c. Repairing brand reputation
Institutional advertising is also integral in instances where the company, brand, or organization seeks to repair its reputation and regain the trust of its customers or target audience. In this instance, institutional advertising helps to improve the company image as well as the perception of the public about the organization. Some companies use this strategy to apologize to their loyal customers in the case of a scandal or breach of public trust.
Types of institutional advertising
There are different types of institutional marketing that include advocacy, image advertising, cause-related, and green marketing. Advocacy institutional advertising along with the cause-related marketing are used by the company to create the perception that the company is connected to a particular social cause. The cause is usually in line with the public interest, and this strategy helps to demonstrate that the company is invested in promoting public good.
On the other hand, image advertising helps to convey the company’s values, and mission to members of the public. These values could include the likes of honesty, best prices, best quality, efficiency, and trustworthiness. Image advertising can also help in promoting the public perception that the company is an authority in regards to a niche topic or subject matter.
Green marketing is a relatively new concept in the world of institutional advertising. It involves promoting the company as one that is dedicated to the conservation of the environment. It also informs the public on the various ways that the company is using to ensure that it is doing its part in the protection of the environment.