Is Traditional Marketing a Thing of the Past?


What is "traditional marketing?"

Traditional marketing can be thought of as an "outbound" strategy for obtaining and maintaining business. This strategy relies heavily on print advertising, direct mail marketing, broadcast advertising, telephone marketing, cold calling, and referral-based calling.

Print advertising includes advertising in magazines, trade publications, and newspapers that are distributed to the public, while direct mail marketing is the distribution of print materials such as brochures, postcards, catalogs, and letters through the mail. While these materials are often utilized, it is difficult to assess how many of these materials are viewed and how many go directly to the recycle bin.

Broadcast marketing is the use of radio and television ads to reach potential clients. These tools have been historically used to reach the masses, but with the rise of advertisement free television and music services, tracking the exposure to the intended audience is more than challenging.  The same can be said of telephone marketing wherein businesses reach out to potential customers via phone calls, only to find out many customers are registered on the do-not-call lists.

The cold call is a technique whereby a salesperson reaches out to individuals who have not previously expressed an interest in a company's products or services, either by telephone or through unscheduled visits. This can be difficult for sales representatives due to hostile customers and the challenge of reaching an actual decision maker.

Traditional marketing has been around since the beginning of business, and has historically been effective. However, it is difficult to track the impact of traditional marketing, and it can be quite expensive.

What is "digital marketing?"

Digital marketing can be thought of as an "inbound" strategy for obtaining and maintaining business. This strategy relies on technology to distribute information to target audiences with the hope that the information will attract, convert, and close new customers. This strategy relies heavily on the internet – think websites, blogs, articles, calls to action, email, and social media.

With the rise of smartphones, tablets, and internet usage, people are seeking information everywhere they go. The digital ad follows potential clients around the world, and with the right software and know-how, the digital ad can be tracked.

The key to digital marketing is to offer valuable, concise information to consumers within the target audience that is relevant to the industry, while also providing contact information, calls to action, and landing pages to effectively bring in those who most likely need a product or service. In short, digital marketing allows companies to focus in on actual prospects and directly measure the effectiveness of their marketing campaign rather than cast the wide net approach used with traditional marketing.   

Email has historically been a valuable aspect of digital marketing and the success rate of email continues to be on the rise. It is important that companies maintain a quality distribution list and make sure the right email is being sent at the right time. The more personalized the content of the email is to the right audience at the right time, the greater the impact email has on the overall marketing plan.

Advertising on social media platforms such as Facebook or Twitter should be utilized with any digital marketing plan. People like to talk and share their experiences. With the social interaction that social media offers, businesses can get direct feedback on their buyer personas, customer service options, perceptions of products and services, and even the quality of the information being distributed. It is important to be able to monitor traffic, generate leads, and build community in order to build and maintain a client base, and social media allows this to happen with the click of a button.

Is a traditional marketing or digital marketing a better plan?

The key word here is "plan." A company should have a solid, evolving marketing plan which can be measured and adjusted according to results. Haphazard approaches to marketing will leave the sales force and management team chasing their tails, but a strategic plan produces results. The majority of companies will want to come up with a blended approach to marketing in order to achieve optimum results. The experts at Everywhere Media are available to meet your marketing needs and help you develop a tailor-made plan.