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Digital vs Traditional – How Should You Market?

Digital vs traditional marketing

If you’re dipping your toes into the waters of marketing, you will likely be aware that there are two approaches. Marketing on social media, Google, anything in the digital domain, and marketing traditionally – through print, PR, broadcasting, direct mail, telephones, fliers or even billboards. With so much choice, it can be difficult to determine how you should be doing things. However, to ascertain an answer, you need to look into marketing in a bit more detail. Here is a quick look at digital vs traditional marketing.

Traditional Marketing

Traditional marketing is still an effective form of marketing, but nowadays it comes with serious drawbacks.

It involves little or no interaction with your target audience unless you fuse digital and traditional marketing with the use of QR codes, etc. This is a shame as when the audience interacts with your brand, you get the opportunity to continue interacting with them, converting them into customers. However, traditional marketing might create longer lasting memories.

Higher costs – traditional marketing has higher costs and potentially lower returns. You can take out an advert in a local newspaper. But this will only get you returns if your target audience is exposed to this advert, which can be unlikely. If that’s the case, you’ve thrown away your money.

Inflexible targeting – you can target people in a certain place or those who read a specific newspaper, but with traditional marketing you don’t get the laser-focused targeting that you can get with digital marketing.

Why Do People Still Go Traditional?

If traditional marketing is more expensive, inflexible, and offers poor interactivity with customers, why do people still use it? To answer this question, take a look at services offered by a marketing team like The Gist People. They allow clients to combine the highly effective digital marketing techniques of SEO, web strategy (i.e. the channels used), PR and creative advertising. They say they ‘work in parallel with “everything”’.

That team’s philosophy should demonstrate that a good, effective marketing strategy doesn’t pick between digital and traditional. It chooses elements of each aspect of marketing and combines them to create a holistic approach, working in parallel with everything. You can spend most of your money on digital marketing. But that often doesn’t come with the cachet of print marketing. Imagine you’re a member of a target audience and you’ve seen a brand while scrolling through social media a few times. You probably see countless brands and learn to tune them out, but you’re reading through your favorite newspaper one morning and come across an advert for that brand. This will likely be much more effective than if you solely use traditional or digital in this instance.

How to Budget

Even though both forms combined lead to a more effective campaign, you still need to think of finances. So how does digital vs traditional marketing compare budget wise? Digital marketing is almost always much cheaper. Many specialists recommend you devote much of your budget to digital marketing, as you’ll get a higher return on investment. It will be money better spent. However, you should inject traditional marketing into your strategy from time to time. Punctuating each campaign with some print or PR work to approach your target audience from different angles and differentiate your marketing mix.

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