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Is the digital advertising really more effective than traditional advertising? This is a long-standing debate, where the marketers have been putting up their merits. The marketing world is continuing to shift online, as online marketing is becoming a more important business strategy. This shift of strategy, suggests that the online advertising is the better way to the businessmen to advertise their products. However, traditional advertising methods such as television and print advertisement have been proven themselves, from time to time. So that they still have their place within marketing. They also hold many advantages over online advertising.
Let us now take a look on to the advantages and disadvantages of each advertising strategy.
Traditional advertising has been in form for a long time, with a lot of improvements to maximize its effectiveness in advertising.
It exists in many forms. The central forms of traditional advertising are:
⇒ Television advertising
⇒ Radio advertising
⇒ Print advertising like the newspaper and magazines
⇒ Displays and billboards
Advantages of Traditional Advertising
1. In reach to multiple consumer segments: Traditional forms of advertising exist in various mediums, used by the mass and hence, spread across multiple consumer groups. Most people, watch television every day, walk across billboards and hence they are constantly exposed to the advertising done on these platforms. This can also be reached to the consumers who may not use the internet frequently. It is more evident in older age groups, where internet usage is significantly lower than in younger age groups.
2. Success rate: Traditional advertising techniques have been refined from time to time, to have maximum potential to reach the customers, positively. For example, television advertising has been around over 70 years and is redefined to be very effective in influencing customer decisions. Due to the long life of traditional advertising forms, their success has been proven time to time.
3. High level of engagement: Traditional advertising, particularly television and radio advertising is very engaging towards consumers. And the more memorable advertisements created by business, are remembered by consumers for years to come. This allows your brand to always be in people’s mind and may lead to a sale at a later date. So while traditional advertising methods may not be as personal as some forms of online advertising, they can be far more engaging.
Disadvantages of Traditional Advertising
1. Higher cost than online advertising: While some forms of traditional advertising are quite cheap such as mail pamphlets, but most of them are quite expensive, in particular, television advertising and advertising in popular newspapers and magazines. For this reason, it may either not be possible for business people to use these advertising methods or not worth for businessmen to use this method, particularly small businessmen, as the cost to value ratio may not make business sense.
2. Lack of personal advertising: Most traditional forms of advertising are a one-way form of communication, allowing businessmen to interact with consumers, but not allowing consumers to interact with the business men. This prevents a lot of potential success as a consumer may have questions about the business and its products, but will be unable to interact with the business men after seeing its advertisement, thus preventing a potential sale.
3. Less targeted than online advertising: While traditional forms of advertising target a lot of consumers, traditional advertising is often, far less targeted than online advertising. This means that a lot of the money you spent on the advertisement is wasted as it is targeting consumers that will not buy your product. There are some forms of traditional advertising, such as magazines, that are highly targeted. They target particular segments such as fitness magazines and business journals. However, a majority of traditional advertising methods are seen by consumers that will not buy your product, despite seeing your ad.
4. High level of competition: Traditional advertising is existing in a very competitive market that is flooded with advertisements from not only your competitors but other businessmen as well. This means that your advertisements have a higher chance of being ignored, as consumers are exposed to many other advertisements at the same time as yours. So if you get engaged in traditional forms of advertising, you must make sure that your advertisement stands out from the competition. A strong way of doing this is appealing to a particular emotion of people.
Online advertising has grown rapidly in recent years and has been developed into multiple types of online advertising. These forms of advertising are constantly changing, evolving and being replaced by new forms which have made them hard to analyze and determine their effectiveness. The main forms of online advertising include:
⇒ Frame advertisements
⇒ Pop-up advertisements
⇒ Display advertising
⇒ Web banner advertising
⇒ Search engine marketing
Advantages of Online Advertising
1. Easy to measure and monitor results: The development and implementation of multiple monitoring, tracking and analytical sites such as Google analytics allows you to measure the exact amount of success your advertising strategies are getting. Such tools allow you to determine information such as the number of people visiting your website or clicking your advertisement, how long they stay on your website, the most popular parts of your website and much more. This allows you to improve your online advertising by providing clear examples of what is working and what is not working.
2. Strong segmentation: Online groups have been segmented heavily by numerous websites such as Facebook and Reddit, which sort people by their interest, age, and other features. This allows your online advertising to be highly segmented, allowing you to target only the consumers you want to target. It also targets multiple different consumer segments easily. For example, if you are selling pet products, you could advertise on a Facebook page that is focused on domestic pets. This high level of segmentation is far stronger than the segmentation that exists in traditional advertising forms such as television and magazines.
3. Cost flexibility: One distinct advantage of online advertising is that you can spend the exact amount of money you want to spend on the variety of different advertising methods. This allows you to maintain a stronger hold on your budget. You can spend as much as, or as little as on your advertising campaign as you want. You will be able to reduce spending money immediately if it is becoming too expensive for your business to maintain. While flexibility does exist in traditional advertising, payments are typically in larger increments meaning that it is harder to choose an exact budget of spending for your advertising.
By observing the above advantages and disadvantages of each of the advertising techniques, we can come to a conclusion that, online advertising is more effective than the traditional advertising. However, both strategies should be used as they can target different areas of your market and are typically far more effective, when used in conjunction with each other, than by themselves.
Developing a mixed advertising strategy is more complicated and costly than implementing only online or traditional advertising, however, its success rate and the level is typically far higher than solely using one strategy. So, it is better to use a mixed strategy by working out the advantages and disadvantages of each strategy.
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