As a small business owner, you are often faced with an overwhelming amount of choices when it comes to where to spend your advertising budget. Since many small businesses do not work with large advertising budgets, the decision on which ad medium to choose can be both important and stressful. Many small business owners may be asking themselves, what is digital marketing? There is much debate in the current climate about whether traditional or digital advertising is the best method to bring in new customers and close more sales. Sometimes, the answer is a combination of both, but more and more businesses are choosing to go with digital advertising, with good reason. Here are some facts that you should consider when choosing how to launch your next advertising campaign.
What Is Traditional Advertising?
- Traditional advertising comprises the time-tested methods of advertising that you are probably familiar with. These ads run on radio and television, as well as in magazines, newspapers, local periodicals and through mailers. Nielsen reports that 47 percent of surveyed consumers around the world trust television, radio and newspaper ads to be credible. While this number is currently higher than some forms of digital advertising, it has been on a steady decline, with drops of 24 and 20 percent in 2011 and 2010, respectively.
The key to the downward trend of traditional advertising method is a change in overall demographics. More and more, people who grew up with the internet as a normal part of their lives are reaching adulthood and becoming the primary purchasers of goods and services. Since these people are more likely to trust and relate to digital methods of advertising, you can see how traditional methods of advertising are trending in the wrong direction. Television is still the most popular form of advertising, but experts expect digital ads to reach and overtake television within the next five years.
What Is Digital Marketing?
- Digital marketing comprises all forms of web marketing, from social media pages and business websites to search engine and banner ads. There are numerous advantages to digital advertising which make it a preferred method in the modern economy. The first key is, as mentioned, the changing demographics. As time goes on, the trends will only slant more in the direction of digital advertising. People of all ages who regularly use technology expect their advertising to be engaging and informative beyond what traditional means of advertising can offer.
In addition to the ability to reach new demographics, digital advertising offers a way for your company to connect with consumers and build lasting relationships. Through social media, you can have direct, meaningful communication with your customers, offer specials and breaking news bring in new business, and keep former customers coming back for more. Digital advertising also provides the unique opportunity for inbound marketing, as consumers can find and connect with you without any direct effort on your part, aside from setting up web and social media pages.
Though traditional advertising still has a place in the modern market, the trends will continue to point toward digital advertising as time goes on. For some businesses, a combination of digital and traditional advertising is the most effect way to reach customers. Others choose to go exclusively digital. The key for any modern businessperson is to include at least some digital advertising, whether in combination or exclusively. Avoiding digital advertising and going exclusively with traditional methods is a sure way to miss out on key demographics, and see your competition pass you by in marketing effectiveness. What is digital marketing? Clearly, it’s the wave of the future.