The Parallels Between Digital and Traditional Marketing
Traditional marketing methods such as print advertising, posters and billboards, radio and television spots and telemarketing are still widely used as outbound methods of promotion and marketing, but the digital world is fast overtaking these methods as the most cost effective, highly targetable and personal ways of reaching new customers. Outbound methods of digital marketing include Google AdWords and similar PPC services, social media “like and share” promotions and email shots, which take inspiration from traditional marketing methods but in the online sphere. Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) techniques also fall under the title of outbound digital tactics as they help put your website in front of interested parties searching for your products or services, much like a well-placed billboard. Online PR operates in a very similar way to print and broadcast media PR, except that is takes place solely online and may involve interviews and features on industry related websites or even guest spots on podcasts. Advertorial content and sponsored posts from social media stars are another example of online PR.
Inbound marketing techniques exist primarily in the digital world, as the traditional marketing world relies on outbound tactics to draw customers in and raise interest, whereas inbound digital marketing is more about creating content that potential customers will be searching for in order to attract their interest and then convert that into a sale. An example of real-world inbound marketing is a sales day or other event that will attract potential customers, usually with the incentive of free food, a free trial of the product or a demonstration. In a very niche market inbound marketing will be much more effective than outbound marketing as the customer to supplier ratio favours the seller. Potential customers will actively seek out a niche product or service and with less competition the sellers can focus on establishing themselves as a market leader and expert rather than blasting adverts all over the internet.
A more competitive marketplace requires a good mix of outbound and inbound digital marketing tactics in order to raise awareness of your business and promote your products and services. Once your name is out there and your website is getting a high level of traffic shifting the focus to inbound tactics, that is to say creating a blog, uploading videos and pictures or other useful resources, will increase your website traffic further and help convert those site visits into sales.
Inbound digital marketing assets include a website, blog, social media page or presence. Online tools, useful resources and white papers are all attractive to potential customers and when a person starts to rely on your website as the go-to place for information they start to establish a relationship with that brand and website. Just by providing interesting, relevant and useful online content, it is possible to attract many good customers without spending a lot of money on advertising – they come to you rather than you approaching them. As many people are wary of a hard sell, or pushy, intrusive marketing tactics this softer approach creates a positive perception of your business online.
There are many parallels between traditional and digital marketing approaches, but the biggest difference is the wider scope of potential marketing channels that can be used online as well as the speed with which a marketing campaign can be realised and start getting results compared to traditional methods. Instead of designing, printing and delivering a flyer the same information can be disseminated online via social channels, AdWords and your website in a matter of hours rather than days. Using a good mix of inbound and outbound digital marketing tactics is what we do to ensure your business rises above the competition online, so you can continue to impress your new customers with your expertise in the real world.
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