What’s the difference between digital marketing and traditional marketing, and why does it matter in ministry? The answers may surprise you.
ministry struggle with deciding which kind of marketing to do, because their
budget will only stretch to one or the other, not both. The decisions that must
be made are not easy: which method of marketing will give me the most bang for
my buck? How do I know if my marketing is working? Who should I trust with my
marketing? Should I do it myself? The answers may surprise you.
To clarify the terms, the use of print ads on newspapers and magazines is a simple example of traditional marketing. Other examples include flyers that are put in mailboxes, commercials both on TV and radio and billboards.
On the other hand, when a ministry invests on building a website or blog advertising the brand name through different social media such as Facebook, Twitter and YouTube, this kind strategy is called digital marketing.
Benefits of Traditional Marketing
can easily reach your target local audience. For example, a radio ad
might play in one location: your city or region. Or mailbox flyers will go to
households in a select number of suburbs.
materials can be kept. The audience can have a
hard copy of materials of which they can read or browse through over and over
easy to understand. It can be easily understood by most people
because they are already exposed to this kind of strategy.
seems to support the
benefits of hard copy marketing. A study sponsored by Canada Post and
performed by Canadian neuro-marketing firm TrueImpact compared
the effects of paper marketing (direct mail pieces, in this case) with digital
media (email and display ads).
technologies used in this study were eye-tracking and high resolution EEG brain
wave measurement. The three key metrics evaluated in the study were cognitive
load (ease of understanding), motivation (persuasiveness), and attention (how
long subjects looked at the content).
Direct mail was easier to process mentally and tested better for
brand recall. According to the report,
Direct mail requires 21% less cognitive effort to process than
digital media (5.15 vs. 6.37), suggesting that it is both easier to understand
and more memorable. Post-exposure memory tests validated what the cognitive
load test revealed about direct mail’s memory encoding capabilities. When asked
to cite the brand (company name) of an advertisement they had just seen, recall
was 70% higher among participants who were exposed to a direct mail piece (75%)
than a digital ad (44%).
The Downside to Traditional Marketing
is very little interaction between the medium used and the customers. It
is more of providing information to the public that the brand exists with the
hope of these people patronizing the brand.
or radio advertisements can be very costly. Printing materials can
be expensive and you need to hire people to distribute these.
on this marketing strategy cannot easily be measured. Was
the campaign successful?
Benefits of Digital Marketing
You can target a local audience, but also an
international one. Further, you can tailor a
campaign to specific audience demographics, such as gender, location, age and
interests. This means your campaign will be more effective.
audience can choose how they want to receive your content. While
one person likes to read a blog post, another person likes to watch a YouTube
video. Traditional marketing doesn’t give the audience a choice. Most people
hate receiving sales flyers in their mailbox or phone calls at inconvenient
times on stuff that they have little interest in. Online people get the
choice to opt in or out of communications and often it is relevant because they
were the ones searching for it in the first place. Don’t underestimate
the power of market segmentation and tailored marketing.
with your audience is possible with the use of
social media networks. In fact, interaction is encouraged. Traditional
marketing methods don’t allow for audience interaction. You can encourage your
prospects, clients and followers to take action, visit your website, read about
your products and services, rate them, buy them and provide feedback which is
visible to your market.
marketing is cost-efficient. Though some invest
on paid ads online; however, the cost is still cheaper compared to traditional
and results are easily recorded. With Google Analytics
and the insights tools offered by most social media channels, you can check on
your campaigns at any time. Unlike traditional marketing methods, you can
see in real time what is or is not working for your business online and you can
adapt very quickly to improve your results.
playing field: Any business can compete with any competitor regardless
of size with a solid digital marketing strategy. Traditionally a smaller
retailer would struggle to match the finesse of the fixtures and fittings of
its larger competitors. Online, a crisp well thought out site with a
smooth customer journey and fantastic service is king – not size.
time results: you don’t have to wait weeks for a boost to your business
like you would have to waiting for a fax or form to be returned. You can
see the numbers of visitors to your site and its subscribers increase, peak
trading times, conversion rates and much more at the touch of a button.
Development: A well maintained website with quality content targeting the
needs and adding value to your target audience can provide significant value
and lead generation opportunities. The same can be said for utilising
social media channels and personalised email marketing.
often do your sales flyers get passed around instantly by your customers and
prospects? Online, using social media share buttons on your website,
email and social media channels enables your message to be shared incredibly
quickly. If you consider the average Facebook user has 190 friends of
which an average of 12% see their liked posts – your one message has actually
been seen by 15 new prospects. Now imagine a number of them also like and share
your message and their friends do the same? That’s why high-quality
content is so important.
which kind of marketing is better?
we would recommend both. Obviously, we are passionate about digital marketing,
because we know that it works. But we do use traditional marketing materials,
A 2009 study conducted by Bangor University and branding
agency Millward Brown also used fMRI to study the different effects of paper
and digital media.
their key conclusions were:
- Physical material is more “real” to the brain. It
has a meaning, and a place. It is better connected to memory because it engages
with its spatial memory networks.
- Physical material involves more emotional processing, which is
important for memory and brand associations.
- Physical materials produced more brain responses connected with
internal feelings, suggesting greater “internalization” of the ads.
How We Use Both Digital & Traditional Marketing
traditional marketing methods support our digital marketing efforts. The two do
not operate in exclusion from each other. But we only use hard copy marketing
materials to further strengthen a relationship with a contact, referral partner
or client. We don’t invest in television or radio ads, for example, but we will
give brochures to someone who is interested in our services.
Rather than taking an all or nothing approach, it appears that a multi-channel approach that leverages the unique benefits of paper with the convenience and accessibility of digital will perform best.
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