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Traditional Marketing vs Digital Marketing: Which One’s Better for Your Business?




Jun 8, 2018

Traditional Marketing vs Digital Marketing: Which One’s Better for Your Business?

Did you know that 1.14 million of all businesses in Canada fall under the small business category? That accounts for a whopping 97.9% of all businesses in the nation!

This goes to prove that start-ups and small businesses will find the Great White North friendly to their enterprise. However, it also means that competition is far more prevalent. It’s for this reason that many entrepreneurs compare traditional marketing vs digital marketing.

Consider this: At the end of 2017, there were more than 33.22 million Canadian Internet users. That’s 89.9% of the population.

Don’t get us wrong. Traditional marketing isn’t dead. At the same time, relying completely on it and not embracing digital can end up with your business in a sinking ship scenario.

In this post, we’ll show you what exactly we mean. And how the best marketing campaign is the one that has the right formula and mix of both.

Traditional Marketing vs Digital Marketing: Statistics You Should Know

What is traditional marketing to the modern marketer? How about online marketing? To put things in perspective, let’s look at their effectiveness in terms of reach.

Despite the continued reliance on traditional marketing, you need to consider that Canadian consumers lead the pack when it comes to Internet use. Compared with other countries, people of the Great White North spend the greatest amount of time online, averaging 36.7 hours/month.

There’s also the fact that more than a quarter of the population (76%) now own smartphones.

Furthermore, an Interactive Advertising Bureau of Canada study found that 75% of adults aged 18 and older use their smartphones to access the Internet. 89% also rely on their desktop PCs/laptops for Internet connectivity and 54% on tablets.

Now, let’s look at the “reach” (per week) of traditional and digital media:

In the same IAB study, it showed that only the Internet (compared with TV, radio, newspaper, and magazine) grew considerably in reach – from 52% to 84% – between 2001 and 2016.

TV only had a tiny 2% increase, while the rest actually experienced a significant decline in reach.
Even More, Stats Displaying the Power of Digital Marketing

Consider the following:

88% of consumers look up information about products they want to buy before actually shelling out money on them. This means that even if they saw a product through a newspaper or TV ad, chances are, they’ll still look it up using the Internet.

To do their research, the majority of them use the search engine giant Google, which processes more than 67 thousand queries per second! In fact, Google’s global traffic share is 79% for desktop and a whopping 93% on mobile devices.
The Takeaway

The above brings us to one of the main reasons behind the effectiveness of digital marketing:

It’s the only platform that allows advertisers to communicate and interact with their market on a real-time basis.

So, if you don’t market online, you risk missing out on the millions of Canadians (or even global consumers) and the profits they can bring your business.

The digital world is also the only place where consumers can freely and quickly share and express their opinions about brands, products, and services. That said, digital marketing holds the key to the modern version of “word of mouth,” particularly online reviews.

Simply put, what people have to say about you online is word of mouth. It’s free publicity — and you can keep a real-time eye on what they’re saying.

Just think about it. Internet-connected device users either always have their devices (smartphones in particular) with them, or they’re always near a desktop or laptop.

On the other hand, they don’t always have the TV or radio turned on. Nor are they always with their newspapers or magazines.

All these should already tell you that, with the kind of coverage the Internet has, digital marketing trumps traditional marketing in terms of reach.

A Quick Look at Traditional vs. Digital Marketing Costs

The effectiveness of your marketing strategies also depends on how much you allocate for them.

To help you better understand why going digital is effective both in reach and cost for the modern marketer, take a look at the 2017 pricing and rates for The Globe and Mail’s classified section (real estate ads):

$23.77/line for 1 to 9 lines on Metro
$28.82/line for 1 to 9 lines on National
$412.50 for a coloured photo ad published every Friday
Note that the price varies depending on the specific industry. There’s a different rate for automotive ads, employment notices, vital notices, etc.

Now, compare these with the average $3.49 average cost-per-click in AdWords (paid search). Or the average $0.82 cost-per-click for display ads.

There’s also the much more affordable $76.73 average cost per action (CPA) in AdWords (Search Network). On the Display Network, that goes up slightly to $78.78.

Considering that a newspaper ad only appears once, you can already see that online marketing is a cost-effective approach — have you ever had someone comment on a Facebook post from a year ago?

The Implications for the Modern Marketer

All the above numbers should already tell you that more and more Canadians do their business and consumer transactions online. It’s far more convenient after all, especially when compared to the hassles and frustrations of long shopping queues (Heck, you can even order groceries online now!)

So, what does this mean for your business? Simple: If all these web-connected consumers don’t see your brand online, you risk losing a huge portion of your market share. In fact, if they can’t find you online, then you won’t stand a chance in today’s extremely competitive market.

And with forecasts saying that more Canadians will shift to online transactions, there’s no other better time than now to start building your online visibility, authority, and reputation.

Where to Start?

A business website – because this will essentially serve as your virtual office address and shop. It’s the backbone of all your online marketing campaigns combined – without it, your SEO and SEM strategies won’t have much impact at all.

But, not just any plain or standard-looking website. You need one that boasts the right visual brand, a responsive design, and ease-of-navigation, among many other factors.

Keep in mind that most consumers nowadays check the official website of businesses before they decide to spend money. It’s the website that primarily influences their decision – the one that can make them pass good (or bad) judgement.

As such, you should consider having pros deal with your website’s design and creation since you want to leave the best first impression on your visitors.

From here, you can then proceed to strategize which digital marketing platforms, like organic search, paid search, or content marketing to invest in.

Social Media Is Your Best Friend

94% of Canadian adults are on at least one social media networking site. This should already tell you that social media platforms are a treasure trove of potential customers and revenues.

But which sites? Just because your neighbour down the street is on these sites doesn’t mean you should sign up for all of them. That can be a waste of time and resources on your part.

You do, however, need to have a presence on Facebook – ranked as the most popular social network amongst all Canadian consumers, young and old alike. With your brand marketing on this social media platform, you can showcase what your business has to offer to over 23.5 million adult consumers.

Work With the Pros

Anyone can build a website, sign up on social media, and curate web content. But not everyone can do them excellently. And that difference between a mediocre and a top-of-the-line brand presence can make or break any brand.

As such, you should include working with professional digital marketers into your marketing budget allocation. These people (like our crew!) keep abreast of all the changes in the digital marketing industry – like those thousands of algorithm updates Google rolls out every year.

Something to consider: If you raised your eyebrows at the term “algorithm updates” because you don’t have any inkling as to what it means, that’s a good sign you should turn to the pros for help.

It’s All About the Right Combination of Marketing Platforms

For a business to succeed, it needs both traditional and digital marketing. It’s not a matter of what wins in the traditional marketing vs digital marketing battle.

It’s more of choosing the right platforms from both types of marketing and then allocating the correct budget for each.

Need more information on which platforms are right for you? We can help. Connect with us, and we’ll be more than happy to answer all your burning questions!

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