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Why Traditional Marketing Needs Digital Metrics

In its most basic form, marketing is divided into two sections: traditional marketing and digital marketing. In an ever evolving digital world, traditional marketing refers to tactics such as print collateral, billboards and physical mail. Though a relatively new medium when compared with traditional media, digital media techniques offer a growing list of unparalleled benefits; notably how rich digital measurability is for marketers.

Without the metrics to support it, is traditional marketing’s time coming to an end? Has the current digital climate banished the need for paper advertisements and catchy television and radio jingles? This article will explore the reliance on measurability in marketing and how, in some instances, traditional marketing may still have the potential to offer its services in the ever-evolving advertising world.

Online vs. Offline

Traditional marketing boasts longevity and, historically, was a popular form of communicating messaging and advertising. The public is accustomed to traditional techniques, and flipping through magazine advertisements and reading billboards are still activities that are done daily.

However, traditional marketing has a number of disadvantages that have become undeniably apparent in the modern world. Traditional marketing is based on the premise of broadcasting a message. The sole purpose is for advertisers to generate attention – in radio ads, print and other media. Consumers can’t communicate back and the two-way-relationship the public expects from companies is non-existent.

Establishing a two-way relationship in marketing is one way marketers gauge feedback on their campaigns or messaging. Social media, for example, has skyrocketed digital marketing opportunities. Brands may run social advertising on popular social networks such as Twitter, and monitor any inbound responses. Using any of the various tools on the market, these inbound responses can be segmented by sentiment, influence score and keywords. At the click of a button, marketers are able to monitor not only number of inbound responses, but also drill down to the public’s perception of their advertisements.

Digital marketing thrives on its measurables, such as the ability to consistently track metrics such as impressions, reach, return on investment and even return on engagement. These metrics are not applied to traditional, offline techniques due to the one-sided conversations offline marketing sparks.

Obtaining metrics often requires the user to complete an action; whether they are aware of it or not. In digital marketing for example, this may mean the user interacts with the messaging, or even simply views the marketing message – this will be accounted for in impressions and reach. For traditional marketing this element is missing.

Despite becoming more scarce, with even magazines opting to make the switch to online, offline marketing is still an integral part of society and methods such as billboards still have the potential to create a buzz, such as how Twentieth Century Fox utilised a billboard to form part of a marketing stunt for the film Deadpool. This offline marketing technique translated to the online; with thousands of users Tweeting and sharing the post on Facebook.

Using Tech To Measure Traditional

Gauging statistics on traditional marketing can be a challenge within itself. This challenge on reporting traditional marketing metrics has been taken head on by global information brand Nielsen. Nielsen has developed the portable people meter, which determines what programming wearers are being exposed to outside of their homes. Nielsen has long been the leading company for measuring television ratings, however with users experiencing televised programmes and adverts out of their homes and on-the-go, simply asking watchers to physically document their activity is not viable, practical or reliable. The people meter, which uses wireless cellular technology, strives to give a more accurate representation of what the public is being exposed to outside the living room. This technology is particularly fruitful for the likes of sports broadcasters, who claim their viewership statistics have been dramatically undercut the past few years due to the sheer volume of viewers tuning into screens at bars, airports and other people’s homes.

So how can this rejuvenate the use of traditional marketing?

With more accurate and versatile means of reporting on viewership metrics, television adverts in this example have the ability to appeal to brands for advertisements. Should marketers be made aware that X amount of users tune into a particular channel in a public house, the appeal to invest in advertising grows. The same goes for listenership on radio stations, which may be played in areas that attract large crowds such as shopping centres.

To Conclude

For traditional marketing to remain prominent in modern life, it should be coupled with elements of digital technology and marketing strategy. Supporting a traditional marketing campaign with the use of digital can allow brands to reach their entire audience both online and offline, and in some circumstances become visible to a consumer demographic they had not yet uncovered.

A simple yet prime example of incorporating traditional and digital is the instance of having a billboard which may be promoting a product. Along with the general advertisement, the billboard encourages users to Tweet a hashtag to join in the conversation surrounding this item or to win a competition, as an incentive. Digital teams can then pull data surrounding the hashtag’s usage and begin to plot a return on engagement and investment.  

How do you measure your traditional marketing campaigns? Tweet us @mporiumgroup.

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