Gone are the days when an ad in the local newspaper or a billboard on the side of the road would suffice for a business’ marketing strategy. Even though the digital age is booming, is it right to abandon those “old” ways of marketing to focus fully on the new ways? Experts say, “no.” A better-suited strategy is one of integrated marketing, intertwining the old with the new.
Online Vs. Offline
We are living in a digital world, but that doesn’t mean that your brand exists only online. As brand experts, we know the importance of getting in front of the right audience at the right time, and for most brands, that includes appearing in a physical offline way as well.
While it may seem to make sense to put most, if not all of your marketing budget into online outlets such as Google Ads, social media, and other content management, statistics show that offline mediums should not be overlooked. In fact, direct mail campaigns have the 3rd highest ROI.
“Giving back to your community and supporting local causes is an excellent way to make a big impact in your area.”
Online marketing or digital marketing certainly has its benefits. For one, it is much more convenient to use. You can sit from the comfort of your home and launch a Google Ad campaign without ever having to call and get quotes or set up meetings. You can easily manage and track the success of a digital marketing campaign. On top of that, online marketing is usually more affordable or sometimes even free.
While offline campaigns can take more time, more resources, and be harder to track the performance of, they can often pay off just as much, if not more than online.
How to Start Offline Marketing:
Promotional Products: People love free things. Create brand awareness by creating a useful product that keeps your brand at the forefront of your audience’s mind.
Networking: Attending local events, speaking at conferences, or even hosting your own events are some of the best ways to get the word out and create authentic experiences. While these may not be happening as frequently in our current time, hosting webinars or offering to speak at an online event are great ways to stay connected even if it’s not in person.
Donating: Giving back to your community and supporting local causes is an excellent way to make a big impact in your area. It not only has a positive effect on your community, but it is good for business too. Seventy percent of millennials reported spending more with brands that support causes.
Print ads or Billboards: Print ads and billboards are a great way for local businesses to reach their audience right where they are. Knowing what magazines your audience is reading or what parts of town your target audience frequents, can allow you to generate that top-of-mind awareness by getting in front of them on a daily basis.
TV and Radio: Unlike online advertisements, TV ads can’t usually be skipped easily, leading to some of the largest completion rates in the industry. TV doesn’t just mean local channels anymore, but also streaming sites such as Netflix and Hulu. In addition to TV, radio is still a very relevant medium for advertising. According to a recent study from Nielsen, 59 percent of US music listeners listen to traditional or online radio. Radio remains the best way to reach consumers as they commute. Which makes radio marketing a great way to reach local consumers with relevant ads.
Combining Online and Offline with Integrated Marketing?
Although both offline and online marketing have proven their worth and effectiveness, we believe the best marketing strategy is one that is a marriage of both, not just one. To truly infiltrate the minds of your consumers, you must get in front of them as many times as possible and meet them wherever they are going to be. This means on social media and Google Search, but also at the local charity event and on the billboard on their commute home.
“The best marketing strategy begins with first determining what your goals are and where your target audience is.”
Many brands feel that putting all their eggs into the “digital marketing” basket is the best approach in this digital age. However, we believe that it is best to take each campaign and each marketing objective and determine on a case by case basis, based on your audience and needs, which is best, online or offline.
Implement an Integrated Marketing Strategy for Your Brand
The best marketing strategy begins with first determining what your goals are and where your target audience is. Once you do this, you can then determine where the best place is to put your message and brand. For example, if your goal is to impact wealthy members of your community, social media isn’t the best tactic. Instead, find local charity events to sponsor and ads in a local high-end print publication. Even networking with local HOAs is worth considering. However, if you are trying to generate more leads for your medical practice, targeted search ads are a smart idea.
Marketing is never a “one size fits all” scenario. And online vs. offline tactics are the same way. Taking time to determine which one is best for you will take your marketing efforts to the next level.
Are you ready to reach your target audience where they are? Whether online or offline, the brand experts at Kudzu Brands can help.