Down the straight and narrow. Right? Right. Not right. Think outside the box. Too outside the box? Yes. No. I don’t know.
Tasks vs. Strategy
The business world is all about balancing task-driving and strategy-driving. Marketing is no exception. Tasks and strategies go hand in hand, but it’s important to have every task point toward an overarching strategy or a strategic goal. Mindless task management is mind-numbing. This is why Digital Marketing rocks. We can do a task and measure it. We can see the data behind a task and how it’s moving us toward our goal.
When understanding digital marketing, it is key to understand what types of tasks tie directly to strategy. And it is important to understand what the strategy is for a digital marketing campaign. Is it a certain ROI or ROAS? Is it expansion? When an overarching strategy is defined, it is easy for a business or an account manager to back into day-to-day tasks to push the business towards that specified strategic goal.
In the instance of traditional marketing, it can become quite messy to determine what the goal is of a grass-roots marketing campaign. Is it attendance at an event? Is it in-store sales? Is it simply taking up advertising real estate like billboards or event program pages? These are all difficult things to quantify as touch-points for ROI or growth or business performance. It is difficult for a business to say: “Because of this billboard we saw a 5% growth in sales over the last 5 months.” Or something like that.
Digital marketing varies from traditional marketing for the very reason that we can track progress, audiences, user’s actions, user’s behaviors, user’s comments, and the list goes on. Traditional marketing, or grassroots marketing, is certainly beneficial but it isn’t as easily quantitative as digital marketing. (And pairing traditional marketing with digital marketing is definitely strategic!) With the internet, companies can specifically engage with target audiences, demographics, and ideal customers. Digital marketing comes with more advertising options than traditional marketing.
All businesses have the goal of engagement. When a customer sees a brand, comes into a brick-and-mortar store, hears about its products, the business has an expectation of that customer to recall something that distinguishes the business from its competition. In traditional marketing, a business can put out a billboard or a flyer or a sign to engage with customers; however, after the advertisement is placed there’s no solid, data-defined way to show how customers interacted after seeing the advertisement. (In-store or online sales could be a data-defined way to say that a billboard or sign or something of the sort impacted the business, i.e. a business put up a sign and two months later their sales have increased-but that is still a little difficult to quantify that an up-tick in sales is due to a billboard).
So, what is the value of digital marketing if a business has never tried it? The value is found in the data. It is found in the many different levers an advertiser can pull to attract new, old, and returning customers. Digital marketing has the ability to expand a business through all the different social, search, and display platforms that are unavailable in the traditional marketing world. (Don Draper would be shocked!) With the ever-growing markets and the constant competition that never ceases, digital marketing is the avenue to propel a business into the future.
Go into the world of Digital Marketing and you will be astounded at how much data is available, at how much advertisers can learn about their audiences. As an audience member, you want to become a hermit so no faceless person can have that much information about you; but, as an advertiser, that data is a goldmine, a ticket to ROAS that you’ve never experienced.
Traditional marketing has its pros for building brand awareness, connection personally to customers, and surrounding a localized market with what a business has to offer. It is an essential element to the success of a business. But to take a business to the next level and really see the performance increase, a business must take advantage of the awesome technology and capabilities of the internet. Internet marketing is a continually growing field that is ever-changing and more important for businesses, ever expanding into markets previously unreachable.