Traditional Advertising: What Should You Know?
Advertisement is key for any company/brand that intends to attract potential customers and convert them into leads. In its basic form, it is speaking about a product or service to a person or people with the intent of selling it to them and keeping the relationship with them for further business and engagement.
The goal of any business is increasing competition in the markets the companies find convenient. Traditional marketing uses platforms such as telecast, broadcast and print media to communicate about the company. Up to the 1990s, traditional marketing was the only form of marketing whose strategy was largely doing promotions using offline methods.
In the digital era, marketing strategies have evolved where the customer can be reached at the tap of a button on something as small as a mobile phone. However, this does not sweep away the role of traditional marketing and its relevance today. This is discussed as follows.
Forms of Traditional Advertising
Traditional Marketing unlike Inbound Marketing involves reaching out to the potential customers and informing them about the company and selling them the products and services.
This form of advertising is categorized into Television and Radio. Television Advertisement is the most popular and mostly preferred form of marketing by companies. This is largely because almost every household has a television set and the different programs attract different kinds of audiences. For instance, women are attracted to Soap Operas and movies, kids are attracted to cartoons and men prefer watching sports.
Advertisements are made by placing ads in between the breaks of the programs. Strategic ad placement is made based on the audiences and what stirs them i.e. for a kid’s program, the advert would be toys related or sweet things that attract them. Television adverts tend to reach audiences who are unintentional in searching about products/services. Their positioning in malls, waiting rooms, lounges, airports etc. reaches to audiences who have nothing much to do hence, grabbing their attention.
Radio as a form of broadcast advertisement has not lost its relevance yet. Most companies still use it because it is cheaper than doing TV adverts. It is an effective marketing tool especially to people in remote areas as well as those who can’t afford TV. Its versatility in that it can be played in public transport vehicles, Walkmans and even phones makes it reach a wider audience.
This involves promoting products through printing hard copy materials and disseminating them to potential customers. This is mainly in the form of newspapers or magazines. Newspapers contain information and current affairs that most households seek to know on a daily basis. Companies therefore place ads, mostly promotions and sales as their marketing strategies to attract customers.
Magazines take a similar form, the only difference with newspapers being that they are produced on a weekly or monthly basis while newspapers are produced daily. Further, magazines have a different audience and they usually attract people of high status thus, strategic advertisement of products is key.
It incorporates placing advertisements in the public/open spaces for people to see. Just like television ads, outdoor advertising seeks to attract customers who were unintentional in seeking to know about the products/services or when they least expect it. This involves doing billboards, transit ads such as buses and taxis, posters etc. With the evolution in technology, outdoor advertisement has also taken the shape of placing big digital screens on streets and buildings and market through them.
Also known as cold calling, this approach has been used for a long time and is still effective. It entails reaching out to potential customers randomly and informing them about offers and products. It is effective since there is direct communication and “contact” as opposed to the other mentioned forms of traditional advertisement. It is also inexpensive and therefore preferred.
Telephone advertisement has evolved to texting and people subscribing to company’s short codes and they receive information about the company’s products and the offers they are giving.
Direct mail involves sending materials/products such as brochures, events invitations, and offers etc. to customers’ physical addresses. The mail is/was customized i.e. have the customer’s name or that of a celebrity to the target audience to convince them into purchasing their products.
It was also coupled with sending gifts or kind messages on special occasions such as birthdays and anniversaries. However, mails are no longer used as much after being replaced with emails which are more direct and are almost immediate. All the personalized messages, cards, brochures etc. have been electronically converted and need not to be sent via postal addresses.
Cons and Pros of Traditional Advertisement
Just like any other form of advertisement, it has its advantages and disadvantages:
- If strategically used it is impactful and easy to understand for instance TV ads targeting specific audiences.
- Easy target of potential audience i.e. reaching the audience unintentionally such as TV ads and billboards.
- Considering the special needs people for instance, radio advertisement is effective for the blind.
- Considers people in the remote areas who can’t access technological infrastructure such as computers, smartphones and internet
- There is no direct interaction with the audience compared to digital marketing strategies. The company has to often assume that enough targeted people were reached.
- It is expensive compared to digital marketing. Placing an advertisement on a TV or billboard will cost more than placing it on the social media account.
- It is difficult to measure campaigns and the success/failure of an advert. For example, one cannot measure whether a product was purchased more because of a newspaper ad or television.
Marketing calls for understanding different types of strategies that help improve results and return on investments. Traditional marketing still has its place in modern society and is still effective. Companies should therefore compare it against other digital strategies and go for the most effective and one with optimal results and profits.
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