What’s the difference between the digital and traditional marketing? Which one should you use as the right marketing type for your business? Here’s everything you need to know.

What is digital marketing?

Digital marketing is using digital channels such as websites and social media as tools for marketing communication. If you’re using social media you will be well experience the adverts that pop up in your social media stream. 

Digital marketing channels include:

  • Social media (Facebook, Instagram, Twitter etc)
  • Website
  • Content marketing
  • Email marketing
  • PPC (pay per click)
  • SEM (Search engine marketing)

What is traditional marketing?

On the other hand, traditional marketing  involves traditional channels, like billboards and printed media. Traditional marketing was pretty much the only type of marketing, up until the development of the internet in the 1990’s.

Traditional marketing channels include:

  • Outdoor (Billboards, bus/taxi wraps, posters etc)
  • Broadcasting (TV, Radio etc)
  • Print (Magazines, newspapers etc)
  • Direct Mail (catalogs etc)
  • Window display and signs

Digital marketing vs. traditional marketing: what are the difference?

The main difference between digital and traditional marketing is the platform which audiences encounters a marketing message. While traditional marketing uses traditional media like magazines and newspapers, digital marketing uses digital media, such as social media or websites.

Traditional marketing doesn’t mean it’s old fashioned. It still plays an important role in people’s lives with the ever growing need to step out of the digital world.

Digital marketing is just as important as traditional if not even more so. It uses every touch point of your daily use of the internet to reach you.Using the internet for several hours each day is a normal part of most people’s day to day life. Digital marketing just uses this to its advantage by cleverly weaving in marketing communications into every digital channel.

Benefit of Digital Marketing

More options for engagement
Through channels such as social media you can physically see what your audience think of your brand and marketing efforts. If your marketing has been shared, liked and had plenty of positive comments, you know you’re doing something right.

Easy to measure your campaigns
On the flipside to traditional marketing, the specifics of digital marketing tracking is exceptionally in depth. This makes your learnings extremely clear for your next round of marketing efforts.

Makes clever targeting possible
If you have the tools to specifically target a 29 year old female writer who loves Lizzo and drinking Guinness then surely you can also create perfectly tailored content?

Benefit of Traditional Marketing

Impactful and easy to understand
A visually bold billboard or a striking TV commercial is a normal part of most people’s day to day lives. They’re easy to digest and often entertaining.

Printed marketing materials are more permanent
If you have an advert in an issue of The New York Times it will be there until the magazine is recycled. Which is great if the consumer is an avid collector.

More memorable
Seeing something in real life rather than on your phone is more likely to be remembered. The anticipation of the new Super-Bowl ads or a beautiful and impressive window display is more likely to stay in your mind than an Instagram ad you’ll probably scroll past in seconds.


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