Before we delve into the digital marketing vs traditional marketing debate, let’s first understand what digital marketing is.

What is Digital Marketing?

Digital marketing involves the promotion of products and services all over digital media, digital platforms, and digital devices including social media platforms, search engines, and mobile devices. It’s about creating a recognizable and lasting brand impression and presence in search engines and popular social media.

Digital marketing is an effective channel of marketing to a rapidly growing and very lucrative online marketplace. Over 2.5 billion people use social media globally. Every day, an estimated 1 million people join social media platforms and over 50 percent of the global population has a mobile device that can access the internet. A large segment of this population forms a rapidly growing and very lucrative online marketplace that is just waiting to be tapped by innovative and progressive businesspersons. Digital marketing allows you to reach these people directly without having to spend much in terms of budget. Essentially, digital marketing integrates marketing with mobile technology.

Why Digital Marketing? The Benefits of Digital Marketing over Traditional Marketing

This being the digital era, most people rely on Google and social media searches done on their web-enabled mobile devices to learn more about a particular brand or company. Social media platforms, such as Facebook have tools such as page reviews and testimonials that allow potential new customers to learn about a brand from actual consumers. This enhances the trust and confidence of the potential new customers in a particular brand. Thus, having professionally managed online platforms enhances the credibility of a company and builds brand reputation. Moreover, customers trust a brand more if the brand is present on social media platforms where their questions, praises, opinions, feedback, or complaints can be addressed directly and quickly. Basically, the modern buyer values direct interaction with the seller.

Digital marketing is rapidly replacing traditional marketing owing to the multiple benefits that the former has over the latter. First, digital marketing is more cost-effective than traditional marketing. For example, for only $5 (Ksh 500) for a Facebook Ad, you can reach around 5,000 people on Facebook with information about your brand, product, or service. The ability to customize your targeted audience, based on gender, interests, and geographical region among others, means that these 5,000 people can be selected purposively through the creation of custom or lookalike audiences to increase the conversion rates of your ads. You can learn more about custom and lookalike audiences and how to create effective Facebook ads on our previous article: how to create effective Facebook ads using the Facebook Business Manager.

Digital marketing also enhances the reach and visibility of your brand. Unlike traditional marketing whose reach is limited by geographical location, a digital marketing post on Facebook, for instance, can instantly be seen by audiences all over the world. Additionally, unlike traditional marketing, digital marketing campaigns are easy to track and monitor using metrics and analytics tools, such as Google Analytics and Facebook Business Manager. This way, you can tell whether the funds you spend on digital marketing add value to your brand and your business’ bottom line.

Digital marketing also supports traditional marketing. After hiring a digital consultant, you will not, for example, need to utilize a different budget to hire a graphics designer to develop a vacancy advertisement or to design the company’s profile as all these tasks will be done by the consultant. Thus, with a digital marketing consultant, you don’t need to find other channels for posting vacancies, responding to customer queries, submitting press releases, or conducting public relations and/or customer support exercises, such as addressing bad customer experiences, praises, opinions, or complaints.

Basically, digital marketing consultants have assumed many of the roles that were traditionally split across at least five professionals; a graphic designer, videographer, photographer, webmaster, content creator, and salesperson. These consultants will develop beautiful graphic designs, promotional videos, and motion graphics, animations, and manage your website and social media pages. These are services that would be done by at least five people in traditional marketing. The images, graphics, videos, and posts inform and entertain your customers leaving them regularly engaged with your brand on digital media platforms. Engaged audiences are more easily likely to be converted to buying customers.

Other additional benefits that a digital marketing consultant brings on board include:

  • Researching about the competition and industry
  • Designing search engine and social media marketing campaigns
  • Preparing your brand/company for transformations in the digital platforms
  • Leading and supervising continuous improvement by ensuring your brand keeps up with the latest trends in digital marketing

Finally, digital marketing services can be outsourced.  You do not need an on-premises digital consultant to run your company’s digital marketing campaign as there are fully-fledged digital consultants or agencies that can be contracted at a cheaper price to provide the services online or remotely. In addition to saving on your budget, outsourcing your digital marketing needs to an established and fully specialized digital marketing agency also ensures that you have the best working for you.

There you have it, a brief look at the digital marketing vs traditional marketing debate. Cleary, you can only ignore digital marketing at your own peril! You can learn more digital marketing tips and hacks by subscribing to our YouTube channel.