Traditional Marketing vs Digital Marketing

Running a successful business is a lot more than choosing the relevant market. It is about leveraging the right marketing technique (Traditional vs. Digital marketing) to reach your target audience.

The debate continues on whether digital marketing is surpassing traditional marketing or not. The majority of people believe digital marketing has taken over traditional marketing.

Statistics show traditional marketing has fallen by 150% while digital marketing has increased by over 15%. What is the reason behind it? And what is the big difference between them?

In this article, we will make you clear about these queries. With clarity between these two, you will better understand which method is appropriate for your business.

What is Traditional Marketing

Traditional marketing has been used since the beginning of marketing and advertisements. Basically, traditional marketing is anything except digital means to brand your product or logo.

Traditional marketing is not only one thing. There are many facets of traditional marketing which include tangible items.

Traditional marketing methods:

  1. Print: newspapers, magazines, pamphlets, etc
  2. Direct mail: postcards, catalogs, etc
  3. Broadcast: Television, radio, etc
  4. Telephone: SMS marketing, telemarketing, etc
  5. Outdoor: billboards, flyers, etc

Traditional marketing is also defined as finding a business through a referral or network and building a rapport with them.

Defining Digital Marketing

Digital marketing is the marketing model of the global village. Advancement in technology has evolved the world of digital marketing.

Digital marketing includes any online promotion for a brand. Everything from Facebook marketing to search engine marketing comes under digital marketing.

Digital marketing is now a standard form of marketing. It helps reach out to your target market, connect prospects, and convert more of them to your customers.

Digital marketing methods:

  1. Social media like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram
  2. Business networking sites like LinkedIn
  3. Promotional ads via emails
  4. Business website
  5. Banner advertisements and video content
  6. Paid pop-ups
  7. Blogs
  8. Click-bait links for viral content

Digital marketing is a form of inbound marketing that aims for people to find you. It plays a long game. First, you put your content or ads to reach your audience. Your audience, on the other side, conducts an organic online search, a paid search to find you. Your post and content listed on the Google organic search navigate your audience to you.

The more they see you or your content, the more familiar they will become with your brand. They will ultimately build trust with you through this online presence.

Digital vs. Traditional Marketing Statistics

Digital marketing has occupied more than half of the percentage in the marketing industry. It is overtaking traditional marketing.

Let’s look at the stats.

  1. In the U.S., 60% of marketer across various industries attempts digital marketing.
  2. More than 80% of users do their research online before investing in a service.
  3. 94% of B2B marketers are using LinkedIn for marketing.
  4. 90% of B2C businesses trust social media as the most effective content marketing.

Regardless of the business you have, you need to take the importance of digital marketing into consideration. You may lose out on taking advantage of the latest digital marketing techniques.

Why Digital Marketing?

Whatever the marketing technique is, the fundamental aspects remain the same. Today, most business relies on the four Ps of marketing: product, price, place, and promotion.

For successful business marketing, you should initiate a sales funnel. By leveraging the four P’s of marketing, a business can lead its prospects and customers through any sales funnel and see favorable results.

Digital marketing supports the 4 Ps.


Effective marketing starts with a good understanding of your own product. The product can be anything tangible good or intangible service. These products follow a logical product life cycle.

The benefits offered by the product and all its features should be understood. It is not limited here; the potential buyers of the product should be identified and understood.


Price is the actual amount the user will pay for the product. The price of a product directly affects the sales. During pricing, the product’s perceived value to customers is more important than the material cost of the product.

This is why your customer matters more than any other aspect. Price is also affected by distribution plans, value chain costs, and markups.


Promotion is about how you will get the word out about your product. Any method that helps you to gain visibility comes under promotion. Whether it is an advertisement on TV or setting up a Facebook ad.

You should be able to differentiate between marketing and promotion accurately. Marketing is the entire function, and promotion is just the communication aspect of marketing.


Placement plays a crucial role in marketing. It deals with how the customer gets the product. A placement strategy will help to assess what channel is the most suited to a product.

Traditional marketing relies on getting on your product in front of your target audience at the right time and place. When a product is placed in an ideal location, the chances of converting a prospect to a customer are high.

Digital marketing is highly effective because it implements all the 4 Ps of marketing. Each of the strategies is used in a unique way and better than traditional marketing. While traditional marketing is all about the third P: Promotion. It is less effective.

2. Higher level of customer engagement

Traditional marketing doesn’t allow direct interaction with your customers. Without further communication, you only post or run your ad, which is just one way.

Digital marketing offers a higher level of engagement and interaction. Whether it is social media comments or email messages, you are instantly connected with them through various digital marketing channels.

You interact with your customers via video, surveys, or webinars. It lets you engage in their problems and help them solve them. You will build a better and long-lasting relationship.

3. Measure the ROI

How it goes in traditional marketing: You advertise in magazines and distribute brochures and fliers. You don’t know where it is going, how many people are engaged, or how far your marketing will be successful. You may be going in the wrong direction, but there is no way to tell you. It’s like playing a blind game.

Unlike traditional marketing, digital marketing lets you play a clear-sighted marketing game. You have access to measure your every effort. From how many people are visiting/leaving your website to what percentage of them are converting. Most importantly, you can test what works the best.

With the data from ROI, you will be able to analyze your success rate. You will redesign your strategy and investment for marketing. It is absent in traditional marketing.

4. Bigger audience range

Say goodbye to the blanket approach that traditional marketing does, and say hello to digital marketing and go how far you want to go. Traditional marketing is limited to a specific area. You cannot go beyond your local and regional audience. Your business is never geographically bound, so why limit your reach?

Digital marketing creates a highly customized campaign. You can set your boundary and target audience. Go digital and globalize your business.

5. More Productive and Less Capital

A marketing budget is something you will set up. But getting a good return on your investment is something else. Yes, return on investment (ROI) is a crucial aspect of marketing. Focus only on those marketing channels and methods that are more likely to give you the best ROI.

Unsurprisingly, digital marketing fetches you a better ROI because it is cheaper than traditional marketing. Traditional marketing is more expensive than digital marketing in more than one way. Whether you choose to advertise in a major magazine or your local newspaper, you need to be ready to spend huge amounts of money over a long period of time.

Also, in traditional marketing, there is no proper circulation. The number of readers who see your ad will be less than the number of prints that distribute. Because a good percentage of print ads are left unsold. Digital ads are changeable and less risky. For instance, if you are running a search campaign, you can adjust according to real-time data. You can target your ad to a specific audience and change it later. It is simpler, cheaper, and more effective.

Drawbacks of going Traditional marketing

Traditional marketing is still in the run. But today, you need to understand the world has gone technical. Technology has grown and is bringing business closer to your audience.

Before investing in traditional marketing, consider these drawbacks of conventional marketing:

1. Cannot be updated

Traditional marketing depends on promotional methods that lack updates. Once you execute a copy of the ad, you cannot update it. Whether it is a commercial ad or a static text print, you will have to replace your old copy with the new one. It may not seem like a big factor, but it makes a big difference in the long run.

Let’s take the example of a magazine ad promoting your latest product. After a particular time, you make a major update to it. Now, can your same ad work? Of course not; it can put a massive dent in your marketing budget over time.

2. Higher Costs:

The recurring costs in traditional marketing can prove to be a huge investment that may or may not give a good return. Your ad in the local newspaper will only be effective if it is seen by your target audience on the day it gets published. And what are your chances of that?

If you want to reach out to them again, you need to create and run a new print ad campaign. Or when you create and distribute posters or fliers in your area, it’s an investment you are making for a one-time exposure. Compare that to content you create on your website that can bring in target visitors for years at no additional cost.

3. Limited Customization Options:

Do you want to target customers working in a specific industry and in a particular age group? With traditional marketing, you cannot go after your targeted customers.

When you’re using online ads, you got many options. You not only reach out to your targeted customers but also show them offers that are tailored toward them.

4. Inability to Disclose Full Pricing Details:

At the basic level, traditional marketing has always succeeded in attracting people with discounted prices and special sales. However, when it comes down to offering unique, customized pricing options, you may hit a brick wall.

If you analyze the opportunities given to you in print marketing, you may lack the required space to display all your pricing options. What percentage of people do you think will convert to this strategy?

5. Poor Campaign Measurement:

When executing any marketing strategy, knowing that you’re not investing in the wrong direction is essential. Unfortunately, you cannot measure the results quickly and efficiently in traditional marketing.

When you launch an online marketing campaign, you can identify where you are going wrong and whether it is successful. This alone makes digital marketing much better than its conventional counterpart.

Decision Time: Where to spend?

Before concluding, I hope you are convinced by the fact that digital marketing is way more effective than traditional marketing. If you have already tried the conventional marketing methods and there is no growth you wanted, then it’s time to give your marketing a shot.

Go digital with little risk and get a great award.

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