It should be obvious to any small business owner that the difference between online and offline marketing approaches are pretty significant. Still, some older business owners tend to resort back to older tactics that they were trained on—offline tactics that may work in a small segmented group but have no hope of reaching the masses the way online marketing approaches can.
So let’s boil it down here…what are some of the most basic ways that online and offline marketing are different from one another?
Cost: This is an area where online marketing has a clear advantage. Older advertising methods involve print distribution, graphic design, maybe even packaging and direct mail costs. This can get quite expensive and you aren’t even sure it’s going to work as well as you’re hoping.
Online marketing, on the other hand, is incredibly affordable when it is done right. In most cases, you can do it yourself. There are some approaches that might cost a little cash but you have more control over these avenues than you would with offline marketing.
Analytics: In the world of online marketing, you can study and scrutinize everything. If you want to know how many people on the East Coast visited your site on the 4th of July between 12 a.m. and 6 p.m. you can do it within a few minutes. Being able to study details like this can help you further plan for your advertising strategies.
With offline marketing, you’ll be lucky to even learn how many people your marketing efforts reached.
Customer Targeting: With offline marketing, the best “targeting” you can hope to do is sending mass mails to certain neighborhoods that you feel might best fit your target demographic. Beyond this, you can just hope one of your fliers reaches the right set of hands.
Of course, with online marketing, you can use social media tools to target your audience with pretty scary precision. From location to age range, you can hunt down your prime customers and market to them directly.
How about you? Have we missed anything? Alternatively, are there any offline marketing practices you still use that work?