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Does Traditional Marketing still Work?

The face of marketing has changed dramatically in the last few years. Social media is becoming a household (or business-hold) name and its popularity has grown at a very rapid pace. In almost every corner, you’ll get the latest news and buzz through Facebook, Twitter, Google, and Foursquare, to name a few.

And now for the question at hand: Whatever happened to traditional media for marketing? Is it truly goodbye for old-school marketing?

Well, it may never be goodbye after all.

Traditional Media: here to stay

While social media is an important element to business marketing, you can’t take the fact that it’s really just a tool. It’s an important element, yes, but it’s not supposed to replace proven forms of promotion. Even though it’s got low cost and a very widespread reach, it’s absurd to think that social media can replace other well-proven forms of marketing. It’s an important tool among other equally important tools in business marketing.

The different forms of traditional media

1. Newspapers

A nice cool day + a cup of coffee (or your favorite hot drink) + a freshly delivered newspaper. Would you ever want to lose the great experience of that combination? Would you ever trade that perfect morning for anything? I know I won’t.

But really, the newspaper gives at least two benefits marketing-wise: it’s cost effective and it’s literally all over the place. Cost-effectivity means that anyone can potentially have his own newspaper. Because everybody potentially owns one, it’s virtually all over the place. And because it’s all over the place, everybody reads it! You have local, national and international coverage. It’s the second cheapest option to market your business. The cheapest? Read on to discover if you don’t already know. :)

What we did in the past for a simple project was we used flyers as our main ad material and we asked a store-owner if we could insert the ads (of course for a small price) at the centerfold of the local newspaper that he sells. The owner of the newspaper stand agreed and our ads spread like wild fire.

Don’t be afraid to check out the options available for you when it comes to newspapers. Trust me, a lot of people who read the newspaper almost immediately open at the center after checking out the headlines. It worked for us. It might work for you, too.

2. Radio

The charm of the radio is not going anywhere. Most people listen to the radio on their way to work, or at home while working or relaxing. Radio is one of the best ways to market your business and it’s cheaper than the next one we’ll discuss.

You should plan on what specific time you want your ad to be played. Most people choose between 8:00 AM – 9:00 AM everyday for a whole week because people are commuting to work at this time.

3. Television

Television advertising is costly. Rightly so. But the fact is even though it will cost you a larger sum than the cheaper alternatives we’ve discussed so far, you will undoubtedly get better results. It always pays to be perfectly sure you have enough resources to support your television marketing strategies.

Also do not forget that you should prepare for the potential demand that could result from the use of television as your marketing media. Television reaches almost every corner of the world—or in your case, every corner of your small town. But it may just be a matter of time before your business goes global.

The television is a very good opportunity for your business to explode, if your resources allow you, of course. You wouldn’t want to miss the chance when it comes. So be ready and televise! :)

4. Word of mouth

If you’re looking for the cheapest way to market your business, you’re reading about it right now. Word of mouth still is the main way for freelancers and small businesses to market—and not ineffectively, on the contrary.

Cheap doesn’t really mean ineffective. Word of mouth can greatly affect your business, it can even make or break it. But who wants his business to die, right? Be positive about it. You can inform your friends about your business or service and be sure to expect the whole neigborhood or even the whole town to know that you’re in business ready to cater to their needs.

What’s really neat about this form of marketing is that it doesn’t cost a dime. But it’s not as easy as it sounds. You still need to do something very critical: open your mouth. People will only open theirs if you start opening yours first. So do your part. :)

The whole point of the discussion

Online marketing strategies or the social media greatly enhance your efforts and make them more interesting and interactive. But they don’t replace the ones we’ve discussed. Online marketing and traditional marketing are essential for success in business today. You just need to effectively use their strengths so that you will be one step closer to your success.

Your thoughts

How about you? What kind of marketing made sense to you and your business? Which of the above worked for you? What were your challenges? How about the rewards? What would you like to add?

Let us all know in the comments!

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About the Author

Stephen NellasStephen is part of the Software Jewel team, the company behind Clutterpad and BiP. He's also a regular author for BiP.View all posts by Stephen Nellas →

  1. WKWK06-04-2010

    I think it still works to a certain degree… We have events form time to time and we still find some of the newspapers and radio station help a great deal. But i guess the success depends on the type of event a person may be running or the type of audience he wants to reach.

  2. artwrter2010artwrter201006-09-2010

    I think it’s just a matter of time; soon enough, traditional marketing will become part of marketing’s glorious history. Technology will surely take over. There might still be some form of television or radio, may function differently from what we now have. But definitely no more newspapers.