Online MarketingI was a marketer of what is called “traditional” marketing for many years, mostly in print. I owned a few magazines and an envelope-mailing franchise. The question I was asked the most was “How do I know customers are reading my ads?” Unfortunately, most of the time I had to answer them with, “Trust me, they work,” or “Count the coupons.” Eventually I wandered into the internet sphere of marketing and fell in love with the tracking ability and strategy of digital marketing.

I think that the downfall of traditional media marketing (whether it is billboards, couponing, magazine or newspaper advertising, or TV and radio commercials) is the lack of ability to have real-time feedback. This is a one way type of communication and leaves the advertiser guessing where the business is coming from. Also, there is also always a lag in the time between the communication and the response which can cloud where the actual response is coming from.

While traditional marketing focuses on “getting the message out,” digital marketing is more focused on creating an interactive user experience. I believe that a marriage of the traditional styles and the “New Marketing is the best one-two punch. Those who only do one or the other are missing an element of the marketplace. With the advancements of social media, search engines emphasizing content, and the constant expansion of entertainment on digital devices, digital marketing is a must in most niches.

From a 10,000 foot view, the internet is the center of digital marketing with websites, banner ads, email marketing, RSS, instant messaging, and especially video. If you have not invested in video marketing on your website as well as on the search engines, you are missing a huge growth category.

A big thing that digital marketing brings is a strategy that goes beyond just “spreading the message.” Making a plan and tracking results is a real benefit of digital marketing as well as the advantage of being able to make a fast change if it is not working. Find a consultant who is a strategist and not just a “package pusher” and explore just how dynamic digital marketing is.