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Monday, February 10, 2014

Inbound marketing has been a real game-changer for the world of advertising. Brands and agencies are realizing that traditional marketing tactics are no longer enough on their own: while traditional methods still play a significant role in any brand's marketing strategy, it's important to bridge the gap between traditional and digital marketing. On the surface, it may not seem easy to tie the two together, but it's actually possible to create a synergistic approach where your online and offline methods lead into each other to stimulate conversions. Incorporating digital strategies into your overall marketing solution can help your company increase brand awareness, expand your customer base, and retain your existing customers. Let's take a look at the differences between traditional and digital marketing, and see how they can work together to create a cohesive marketing strategy.

Traditional Marketing

Traditional marketing efforts are conducted through offline channels, such as television, radio, print, telemarketing, and direct mail. These campaigns generally require a high degree of planning, involving detailed demographic research. They revolve around the well-known "4 Ps" of marketing: price, product, placement, and promotion. Traditional marketing usually has a longer time frame for execution than digital efforts, and are more expensive overall.

Inbound Marketing

Inbound marketing efforts are quite different from their traditional counterparts. With a short life cycle and nearly instantaneous feedback, they can give marketers a targeted, detailed look at consumer behavior, demographics, purchasing habits, and interests. Messaging can be executed on a real-time, one-to-one basis, creating a level of engagement that's impossible with traditional methods. These inbound strategies are invaluable to marketers as a tool to attract, engage, and ultimately convert customers.

Creating Synergy

Traditional and digital (inbound) marketing efforts can work in tandem to create a powerful conversion cycle. For example, QR codes can serve as an effective bridge between traditional and digital campaigns. These codes can be added to print advertising, business cards, and even product packaging. Accessible to anyone with a smartphone and a barcode-scanning app, they can link to your website, blog, product videos, or contact information. Linking them to any of your company's social media properties is an easy way to increase your following.

Even direct mail, a staple of traditional marketing, can make the leap into the digital realm. Companies can use email mailing lists to enhance, or even replace, their existing direct mail efforts. Email boasts multiple advantages over traditional mail for marketing purposes:

--It's easier to respond to
--It's a better choice for brief messages, like follow-ups and confirmations
--It's a better choice for sending reminders

No matter what methods you use to integrate traditional and inbound marketing strategies, it's important to keep a few things in mind. Your traditional and inbound campaigns will work best if launched simultaneously, so that they can support and lead into each other. As your campaign progresses, you can reduce your costly traditional media schedules while continuing to draw visitors through your more budget-friendly inbound marketing efforts. Remember to keep your brand's message, as well as the look and feel of the materials, consistent between both mediums. As you receive and analyze feedback on your inbound efforts, be sure to make the appropriate adjustments to your web-based tactics.

It's clear that traditional and digital marketing methods might appear quite different in their tactics, but they share the same goal: to attract leads, create conversions, and increase brand awareness. Integrated correctly, these two types of marketing can seamlessly lead into each other and streamline the conversion process. Try bridging the gap in your own company's marketing strategy, and watch your bottom line grow.

Special thanks to our guest post writer Rick Delgado. Rick is a technology enthusiast and former direct mail marketer. He's recently taken a step back from a successful career to pursue his passion for writing.


Unknown said...

Inbound marketing is a great thing which covers most number of success rates till date in the world of digital media marketing by Social Media Networks.

Unknown said...

Your article seems cool. I would like to read more about your blog.. You keep a good info about marketing

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