Truth be told, both offline marketing and online marketing have their respective set of advantages. However, with the growing accessibility to the internet and with more and more people consuming information on the move, online marketing certainly proves to be much more beneficial and advantageous as compared to offline, traditional marketing. This has made it incredibly easy for companies to build upon and create the influence of their brand image thanks to social media and other online platforms.
Statistically, India constitutes 13.5% of the internet users in the world. Despite such a high statistic, it would come as a surprise to many that some of the highly successful businesses in the world today continue to employ offline marketing to reach out to their audiences. While the traditional form should not be undermined for its many benefits, it is also important to weigh the advantages of online, digital marketing against that of offline marketing.
Better Audience Reach
Considering the sheer number of people who use the internet on a daily basis to gather information and purchase products and services online, it is plain common sense that the digital marketing can help reach a much larger audience than any offline channel of marketing. As of 2017, India had a population of 462 million internet users. Having said that, the moment a company takes their marketing campaigns online, they are not just reaching out to Indian netizens but to netizens all across the globe.
Unlike traditional marketing campaigns, the internet does not require heavy capital investment in order to capitalize on email marketing, social media marketing, search engine optimization, pay per click, or online banner ads. On the other hand, investing in printing and publishing of advertisements is a much more expensive alternative. Moreover, the internet offers much easier options in terms of modifying a campaign to suit the company’s needs. To readapt offline channels, and then reprint and redistribute in accordance with a new campaign will prove to be much more cost heavy in comparison.
Smart uses of technology and ideas can accommodate a human touch into even the most heavily digitized online campaigns. Moreover, internet marketing allows much better modes of interaction with customers than print and paper. Today there are evolved digital channels for customers to file feedback, complaints, queries, or even personal reviews for a particular service or product. This also allows companies to gather the temperament of their customers and respond accordingly with immediate feedback, thus increasing the efficiency of the company and building brand responsibility.
Better Tracking Methods
The kinds of analytical tools and softwares available today allow marketers to meticulously track the results of their marketing efforts. And this feedback is often gained real time. Whether it is about determining which marketing channel had the best response or where the highest traffic flows or how the consumer base reacted to a certain outreach effort – it can all be tracked real time. Such reports and data allow for analysis of your marketing strategies, thus providing the company automatic feedback on how to make it more effective. With offline marketing, however, it is much more difficult to track responses.
There’s some credit to be given to custom made products and services that may not be available online. We can’t argue with that. However, that is not to say that customization can’t be realised in terms of marketing efforts and content creation. The exposure that consumers get to a particular brand online can easily be influenced on the back end and that is exactly why automaton tools exist today. Moreover, digital marketing remains non-invasive while at the same time available in the peripheral reach of internet users, should they want to go ahead and access it. That is one of the biggest advantages that online marketing has over offline marketing. Furthermore, generating personalised marketing content, specifically tailored to the likes and interests of each individual user can go a long way in building upon customer relationships.
Building Brand Credibility
At the end of the day it does not matter how effective your consumer engagement is if the consumer does not trust the brand in the first place. The internet can be advantageous in this way by building upon brand credibility and transforming public image. There are many examples out there that highlight how a brand totally changed its image and brand perception simply through their digital marketing efforts. At the same time, it is equally important that the brand brings about this transformation offline as well for customers to truly invest in the brand at an emotional and personal level.
All said and done, the truth is that no business today can survive without an online presence. Consumers are heavily dependent on the internet for day-to-day activities and an online presence of the services they use offline. To go the traditional way of marketing can be beneficial but with small returns. Online marketing on the other hand, is impossible to fail you if done right.
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