Online or Offline Marketing: Which is Right for You?

Marketing strategies have been constantly changing for several years, and that may be the only thing in the world of advertising that isn’t going to change.

If you had $100,000 in your marketing and advertising budget, how would you spend it? How much would you spend online with content marketing, mobile marketing, email marketing, social media, and Google ads, and how much would you spend on offline advertising, like radio, television, newspapers, magazines, direct mail, or billboards?

At the moment, online and offline advertising should both have a place in your marketing strategy, although the trend is moving more toward online tactics with every passing day. On average, traditional advertising budgets have been reduced by 28% to fund digital marketing. Television advertising was surprisingly stable until recently, dropping only a few tenths of a percent each year. Then, in 2017, the amount companies spent on television ads suddenly dropped by 4 percent. The ad spend for newspaper print ads took an even greater plunge, falling by 22.3 percent in 2017.

Advertising has been in a state of flux since the internet became a part of daily life. Since it’s predicted that fluidity will continue for several more years, the smart thinking is that companies should cover all their bases with a mix of online and offline marketing.

Offline marketing follows the old saying that, if you throw enough ads against the wall, some of them will stick. Television, radio, newspapers, and direct marketing reaches all age groups and profiles, and some of those recipients will have an interest in your product. Additionally, with fewer companies placing ads in those media, there is less competition for a viewer or reader’s attention. If you have a product that appeals mainly to senior citizens, then offline advertising will have a much greater return on investment, since traditional media is where older Americans spend their time.

If you’re looking to target a specific, younger demographic, then online media will probably yield a greater ROI. And while it’s hard to track an ads efficacy using offline resources, feedback is immediately available online, allowing companies the opportunity to constantly hone their advertising message. Online advertising is also more cost effective, and it allows companies to interact with their customers in real time.

The perfect balance is to find the right combination of print media that cater to a specific audience, while taking advantage of social media and online publications. If you make custom guitar amplifiers, then an ad in Guitar Player magazine is a wise investment, as is a banner displayed on the websites of the most popular online guitar retailers.  If, however, your company produces matcha tea, your audience may skew younger and you may get a better buzz and find a more targeted audience online; consequently, you would place an online ad on, and then buy a print ad in Healthy Living magazine.

Dividing your marketing budget between online and offline advertising is an art and a science. If you’re unsure which approach is best for your company, call McFadden/Gavender. Our digital team will get your product in front of an audience interested in your specific product, geotargeted and in a specific demographic. At the same time, our design and media team will get your name out using traditional media. Give us a call, and we’ll custom design an advertising strategy for your brand, without exceeding your budget.