Traditional media is not dead, Google it!
I read a blog the other day talking about traditional advertising becoming obsolete. It talked about the death-spiral for traditional media. This blog author claimed that because of the fall of traditional advertising, business should direct their advertising dollars to interactive advertising and social media. It really annoyed me. Then I managed to score a mini Milky Way Midnight. That dark chocolate with the creamy caramel and vanilla nougat gets me every time.
No one can deny that consumer behavior has changed. It has changed, it is changing and it will change. Yes, we have become accustomed to getting our information when we want it and where we want it. The Internet is to thank for our information demands. It’s everywhere. We have the Internet on our cell-phones. Remember when they came in bags? Now they’re pocket-sized and with the touch of your finger you have access to all the information you can possibly imagine. It’s rare to walk down the street without catching a window cling that says “Wi-Fi Available Here.” Google, Googled and Googling are now part of the Miriam Webster Dictionary. As a media buyer and planner by trade I do believe that interactive advertising should be part of most company’s media plans. Why wouldn’t you want your brand to be where your consumers are, where they are spending the most time? It’s advertising 101. The key is you have to do it correctly.
In my opinion and through my experiences, throwing banner ads on websites research has determined your target market visits isn’t going to draw people to your website. An average click through rate is .04%. Shocking? Think of how often you click on banner ads? Or think about how often you try to x-out of a rich media ad and accidentally click a little to the left of the x. Sure I notice banner ads, when I’m spending my 4-5 hours a day on the Internet. Being a media buyer, I probably notice these more than the average consumer, but I can tell you, I do not click. Even the coolest of rich media, a T-Rex claw slashing across my screen advertising the dinosaur exhibit at the local museum, does not tempt me to click. If I am interested, I will visit that site on my own time because I want the information I am looking for where I want it and when I want it, and I will not be distracted by dinosaur talons, not even if he has a super cool roar. But I remember it. In my opinion and experience, banner ads should be used for branding purposes only. There your target market is, there your brand is. They’re there, you need to be too.
Similarly, creating a Facebook and Twitter page, aren’t going to get you followers. Consumers are smarter than that. Unless you have something relevant to say or are offering us something we want, we simply don’t care. And how are you going to let me know that your business is on Facebook and Twitter, and that you could possibly offer me something I want? TRADTIONAL MEDIA!
Use the Internet to Google statistics on how many people have a DVR and how many people have satellite radio in their cars. Take a look at the Nielsen and Arbitron data. It does not lie. TV viewership is not going away. In fact, Modern Family’s TV audience is up 19 percent from last year according to Media Life Magazine. Consumers are listening to the radio. People Meters show that. There are also various economical reasons that a few newspapers are ceasing publication. Think of the state our economy since the war started. Even though we can just Google it, there is something to be said about coming home to the latest issue of People Magazine in your mailbox, or a youngster’s first paper route.
Interactive media is important, but it can’t be a replacement for traditional advertising. Use it correctly. Use it for branding. Social Media is great. In fact, someone once said the greatest type of advertising is word of mouth, but have something relevant to say. Use your traditional mediums for the purposes the advertising gods gave them and additionally, use them creatively to drive consumers to your website or your social media sites. Traditional media is not dead, it’s not going anywhere. The traditional media mix has expanded, that’s all. So Mr. Blog writer whose name will remain anonymous, traditional media is not dead, dying or on a death-spiral. The data is there. Google it!
Image: Dean Ayres