How to get small businesses to consider traditional advertising vs online

It seems like its almost every month that we hear about the death of an advertising medium. Over the years, we’ve all heard about the death of print, the death of radio, the death of traditional advertising in general. Of course, it’s not true but it can make it harder to sell to smaller businesses who might be turning to online advertising instead. In fact, according to Gartner 28% of marketers say they have reduced their advertising budget to fund more digital marketing. We look at how to compete with the likes of Google and show your prospective customers why they should be buying advertising space from you.

What’s the challenge?
Figures suggest that the most effective advertising campaigns are multi-channel, mixing social, paid search and traditional advertising to build awareness and generate leads and sales. The challenge comes when the client has limited budget and has to choose where to focus. How can you get your prospects to consider traditional advertising? Sharing facts and figures – and the stories behind them – can help your clients understand the benefits of traditional advertising and what it could do for their business.

We look at six facts that show that traditional advertising works:

  1. Traditional advertising is the most trustworthy

    TV, OOH and press advertising all score highly with consumers for being trustworthy. Research by Future Foundation for FEPE International found that:
    • 28% of consumers find television advertising ‘most trustworthy’
    • 24% find OOH advertising ‘most trustworthy’
    • 22% find press advertising ‘most trustworthy’
    • Just 3% find online advertising ‘most trustworthy’
    So if your client wants to build trust then traditional advertising is likely to be the best approach.
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  2. TV, radio and print advertising have been shown to be effective

    TV has often been seen as the most influential advertising medium – something backed by Nielsen research, with 68% of people ranking it as an influence on their behaviour. Radio advertising is also effective, with research by The Radio Centre showing that radio and cinema ads are the most likely to be engaged with. Other research by Nielsen showed consumers also ranked print newspapers as an effective advertising source. And it doesn’t stop there. Figures from Newsworks showed that 70% of people who read press ads said they would like to find out more.
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  3. The lines are blurring between traditional and digital

    If your customers see traditional advertising as old-fashioned, they may not realise that it’s changing. With the rise of tablet versions of magazines, newspapers running stories in print and online, and OOH ads becoming digital, traditional advertising is embracing technology. It seems these new formats keep the same high level of engagement too. Research bu GfK showed that tablet versions of ads had the same level of recall as print adverts.
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  4. There’s more and more noise in the digital space

    We all know that there’s more and more content available online as time goes by. The rise of social media, content marketing and online advertising mean that there’s now more noise to cut through to get your message across. The situation doesn’t look set to improve either. Research from the eMarketer shows that digital ad spend was up 15% last year. That translates as more ads and more competition, or more expensive advertising. Either way, small businesses can cut through this by looking to traditional advertising instead.
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  5. Online ads are less likely to be clicked

    Figures from eConsultancy show that clickthrough rates from online ads is falling – from 9% in 2000 to just 0.2% in 2012. That means that online ads are becoming less effective for those businesses to generate leads or sales.The situation is unlikely to improve. The launch of iOS 9 came with a flurry of attention, as it now supports content blockers. That means users can choose to block online adverts, which includes paid search ads. That’s likely to have a big impact on the effectiveness of online ads. So if your clients want to ensure they reach their audience, traditional media is a good approach.
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  6. Traditional advertising works well with digital

    If a small business does have sufficient budget, mixing channels can work well. Multi-channel campaigns have been shown to boost ROI by an acerage of 300%. For example,
    • Out of home gives an 45% uplift to digital campaigns
    • Nearly 40% of online searchers make a purchase after being influenced by an offline channel
    • In one case study by TV Attribution, one brand’s TV ads were driving twice as many branded searches as search-referred website visits. Those are just some of the reasons for small businesses to choose a mix of traditional and online advertising.

Bring the figures to life
Facts and figures are great, but to win the business, you’re likely to need to use real-life examples too. Humans love stories and we respond to them on an emotional level. That means that you’re more likely to win a sale if you can explain how other clients use your advertising and what it means for your business. So do take the time to find examples that you can use and show the real stories behind the facts.