The Role of Traditional Media in a Digital World

The Role of Traditional Media in a Digital World

The world has gone digital. So should you continue to advertise on traditional media, such as radio, TV and billboards? The answer is an unqualified “yes.”

The best, most efficient campaigns are executed on multiple platforms. This holds true in consumer marketing as well as franchise development.

Using traditional and digital media together reinforces your messaging. Someone might see an ad in their Facebook feed or on a local news website, then hear a related commercial on the radio as they are driving their kids to school. Repetition helps people remember what you are saying.

Increasingly, traditional media are becoming more “digital” in the most positive ways. Digital billboards, which are becoming almost as common as those printed on vinyl, can be updated with new messaging much more quickly. Newspapers and magazines that have survived the war on print have been forced to adapt by either creating strong websites or becoming digital-only products, which make them attractive venues for advertising. Radio stations can provide detailed demographics so you can find the best fit for the audience you are trying to reach, and some even allow targeting by ZIP code. Music streaming sites such as Pandora and Spotify also serve as radio products, but they function like digital platforms, offering very specific targeting options and pricing based on impressions.

Network TV is by far the most expensive medium, but the price of commercial spots on local channels varies widely by market. Franchises targeting the Tampa market might pay $1,200 to $1,500 per spot, while an Atlanta franchise would expect to pay $10,000 per spot. On cable networks, the charge could drop as low as $50 per spot. And although TV is an effective way to reach the masses, it also works better when complemented by a digital product that is being targeted to your key demo.

Which platforms you choose will depend largely on your budget and market.

The good news is that even the smallest companies can afford to advertise on at least two types of media — a digital platform and a traditional one. In a large city, a small franchise would not likely be able to afford TV or traditional radio, but they could reach their target audience via Pandora and a social media platform.

Franchises must balance their media plans between digital and traditional media for maximum effectiveness. Working together, digital and traditional platforms can reinforce your messaging and persuade your target audience to act.