Traditional vs. Digital

Thomas Wynne

by Thomas Wynne

Wed, 05/02/2018 - 15:38


Here’s a question: as a business or brand looking to reach a global audience in 2018, where do you invest your marketing budget: digital or more conventional marketing channels? With the evolution of online marketing in recent years, it’s no surprise that we’re now seeing how more and more brands are channelling most, if not all, of their messaging digitally. The benefits are clear to see, when wider audiences can be reached through more cost effective, data driven, and finely targeted online mediums. This will of course lead many to ask: given the rich digital playground of today’s marketing landscape, are other more traditional methods still relevant?

It is useful to consider that, while the platforms may be radically different, the content itself hasn’t really changed. So whether you’re viewing a billboard from a train window or scrolling through your Twitter newsfeed; viewing a commercial on TV or while browsing YouTube; receiving a printed leaflet through your door or a Facebook carousel – only the delivery is different, not the actual messaging. And while it can’t be denied that digital mediums can reach far larger audiences at lower cost, there is an undeniable weight that remains with certain more traditional forms of marketing. Think how easy it is to skip past a YouTube ad after the mandatory 5 seconds, or to decline a desktop pop-up without ever viewing the content – compared with a beautifully presented coffee table printed brochure that invites you to pick it up, or a TV or cinema commercial you can’t skip.


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A recent study sponsored by Canada Post compared the effects on participants exposed to digital and hard copy forms of brand messaging. Interestingly, participants were over 30% more likely to recall the brand information they had seen in conventional printed material than those exposed to digital ads. So what does all this tell us? While digital marketing has undeniable advantages, clearly there is still a place for traditional mediums too. So a marketing strategy that adopts a combined approach, and an array of avenues for customers to view your content, will be far more likely to maximise the return on your investment. This is what we offer our clients at Burrows. We believe in the added value of a combined strategy, and how a multi-layered approach can help traditional forms, such as the printed brochure, to stay relevant in today’s digital world.

Beautifully presented printed brochures, for example, can provide digital activation for readers to access additional online content. While digital e-versions of these brochures can be downloaded to a device or smartphone. And engaging, interactive configuration tools online can then provide your customer with a uniquely personalised brochure specific to them.


Thomas Wynne

Junior Digital Strategist