Is Traditional Marketing Really Working for You?

traditional marketing alternatives

As many businesses are facing various changes to their operations due to these uncertain times, you may be going through your finances and expenses to see if there are any outliers. And if you are still investing in traditional, non-digital marketing, it might be time to invest more in digital.

We’ll look at a few reasons why now, more than ever, could be the best time for your business to reduce traditional marketing. But first, let’s go over what traditional marketing entails.

Definition of Traditional Marketing

Traditional marketing is a term used to refer to the “old school” strategies that existed before online marketing came into play. It is comparable to advertising, direct, and print marketing, as traditional marketing includes:

  • Billboards
  • Pamphlets/flyers
  • Mailers (postcards, coupons, etc.)
  • Television ads
  • Radio ads
  • Print ads (newspapers, magazines)

5 Reasons to Move to Digital Marketing

Media Spend

Since 2019, the industry has seen a consistent shift in media spend from traditional to digital, according to

tech crunch

And as you can see, the lean into digital media spend is likely only going to continue to surge past traditional. There are various positives about digital advertising, including being able to control your budget, seeing real-time results, and even the ability to discover what your competitors are doing.

For example, you can use the website to creep on your competitors to see how much they are spending on average each month, what keywords they are utilizing, the ad copy they are using, and so much more.

Return on Investment

Over the past few years, have you been able to see tangible and measurable results from your traditional tactics? For example, if you purchased space on a billboard, do you know how many customers it has really attracted? If you ran an ad on the radio, do you know how much revenue it produced?

With online marketing, tracking your efforts is much easier and more reliable, which helps you be able to see a real return on investment.  


Let’s take a look at how much a few of the methods I mentioned earlier cost on average:

  • Billboards – Anywhere from $250 to $15k per month, depending on location, format, and other factors (Source)
  • Print ads – For newspapers, it can cost anywhere from $2,700 to $163,000 depending on the publication, the size the ads, if the publication is local or national, and more (Source)
  • Television ads – For every 1k viewers for a local TV ad it can cost around $5-$34, but nationally, 30-second commercials are around $115,000 (Source)
  • Radio ads – A radio placement averages between $200 to $5k per week depending on the audience size, reach, and various other factors (Source)

By choosing digital marketing, not only can you receive long-lasting features and benefits (an updated website, for example), but you can also be in control of how much you are spending with strategies such as pay per click.

Data Tracking

As I touched on above, one of the biggest downsides of traditional marketing is that it can be hard to track its success. Even if you have unique coupon codes or ask customers to say a certain keyword in the store, a lot of user error can come into play in various ways.

With internet marketing, everything is done for you with the help of numerous analytics tools. Google Analytics is an essential piece of code that can be placed on your website that records the traffic to your website, where it’s from, if a user filled out a form, and a lot of other useful metrics.

Not to mention, there are codes and software that could allow you to track lead source data, phone call data, and more!


Alongside flexibility is how easy and quick it is to switch up your approach with a digital campaign. You can’t just decide to change your messaging on a flyer or billboard, or decide to record a whole new commercial, and get anything accomplished quickly. All of those things come at a great delay and a high cost.

With digital marketing, you or the agency you choose to work with can make edits and updates to your website, social media posts, and online ads in a quick turnaround time. 

Learn More About Online Marketing

Here are a few other helpful blog posts that could persuade you to make the switch:

And if you are interested in learning more about digital marketing and would like to see if our services are right for you, don’t hesitate to reach out.

Sarah Blocksidge

About the Author

Sarah Blocksidge

Sarah is the Marketing Director at Sixth City Marketing and has been with the company since 2016. Her main role is to attract more B2B clients for the company via various SEO, web design, and PPC strategies. Over the years, she has been mentioned on HubSpot, Search Engine Land, GoDaddy, Content Marketing Institute, Fast Company, and Mashable.

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