Despite the continuing and growing buzz about online advertising, we still see companies using offline media for advertising. Many businesses continue to use tv, radio, print, direct mails, and out-of-home advertising media such as billboards, posters, banners, and transit ads.
Offline media ads are generally more expensive, less targeted, and its ROI cannot be determined and evaluated in real time. On the other hand, online advertising campaigns can be done on a relatively smaller and tailor-fit budget, can be laser-focused on a specific niche, and results can be analyzed and evaluated using real-time metrics.
Appeal of offline advertising
I am trying to assess the appeal of offline advertising from the point of view of an ordinary consumer. I am considering these points:
- Offline ads present themselves in a less “pushy way”. I hardly find them obtrusive. Or, I can easily choose to ignore them. Skillfully presented, some of these ads can be pleasantly informative and entertaining.
- Through constant and persistent exposure, like seeing billboards on my way to work at least once a day for thirty days, I get to recall the brands and its messages more distinctly and probably get to engage with them when the relevant needs arise.
- I can always go back on a leisurely schedule to newspaper or magazine ads and even direct mailers to read more about a product or service which I had initially found interesting. I can then make a call to the advertiser and inquire about some points I previously jotted down.
- There are segments of the market that are not inclined or do not have time to access online media but are constantly exposed to offline ads like radio, billboards, transit ads, banners, or posters while engaged in their daily or routine activities.
Outlook for offline advertising
Given the above observations, I believe offline advertising will stay and continue to be used by both small and big businesses, by local and global companies. While use and expenditures for online advertising will continue to grow, many marketers will still consider some forms of offline advertising in their promotional mix.
Combining offline and online advertising
Effective promotional strategies will include collaboration between offline and online advertising. While the ratio of use and ad spend will be heavily in favor of online advertising, offline channels for brand messages will remain in use.
It may work this way:
A brand catering to the B2C market can periodically buy ad spots on tv, radio, or print with brand awareness as the objective. The broadcast media reach can be national or regional. These offline ads would highlight the brand and the company URL. These tri-media ads will run in conjunction with online promotional campaigns.
The online ads will actually run continuously throughout the year with far more objectives in consideration such as brand awareness, credibility and reputation building, lead generation, and customer engagement (particularly two-way engagement which cannot be done in real time with offline advertising). Online media will include online ads such as those on Google, Facebook, Instagram, and others.
Both the offline ads, directing its audience toward the advertiser’s URL, and online ads generate traffic to their website. This synergistic combination will result in significant awareness and lead generation for the brand.
Through effective inbound marketing efforts, the leads generated can be converted to outright sales or may be followed through with outbound marketing efforts using offline promotional tools like direct mails or personal selling.
The combined offline and online advertising can also be used for the B2B market.
In promoting your brand, you may look into how to effectively combine offline and online advertising.