Mediagistic Blog

Is Traditional Media Still Viable in Today’s Digital World?

Geri Persiano-Vukas
Geri Persiano-Vukas

Considering the current digital landscape, potential clients ask us all the time whether traditional media solutions are still relevant. Here’s the short answer: Yes they are.

Traditional television and radio advertising media channels still dominate when it comes to discovering new brands. We agree, consumers are spending an increasingly amount of time on digital platforms. When introducing a new brand or recalling an existing one, though, research shows traditional media remains the primary driver in recall for consumer advertising.

Effectiveness of Media in the Digital Age

During the Institute of Advertising Practitioners’ (IAP) Effectiveness Week last November, researchers Les Binet and Peter Fields debuted a study titled “Media in the Digital Age.” Using “decades of effectiveness data from the IAP databank,” the study covered four different types of media — online banner ads, online video ads, television, and radio.

Binet and Fields analyzed the cost of each channel for a 1 percent increase in reach and consumer recall. These were the results:

  • Currently and for the next few years, “traditional media is still an indispensable channel.”
  • The percentage of the total population reached that recalled an ad campaign was lowest for digital media, which peaked at 30 percent.
  • Television and Radio had recall rates of up to 60 percent for consumer products and services.
  • Repeating the same ad, or the use of “frequency,” gained even further reach and recall to those exposed multiple times to the ads.

Watch their seminar, “Effectiveness in a Changing Digital Landscape,” in the video below:

Bottom line: Mass media, with its massive reach, tends to deliver bigger results. Adding TV into the media mix of an ad campaign increases the effectiveness by 20 percent or more; a bigger impact than any other single medium. From this perspective, combining online media with traditional increases the overall effectiveness of the media campaign by 13 to 25 percent.

Integrated Campaigns: Powerful but Difficult to Execute

Going all digital or all traditional is not the most effective way to advertise in today’s environment. The strategy is simple — integrate your traditional and digital media by coordinating messaging and timing, and segmenting the demographic to reach your target audience. The key is to deliver multiple impressions of your product or brand to the audience intended.

The concept is powerful; however, the execution is loaded with landmines. Today’s media environment is fragmented with various ad formats, individual platforms, disparate buying processes, and orchestrating this type of marketing strategy is not done easily.

Avoid Landmines & Return to the Metrics that Matter

So how is it done? Getting back to basics and return to the metrics that matter to your customer. Reach, frequency, impressions, and demographics. The basics of advertising are even more relevant today than they have ever been. But they are also more advanced and go deeper into the behavior of your audience to deliver more targeted results.

Advertising works, that’s why the companies we know and buy from continue to do it. It can be scaled down to whatever your consumer target area is and done effectively for any business’ size.

Tune in next month for the Part II of the Media Series: How do digital video streams, DVR, VOD, and mobile video impact the effectiveness of traditional Media?

Geri Persiano-Vukas is Mediagistic’s Vice President of Sales & Service. A veteran of international sales and marketing with AT&T, she joined the Mediagistic Team over five years ago. Within a few months of her arrival, our well established business managing regional and national dealer co-op programs for manufacturers like Carrier and Bryant exploded into full service agency representation of dealers for all of their individual marketing and advertising needs. Connect with her on Linkedin.

Image via Thinkstock

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