Is traditional media dead?

The answer to this question is “no.” Several credible research organizations have published studies during the first few months of 2023 showing that even within our heavily digital landscape, traditional media still matters, and in fact, can still deliver meaningful numbers and results when used strategically.

The key is the same as it has always been. The delivery vehicles need to match and support the key messages and your targeted audiences. And companies need to not think of digital advertising as their “one-trick pony.” Frequently, it is the correct combination of media outlets and platforms that create success.

Interestingly, some of the newest research shows the following:

· The percentage of the total targeted population that recalled an advertising message or campaign was actually lowest for digital media, coming in at around 30 percent.

· Television had up to 60 percent recall for consumer products and services, and adding television advertising into an existing campaign tends to increase its effective reach by 20 percent or more.

· Advertising “frequency” still matters, whether it is traditional or digital advertising.

· Television and radio media channels still deliver the best results when it comes to introducing new brands.

In other words, it is smart to think of digital advertising as a part of an all-inclusive campaign. Digital should certainly play a role in the overall advertising mix, but not to the exclusion of all else.

The measurement metrics that matter include the same effectiveness measurements that have always determined positive results for advertising and marketing campaigns, including reach, frequency, impressions and demographics.

The results are similarly true for public relations or “earned media.” Digital plays an increasingly important role in this overall mix as well, but should not negate the effectiveness of traditional media coverage as its outreach partner. Remember that while audiences are increasingly turning to digital channels to receive news and information, much of the news that is consumed is actually initiated by traditional media outlets. So, reaching and positively influencing those traditional outlets to cover your story is still very important. Don’t confuse delivery systems with the information itself.

Additionally, self-publishing content is important and will increase in importance, but the third-party credibility that is still inherent in news organizations and writers covering your news remains a powerful ally to your paid media, whether it is digital or traditional.

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