Which works, advertising, SEO and Social Media?
In truth, all and none.
They all have a role to play and a place in your budget as both deliver results - But as always it's about message and targeting. Depending on the size of your business and location of your audience, there was a time when all you had to do is decide between Yellow Pages, local press or national/international trade publications. Then came the Internet. For a period this had little effect because people didn't know how to use it effectively, internet speed was slow and not everybody was either online or web savvy. Then came broadband and the super highways, but unfortunately this still wasn't accessible by all and was only for the 'techie youngsters'. Then came the boom in mobile phones, digital TV, wireless communication and now Smart phones. Grannies can be seen drinking tea whilst on their mobile phones and even browsing "that tinternet thing".
"So what?" you may ask. So now 'online' is relevant to all, including Granny, this means you now have 'options' and options means you have more advertising and communication channels competing for your advertising budget. Okay, surely far reaching, quick, low cost 'online' advertising must be the way forward and traditional advertising must be redundant! Not so. I was talking to a very successful National maintenance and decorating business that had tried various on and offline advertising channels with little success. Instead over 80% of their business comes directly from recommendation, vehicle livery and onsite signage. Not trade, local or online advertising. Not from SEO or social media, so what's the point?
The point being, don't throw out the old for just because there's something new, it's more about selection and mix. What works for one may not work for another? We have other clients whose businesses couldn't survive without SEO and online marketing/advertising; whose business can measure 99.9% of their business comes via the internet. Online, SEO and SMO activities are a must for some and of limited benefit to others - or are it that the later don't know how to use SEO?
That's another story for a later blog!