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Online Marketing Vs Traditional Marketing – Which One is better for a Small Business?

Getting a small business off the ground is no easy task. The current economic climate is still challenging and a huge number of startups fail in the first year because of cash flow problems. There are, of course, many ways to ensure your business doesn’t become another failure statistic.

Effective marketing is essential if you want to build a recognizable brand and attract customers, and as we all know, an invisible business with no customers simply can’t make money. But what happens if your marketing budget is virtually non-existent?

The Benefits of Online Marketing

Online marketing is the perfect tool for small businesses. It costs very little to make use of social networks and email marketing strategies, so if you are operating on a shoestring, online marketing is definitely the way forward.

Social Media Marketing

In order to make a success of online marketing, you need to create a presence on social networks and work hard at building your brand. Success won’t happen overnight, but if you are diligent and willing to spend time interacting with old and new customers, social media marketing can be highly effective.

Before starting a social media marketing campaign, think carefully about which social media network is the right ‘fit’ for your business. Each website has different things to offer, so make your choice wisely. For example, if you have a lot of visual media to share, Instagram, YouTube and other primarily visual websites are going to suit your business down to the ground, but if B2B marketing is more your style, creating a business profile on LinkedIn will be a better idea.

The Benefits of Traditional Marketing

A lot of small businesses overlook the benefits of traditional types of marketing. They wrongly assume that online marketing and SEO is the best way to gain visibility for their business, but this is incorrect for there are a lot of advantages to traditional marketing techniques.

Email brochures are quick and easy to produce, plus they cost nothing to distribute via an extensive mailing list, but the majority of recipients ignore such emails. A company brochure or marketing leaflet printed on good quality paper is more likely to be read by the recipient, and therefore remembered. Marketing leaflets are no different.

Creating Marketing Materials

With the aid of a desktop publishing programme any small business can produce sophisticated marketing leaflets for distribution via the post or as handouts at trade fairs and the like. As long as you have a good quality colour printer, it is easy to print off leaflets and brochures. Obviously there is a cost involved with the purchase or lease of a laser colour printer and the machine will need HP fuser parts if it breaks down, but the expenditure is still going to be cheaper than the cost of paying a design company to design and print your marketing materials.

The best tactic for any small company is to use a combination of traditional and online marketing. That way you can attack from all angles and increase your chances of reaching people who either spend their waking hours online, or who have an allergy to modern technology.