What is Traditional Advertising And Why Is It On The Decline? Part 1 of 5

Traditional advertising methods like Yellow Pages Canada are no longer as effective as they once were.  An increase in internet use and activity over the years is making traditional advertising obsolete.

If you are a business owner with a small to medium sized business this change likely causes you to feel frustration and annoyance as you struggle to make a return on investment for your advertising dollars. Are you finding yourself spending increasing amounts of money on your traditional ad campaigns which are producing dwindling results?

If so, you’ll find this series a must-read.  Over the next five days we’ll be talking about why traditional advertising isn’t working and examine how to make the change to internet marketing and how internet marketing has worked for businesses like yours.

When we are talking about traditional advertising we are talking about:

  • Yellow pages
  • Newspaper and magazine print ads
  • Radio spots and billboards
  • T.V. commercials
  • Direct mail sales letters

Have you used any of the above methods in the past?  Are you using them currently?  If so you should ask yourself how much are you spending on each medium and what kinds of results are you getting for your money?  Are these methods generating leads, producing new business or helping you to increase profit?

The point of any type of advertising is to reach a targeted consumer.  Since our society is so internet savvy many of these traditional mediums are no longer as effective as they once were in reaching the consumer.

Yellow Pages – From Your Doorstep to Your Recycling Bin

Are you paying expensive fees to have your ad displayed in the yellow pages? If so, you may want to reconsider how you are spending your money.

For example, in New York city a one inch display ad costs $2500 and a full page display ad can cost up to $92 000!

This is a lot of money to spend considering that fewer and fewer consumers are turning to the yellow pages for information.  Although everyone receives a yellow pages book for free few people actually use it and sadly they tend to collect dust on a shelf or go straight to the recycling bin.

Why would anyone use the yellow pages when it is faster and easier to search online for the same information?  Not only is it easier to use the internet to find what you are looking for, you’ll notice that information on the internet is bigger and easier to read than the small print on super thin paper.

Ultimately the use of traditional yellow pages is declining as 80% of people are turning to the internet to find information through on-line search engines.  Increasingly people are using Google maps to find local businesses. Advertising in print directories is expected to fall 39% over the next four years, so the future of yellow pages is certainly in question.


Declining Newspaper Readership

Do you invest now in newspaper advertising?  If so, you know that depending on the size of ad and level of newspaper (local or national) you can spending anywhere from hundreds to thousands of dollars for an ad to appear in the paper for one day.  Is this an effective use of your advertising budget? You might reconsider if you knew that although the population has grown newspaper readership and circulation are down 20% and are continuing to drop.

With less people reading the newspaper, fewer will see your advertisements.  Is it really worth it to pay big money when newspaper readership is currently at an all time low?

Radio Spots are Not Effective for Short-Term Advertising Campaigns

Do you use radio spots as a form of advertising?  If so, then you know that you must purchase 30 – 60 second spots and that the spot must run for at least 6 months in order to see results.  This method is expensive and if it produces results it will only be in the long-term, where as internet advertising can produce results much more quickly and effectively.

T.V. Commercials

There are many issues with running television commercials.  T.V. ads are very expensive and often only large businesses can afford this medium.  However, despite the costly price T.V. ads aren’t very effective for a number of reasons, including:

  • The demographics are so spread out it becomes difficult to reach a specific targeted audience
  • DVR has changed the way people interact with T.V. programming.  For example, 60% of DVR users skip commercials

Why would you spend a lot of your advertising budget when you can’t guarantee your audience will view your ad or that the right type of consumers will be targeted?


Direct Mail – Directly into Recycling

Direct mail campaigns are not only costly, but the frustrating part is not everyone pays attention to them and the ads you have spent so much money on will find themselves in the recycling.  Why throw your advertising dollars away?

Internet marketing is a great solution to the frustrations and disappointing results that you receive from traditional marketing, which is costly and ineffective.

Tomorrow we will discuss why internet marketing is a better solution and look at how it has helped businesses who were struggling to make a return on investment through traditional marketing campaigns like Yellow Pages Canada. Are you frustrated with traditional marketing?

Share your experiences and stories with usWhat is your issue, problem or success story when it comes to advertising and marketing?