Aspects of marketing such as research, publicity, advertising, merchandising and sales all play a part in increasing awareness of whatever you are selling. Forms of traditional marketing include placing advertisements in newspapers and magazines. Radio commercials, telephone sales, direct mail and door-to-door sales also fit into this category. Although these marketing methods have been successful in the past, they all have disadvantages, especially with the rapid increase in Internet usage.
Traditional marketing uses static text or advertising commercials to promote a product. If an ad is placed in the newspaper, it can't change until you place another ad. For example, if you have a sale on bicycles that you put in the newspaper and then you run out of bicycles, you may have many unhappy customers. On the other hand, on the Internet you can instantly update your page to let people know your bicycles are "sold out."
You must pay for ads in newspapers or mailers every time you run a new campaign. Adding new products or sales pages to your website doesn't create additional costs if you already have a person on your team who can update your product information. Traditional marketing companies may charge per delivery area for fliers or mailers. On the Internet, your ad is accessible to the entire World Wide Web.
With traditional ads, it is difficult to target a specific customer. Specific market segments can be targeted, but not an individual. For example, an ad may target young women. The ad may show young people interacting and present interesting copy about a new style of purse. On the Internet, new marketing techniques can track what a viewer has looked at and suggest similar products.
Traditional marketing can present special sales and pricing. However, it is typically more difficult to offer complex bundle pricing. Most print marketing doesn't have the space to explain all the different pricing variations that may appeal to buyers. An online catalog may present you with an offer that if you buy four items from one category, you get a free item from another category.
Debbie McRill went from managing a Texas Department of Criminal Justice office to working for Compaq and Hewlett-Packard as a technical writer and project manager in 1997. Debbie has also owned her own businesses and understands both corporate and small business challenges. Her background includes Six Sigma training, and an Information Development career with journalism and creative writing as her passion.