How to combine face-to-face with digital marketing

Editor’s note: This post comes from our Constant Contact UK office. You can view all the posts from our UK team here. Or connect with us on Facebook and Twitter.

Despite advancements in technology and throughout the marketing industry, many UK marketing consultants and agencies still rely on traditional marketing methods. Surely, this must mean these traditional marketing activities are still working?

Constant Contact and Our Social Times recently joined forces and, with the support of Smart Insights and Enterprise Nation, surveyed over 130 UK-based marketing consultants and agencies on their habits, priorities and fears when it comes to their own digital marketing. You can download the report in full here: Digital Marketing Survey 2015.

digital-marketing-activity

Perhaps unsurprisingly, 66 percent of the 130 marketing consultants and agencies we polled said that digital marketing makes up over 60 percent of their total marketing activity, with 38 percent saying it accounts for between 81-100 percent of their marketing.

This shows broad similarities to marketing industry reports, such as Econsultancy’s Marketing Budgets 2015 Report, which found that 77 percent of all companies are planning to increase their digital marketing spend this year, while just 22 percent plan to keep it the same and 1 percent are reducing spend.

What percentage of the overall marketing activity for your business is digital

Perhaps more surprising was the finding that for 13 percent of marketing consultants, traditional marketing methods, such as trade shows, face-to-face and offline advertising, account for up to 80 percent of their total marketing output.

The marketing industry has undergone repeated tech revolutions in the past twenty years – but readers might be astonished to discover that experts aren’t 100 percent invested in the most advanced methods. Yet as Dr Dave Chaffey (who spoke at the launch event of our report) pointed out to me, face-to-face is still the most powerful medium available to marketers.

Of course, if marketers combine reach and frequency of social and digital marketing with the trust and authenticity of face-to-face the result can be an even more potent cocktail. This probably explains why Constant Contact provides a marketing platform that combines email with social media and event management. Smart cookies!

In fact, for all the misgivings I might have about traditional marketing methods, my company, Our Social Times, has been combining digital marketing with events to great effect for the past six years. A blog post we published about the power of social media and events (complete with obligatory infographic) is still being widely read and shared today.

There are clearly lessons for digital marketers and traditionalists alike in our report. Thankfully, in addition to making it available as a download, we have had some printed. If you’re in the offline 13 percent just send us a note and we’ll get one out to you in the post.

Next in this series I’ll be exploring our findings around how effective specific digital marketing activities really are. Join me.

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