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Digital Marketing Vs Traditional Marketing: Which Should I opt For?

Many small businesses often find it difficult in deciding on the best form of marketing they need, this is because they operate on a tight budget. The goal is to spend in the direction of the greatest advantage. So far, digital marketing versus traditional marketing debate has raged for some time now as both kinds of marketing have their pros and cons. So which is better?

What is traditional marketing?

Traditional marketing is a conventional mode of marketing that involves the use of tangible items such as business cards, print ads, posters, brochures, posters and billboards. It also includes commercials on TV and radio.


  • Allows businesses to reach local audience easily
  • Easy to process mentally and recall in the future
  • Allows businesses to reach a large population across many demographics


  • It is less engaging
  • It is more expensive
  • Difficult to measure ROI
  • Customized marketing is not possible
  • Provides less information
  • New material must be produced to effect changes

What is digital marketing?

Digital marketing refers to marketing activities carried out online with the goal of making people find your business. Examples of digital marketing include websites, social media mentions, YouTube videos and banner ads. Digital marketing is still evolving, but there are different aspects of digital marketing, and some of them include content marketing, search engine optimization (SEO), social media marketing )SMM), affiliate marketing, email marketing, pay-per-click advertising and so on.

Advantages of digital marketing 

  • You can target a vast audience regardless of their geographic location
  • Content can be tailored to meet ideal buyer persona – age, gender, profession, income, goals etc
  • It is more engaging
  • It is cost-effective
  • Audience can choose how they want to receive content
  • Measuring ROI is easy using Google Analytics and other tools
  • Chances of instant results are higher
  • Offers instant publicity once a post is published
  • Content can be modified during campaigns
  • Possibility of virality within a short period is higher
  • Content and ads are available round the clock, giving room for a wider reach


  • Negative feedback by unhappy customers is visible to the general public
  • It is largely regulated by search engines and social media platforms
  • Certain level of expertise is required.

Digital marketing versus Traditional marketing: Which is better?

The goal of marketing is to get good returns on investment, and this is why it’s important for small businesses to concentrate their resources on areas that will give the best bang for the money. A point worthy of note is that many people are now using the internet than ever for different purposes, making it one of the most used tools. Successful marketing requires a business to connect to its prospects and customers in the best way possible.

Going further, research has shown that traditional marketing fell by nearly 160% in the last year, while digital marketing increased by over 14%. Apart from what the stats say, the pros and cons of both kinds of marketing obviously show, which is better.


Since most small businesses operate a tight budget, it’s crucial to know which marketing option offers the highest ROI. An exhaustive and in-depth knowledge of your business and target customers can help you decide which is best for you, but if you’re thinking long term, digital marketing is undoubtedly the way to go.