The Last Word: TraDigital Marketing—The Art of Blending Traditional and Digital Media

The Last Word: TraDigital Marketing—The Art of Blending Traditional and Digital Media


Let’s face it; today’s world is an information overload. When businesses develop marketing strategies, they are still categorizing media as traditional and digital. Marketing has become multi-screened, and media channels are becoming intertwined. 

When someone hears the words “television” or “radio,” it doesn’t necessarily mean traditional marketing anymore, because it has grown into the digital space. In fact, 90% of consumers’ time is spent in front of a screen, 10% is spent in front of print. Through 2015, 50% of companies plan to increase their digital marketing plans.

A television screen no longer commands our full attention and is one of the most common devices used simultaneously with other screens. Indeed, 77% of TV viewers use another device at the same time in a typical day. Screens come in a variety of forms, such as a laptop, iPad, tablet or smartphone. Having multiple screens makes us feel more efficient since we can act spontaneously and get a sense of accomplishment. Portable screens also allow us to move easily from one device to another to achieve a task. Search is the most common bridge between devices in the sequential usage.

To traditional broadcasters, researchers and marketers, we still visualize television as the local 6 p.m. and 10 p.m. newscasts. YouTube, Hulu, Netflix, etc., are all considered television; people just consume television in different ways. The same goes for radio. Radio isn’t only what you hear on local stations in the car anymore. Consumers are still listening to radio, just in different forms: Pandora, Spotify or XM radio. When the walls between traditional and digital media are broken, the art of TraDigital comes into play.

Practicing TraDigital decreases bounce rates on your website and increases brand awareness frequency. For example, when a consumer sees your commercial on TV and you communicate your brand, do consumers get lost as soon as they enter your “sale cycle”? In just .38 of a second, potential customers will determine if your website is worth their time, money and relationship. 

It is so vital to make sure your website is responsive and can adapt no matter what size screen it’s viewed on. Overall, your website should communicate to your potential customers just like an employee would when a customer walks into your store. Content is key. Generating unique and up-to-date content on your website and social media platforms will build trust and positive brand awareness to current and potential clients. 

Practicing TraDigitial also allows you to target a specific audience. Television commercials and radio ads are great for exposure and can reach a large audience number. But that type of media doesn’t produce accurate results. Practicing TraDigital, you can target people who have already shown interest in your product or industry online. 

At my company, Team SI, we call this the “sniper rifle approach.” We match the person of interest by his or her profile, match the demographic area the business’s product can reach, and allow the ads to display only to consumers who meet the predetermined qualifications or demonstrate similar behaviors. 

The ads will then be placed on various digital media outlets, such as Pandora, XM Satellite Radio, Hulu, Facebook, YouTube, etc. The online display ads will then retarget and “follow” consumers after they have visited your business’s site. For example, Joe looks at a Tamron lens on your website. Joe leaves your website without calling or filling out a form to request more information. He then visits to check on his favorite team and sees an ad for your business promoting a Tamron lens. 

Overall continuity is key when mixing traditional and digital media together. Your website should reflect your store or business’s voice. If you have a business that has been in the community for decades, your website copy should reflect the store’s community environment. If your business has a slogan or a theme in a commercial, it should look the same on all social media platforms. Also, when your company runs special promotions on TV or on the radio, those should be reflected on the website and all social media platforms. 

Traditional and digital marketing are not enemies; they are perfect for each other when a plan is in place to blend them. Not only will practicing TraDigital create a better user experience for potential customers, overall it will generate an impressive ROI for your business.

Tim Whitley is the cofounder and president of Team SI, located in Little Rock, Arkansas. Whitley and his company have proven TraDigital success to more than 170 clients across a wide range of industries, including automotive, healthcare, retail and education.