Marketing and advertising are not the same thing online of off. There are a lot of people who believe that advertising is all there is to marketing, and that ad buys and ad design are the only thing to consider when it comes to online marketing. Advertising campaigns – not just ads – are a part of a marketing strategy. If marketing is the whole enchilada, adverting is the red sauce. Breaking it down to bare bones, marketing is the process of preparing to present your product to the market place, advertising is how you let your target audience know that it’s there and how to find it.
What Marketing Is:
- Financing. It takes money to create a product or service, cover your costs and overhead, and bring your product or service into the market place.
- Research. Who are you trying to sell your product to? What other products are similar to yours are already in the marketplace? How would your product carve out a niche? What unique features do you have to offer versus your competition? What is the regulatory environment for your product? How will you price your product?
- Branding. How do you create a brand that stands out and reaches the people you want it to reach? Branding means that the product does the talking.
- Promotion. Advertising is a part of promotion, but so is sending your product out for reviews in the media, hosting events, even taking out a booth at trade shows.
- Customer service. Listening to your customers and understanding what they want from your product helps you to improve your offerings.
- Sales. This is the last on the list because it’s the last step in marketing. You sell your product after you’ve initiated a successful marketing process.
What Advertising Does:
- Attracts potential customers to notice the product.
- Moving them to investigate the product.
- Gets them to try the product.
- Reminds previous customers of the satisfaction that comes from using the product.
- Brings them to purchase the product again.
Online advertising is not the be-all and end all of advertising. Certain demographics make up the overwhelming numbers of internet users, with almost 75 percent falling into the 15-44 age group and 25 percent aged 45 and up. Their surfing habitats are composed of 74 percent search engines, 64 percent social media like Facebook, Pinterest, Tumblr, and Instagram, and 55 percent web portals like Yahoo and AOL. Mobile device use is overwhelmingly skewed to 18-44 age groupings, but almost 56 percent of the 55-64 age group use it, and 42 percent of 65+. More than ever, for online ads, you have to know your target demographic, the sites they frequent, and even how they respond to email marketing. There is no one size fits all, and even tradition radio, television, and print ads are still in play. Working with an experienced marketer can help you with a marketing plan that will reach the people by whatever channel to move your product.