The advertising exodus from traditional media to new media has put the squeeze on newspapers and magazines, pushing many to extinction. Satellite radio and cable television has made it tougher for other networks to maintain their advertisers. And mobile apps have pretty much decimated phone directory advertising.
But just because there has been a shift in media doesn’t mean that advertising is a dying medium. Like the baby and the bath water, there’s a distinction that needs to be made before letting your advertising plan circle the drain.
For example, Gartner recently conducted a survey of 543 business and IT managers in the United States. All of the respondents were involved in the evaluation and purchase of IT hardware and software products and/or services over the past year. When asked which marketing activities most influenced them during the first phase of the buying cycle (“Determining potential solutions to a business problem”), 64 percent responded that advertising was the strongest medium. Not websites, brochures, events, or sales calls. 68 percent of IT Managers and 56 percent of Business Managers said advertising had the most influence on their decision to consider a product or service.
When asked which type of advertising medium most impacted their perception of an IT provider, 46 percent chose print advertising as the most influential. Search engine advertising and online advertising were the first choices of 24 and 23 percent, respectively. And, while mobile technology is certainly gaining momentum, this group doesn’t see it as an important medium for building perception. Only 4 percent said mobile advertising was the most influential advertising medium.
The first line of marketing offense—building brand perception—needs to be supported with advertising. And this is a never-ending battle, because the proliferation of brands and advancement of technology creates a constant flow of new competition. In order for your brand to be considered, it has to be remembered. And that’s what advertising is all about!