Traditional media is alive and well

Dr Mark Ritson has a Ph.D. in Marketing from Lancaster University in the UK and has been a faculty member at some of the world’s leading business schools. He has taught MBA courses in brand management and marketing management at London Business School, MIT Sloan, the University of Minnesota and Melbourne Business School – where he is an Associate Professor of Marketing. He is one of the world’s leading Marketing instructors and has won the teaching prize at LBS (2004), MIT (2009) & MBS (both 2008 and 2009).​

According to Mark Ritson, traditional media including TV and radio are alive and well. He relates the story about the Oreo tweet that occurred during the Super Bowl when the lights went out. The tweet was proclaimed by media authorities throughout the world to have revolutionized the world of marketing and inferred that traditional media was passé. However, if you analyze the numbers, a different reality unfolds. The tweet reaches 63,000 consumers based on click through rates. He compares this to a Budweiser Super Bowl ad which reaches almost 50,000,000 consumers. As well as the monumental difference in reach, he points out that the 60 second TV ad is both lengthier as well as dramatically more powerful in that it taps into your emotions and feelings.

So is social media over-rated? According to his research, advertisers are spending more on social media year after year, however, the vast majority cannot ascertain whether or not it is working. Social media is social media. In other words, it is for one on one social interaction. 

But can it build brands?

Two major brands, Unilever and Coke, were early adapters to social media, however, both have scaled back and returned to a more traditional approach to marketing. And of course, the Pepsi Refresh social media campaign was a complete disaster. Pepsi spent $20,000,000 and garnered 80 million facebook likes and 60,000 new Twitter followers. But in that same year, Pepsi lost 2.6% of the overall carbonated drink market. 

We mentioned TV viewing and how it is allegedly declining, however, Ritson points out that TV viewing is as strong as ever and has maintained its tuning levels year after year. And radio still reaches over 90% of the adult population on a weekly basis. As a matter of fact, consumers spend double their time listening to radio than using facebook?

So why all the hype? More than half of marketing articles are written on social media. Yet, 70% of advertisers invest less than 10% of their marketing budgets on social media. 

Social media does play a role in marketing, however, make sure that traditional media is not forgotten.

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