Content is a valuable thing, and we should keep it original and thoughtful
What is the difference between a “traditional” marketer and a digital one? And then, what is the difference between traditional marketing and digital marketing? We need to start with these questions if we are to understand that we have too much useless information about the digital side of the marketing.
Actually, we have too much content on the digital side of everything, starting from content creation to marketing to sales and lead generation. So, let us begin with defining what is marketing in general and what digital marketing really is.
Look at the table below. It summarizes what are main differences between the traditional marketing and the digital marketing.
What we see is that what is considered the main difference is actually the nature of the medium used to reach your prospect and existing customers. So, we have physical media and digital media. Is that a fundamental difference? We’ll discuss that later.
Then we have the proven methods of the traditional marketing as supposedly opposed to the unproven but cost-efficient techniques of the digital marketing. And then, we have long-standing initiatives in the traditional marketing and short-term campaigns used by the digital marketers.
Now, we must ask ourselves the question if the differences mentioned above have valid grounds at all.
Let me explain. Is there any real difference between the print and digital media, outside the interactivity? There are both serious publications and tabloid-type publications in the print and the online world. There are responsible TV and radio stations and broadcast media that are looking after the paparazzi news stories. However, the same applies to all the podcasts across the digital domain.
Then, we have direct mail as opposed to banner ads or e-mail marketing campaigns. Where is the real difference? On the one hand, you can delete any marketing e-mail message in your inbox without even reading it. On the other hand, you can put any flier or a postcard directly into your trash bin.
Let’s not dig deeper into the technical details and differences between “traditional” and “digital”. Once we come to the conclusion that the two disciplines differ too little in their basics, we come to the second important point.
A simple search in Google’s book directory returns more than 380,000 results for the term “digital marketing guide”. You should bear in mind that this a relatively neutral search term that does not includes phrases such as “best,”, “top”, etc.
We do not have such a large number of books in domains such as quantum mechanics, for example. Also, And we must admit that the quantum mechanics is about the nature of the universe, which is a more important domain.
Source: Google Search
So, what we have here? Zillions of books that try to sell content about how to sell content. Because we must agree that marketing is all about sales and sales are initiated and closed by the means of content. To put it simply, you create a billboard or a banner, and it eventually generates leads and sales.
The mechanism of closing the sale works the very same way regardless of where your prospective clients have seen your ad – online or while commuting.
The human nature has not evolved so much in the past few centuries to require different basic approaches when you are marketing online and when you are selling through physical mediums. Thus, the very same psychology works in both the cases.
Do you need to read a hundred books on how to sell online if the basic principles of marketing are invented at the dawn of times? A medieval merchant was marketing his goods in the very same way the modern one does. The change of the medium from oral or print to a digital one does not change anything. I do not think we need more than a couple of books on the principles and basics of marketing when learning the sales process is concerned.
In fact, we only change the marketing medium, not the principles of marketing itself.
This is an important question, too. Obviously, most of the marketing efforts in the years to come will be on reaching a digital audience that is also increasingly mobile. However, television is far from being mobile while outdoor advertising is actually the opposite of mobile or digital.
As you can see, estimates are that television, outdoor and cinema will witness growing advertising spending in the next years. Which actually means that the very same marketing fundamentals work across all media types.
Then why you need so much content on different types of marketing, digital marketing including. What you need is to be acquainted with the fundamental principles, which are all the same across all media verticals.
Moreover, we are far from going all-digital for the foreseeable future, which in turn means that those digital marketing articles that are being produced in dozens on a daily basis are mostly useless. They are overvalued by novice marketers and go mostly unnoticed in the circles of the professionals.
You buy your daily slice of bread because you need it, not because its form is very original. In contrast, you buy a piece of cloth both because of its functionality (it protects your body) and because you want to look a little different, i.e. because of its originality and creative design. We can say that marketing as a whole is about sales and originality. In other words, you need to convince your prospect in the originality of the product you sell. It might be even bread, but in this case, you need to create a very original message that highlights some specific qualities of your bread.
Moreover, there are no 5 simple techniques to do this successfully. Why then we get hundreds of online articles daily claiming they will teach us how to become a top seller within a couple of days. These very articles lack one main quality: They are not original at all.
Thus, they do not follow the basic principle of the successful marketing – be creative and produce a message to remember. Creating an original article or blog post or any other piece of content requires three main things. These are – you need to have something new to say, you need to know your thing and you need some data to support your statements. How then we come with “new” advice on how to be successful in the field of digital marketing on a daily basis.
The very digital world makes it very easy for anyone with a digital device to produce content, e.g. about digital marketing. Having access to the Internet does not make you a professional in the field of digital marketing, especially if you just populate a blog without having an idea about the real statistical data behind one trend or another.
One of the greatest “problems” of our times is that we are all literate. Have you asked yourself why we have so little number of medieval books that now sit in museums and libraries all over the world? It was hard to write on any subject then. And if you happen to copy someone else’s work just because you do not have anything new to say, our ancestors were here to wipe the book pages for someone else to be able to write on clear folios.
It is as simple as that. You do need to be able to say something new, in the first place. Most of the content about digital marketing just reproduces a few basic mantras. Most of this content has no data to support the general statements. Most of this content is not even produced by people who know their stuff.
We did not mention it across this text, but digital marketing is actually about search engine optimization (SEO). Optimizing for the web is one thing, creating original content is a very different journey.
People tend to create content for the sake of content or just because someone has said you need content for your website to be successful. It is totally wrong. We need content that is original and says something new. We have too much digital content that tells us how to create even more digital content.