Traditional retail marketing, in this case before internet marketing, mostly focused on driving people in to a store and building brand awareness. Except for the ‘display window’ in the stores, external channels were pretty much the only alternative to bring people into the stores. The options where limited to TV, radio, Newspapers, direct mail and other print media. And thus it was for these channels the ‘marketing’ budget was set.
Nowadays retails stores exist both online and offline and especially online the rules for where traffic is coming from have changed. Yet many are still working with it like they used to and so are the budgets. Money is spent on driving traffic with advertisement and little is spent on creating a platform that will generate traffic. We are stuck in an old mindset.
A website can drive it’s own traffic by have relevant and good content. This because people will link, like, share and talk about it. If you have good content people will spread the word. This will generate links into your site, which will create more ’doors’ into it. This is an option that you did not have in a traditional store, you could not open more doors to the shop and have more people entre, the entrances and the diplay window was limited. Thus other types for marketing and mentions were necessary and you could only wait and hope that they would work. No wonder people spent so much money on marketing.
Today I would say that much of the marketing budget is spent on activities that do not generate half the traffic that good content would. Yet we are terrified to change or move budgets to invest in what will generate more traffic in the long run.
Think about it yourself. What is your favorite website? Many might say facebook. Why? Because the content is interesting (the content created by your friends, about their life). Yeah, but we are not facebook you might think. Then let me ask you this, think about your favorite webshop. Why is it your favorite? Why do you keep coming back? I bet it is because the content is good and relevant for you. Now, how many times do you go back because you’ve seen an ad for it? Not that many? No, you go back because you are in the mood, you want to see if there is anything new or perhaps only to waste some time. Regardless, it is not the ads that make you come back, it is the content.
So why? Tell me why? Do we spend so much more money on advertising than we do on content?