Websites are Valuable Marketing Tools

Many businesses feel that prices are high for a professionally designed website, but they fail to compare the cost to achieve the same value with other marketing media. Here I’ve compared the various media options to show why websites are valuable marketing tools.

Magazines

  • The price for a full page ad in a local magazine is often $1000+ for a one-time run. The larger the geographic area, the higher the cost.
  • Your ad may gain full or partial attention as readers scan the magazine to find content they are interested in reading.
  • Works well for generating brand awareness and interest, but it is not likely to result in a direct sale. However, when a consumer does have a need for your product or service, he or she may recall your company, and they are more likely to go to your store or search online for more information.

Direct mail

  • Costs vary depending on quantity, size, quality, etc. but with printing, postage, and a mailing list, you may spend almost $1 a person.
  • Direct mail has a short life, with most of the mail getting thrown in the trash with hardly a glance.
  • Response from direct mail is typically low. The more targeted the mailing list, the better the response rate.
  • Like magazine ads, direct mail is good for generating brand awareness and interest. It is also good for keeping in touch with leads and current customers. Be sure to weigh costs against your expected response rate.

Outdoor

  • Outdoor advertising can be expensive, but with the advent of digital billboards, costs are coming down.
  • Outdoor offers high reach and frequency of your message to a specific geographic area.
  • Messages must be very short and simple since drivers will only have a second to glance at your sign.
  • Also good for generating brand awareness and interest.

Television

  • Cost for production and media placement is high.
  • Good for reaching mass markets and giving consumers a good visual or demo of a product.
  • Lots of competition for attention. Audiences tend to tune out messages or fast forward through them.
  • Messages have a short life. A consumer must search elsewhere to get more information.

Websites

  • Costs vary greatly, but an effective, professional website will be in the thousands.
  • Websites are available 24 hours a day, which allows customers to find you when they need you most. Your messages are timely and relevant.
  • When visitors are at your website, you have their full attention. They are interested in what you have to say, and you don’t want them to leave unsatisfied. With the right, well organized content, you can appeal to visitors at all stages from research to the final sale and beyond.
  • Website space and content is only limited by bandwidth. A website can provide virtually unlimited information in multimedia formats.
  • Websites can attract a national audience with no extra cost.
  • Websites allow businesses to interact with customers one-on-one with live chat, comments on blogs, contact forms and more. It is not a one-way street like other media.
  • Website results can be easily tracked with web statistics and number of online leads/sales.

Summary

The main point I’d like to get across is that the value of a website is well worth its cost. Traditional media and websites should work together. Traditional media works well for generating brand awareness and interest and driving customers to websites for more information. Websites are the perfect place to interact with customers one-on-one and lead them through the sales process. A professional website is a valuable and necessary marketing tool.

Feel free to comment. What are more advantages of websites and other media? How have you used traditional media to drive people to your website? How has your website helped your business?

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Third-Party Resources

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