What’s the Difference Between Traditional and Digital Marketing?


When it comes to engaging new patients and retaining longtime patients, practitioners are forced to choose between how much digital marketing and traditional marketing they want to invest in. But knowing which is worth investing in depending on what will resonate the most with your audience requires knowing the difference between the two. 

Traditional Marketing

When someone says the word, “marketing”, images of magazine advertisements, billboards, TV commercials and radio spots probably pop into your head. These are all examples of traditional marketing.

Many of these methods serve as a tangible way to broadcast your practice’s services and brand. Everything from posters to brochures and commercials on TV/radio are considered to be forms of traditional marketing.

One of the most legitimate criticisms of traditional marketing is the fact that it typically targets an array of different demographics. Consider a radio advertisement that is played on a local station; it only reaches those who are tuned in at the time when the advertisement is broadcast. Perhaps more importantly, it does not narrowly target specific crowds of people who are sincerely interested in your practice’s services.

Digital Marketing

As the name suggests, digital marketing involves any type of marketing that occurs over digital channels. This typically allows for more targeted audiences.

Examples of digital marketing include:

  • Websites
  • Local search profiles and directories
  • Social media marketing
  • SEO optimization
  • Blogging
  • YouTube channels

This style of advertising is not much different from conventional advertising except for the fact that it is being broadcast on a vast array of digital devices. It is important to point out that digital marketing is a means of inbound marketing that aims to help potential customers to find your practice online.

This is a stark contrast to the outdated traditional advertising methods that cast a wide net over a prospective audience. Why bother marketing your practice to anyone and everyone who might be tuning into a certain TV or radio station at a given time when you can reach those who are most likely to need or desire your services? This is precisely why more and more practices are making the transition from traditional marketing to digital marketing.

Getting The Most Bang for Your Buck

Another important benefit of digital marketing is the fact that you typically spend far less than conventional marketing.

If you research what it costs to take out a TV, radio, magazine or billboard spot for your practice, you probably will be taken aback by the price. Alternatively, the money that you could spend on digital marketing efforts will prove to be a much more efficient use of your marketing budget.

There is no sense in pouring marketing funds into campaigns that target the masses when many of them are not interested in your practice’s services.

Digital marketing makes a more powerful, direct impact for those who desire to find your services. And it’s cost effective! With digital marketing, prospective patients have a higher chance of finding you when they conduct organic online searches or browse social media.

Gauging the Success of Your Practice’s Marketing Effort

While traditional marketing broadcasts your message over airwaves, on billboards, in magazines and other sources it is difficult to measure its effectiveness.

The difference between the tracking mechanisms of traditional and digital marketing are staggering. The data derived from digital marketing is much more sophisticated and quantifiable than traditional marketing.

Digital marketing experts, like the team at MyAdvice, can track your campaign’s success by many different metrics, such as:

  • Number of impressions
  • Number of clicks
  • Number of shares
  • Number of visits to your practice’s website
  • Visitor engagement

These statistics empower you to measure your practice’s incremental progress and align it to your long-term goals. With this data in hand, you will be able to figure out exactly which advertising efforts are working the best, which ones are not working and then refine your digital marketing strategy for future success.

We want to help your practice succeed in today’s competitive market. Pair our team of digital marketing experts with our proven patient acquisition strategies, and your medical practice’s website will outperform your competitors and your high-value patient volume will grow.

Curious what marketing strategy is right for your practice? Contact one of our digital marketing experts today for a complimentary consultation. 

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