Digital Marketing In The Modern Era

Digital Marketing in The Modern Era

Radio, Radio

Digital Marketing in The Modern Era

Radio, Radio

Some of you must be wondering if this is an article about digital marketing, or Elvis Costello... I guess it could be about both... After all, Elvis rocks! For those of you who don't know who Elvis Costello is, shame on you, do a search, and listen to the song, "Radio, Radio;" a once subversive song about the radio industry. Now, on with the topic at hand: digital marketing in the modern era, and how this song's lyrics represent a similar point, albeit from a different angle.

The term “digital marketing” has more to do with the sum of its parts than many people understand. An advertising agency, or more specifically, a radio advertising agency that offers “digital marketing,” may not have the actual experience, or motivation, that digital marketing professional requires. In fact, many of these agencies lack both the digital knowledge, and the marketing experience needed to create a successful digital marketing or SEO campaign.

Currently, there is a rush by many advertising agencies and radio/media companies to get into the digital marketing space. That is because they are losing market share to digital marketing and SEO companies. In response, many of these companies offer digital marketing services as an addition to their own services, and employ in-house staff or hire third party digital marketing companies to perform the service. In turn, they increase the costs of these services, and also offer subpar service, as most of their money is spent on driving sales and growing revenue, rather than offering legitimate marketing services.

In fact, I had an employee of one of these companies tell me that not only did their company offer these services and heavily promote them, but they were required to sell these services as bundled promotions in order to increase radio and billboard advertising sales. They also expressed to me that the so-called “digital marketing agency” didn’t know what they were doing and some of their customers had done worse due to working with them. I have also met with customers who had little or no improvement, despite spending thousands per month on a bundled radio advertising package including SEO.

The reason they didn’t do well is because these were salespeople, selling services, rather than marketing professionals, offering experience. You can hire web developers, to do the job of marketing professionals, but that does not mean they know anything about marketing. You can also hire a marketing professional with 30 years experience, but that does not mean they have experience, nor have the ability to successfully alter website content to get the intended results on search engines.

According to one sales rep from a radio advertising agency that I spoke with, the digital marketing company they were using offered "shoddy work" and were "sketchy." In fact, this person claimed that they lost clients due to how upset their clients were due to the company's "digital marketing faux pas." However, the company sells these services relentlessly, and pushes their services to all their customers. Part of the problem, according to this employee, is that the majority of sales reps are older salespeople who don't know anything about the internet, and are simply trying to earn their commission.

The point is, when looking for someone to help with digital marketing, ask questions, learn more about the company, and find out more about their digital marketing experience.. Some big agencies have a strong word of mouth due to deals they give people, and many times they don’t know if sales are being driven from the radio, or from local SEO services. The fact is, in every single case that I have spoken to a client who used these type of services, they have seen little or no return on their investment.

To be clear, I’m not generalizing across all advertising agencies. Some companies may employee legitimate tactics and I’m sure there are good companies out there that use legitimate tactics and will offer a return on your investment. If I find one, I’ll gladly promote their services, and let my clients' know. However, at this point, I have not found these companies to be reputable. In fact, I have had a competitor attempt to hack my website and harm my business due to the fact they they were not able to replicate our success through legitimate means; which is common in our industry. Most companies out there offering digital marketing services, seem to know little about web development, or search engine optimization.

So, when it comes to using advertising agencies that bundle digital marketing services, I have to say, I’m not a fan. I strongly believe that you hire a professional who knows what they are talking about, and can answer questions and demonstrate their worth in a meeting. Otherwise, be prepared to waste money and not see a return on your investment. Meanwhile, at least listen to the song by Elvis Costello; it's a classic, and is as relevant today, as it was back in the late '70s.
Photo by Eric Nopanen on Unsplash

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