Digital Marketing vs. Traditional Marketing: What’s the Difference?

Business/Industry insights

Digital Marketing vs. Traditional Marketing: What’s the Difference?

According to recent data published by Statistica Research Department, global digital ad spending in the United States of America alone is expected to exceed $526 billion by 2024, which is over 53% of its current value!

With the diverse array of marketing processes popping up every minute, it can become difficult to judge which marketing option fits well for all kinds of businesses.

Although making the right marketing decision is never easy, getting your hands on the appropriate one can make a huge difference in your business results.

This is why, we have curated this article to provide you with the clarified definitions, benefits, and downsides of both the traditional a.k.a. postcard version of marketing and digital social media advertisement.

Keep reading to find out the difference between traditional marketing and digital marketing and figure out the right marketing strategy to help you grow and enjoy a larger share of the budget and gain the largest profit you ever have dreamt of.

What is digital marketing?

Digital marketing involves using technology such as digital devices and platforms for marketing communication.

It leverages online platforms including speed advertising, blogging social media and more, to promote services and products.

According to recent data published by Statistica Research Department, global digital ad spending In the United States of America alone is expected to exceed $526 billion by 2024, which is over 53% of its current value!

This not only proves that digital marketing is steadily gaining an edge but also the fact that it ensures that you are ahead of your competition. In terms of general marketing salaries, digital marketing salary is relatively higher than others in the marketing domain.

What is traditional marketing?

Traditional marketing makes use of physical items such as notice boards, business cards, handouts, TV or radio promotions, announcements or print advertisements in magazines and daily newspapers to promote products or publicize an event.

This is an older version of marketing that is still used in one form or another to help reach out to a semi-targeted audience, with various offline promotional and advertising methods.

Digital marketing vs. traditional marketing: their distinguishing features

Keeping the current expansion of digital marketing in mind, it is fair to assume that digital ad technique is speedily taking over television ad-based traditional advertising technologies.

But before you jump to any conclusion, we would suggest you look through the following pointers to better understand the difference between the two, in terms of their growth and prominence.

1. Target audience - While marketing allows for global reach, traditional marketing is restricted to the people in certain locations of certain demographics.

2. Audience engagement - With digital marketing you can constantly interact with different people on digital media, but it is a one-sided conversation with traditional marketing.

3. Budget efficacy - you can explore an affordable range of equipment and resources to conduct digital marketing, whereas traditional marketing campaigns can cost you higher.

4. Return on investment - digital marketing can provide you with an immediate result by click-through rate, on the other hand, it can take longer to determine the efficiency of a campaign with traditional marketing.

5. Decision-making – With digital marketing, it is much easier to attribute success to direct sales, unlike traditional marketing, which promotes new sales via long-term campaigning.

6. Audience feedback cycle - digital marketing is curated to demonstrate better know-how of the consumers, whereas traditional marketing typically requires more time to gather responses from the customers. 

What are the pros and cons of digital marketing?

As technology evolves, we need to get In sync with the online marketing channels and how they can help the global population propel forward.

Let’s take a look at some of the advantages and disadvantages of online advertising.


Digital marketing can help you reach an international target audience platform.

  • Online advertising is a great way to attract more audiences to your website buy call-to-actions that can lead the end-user to your business services.

  •  The cost of conducting digital marketing is cheaper overall.

  • You can observe measurable results for you to improve your techniques and make necessary changes whenever required.

  • It allows newer customers to look through product reviews to gain motivation for making a purchase.

  • The online advertisement promotes relationship building by allowing ongoing feedback.

Cons: The only tough part about executing digital marketing is the constant attention that it requires to flourish, as you will be dealing with a global consumer base.

What are the pros and cons of traditional marketing?

Any type of marketing execution to promote a brand, company or its products and services is referred to as traditional marketing.

Following are some of the advantages and disadvantages of this form of offline marketing.


The process of traditional marketing is quite simple that requires physical messages and materials for the user to absorb information.


It calls for a higher financial investment with little interaction and difficult to comprehend outcomes.

Which type of marketing should you use?

The traditional marketing concept has indeed been an inspiration to many modern online forms of advertising.

However, in traditional marketing vs. digital marketing - it is quite clear that digital marketing has taken advertising strategies to an elevated level that allows a younger and broader range of audiences to understand the content and exchange their views, simultaneously.

Explore the Diploma in Digital Marketing CO-OP program offered by the Canadian College of Technology and Business (CCTB),  to become proficient at empathizing with your audience and becoming an outstanding marketer!

Send in your applications today and take a step closer to creating strategic marketing plans that are the most relevant to your audience’s thoughts.



20 September, 2021

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