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Benefits of Internet Advertising Over Traditional Advertising

Updated on July 10, 2013

The internet, which has literally eliminated boundaries for communication has also given birth to a host of businesses. Online advertising is one such example, which makes use of internet to market and promote products and services to consumers. The objective of the ad remains the same: branding and/or direct selling, but the difference is that the audience reach is practically spread throughout the globe. Online advertising includes email marketing, social media marketing, mobile marketing and an array of display marketing such as banner ads, pop-ups, etc. As with traditional media, internet advertising involves a publisher, an advertiser and often an agency that facilitates the process, generates the ad content and places the ad copy.

This is a business that has steadily grown in popularity since the late 90’s. The year on year growth in digital advertising is averaging 18%, with companies spent over $37 billion on it in 2012 up 15% from 2011. And, Interactive Advertising Bureau says online ad spending hit $9.3 billion in the first quarter of 2013, which is up from $8.3 billion during the same period in 2012. With consumers increasingly spending more time on the internet and marketers rightly believe in stabilizing ad spend too with this trend. Youth-oriented products and services especially find social media platforms and blogs more effective to grab eyeballs. Through interactive and engaging messages, the consumer is actually becoming more involved in the actual advertising process. As a result, the efficacy of internet ads is more measurable, with each impression and hit being monitored. It is easier to work out hits versus purchase, or conversion ratios.

Have a look at the below spend growth in internet advertising

IAB Internet Advertising Growth Rate
IAB Internet Advertising Growth Rate | Source

The most notable benefits of online advertising over traditional advertising are:

  • Cost implications: The electronic medium is a powerful mile ahead of other means when it comes to cost. Covering a huge audience is possible with a limited spend online, resulting in a much better return on investment percentage. And, this is one of the biggest reasons why SMB's are now considering online marketing to their marketing strategy and who really can't bear the cost of outdoor banner advertising, trade shows or magazine ads.
  • Easier targeting means: Due to the nature of the internet, it is possible to taper down the target audience so that only the segment that does view the ad consists of potentially strong buyers. In fact, there is a lot of geographical targeting to make the ads relevant to users. Similarly, users’ web browsing history can be made a base for zeroing in on preferences and avoiding useless repetitions.
  • Measurable: This is one of the most important factors in deciding the impact of online advertising. On the internet, it is possible to collect accurate data of hits, pages visited, number of times the ad was viewed by the same user, how the user reached to the ad or the website, and whether the activity resulted in a sale.
  • Versatility: Unlike offline media, online advertising can be highly interactive. From incorporating videos and games to audio messages and sections for query input, there are many methods to keep the consumer keenly and constantly engaged.
  • Speed: Once an ad copy is ready, the distance between the advertiser and its consumers can be rapidly covered. Deployment can be immediate as most of the time the delivery of ad schedules is not dependent upon the publisher’s schedule. Even modifications and replacements in the ad are faster on the internet.

There are certainly some downsides to internet advertising. “Click-fraud”, privacy infringement regulations, and “banner-blindness”, or the lack of ad impact due to viewer annoyance are just some of them. However, the merits far outweigh the shortcomings.

Online advertising is here to stay.


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