When I worked at a marketing agency a few years back, we measured the results of our public relations work in column inches.
As in: take out a ruler, measure the length of the news columns that our client’s story was featured in, and multiply times 2.
Everything is so much more measurable now!
- You can tell how many hits your Web site is getting.
- You can tell how many people are clicking on your ad.
- You can use pay-per-click Google ads so that you only pay for qualified leads who are searching for what you sell.
Search is going to keep getting better and better – more precise, more obscure – people are increasingly going to be able to find information on whatever it is that they want to buy.
In the olden days of advertising, companies were trying to reach a mass audience through TV, radio and print ads. The assumption was that advertising needed to interrupt people (from their TV viewing or their magazine reading) and capture their attention – “And now, a word from our sponsor.”
With online marketing, things are totally different.
There’s not the same need to “interrupt” your audience with an ad. Instead, there are people online who are already actively looking for what you have to sell. The challenge becomes: how can you engage with them once they find you?
How can you present yourself – your company, your brand, your product – in a credible, compelling and authentic way?
People are already paying attention to you. The important thing now is to find ways to reward their attention – and build a relationship over time.