Online vs. Offline Marketing: Whatever you Think, Think the Opposite

Whatever You ThinkHaving dealt with many traditional marketers entering the online world, and having gone through the transition myself, the best advice that I could share with anyone joining this world (and everyone will, eventually) is the title of this book. Whatever You Think, Think The Opposite is a brilliant book that doesn't have to do anything with online or offline, but the advice makes a lot of sense to me because almost everything that we do online is counter-intuitive to the thinking of traditional economics. Paul Arden presents his ideas by using the medium he is best at, advertising. The pages of the books have the structure of an ad. A big image with a headline and some descriptive text. Each page can be read separately without having to read other pages for context. The only difference between these pages and ads are brand and logos. So, me easy advice would be to think the opposite of the way you think. Most of the thinking and planning works the other way round; big becomes small, one becomes many, decide become discover, etc. Here I outline some of the main differences in doing marketing online compared to the thinking offline.



  Offline   Online
General Implementation: Planing, planning, planning, and then you have one big bang.   Start small, very small, extremely focused, based on results improve, expand, optimize, and grow. Start spending big ONLY when you have good results.
Time to analyze resuts:  Takes several weeks, if not months, needs a different process of a sampled group of people to give their feedback.   Almost immediate results on your campaigns, per creative, per placement.
Restuls Analysis: Based on people's feedback.   Based on actual usage (clicks, impressions, conversions, etc.).
Campaign Analysis:  A separate process, involving additional cost and research.   An integral part of the campaign.
Campaign Cycle:  Ends when the ad is seen, and there is no direct link to the customer behavior based on the ad.    full cycle is measured from impression, to click, to landing pag, to funnel, and finally the 'thankyou' page.
Targeting:  Usually one big market, at best segmented based on medium   Extremely fragmented, potentially every keyword is a segment. 
Customization:  Fixed messages can only be changed in different campaigns or editions of a publication.   Can be tailored to each segment, and can be based on previous performance data.