The importance of digital marketing is undeniable. There isn't a business that shouldn't be investing in digital marketing — no matter your industry. While it's essential to have a presence on mainstream channels, alternative media can help you tap into the areas beyond search engines and social media trends.
It may tap into a smaller group of people, but you'll often find a more dedicated group who make up your core consumer base. That alone can make an incredible impact on your company's growth and success with its target audience. Let alone the potential you can reach when you integrate your marketing efforts.
Here are some of the best alternative media advertising examples available for marketers today. Before jumping in and using alternative marketing in your mix, use the following insight and tips to make sure you're doing it correctly.
What Counts As an Alternative Channel
An alternative marketing channel refers to channels out of the realm of our traditional marketing channels that break through the clutter and reach your target audience. In a nutshell, it is anything that isn't mainstream.
They can come in several different marketing forms. Alternative digital channels can include:
- Influencer marketing — gaining traction but not yet mainstream
- Webinars — although often underrated, webinars have been ranked as the 2nd highest-rated channel according to 62% of respondents
- Repurposed content blogging — taking your old content, updating it, and presenting it as new
Think of it this way, alternative marketing uses specialized publications to differ from what everyone else is doing. It can greatly benefit brands looking for new, interesting, and unique ways to communicate with consumers. With the constant change of online channels, you could be at the forefront of the next significant shift, giving you an advantage over companies shifting once there's more competition.
Tap Into New Audiences
Going beyond standard marketing routes gives you access to new audiences who are either not found through traditional channels or will be more captivated when found on alternative channels. Where that may be of benefit is if you're part of the nearly 72% of marketers who can't find their target audience online, under normal circumstances — let alone on publications competitors don't utilize properly.
In a marketing world where consumers come to expect brands to advertise to them on their typical platforms — such as Facebook, TikTok, display, search engines — it's refreshing to find brands on less saturated channels. Finding your key platform early in its development lets you benefit from less competition fighting for your target consumer's attention.
More focused channels will increase brand awareness, and more importantly, it lets you reach people at a more receptive time. That way, you can resonate deeply with groups, even if you have a less broad reach. The greater focus and attention you can provide these audiences make for a more dedicated, connected audience. Furthermore, it helps you learn what voice your customers will respond to best. When combined with digital channels of broader reach, you'll be better able to pinpoint your target audience and get through to them — maximizing your potential with alternative media and digital advertising.
Use Content Marketing
Content marketing is an incredibly successful form of digital advertising. It allows you to demonstrate expertise and show consumers how much you know — without being too obvious, promotional, or invasive. You can even use a blog or video content to reach a specific niche of your audience to both advertise your brand and develop a more trusted following amongst your audience.
From there, you can use email marketing alongside (and as part of) your content marketing strategy to alert people to new content and other promotions you're offering simultaneously. Do this by sending out newsletters, blog updates, and announcements via email to let your recipients know about new content.
You could also use email to survey recipients about content topic ideas and their interests, encourage users to post and share your content on social media with friends and family, and A/B test topic ideas before executing them. Many of these advantages of email and content marketing mixtures are the reason as much as 90% of marketers use email as their top tracked metric, and 31% of marketers claim email newsletters are the best way to nurture leads in their content marketing strategy.
Optimize Your Digital Strategy
Alternative media channels are a fantastic way to optimize your digital strategy by cutting through the noise and competition of PPC. Often, marketers tend to follow the crowds in what works (not always a bad thing — social media does bring in incredible results), but many forget how successful thinking outside the box can be. That is especially true when you add alternative marketing to your standard marketing mix.