Traditional Media Is Dead

By Tim Baker

Have people forgotten what the term “traditional” actually means? Merriam-Webster defines “traditional” as an inherited, established, or customary pattern of thought, action, or behavior. So why is it that many marketers and publicists use the term “traditional media” when discussing print or “offline” outlets?

Just the other day it was reported that more people get their news online than they do in print and radio. With this being the case, why are so many still segmenting marketing and PR efforts down the two channels they refer to as “traditional” and “digital.” Using Merriam-Webster’s definition of “traditional,” doesn’t the fact that news is being devoured more online than in print or radio mean that the internet is now the customary pattern of thought, action or behavior? I think so.

The inherent problem in separating print and online is that news and consumption of media is not separated into two channels. When is the last time you read an article in a newspaper that wasn’t also available online? When was the last time you saw or heard a commercial for a product or service that didn’t have a corresponding website?

The point I’m trying to make is that proclaiming traditional media is dead is actually untrue because there’s no such thing as “traditional media” to begin with, at least in the context that many marketers and publicists now use it. The new “traditional media” is actually “Tradigital” media.

In order for any marketer or publicist to execute a successful strategy, they must think along one road – the “tradigital” path. With media existing in so many outlets, including online, mobile, print, television radio and social, the dividing lines have been blurred. These days, print, radio and television all exist online and offline. Social media isn’t just on your computer anymore. Building a successful strategy requires choosing the appropriate “tradigital” elements that make sense in selling your message or brand. If you’re working on a team, everyone must be in sync, not segmenting responsibilities by those handling”digital” and those handling “traditional” media.

Media is progressing so fast and every day brings new and emerging technologies for brands to spread their message. In order to find true success in this “new media,” a marketer must know how to see the big picture, and that big picture is no longer in black & white.

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