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  • Writer's pictureJody B. Miller

Digital or Traditional TV - Which Works Better?

Updated: Nov 7, 2023

Today, we're diving into the wild world of advertising – both digital and good ol' local TV.


Now, you might have heard some rumblings about digital advertising not quite hitting the mark unless it's got some flashy video content involved. Well, let's break it down and see why that's the case.

First off, let's talk about engagement.


People have the attention span of a caffeinated squirrel these days.

You've got about 8 seconds to grab 'em before they're off to the next shiny thing.


And guess what? Video has this magical power to grab attention and keep it like a captivating story around a campfire.

But how long should these videos be, you ask? Great question!


Studies have shown that shorter videos, around 15 to 30 seconds, are like the Goldilocks zone – not too short that you're left scratching your head, and not too long that you're checking your watch.


Remember, you're not making a cinematic masterpiece here; you're making a quick, engaging pitch that leaves 'em wanting more.

Now, let's talk platforms.


If you're looking to reach your target audience, you've got to go where they hang out.


Social media platforms like Facebook, Instagram, and TikTok are like hipster coffee shops for the digital age. People are scrolling through these platforms while waiting for their double shot of espresso. So, toss your video in their faces right where they're most likely to see it.

And let's not forget about the good ol' YouTube – the granddaddy of video platforms. It's like a treasure trove where people actively search for stuff they're interested in. So, if your audience is looking for "how to knit a sweater for your pet iguana," you better believe there's a space for your video there.

Now, let's sprinkle some data on this conversation.


According to a study by HubSpot, 54% of consumers want to see more video content from brands they support.


And a study by Wyzowl found that 68% of people would rather learn about a product or service by watching a short video. It's like they're telling you, "Show, don't tell!"

But, what about targeting, you ask?


Well, the beauty of digital advertising lies in its superpowers of targeting. You can slice and dice your audience like a master chef preparing a Michelin-star meal.


Platforms like Facebook and Google allow you to target based on interests, behaviors, demographics, and even life events. So, if you're selling surfboards, you can make sure your video lands in front of beach bums, not snow bunnies.

Let's dig even deeper into the data, because numbers don't lie, my friends.


According to a study by eMarketer, digital ad spending has been on a meteoric rise, with projections showing it surpassing traditional TV ad spending. However, the effectiveness of these digital ads can vary like the weather in San Francisco.

Studies have shown that local TV advertising can be effective in certain cases, especially for local businesses with a strong regional presence. People still tune in to their local news stations, and if your target audience aligns with those viewers, you might just hit a home run.


But here's the kicker: unless you're diving into the world of video content, you might as well be whispering into a hurricane.

Why? Well, think about the way we consume information these days.


We're in a fast-paced, content-saturated world where scrolling and swiping are practically Olympic sports. It's like trying to stand out at a rave with a candle – you need some serious lumens to get noticed.

Enter video. It's like the neon lights of the digital landscape.


A study by Cisco predicted that by 2023, online videos would make up more than 82% of all consumer internet traffic – that's like a video tidal wave washing over everything else. People crave motion, color, and engagement, and video serves up that smorgasbord.

But how long should your video be?


The good folks at Wistia, a video hosting platform, crunched the numbers and found that engagement drops off significantly after the 2-minute mark. So, keep it short and snappy.

When it comes to platforms, let's dive deeper into YouTube.


It's not just a video-sharing site; it's a search engine in its own right.


Google, the keeper of the internet keys, owns YouTube, which means your video content can get some serious SEO juice.


In fact, YouTube is the second-largest search engine after Google itself. Plus, with the rise of YouTube ads, you can target your ideal audience based on their search queries and interests.

But social media isn't slacking either.


A study by Animoto found that 73% of consumers claimed to have been influenced by a brand's social media presence when making a purchasing decision.


Platforms like Facebook and Instagram offer detailed targeting options, allowing you to pinpoint your audience based on demographics, behaviors, and interests. It's like shooting an arrow with eyes – you're hitting the bullseye every time.

So, my fellow experimenters, the evidence is clear.


When it comes to digital advertising, especially without the glitz of local TV, video is your golden ticket. Keep it short, utilize platforms like YouTube and social media, and laser-focus your targeting. In this digital arena, data is your sword, and video is your shield. Go forth and conquer!

And that's a wrap for this deep dive. Until next time, keep hacking, keep hustling, and keep those videos rolling.


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