Prominent Irish blogger Damien Mulley recently pointed out the folly of focussing on some elements of online marketing at the expense of others.

Pursue more established online marketing strategies and ignore social media and your letting a golden opportunity slip by – but by equal measure, if you put all your efforts into social media and eschew more established online avenues you could be missing the lions share of online business.

Or as Damien puts it:

How many people have an email address, how many have a Facebook account?

Consider all your options

You absolutely can’t ignore the online "conversation"… but then neither should you neglect the more established elements of online marketing, like e-mail, SEO, PPC, affiliate programmes and even online display advertising if it dovetails with your particular audience. Also, its often worth considering how offline marketing can augment and complement your online campaigns.

Do your homework

Know what you want to achieve before you start, know your market and where they spend their time online, identify the key influencers. Then align your marketing strategy accordingly.

New marketing doesn’t kill old marketing

Marketing is evolving — but that evolution doesn’t eradicate what preceded it, it just adds more strings to the marketers bow, giving you a suite of new and exciting ways to engage with the people who really matter to your business.

You can see — or rather hear the proof of this in any outdoor market, anywhere in the world. From the street markets of London to the Souks of Marrakech to Asia and beyond,  you’ll find the very first marketing medium in history — the human voice — employed to hawk the merchants’ wares, as effective in the digital age as it ever was.

A more rounded future

I think we’ll see a much more holistic approach to marketing emerge over the next few years, and will gradually see the stark delineation between "traditional" and "online" marketing converge into a much more rounded whole. We’ll stop thinking in terms of “traditional” versus “digital”marketing… it will just be marketing, and we’ll employ a carefully tailored blend of techniques spanning a variety of media to engage effectively with our target market.

It’s going going to take time, of course… but it promises to be an intriguing transition.