Traditional Marketing vs. Inbound Marketing [Infographic]

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Traditional Marketing vs. Inbound Marketing [Infographic]

Editor’s note: This post was originally published on 1/26/18 and has been updated for accuracy and comprehension.

Ever wondered whether your traditional marketing strategies are enough? 

Thought about implementing inbound marketing, but worry that you won’t get results? 

Here’s a look at how traditional marketing and inbound marketing differ, along with their advantages and disadvantages for small marketing teams.


Keep reading after the infographic for a deeper dive into the differences between traditional marketing vs. inbound marketing.


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3 Big Differences: Traditional Marketing vs. Inbound Marketing

The infographic touched on the differences between inbound and traditional marketing, but let’s take a closer look at three of the main differences between them.

1. Company Focus vs. Customer Focus

Traditional advertising is all about selling – whether the customer is ready or not. That’s where the billboard, television, radio and newspaper ads come into play.

The idea is to blast everyone and hope that enough people respond.

Inbound marketing is concerned with the nurturing process, taking a person on a journey from being a stranger ➞ viewer ➞ lead ➞ customer – when THEY are ready.

It’s no wonder the inbound method is more effective.

2. Interruption Marketing vs. Problem-Solving

“Interruptive marketing” is giving consumers information when they’re not looking for it. Just think about how annoying commercials are during your favorite show.

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That’s the crux of traditional marketing.

Inbound marketing puts content on the web to catch the attention of people who already know they have a problem and are actively looking for a solution.

3. Talking AT vs. Interaction

With traditional marketing, the business is getting their message out, whether the audience wants to hear it or not. 

A billboard or direct mailing doesn’t offer any chance for a back-and-forth.

Again, inbound marketing comes out on top by opening up the lines of communication between you and the consumer.

Emails, social media, etc. gives your audience the opportunity to engage, get to know your brand, and then eventually become a customer.

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Final Thoughts 

When you give your audience a chance to engage, offer them a solution to a problem and keep the focus on them, your message will resonate with the right people.

What are the differences between traditional marketing vs. inbound marketing?

The differences between traditional marketing vs. inbound marketing are:

  1. Traditional marketing focuses on the company. Inbound focuses on the customer.
  2. Traditional marketing is interruption marketing. Inbound seeks to problem-solve.
  3. Traditional marketing talks at the audience. Inbound marketing encourages interaction.

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Josh Coffy

Josh has an exhaustive understanding of technology and a creative marketing approach that drives client results. In his free time, Josh does CrossFit and travels with his wife.