The Most Effective Marketing Channels

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Published: 2018 | Author: Anne Casey


The colossal and ever-changing growth of the internet has thrown more marketing channels into the mix than ever before. If you aren’t a marketing master, then given all of these choices, how do you know which one combination is right for your business and which are the most effective marketing channels? In this article, you will find information on each marketing channel and what results you can expect from it. You can download the chart with the marketing channels and measures for future reference.

Marketing channels can be divided into twelve groups. It is important to note that often the channels may cross over and they are not mutually exclusive.

1) Social Media Marketing Channels

This includes Facebook, LinkedIn, Pinterest, Instagram, WeChat, Whatsapp and more. The underlying principal here is sharing of your life online and in a way that you are comfortable with as well as with those that you want to ‘hangout’ with online. The most common measure for social media includes likes, shares, repins, comments and followers. Social media has changed the face of marketing and impact on brands and businesses is profound as there is now a direct line of communication for brands to their users and potential customers.

2) Public Relations and Event Marketing

Gets your target audience involved through event or participation. The strength of this is that it is experiential and face to face with a concentrated audience. The key to this is that the event or activity has your right target audience and you need to standout and be memorable. Often, this can also work as a ‘dip stick’ to gauge customer feedback and perception in a short period of time. The measures for this is usually sales and sales leads generated, brand awareness and number of entries or interactions.

3) Email, Direct Marketing and Telemarketing

Digital media has added another realm to the direct marketing and telemarketing scope with opportunities to send emails and newsletters direct to your clients. This is a one-to-one marketing channel and enables a high degree of personalisation and refined targeting. Success is most commonly measured through how many people clicked on your email, opened it, forwarded it or unsubscribed from it. With direct marketing and telemarketing response rate and leads generated are the common measures.

4) Print – Magazines, Inserts, Press and Unaddressed Mail

In this digital age, print media has loss much of its appeal. However, often it can reinforce a message and is tactile. Furthermore the environment that it is in can create a different atmosphere or association that may be good for a brand. For example, being in a high end magazine can create a similar high end perception for the brand. Results are often measured by brand awareness, sales, visitors to stores and websites or response to a particular call to action.

5) Online, SEO, Adwords, Display Ads, Facebook Ads

Where would marketing be if we couldn’t reach our audience where they spend most of their time…the internet! These marketing channels are the anchor of digital marketing and success here is measured by clicks, impressions, awareness and conversions to sales or leads. The beauty of this channel too is how easily measurable it is and how fast we are able to react to the results.

6) Website, Storefront

Whether you have a physical or digital storefront, this is where the first impression is made. The unconscious decision to engage or not is formed by these initial few seconds. Whether it is online or a physical location, the branding principals remain the same – the overall brand, finer details, language, positioning and more. Measures of success here include visits, feedback, sales, sign ups and interactions.

7) One on One networking, Affiliate Marketing

Building mutually valuable and beneficial relationships through affiliates goes back to the basic fundamentals of business – uncovering opportunities that can help to reach a wider market, build a stronger presence or product offering. In today’s internet world, affiliate marketing is key for many e-commerce websites. The success is measured through referrals, recommendations and leads.

8) Multimedia, Webinars, Video and E-Business Cards

Moving images and variations of this has shown to increase engagement and understanding much more quickly than other forms. It is a channel that not only is able to educate but also entertain at the same time which is very appealing. Results are evaluated by the number of responses to the call-to-action, leads, clicks, webinar registrations, recommendations and more.

9) TV, Radio and Outdoor

These mediums used to be the be-all-end-all before media became as fragmented as it is today. However, these marketing channels still have a place in our lives and can be effective (however to a lesser extent that they used to be). Results are often measured on brand awareness and action taken e.g. visits to your store, calls or website visits.

10) Point of Sale and Sales Presentations

Visual cues are critical for us humans. The idea that we attract the right attention and have the best chance of converting can often come down to how your point of sale materials and sales presentations look like, what messages are being communicated and even the order and importance given to each message. To measure this form of marketing we can evaluate the feedback, brand awareness and shares and even word of mouth mentions.

11) Content Marketing, Blogs, Podcast, Slide-sharing, Videos, Ratings and Reviews

Sharing content and information is a good way of building brand awareness and customers. This very closely ties in with social media and is really the internet’s form of word-of-mouth. You can measure the effectiveness by the number of shares, comments, views, likes, clicks and traffic to websites.

12) Mobile Apps, Mobile Responsive and SMS Marketing

When the world is in the palm of their hand, there is no better way to reach your audience. This is the future for marketing, so much so, it is often ‘mobile first’ for technology and user experience developments. To get a gauge of what is possible, WeChat leads the way and New York Times has put together an excellent video to give us an insight of what this may look like. You can use response rates, attendance and opt outs as a way to measure the results of this, as well as compare it to other marketing channels.

And there you have the twelve main categories of marketing channels and the common measures used. Feel free to download this diagram so that you have it handy to refer to.


To find out more about digital marketing or if you have any other questions, call us at +64 9 634 4390, email info@marketingminds.me or contact us.

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