December 8th, 2004 by Bob Bly
Rick Bruner, an active blogger and my polar opposite in all things marketing, questions the effectiveness of my use of traditional media ? specifically, articles I write for DM News
He derisively refers to trade journals and newsletters as ?dead tree media,? and suggests that online communication, like blogging, is really where it?s at.
I?m not so sure.
So far my blogging has brought me a lot of fascinating discussions with bloggers (about 80 posts in its first week), but no posts from potential clients.
My DM News articles, on the other hand, bring me more than a dozen leads per article, all from the direct marketers who are my potential clients — because that?s who reads DM News.
My ?dead tree? medium is highly targeted. I am not sure who reads blogs ? but DM News has an audit-verified circulation of 50,000 direct marketers, which is my target market spot on.
Here?s my quick take on online vs. offline media?.
Online is more high tech, more today?s hot topic, more the flavor of the month, more appealing to the under 30 crowd, and more interactive.
Online is easier to respond to, and the response and discussion is immediately visible to everyone on the Internet. The conversation can spread like wildfire, which is a real plus.
Offline is more traditional, more appealing to the over 50 crowd, and has greater selectivity.
Anyone can publish a blog, Web site, or e-zine. That?s why David St. Lawrence calls blogging ?Citizens Publishing.?
But not everyone can get published in Harvard Business Review or the Wall Street Journal ? or convince McGraw-Hill or John Wiley & Sons to publish their book.
And that?s why these dead tree media, unlike a blog, give the author a certain status and credibility that self-published online writings, like e-books, do not.
The best tact is a mixed-media approach: For instance, I am a regular contributor to dead tree media including Writer?s Digest and DM News. And I am the author of 60 books published by such mainstream publishing houses as Prentice Hall and Amacom.
Does anybody have an opinion on which is better ? traditional paper publishing, online publishing, or a combination? What has worked for you guys?
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