This was inevitably going to be a contentious issue. Traditional media buyers and marketers were initially resistant to the advent of less costly and more measure digital marketing programs. Early digital marketing pioneers were not the most social of sorts and hence the battle ensued for your almighty marketing dollars. Consult PR is uniquely positioned to offer this opinion because of it’s middling role as both a direct hire for digital marketing as well as an outsource option for traditional marketing agencies over the years. Good news though the dust has settled and lots of options for balance in exist in the new marketing world order. It comes down to two things, relationship and specialization of expertise.
Traditional agencies are still the place for abundant creativity, abstract development of brand concepts and traditional media creation to fulfill media buys. Digital agencies are the other end of the spectrum, the quickie social media content creators with emphasis on consistent deployments and less on perfection. Digital is the more conversational media and is a more result focused group since everything is so real time and measurable in digital. Traditional is the more brand awareness and business profile growth group with less measurement and more "you know you have to be out there" sort of approach, but more of the "you know you do rather than the why you do". Both types of firms have their specialization and strengths. It is truly a case of apple and oranges.
Our recommendation, if you already have a traditional marketing firm, is to keep the two separate relationships and they will find a way to not only coexist but achieve great things for your firm. Keep traditional in the lead on creative and content and keep digital in the lead on measurement and deployments.
Our best case recommendation would be if you don't have an existing traditional relationship. Then you should first establish a digital marketing firm relationship, see what call can be done in that less costly and more measurable space, including crossover areas and then selectively hire traditional media firms and consultants for specific tasks rather than on a retainer basis. Contact us today for more guidance on this topic or for a free marketing consultation