Spanning the Digital Divide

This is an interesting time to be in business. On the one hand there’s a constant stream of new shiny objects, gadgets and apps to play with, presenting exciting new ways to reach your customers. But on the other hand there are still plenty of traditional routes to market that  generate vast reach, even if they may be losing some of their earlier potency.

And that means, in this unprecedented time of change, that being able to span both the old and the new and make intelligent decisions about what to adopt and what to abandon has become a crucial skill for marketers.

Where are you on the journey?

For most businesses, knowing how to nurture traditional routes to market while reducing your long term dependency on them is essential. And intelligently testing new channels in parallel to allow these to gently come to the fore will also help your business to evolve and become future-ready.

NRS Survey Findings

I was reminded of our digital divide by the above infographic based on data from the National Readership Survey. Even today, with tablets seemingly everywhere in our big cities, fewer than 1 in 6 (15%) adults own either a tablet device or an e-reader. And a tiny 1.4%, like me, own both.

Although tablet devices or smartphones or HTML5 enabled browsers or Twitter or whatever… are undergoing remarkable growth, most still remain in minority ownership.

There’s no doubt in my mind that the offspring of the digital form factors will ultimately become universal but there’s no getting away from the fact that they’re still far from omnipresent. And until they are, marketers would be well advised to continue nurturing traditional communication channels.