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Well stated - as you know, I can connect with all of your points here. And we've never had the large marketing budgets either so always evaluate trade-offs. That said, I don't think it's an all online proposition. We actually get good traction via old fashioned direct mail. Traditional print advertising, however, is paying rapidly diminishing returns.

More importantly, I think it's looking at how and where your customers get their information and using a combination (at least for now) of old and new tactics. Sometimes when everyone's doing an eDM, it pays to do the opposite to get attention. It's also about being innovative online - or in print - to cut through the noise. For instance, look at how Pepsi channeled their Superbowl $$ into social with the Refresh Everything project. If a marketer thinks they'll gain traction by shifting from print to a bunch of banner ads they'll be sorely disappointed.

Online is attractive for it's measurability and relative ease / speed of implementation. Whatever will build the relationship and deliver customer value is where you should be imo. Also, saw something recently about the largest brands on Facebook are also the biggest spenders in traditional arenas.

What I've seen working is integration into a plan with short term and long term goals. However, often the switch is made based upon the ability to track things more easily without the verification that what is being tracked is worth tracking. Ultimately, figuring out what gets best results needs to take change in buying habits and in what makes people decide into account, too.

Of course, it depends on your business, but that being said, I could see if someone wanted to shift a majority of their lead gen spend online. However, in a lot of businesses, the close still comes in the store, over the phone, in the office, and so on, so while someone selling personal computers *might* be able to shift all of their spend online, someone selling more expensive products, products you have to feel, fleets of products (like cars maybe), etc probably will not be able to go all the way online.

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