Times they are a changin’ – yet again. I am involved in the communications for several friends who are running for Municipal office – Regional Councillors and Mayor. During the process of planning to get their message out, the obvious conversation about the affect of the Internet comes up. And despite the huge shifts that have happened in the past 4 years (since the last election) online, people (and candidates) still do not trust that they can reach the majority of their potential voters online. Despite knowing how effective the Internet is through programs like The Drum Platform™ and BFOUND™, my experience when having this conversation with many others in the past few years is never positive. Most people who have made up their mind that because their “Aunt Edna has never been on the Internet”, there must be a lot of Aunt Edna’s out there. So I looked up the facts. I went to Stats Canada and found THE number. In 2009 Stats Canada reports that 81% of Canadians have access to the Internet at home or at work.
Then I see this great article in eMarketer stating that “Usage among internet users ages 50 and older nearly doubled during the past year, from 22% to 42%.” There will always be the Aunt Ednas, but not using a medium that reaches people more effectively than anything I have come across in 30 years of marketing experience is just plain dumb. Four years ago I told my clients it was coming – we could see the trend heading this way. Today, in 2010 – it is here. Now.
A combination of several studies compiled reveals that 47% of people’s time is spent online. In fact this chart shows that as marketers we have been very slow to change. Keep in mind this was done in 2007!
So next time you find yourself thinking you can wait to start using the Web to market your products and services, think again. It is here. Now. Start somewhere, but start today. A likely place is your website. If you have been using your website as an online brochure, consider transforming it to be the hub of your business. With the right approach you can attract traffic, create qualified leads and convert them to customers, allowing them to easily buy your product. Jump in – the water is warm.