While you’d be forgiven for thinking that above the line and below the line marketing refers to white hat and black hat techniques, you’d be incorrect in your assumption. Instead, these are understandings of segmented marketing.

This post will look at what each of these marketing segments is, the differences between them, and which will be better for your business. Our experts at Blend Commerce will have you ready to try your hand at new marketing techniques in no time and are always prepared to help you go further.

What is below the line marketing?

Below the line marketing, also known as BTL advertising, is a highly targeted strategy where products and services are promoted in media that diverges from the traditional mainstream options. Below the line marketing advertising systems include:

  • Direct mail and email campaigns
  • Targeted search engine marketing
  • Social media marketing
  • Trade shows and catalogues

These methods tend to be more focused and less expensive than above the line marketing systems. They are also more engaging and make the audience feel like you are speaking to them personally, improving customer relations and loyalty.

What is above the line marketing?

Above the line marketing, also called ATL advertising, is a less focused marketing technique that reaches a larger/wider target audience. This is a more old-school approach that boosts brand awareness while promoting certain products and services. ATL advertising strategies include:

  • Television
  • Radio
  • Billboards
  • Newspapers and magazines

These mass media promotions allow you to reach a large audience but can cost more than BLT techniques and don’t utilise specialised data on your business’s target audience. ATL methods usually suit large corporations aiming to build a well-known brand.

Above the line vs below the line marketing

If possible, it is always best to diversify your marketing strategy, using multiple different techniques and options. This will allow you to make the most of the more targeted approaches of BTL, and the greater reach and brand awareness capabilities of ATL marketing.

Since these marketing segments fulfil different requirements, we cannot tell you which is best and worst. Instead, consider which is best for your business and marketing goals.

Is BTL or ATL marketing better for your business?

Are you wondering which of these advertising options is best for your business? The answer is quite simple. If you have a smaller company, BTL marketing is best for you. You can use your resources, past marketing campaign data, and target audience knowledge to create targeted media campaigns. 

These are more cost-effective and offer a more significant ROI for the resources required. It is also easy to track the return on investment, and the data gained can be used to improve future campaigns.

If you have a larger company and/or are trying to create a brand identity and awareness, then ATL marketing is right for you. These methods are often more attention-grabbing than their BTL counterparts and have a greater reach. 

Need help with your marketing?

If you aren’t sure what direction to head in with your marketing campaign, get in touch with us today. Our team is always enthusiastic to grow new and old businesses.