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Stacey Cavagnetto

Above-The-Line Vs Below-The-Line Marketing [Infographic]

1st Jul 2015 Content Marketing Blog 2 minutes to read

Deciding on where to allocate your marketing budget? Consider how Above-The-Line (ATL) and Below-The-Line (BTL) marketing works, and which is better for your business, with Koozai’s latest Infographic.

Above The Line Advertising

Above the line advertising refers to advertising messages that are broadcast to ‘the masses’ without any sophisticated form of targeting.

These messages go out to large audiences via traditional offline media such as TV ads, radio, newspapers, magazines and out of home billboards.

The potential reach of these messages is huge, particularly if they are broadcast on a popular tv channel at prime time, or in a large-circulation national newspaper.

For this reason, above the line channels are well suited to brand-building as there is an opportunity to get in front of potentially hundreds of millions of eyes.

The disadvantages of above-the-line largely relate to cost; prime time slots demand prime rates. There is also little opportunity to target in any sophisticated way; of course certain television channels can be selected based on audience; similarly, certain regional print publications can be use to target specific geographical areas, but targeting is severely limited compared to below-the-line channels.

A simplistic way to think of above-the-line channels are to see them as ‘push’ channels, i.e. channels that can be used to ‘push’ out messaging in an unsolicited manner to audiences that possibly haven’t shown any prior interest in a brand or product.

This makes it ideal for making people aware of a brand or product, that previously weren’t aware.

Below The Line Advertising

Below the Line advertising refers to messages that are delivered to specific audiences.

The specificity of that audience depends on the channel being used to deliver the message, for example, paid search advertising allows advertisers to target based on various different demographics such as age, gender, and location.

SEO on the other hand allows broader targeting options.

This means that below the line channels are ideal for delivering highly targeted product messages to much smaller audiences that are likely to convert as a direct result of the advertising message.

Furthermore, below-the-line advertising can be tracked much more accurately and easily than above the line. This means that marketers can trace the precise ROI or a particular message, or campaign, which means below-the-line advertising spend can be scrutinised.

Before spending or testing without certainty, it’s important to know what will work for your business. We’ve aimed to showcase how ATL and BTL works when it comes to marketing and advertising, to make your decision that little bit easier. Segmented into various sections, the visual compares and explores:

  • The various methods employed by each marketing group
  • How each type works, and where they are best used within the audience’s buying cycle
  • How you can measure each marketing group
  • The cost associated to your business

Feel free to share your thoughts in the comments section below or tweet me @JamesaChallis. For more information on how Digital Marketing can help your business, get in touch today.

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Stacey Cavagnetto

Content & PR Lead

You’ll find Stacey shooting hoops on the netball court, that is if she’s not binge watching something on Netflix. She likes to keep herself on her toes, whether it’s from 15 years of ballet, or terrifying herself with a horror movie. Not that any of that would keep her from sleeping; she relates strongly to the ever-drowsy Koala as she’s a big fan of snoozing.


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