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Shock news: Over 90 percent of conversations happen offline

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It’s a wake-up call for any digital marketer who’s spent too long supping the intoxicating brew delivered through their ADSL line:

More than 9 in every 10 conversations take place offline.

Yes, offline, in the real world, where human beings apparently talk to other human beings via a one-to-one interface.

I know, unbelievable, but true.

It turns out that human habits really haven’t changed as much as some people would have you believe. After 6 million years of evolution, it looks like we’re going to need a little longer than a few months to change our ways and shift the majority of our interactions into the digital ether.

Thankfully all is not lost for digital marketers. Word of mouth remains one of the most potent weapons in our arsenal with almost half of all 18-54 year olds claiming they are highly likely to buy an item if they hear positive word-of-mouth.

The key is to figure out how to use low cost digital channels to kick-start the conversation with relevant and valuable content that will naturally and seamlessly make the leap back to conversations in the real, offline world.

The bottom line: digital activities still contribute only a small percentage of the total interactions that shape the way we view our world and the choices we make as consumers. Online marketing is a great conversation launching pad but the wisest marketers know that the real magic still happens in the offline world.

Further reading
Microsoft Advertising case study: http://advertising.microsoft.com/social-media-case-study