Organic vs. Paid marketing: Which should you go for?

Updated: Nov 7, 2019



Many businesses are faced with the decision on whether to pay for their content to reach the masses, or whether to just grow organically. It definitely isn’t an easy decision in this economy. Very often, the easiest decision is to spend little to no money on sponsoring digital content with the hope that people will just find it, organically.


In Africa and Kenya, internet usage is slowly and steadily growing. People are continuously interacting with content from their favourite brands. In Kenya alone, internet penetration is at 84% of the population (Hootsuite, 2019). From these statistics, it is evident that the internet has the capability to reach large numbers of people at a relatively lower cost than traditional advertising. Furthermore, it is much easier to measure the level of engagement that your content generates on the internet.


Consider your own journey when deciding to make a purchase. The first thing you’d typically do is search for the product online before you make the purchase decision. Just like you, different studies show that on average, over 80% of people begin by first searching for content online before making any purchase decisions.


These numbers show that, if nothing else, you need to find a way to be at the top of search results on search engines.


When making this decision on paid or organic search, other important considerations are whether or not your competition is aggressively marketing online, as well as the algorithms behind the different search engines and how your content gets found on the internet.


Whether you opt to go for organic or paid search, the secret is to ensure that when creating the content, you use the right keywords and keyword phrases to reach those who are actively searching for what your business is offering, and you give your readers content of value.


Long and short, this decision all boils down to risk. Are you willing to grow slowly and organically, or will you pay to get found?


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