Quite simply, digital marketing is just our good old marketing, via the means of digital tools. Marketing is all about communicating value to your customers. Likewise, digital marketing means communicating value to your audiences online. Today, businesses leverage digital channels to connect and engage with their customers and potential ones.
Traditional vs. digital marketing
Both traditional and digital marketing are about marketing. While the strategies for both may be similar, the difference lies in the tools and the mediums they use.
Traditional marketing uses:
– All forms of print
– Direct mail
Digital marketing uses:
– The Internet and electronic media
– Tools like social media, content marketing, search engine marketing and more.
Why digital marketing is overtaking traditional marketing
Currently, media consumption is moving increasingly from traditional to digital content. While traditional marketing still works, it simply doesn’t stand a chance against digital marketing today. Why? Because on average, digital marketing is:
– more cost efficient
– more effective
– has a wider reach and penetration
– allows you to measure, monitor, analyze and test at a much better and faster rate
Why you need digital marketing
Every business needs a great digital marketing strategy. The fact is, with marketing having shifted to a results-driven approach, digital marketing ticks many boxes for accountability and measuring progress. Here’s why you need it:
- To gain focus and direction
You need a clear strategy to achieve your business goals, and digital marketing helps you measure the success (or failure) of your strategy. Thereby, you can focus and fine-tune your efforts and execute accordingly. Remember, always test, measure, re-adapt and repeat.
- To get to know your customers better
One role of digital media is to open avenues. For instance, social media can get you directly in touch with your customers, stay accessible to them, and help get to know them better. You should start the conversation and listen to them! Through these insights, you will be in a better position to address their pain points, offer solutions, and make better decisions regarding your brand. You really want to answer their questions and address their needs.
- Your competitors are online
Learn from what your competition is doing. Find out what’s working for them and what isn’t. Observe how they communicate with their brand, what makes them unique, and how they engage with their audience. Then, see how can you do it better or fill a gap in the market. Be unique in your approach and never copy!
- It aligns with how people shop
People spend an enormous amount of time online. They read online reviews and ask for recommendations on social media. They also sift through options for what they want to buy. So, it’s just natural for any sales process today, to start online. So make sure your business is integrated with your customer’s online experience.
Benefits of digital marketing
The Internet continues to become a part of everything we do. Likewise, the importance of digital marketing continues to grow. The good news is, there are many benefits for businesses that have undergone a digital transformation. Some of the most important are:
It is cost-effective when compared to traditional marketing. You can reach a wider audience too. This makes it especially accessible by small businesses who may not have large budgets for their marketing.
- Cross-platform accessibility
Digital marketing is suited to any device with an Internet connection.
- Provides equal opportunity
It’s tough to compete with big brands, but digital marketing has made it possible. It levels the playing field, and gives small brands the opportunity to compete, with a limited budget.
- More targeted strategies
Digital marketing allows you to define your audience. Hence, you can create ads and strategies that are highly relevant to just that target market. Such fine-tuning helps your brand connect better with your customers. Read our article on how to define your target audience for more insight into the process.
Digital marketing has the potential to narrow your target audience to a niche. Email marketing, an important part of digital marketing, has the potential to target right down to an individual. This can help you send tailored content that is highly relevant to them, greatly increasing the possibility of a sale.
Types of digital marketing
How would you go about digitally transforming your business? There are various ways:
- Search Engine Marketing (SEM)
SEM is a process of increasing visibility and traffic from search engines. This could be via paid or unpaid means. Search Engine Optimization or SEO is the unpaid method. SEO helps your content rank better on search engines to gain better visibility, reach and authority. So, what is it that you need to optimize? Your writing, your design and also your links. You could read our article on what is SEO-optimized content for a better idea. Paid SEM is Pay-Per-Click or PPC. PPC helps marketers utilize online ads to drive traffic to their website.
- Social Media Marketing (SMM)
This is, perhaps, one of the most popular types of digital marketing. It uses social media platforms such as Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, Pinterest etc. to disseminate quality content to a target audience. Word of mouth is still the strongest form of trust, and marketers should leverage this. In fact, 71% of consumers who have had a good social media service experience with a brand are likely to recommend it to others.
There’s always the possibility that social media can get overwhelming. However, it really helps grow your brand awareness when it is done the right way. If you are not sure where to start, it may be a good idea to organize your social media plan.
- Content marketing
According to the Content Marketing Institute, “Content marketing is a strategic marketing approach focused on creating and distributing valuable, relevant and consistent content to attract and retain a clearly defined audience – and, ultimately, to drive profitable customer action. In simpler words, it’s about storytelling. Read our article to learn how content marketing and SEO can boost your website traffic.
- Email marketing
This is a highly personalized form of digital marketing. It includes sending targeted emails to potential and existing customers to help develop a relationship and bring about conversion and sales. Here are some ways to personalize your email marketing.
Analytics gives you detailed data about how your online campaign has been faring. It identifies your website visitors, enumerates where the traffic is coming from, what they have viewed most, how long they have been on your page and so on. With this data, you can fine-tune your future campaigns as needed in order to fulfill marketing goals.
We hope that this article gives you a clearer understanding of what is digital marketing. Remember to always start with a strategy before you dive into it.
At Them You & Me, we strive to demystify digital marketing. If you’d like help with your digital strategy, give us a call.
To know about what we do and the services we offer, please visit our website.