If you have been avoiding digital marketing until now, is it because you think your business is still not ready for it? Well, think again!
There is an honest chance that right now your potential customer might be already looking for a business like yours on the internet, but since they are unable to find you, they have decided to choose your competitor who has a strong digital presence.
Enter digital marketing -- in other words, any form of marketing that exists online. Since marketing has always been about connecting with your target audience in the right place and at the right time, today, marketers need to connect with them where they are spending most of their time: on the internet.
What is Digital Marketing?
Most people do a poor job of nailing down the definition of digital marketing. However, the term is less vague than you might imagine from the outset.
Simply put, digital marketing is the promotion of products or brands using electronic devices or the internet. It uses multiple channels and technologies that allow an organization to analyse campaigns, content, and strategy to understand what is working, and what is not – typically in real-time.
While people often assume that digital marketing is all about content marketing and social media, they are not all encompassing. Digital marketing occurs -- both online and offline and includes text messaging, instant messaging, video, apps, podcasts, electronic billboards, digital television, radio channels, etc.
History of Digital Marketing
A generation ago, consumers were at the mercy of advertisers who spoon-fed marketing messages to them across a few media channels: print, billboards, television, and radio. Furthermore, these advertisers created markets while defining and reinforcing consumer stereotypes. Advertising was primarily a one-way conversation with a captive audience.
With the explosion of digital media, people began to engage with each other – and the companies they did business with – in new ways. The relevance of traditional print and broadcast channels declined since then, completely changing the consumer-corporation dynamic. Digital channels opened doors for consumers and it no longer had passive participants in a one-sided marketing conversation. Thus, consumers became empowered -- authors, publishers, and critics.
In turn, the exponential growth in digital channels has given rise to the importance of digital marketing. However, this form of marketing is not just about the channel. It is also the mechanism by which people are creating and sharing content and experiences, engaging both with each other as well as the business they are dealing with in real-time.
Importance of Digital Marketing
The amount of time we spend connected to our electronic devices increases every day. An average consumer spends over 11 hours each day using electronic devices. Hence, digital marketing is more important and impactful than ever before and almost every business can benefit from it. Regardless of what your business sells, here are six reasons as to why digital marketing is important for any business:
You reach people where they spend their time
With the growth of the Internet, more people are spending their time online. Over 7.7 billion people use the Internet across the globe and it has become an integral part of everyday life to conduct searches, check social media, and purchase products online.
Your customers are online, which highlights the importance of digital marketing. They are browsing the web looking for your products or services. If they cannot find them because you do not have an online presence, you risk losing those leads to your competitors. To drive the best results for your business, you need to build a strong online presence and reach to more prospects who want your products or services.
Your competitors are already doing it
If you are wondering why digital marketing is important, the answer is that your competitors are already using it. Many of your competitors have already taken advantage of all that digital marketing has to offer. They have created social profiles, adapted their website for SEO, and run paid advertisements to reach new leads.
This reason in itself is one of the reasons why you should use digital marketing. If you want your business to compete with others, you have to do what your competitors are doing and much more. Hence, to keep up with your competitors, you must invest in digital marketing.
You can compete with larger corporations
When you are in a market with bigger corporations, like Walmart, Amazon, Flipkart, and others, it is hard to compete with them. Since they have a big name for themselves, it automatically draws people to trust those corporations.
However, with methods like SEO and pay-per-click (PPC) advertising, you have a fighting chance against such corporations. With digital marketing, your business can reach interested leads with the same methods as a larger corporation.
You can target your ideal audience
With digital marketing, you can target your audience more precisely than traditional methods. You can input important information about your audience and use that information to shape your digital marketing campaigns. This helps you to reach more leads that are interested in your products or services.
5. You can monitor your campaigns and optimize them for better results
When you invest time and money into your campaigns, you want to know that if they are working or not. Digital marketing makes it easy for you to track your campaigns, which allows you to adapt and drive better results. You can see metrics such as impressions, clicks, likes, shares, comments, conversions, and more. Although the type of metrics will depend upon the medium and what you want to measure.
Comparatively, when you use traditional methods, it is challenging to know the results of your campaign. If you run a TV ad, you may have to ask every person that comes into the store about what brought them to your business. It would be a very time-consuming effort that could annoy people who visit your business.
You get an impressive return on your investment (ROI)
It is very cost-effective to use online marketing methods. This leaves room for a great ROI because you do not have to spend much money to run a campaign. It does not cost much to run a PPC campaign or social media ad campaign, compared to some traditional methods, which allows your business to have an opportunity to grow.
Hence, without digital marketing efforts, you stand to reach almost no one and as a result, your business may be left in the dust.
Types of Digital Marketing
To build a successful online business and stand out from the crowd, you need a complex digital strategy based on a thorough market study, in-depth business analysis, and constant feedback. Consider the following types of digital marketing and think about which ones work best for your industry, your company, and your audience.
Search Engine Optimisation (SEO)
According to statistics released in 2020, about 67,000 searches are performed on Google every second. While 93% of all online experiences begin with a search engine, 97% of consumers go online to find local services. Therefore, no matter what type of business you own, SEO must be part of your online marketing strategy.
Search Engine Optimization, also known as SEO, is the process of getting traffic from the organic search results on search engines. All major search engines such as Google, Bing, and Yahoo have primary search results, where web pages and other content such as videos or local listings are shown and ranked based on what the search engine considers most relevant to users. It is the process of editing and creating website content and code on your website so that each of your web pages ranks on page one of the search engines.
Search Engine Marketing (SEM)
SEO is not the only way to increase incoming traffic from search engines. Search engine marketing (SEM) makes it possible to advertise a product in search engines and make it appear among paid search results. Since search engines usually display paid results above organic results on SERPs, they almost look the same as organic results with only small differences in appearance, for instance, Google shows a small “Ad” label next to the related URL.
The most frequently used paid search services are Google AdWords and Bing Ads. They allow you to buy ad space based on target keywords, location, viewer demographics, and other data.
Social Media Marketing (SMM)
Without a doubt, social media is the queen of 21st-century digital content. It is not simply a marketing channel but also a way for people to keep in touch with their friends and family, get the latest news, or follow topics of interest.
By using social media marketing, you will gain more reach when you post quality content. Everything you do to increase traffic or business on your social media channels is social media marketing. Whether you are on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, YouTube and Pinterest -- these efforts all amount to social media marketing.
Content marketing is another type of digital marketing you can use to promote a business online. Content marketing is an indirect way of marketing, as you publish content that the audience finds naturally while browsing the web. The main goal of content marketing is to make viewers interact with the content by reading, sharing, and commenting on it.
High-quality content also allows you to persuade an audience about the expertise of a business in a certain niche. Gaining the trust of customers is one of the most important long-term goals of digital marketing. You can publish shareable content either in the form of blog posts, white papers, reports, or webinars or by guest blogging in popular publications in the same niche.
Email marketing allows you to update your email subscribers regularly about your company. This fosters a relationship unlike any of the other types of digital marketing. Your email updates provide value to your consumer. As a result, you build brand trust and brand loyalty.
The best email marketing campaigns involve a list of subscribers earned by your content and company, not paid for by your company. People who opt-in to your email subscription prove more likely to become active buyers.
Affiliate marketing is one of the most lucrative types of digital marketing. It involves a partnership with an online retailer where you earn a commission from every sale or lead that you bring in. You either offer a unique discount code to their readers/followers or you link to your website from their content website.
Whenever a user plugs in the discount code or clicks on the link, you pay your affiliate partner for the website traffic/sale. The most popular affiliate network is Amazon Associates, but there are also such programs with eBay, Shopify, and other e-commerce sites.
Influencer marketing is among the newer types of digital marketing. Influencer marketing uses people with an enormous online reach considered experts by your target market to drive traffic and sales. It is highly popular on social media channels like Instagram and Snapchat.
Companies hire Instagrammers with large followings to promote their brand by posting one or more photos with the product. They also engage in Instagram or Snapchat “takeovers” where the hired influence controls the company’s social media platform for a given amount of time, most often a day. These social media takeovers drive the influencer’s following to your social media channels increasing your new followers and unique views.
Viral marketing makes use of all types of digital marketing mentioned in this article. The essence of viral marketing is to create a post, video, meme, or another short-form content type that is trendy, funny, or strange enough to garner a massive amount of shares online. Such type of marketing causes an enormous spike in website traffic over a short period.
Although it is difficult, the benefits make the effort worth your time. To make a successful viral marketing campaign, you need to promote the same content across multiple channels such as Twitter, YouTube, blog posts, and newsletters over a brief period.
Mobile Phone Advertising
Each of the types of digital advertising can happen on a mobile device. Some types of marketing using a mobile phone do not fit the above types of digital marketing. These include SMS advertising which could prove an asset to local marketing efforts. You can prompt your consumers to use SMS to receive special offers, coupons, and updates from your company.
Offline Digital Marketing
It is worth it to know that your digital marketing strategy is not complete with online digital marketing alone. Enhanced offline marketing is offline marketing that uses electronic devices to boost the user experience. For example, a restaurant that lets customers put in their orders with electronic tablets is using offline digital marketing.
Other such forms of offline digital marketing include radio marketing, television marketing, and phone marketing.
While most companies know they should be using digital media to market their business, they do not know what kind of tools to use or how much to use. This is where our digital marketing team steps in. Turiya Communication LLP’s digital marketing services remove the complexity of digital media for business owners and let you stick to what you know best—running your business!