By: Jeremy Kurian
Digital marketing is an umbrella term for the targeted, measurable, and interactive marketing of products or services using digital technologies to reach and convert leads into customers. The key objectives are to promote brands, build preference and increase sales through various digital marketing techniques. It is embodied by an extensive selection of service, product and brand marketing tactics, which mainly use the Internet as a core promotional medium, in addition to mobile and traditional TV and radio. Digital marketing activities include search engine optimization (SEO), search engine marketing (SEM) , content marketing, influencer marketing, content automation, e-commerce, social media marketing, social media optimization, e-mail direct marketing, display advertising, e–books, etc.
In simplistic terms, digital marketing is the promotion of products or brands through one or more forms of electronic media. Digital marketing differs from traditional marketing in that it involves the use of channels and methods that enable an organization to analyze marketing campaigns and understand what is working and what isn’t, typically in real time.
Why is Digital Marketing Important?
Digital media are so pervasive that consumers have access to information any time and any place they want it. Gone are the days when the messages people get about your products or services come from you and consist of only what you want them to know. Digital media are an ever-growing source of entertainment, news, shopping and social interaction, and consumers are now exposed not just to what your company says about your brand, but what the media, friends, relatives, peers, etc., are saying as well. And they are more likely to believe them than you. People want brands they can trust, companies that know them, communications that are personalized and relevant, and offers tailored to their needs and preferences.
What Does a Typical Digital Marketing Campaign Include?
It is common to see some digital marketing campaigns with:
- Search engine marketing: Either through a content strategy and SEO or through paid search advertising.
- Social media promotions: paid advertising on Facebook, as well as promotions on Twitter, Pinterest and Google+.
- Mobile marketing promotions: development of native apps that are available via Google Play and iTunes
- Email marketing: promotions of products or services through email marketing campaigns
Challenges Faced by Digital Marketers
- A wide variety of platforms and behaviors. Consumers use multiple digital channels and a variety of devices that use different protocols, specifications and interfaces – and they interact with those devices in different ways and for different purposes.
- Intense competition. Digital channels are relatively cheap, compared with traditional media, making them within reach of practically every business of every size. As a result, it’s becoming a lot harder to capture consumers’ attention.
- Exploding data volumes. Consumers leave behind a huge trail of data in digital channels. It’s extremely difficult to get a handle on all that data, as well as find the right data within exploding data volumes that can help you make the right decisions. It’s not enough to just know your customers; you must know them better than anybody else so you can communicate with them where, when, and how they are most receptive to your message. To do that, you need a consolidated view of customer preferences and expectations across all channels – the web, social media, mobile, direct mail, point of sale, etc. Marketers can use this information to create and anticipate consistent, coordinated customer experiences that will move customers along in the buying cycle. The deeper your insight into customer behavior and preferences, the more likely you are to engage them in productive interactions.
It is important to know the differences between the different marketing theories so that you can select the most appropriate tools to use in your campaigns. Digital marketing is the future of marketing and will gradually gain more ground. Social media, on the other hand, is a new way to connect with other people. It is part of digital marketing and it’s here to change the way we find new customers and promote our products.