Marketing has revolutionized greatly over the years. Unlike in the past few decades, where a newspaper ad or a standard TV commercial was enough to popularize your brand like wildfire, there has been a great shift towards online marketing over the past decade or so. After all, we live in a digital age, and thanks to technology, just about anyone can access the internet these days. Smartphones, specifically, have been a major game-changer in the world of marketing. They’ve brought information, products, and services closer to consumers and consumers closer to entrepreneurs. For this reason, businesses that invest well in digital marketing are among the most successful in the market.
But then again, online marketing is broad and diverse. Considering how competitive the internet market has become nowadays, entrepreneurs who employ smart and strategic moves in their digital marketing approaches stand out the most. This means that whether you’re just starting a business or you want to take your operations online to reach a wider audience, you want to be as informed as possible about online marketing. On this note, here’s a brief look at everything you need to know about digital marketing.
What It Is
By definition, digital marketing refers to the engagement and marketing activities done online to promote a brand, products, or services. It is sometimes known as online marketing and seeks to help businesses get found easily, get noticed, acquire leads, and convert these leads into loyal paying customers. It may encompass a wide range of approaches, including the following:
- Creating a website
- Search engine marketing (optimization)
- Social media marketing
- PPC ads
- Email marketing
- Video marketing
Generally, the entire process revolves around creating awareness, attracting interest, influencing consideration, and driving intent for an interested customer to consider making a purchase. From the business’s side of things, the purchase bit becomes a sale.
It’s All About IT
Whether you’re running an online site for your brick-and-mortar business or you’re strictly operating an online venture, digital marketing is all about using information technology to your advantage. This is because to make it work for you, a considerable amount of time, funds, effort, and other resources will be spent on computers and other tech gadgets. As pointed out on the Summit Advisors’ website, this also means that IT issues such as network downtime, outdated hardware, and the lack of proper software can greatly affect business processes and impede your productivity. This is not to mention cybersecurity issues, which can be a huge threat to your business’s image and reputation. Luckily, these and many other challenges can be addressed by working with a reliable IT solutions provider.
Importance of Digital Marketing
With today’s consumer spending most of their time online via smartphones, tablets, and laptops, digital marketing has become the most effective way to reach them. Additionally, statistics show that more than 90 percent of people use the internet to find products and services they’re interested in. More than 80% of consumers find online reviews as trustworthy as personal recommendations, and at least 84 percent of online users in the US are shopping for something. You just can’t afford to overlook your digital presence as a business.
Digital Marketing Approaches
As mentioned earlier, there are several digital marketing techniques. As an entrepreneur, the most important ones you should know include the following.
This is the flesh and bone or modern internet marketing. It is your best marketing asset as a business and makes t easy for your prospects to find you. Also known as inbound marketing, it helps you drive leads to your business using content and information related to the products or services you are offering. Some websites take it a notch higher and employ remarketing strategies to follow up on potential leads from their visitors and app users. A good website should be fast, secure, mobile-friendly, easy to use, and optimized for SEO.
SEM and SEO
If website marketing is the mother of digital marketing, search engine marketing (SEM) is the firstborn. Basically, SEM includes using various techniques to promote a site’s visibility on the search engines. This is basically achieved through search engine optimization (SEO) and pay per click (PPC) search ads.
Social Media Marketing
Digital is largely about bringing your business closer to your target prospects online, and one of the places you can find them is on social media. Businesses with an active social media presence on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest, and LinkedIn get more leads and are more successful in retaining customers.
Email marketing has been around for quite a while. Basically, it involves promoting a business, its products, or services through email. It is often an excellent approach to obtain and convert specific leads since it can be automated and customized to suit the target customer’s needs.
Video marketing is all the rage these days. As you can tell from the name, it involves the use of video content for marketing purposes online.
Finally, research, tracking, and analysis are highly important as far as digital marketing is concerned. Whatever techniques you decide to start with for your digital marketing approach, you have to know what matters most, how to implement it, and how to track progress to see how it is affecting your bottom-line.