The importance of digital marketing can’t be overstated. Today, people spend twice as much time online as they used to 12 years ago. Technological advancements have made online shopping so much more convenient for consumers that offline marketing isn’t nearly as effective as it has been in the past. Effective marketing capitalizes on the technique of connecting with your audience under the right circumstances, and today, the “where” and “when” to meet are “on the Internet” and “all the time.”
Digital marketing refers to any and all online marketing excursions. In order to connect with current and prospective clients, businesses have to use digital channels including social media, search engines, and blogs to their maximum advantage. In order to stand out, the best digital marketers have to clearly understand how to best exploit each of those assets and tactics. We’ve published a free guide of the fundamentals to really get you started: created Why Digital Marketing? The Essential Guide to Marketing Your Brand Online, which you can download it for free here.
Typical Digital Assets:
1. Your websites and blog posts
2. Easy-to-read info graphics
3. Whitepapers, brochures, and lookbooks
4. Interactive animations, charts, and other tools
5. Social media accounts and channels
6. Branding graphics such as logos, slogans, and fonts
Tactics & Techniques
1. Search Engine Optimization (SEO): crafting website content, keywords, HTML, and other details so it will rank higher in search engine result pages, making it more likely to attract more views
2. Content marketing: creating and promoting assets in order to generate brand awareness
3. Inbound marketing: using content to attract consumers and then provide content for them to be convinced to rely on your website consistently; not the same as outbound marketing, which
pushes messages directly in front of audiences instead of trying to draw them in
4. Social media marketing: increasing awareness of and driving traffic towards your business using media such as YouTube, Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, etc
5. Pay-per-Click: attracting traffic by paying a publisher every time your ad is clicked
6. Affiliate marketing: receiving commissions for promoting other brands on your website
7. Native advertising: primarily content-led; featured along with other, non-paid content
8. Marketing automation: software that fulfills marketing actions, such as sending preset emails, automatically
9. Email marketing: using email to communicate with audiences to promote their content and events as well as directing them to the website
10. Online PR: securing online coverage with digital publications, blogs, and other websites
The benefits of digital marketing all involve maximizing the amount of traffic your website receives. For instance, digital analytics software such as HubSpot can track the exact amount of people
who visit your website’s homepage, what pages they go to next, and what sort of devices they’re using. This will give you a better idea of which areas to spend more effort on.
So now that you know what digital marketing is, what sort of content should you create? How do you tailor your online habits in a way that maximizes your digital marketing? It really depends on your audience’s needs at certain times in the process of buying. For instance:
1. The Awareness Stage: To Attract, and Keep, Their Attention
• Blog posts – SEO is important to keep in mind here! Give them interesting and relevant things to read.
• Infographics and short videos – especially when concise, people are more likely to share these, increasing your chances of attracting more people.
2. The Consideration Stage: You Have their Attention, Now Convince Them!
• Ebooks and research reports – More comprehensive than blog posts or infographics
• Webinars – a more interactive form of video content to help your viewers learn more and get a better feel for your brand.
3. Decision Stage: They’re Almost Sure About You
• Case studies and testimonials – These will help your clients visualize themselves really working with you.
Now that you know more about it, you’re wondering about the downsides of digital marketing. For instance, how long does it take to see results? That really depends on how many tactics you implement, and how skillful your company is at them. However, once you spend time identifying the needs of your audience and creating good content for them, you’re likely to see positive results within six months, or even shorter if paid advertising is used.
Speaking of paid advertisement, what about the budget? As with any business venture, you might be expected to put money down before seeing a profit; however, this is really only a problem if you are primarily focusing on outbound marketing such as banners and pay-per-click ads.
Fortunately, aside from the cost of buying a website domain and paying employers, inbound techniques such as social media, blog SEO, and creation of content generally do not require any additional budget!
The main focus is creation of high quality content for your consumers.
The last little detail you might be worried about is mobile marketing.
You’ve probably heard people complain about the poor quality of the mobile websites from some usually-legitimate brands, even if those people aren’t especially involved in marketing and wouldn’t know anything about SEO.
In fact, mobile usage accounts for 60% of time spent consuming digital media, either by using apps or mobile websites, with desktop-based digital media comprising the other 40%. So even if you aren’t planning to produce a smartphone app, consumers will expect quality content to still be accessible, so it’s crucial that your advertisements, websites, and social media accounts are optimized.
This is definitely a lot of information to take in, but there’s no need to feel overwhelmed.
As mentioned earlier, you can download our free, comprehensive digital marketing guide here. It is our hope that you feel more prepared to take on the tactics we listed, and we wish you the best of luck as you fine-tune your assets! Happy clicking!