All marketing activities that take place online are referred to as digital marketing, also known as online marketing. To engage with present and potential consumers, businesses use digital channels including search engines, social media, email, and other websites. This also involves messaging via text or other types of multimedia.
Did you know that more than 34% of Americans access the web daily? Additionally, 43% log on more than once per day, and 26% are online “almost constantly.”
When it comes to mobile internet users, these numbers are considerably greater. 89% of Americans use the internet at least once every day, and 31% use it frequently. It’s crucial for marketers to capitalize on the digital age by developing a brand, establishing an online presence, offering excellent customer service that attracts additional potential clients, and more.
With the use of a digital marketing plan, you may engage with current clients and potential consumers by using digital channels like social media, pay-per-click advertising, search engine optimization, and email marketing. As a consequence, you may create a strong brand, offer excellent customer service, attract new clients, and more.
Inbound marketing versus digital marketing
There is a legitimate confusion between digital marketing and inbound marketing. Numerous inbound marketing tools, such as email and online content, are also used by digital marketing. Both are there to draw potential consumers’ attention and convert them into customers along the buyer’s journey. However, the two methods have different perspectives on how the tool and the objective relate to one another.
Digital marketing takes into account the ability of certain technologies or digital platforms to convert prospects. The digital marketing strategy of a company may utilize several platforms or concentrate all of its efforts on a single platform. For instance, a business can ignore other digital marketing channels in favor of producing content only for social networking platforms and email marketing campaigns.
In contrast, inbound marketing is a comprehensive idea. The aim is taken into account first, and then the tools that are available are examined to see which will best reach target clients and at what stage of the sales funnel that should occur. Consider the scenario when you want to increase website traffic to produce more leads and prospects. When creating your content marketing strategy, you can concentrate on search engine optimization, which will produce more optimized content, including blogs, landing pages, and more.
The most important aspect to keep in mind regarding inbound and digital marketing is that, as a marketing expert, you don’t have to pick one over the other. They actually function best together. Inbound marketing gives digital marketing initiatives structure and direction, ensuring that each digital marketing channel serves a specific purpose.
Why is digital marketing important?
Any form of marketing can make your company successful. But because digital channels are so widely available, digital marketing has grown in significance. In reality, just in April 2022, there were 5 billion internet users worldwide.
There are various methods to employ digital marketing strategies to reach your target audience, from social media to SMS messaging. Digital marketing is also a low-cost marketing strategy for small enterprises because of its low upfront expenditures.
Types of digital marketing
As there are different ways to interact with digital media, there are also different specializations within digital marketing. Here are a few crucial illustrations of various digital marketing strategies:
Technically speaking, search engine optimization, or SEO, is a technique for marketing rather than a type of marketing in and of itself. According to The Balance, it is “the art and science of making web pages attractive to search engines.”
What matters most in SEO is the “art and science” component. In order to attain the greatest ranking on a search engine results page (SERP), SEO needs you to do research and balance several contributing elements.
The following are the key factors to take into account today when optimizing a web page for search engines:
User engagement level and content quality
Inbound connections’ quantity and quality
You also need to optimize technical SEO, which refers to all of your site’s back-end components, in addition to the factors mentioned above. This covers things like loading times, broken links, and URL structure. Search engines can better crawl and navigate your website by making technical SEO improvements.
Ranking on the first page of a search engine’s result page is the ultimate objective. This makes it such that those looking for a particular inquiry associated with your brand may quickly locate your goods or services. Although there are many search engines, due to its position as the market leader globally, digital marketers frequently concentrate on Google.
Content marketing –
An optimized page’s content quality is a crucial element. Because of this, SEO plays a significant role in content marketing, a strategy built on providing target audiences with useful and relevant information.
The objective of content marketing, like with any marketing plan, is to draw leads who will eventually become customers. But it does so in a unique way from conventional advertising. Instead of luring customers with the promise of value from a product or service, it provides value for nothing in the form of textual content, like:
Video or audio transcripts
Numerous statistics demonstrate the importance of content marketing:
customers want businesses to create enjoyable and useful content experiences, according to 84% of customers.
Companies with at least 5,000 workers create material everyday in 62% of cases.
92% of marketers think their business sees content as a valuable asset.
No matter what kind of material you produce, it’s a good idea to adhere to best practices for content marketing. This entails creating information that is grammatically accurate, error-free, simple to grasp, pertinent, and engaging. If a free consultation with a sales representative or a signup page is the next step in the pipeline, your content should direct readers there.
Social media marketing –
Social media marketing is the practice of increasing website traffic and brand recognition via online interaction. You may promote your business, goods, services, culture, and more via social media marketing. Concentrating on social media marketing may be beneficial because billions of people use social media platforms to interact.
Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram are the most widely used digital channels for social media marketing, followed closely by LinkedIn and YouTube. The social media channels you use for your business ultimately rely on your objectives and target market. For instance, targeting your audience on LinkedIn is a fantastic idea if you want to get new leads for your FinTech business because experts in the field are active there. On the other hand, if your firm runs a B2C with a younger customer emphasis, Instagram social media advertisements can be preferable for your business.
Social media marketing has gained popularity because it encourages engaged audience engagement. At 96%, it is the most common content format for B2C digital marketers, and it is also becoming more popular in the B2B sector. The Content Marketing Institute reports that 61% of B2B content marketers used social media more this year.
Built-in engagement metrics in social media marketing are quite helpful for letting you know how well you’re connecting with your audience. You get to choose which interactions—like the quantity of shares, remarks, or overall hits to your website—mean the most to you.
Your social media marketing plan may not even have direct purchase as one of its objectives. Many brands use social media marketing to engage audiences in conversation rather than pressuring them to make an immediate purchase. Brands that cater to older audiences or provide goods and services unsuitable for impulsive purchases are particularly prone to this. Everything relies on the social media marketing objectives of your business.
Pay-per-click marketing –
PPC, also known as pay-per-click marketing, is a type of online advertising in which you are charged each time a user clicks on one of your digital adverts. Therefore, you only pay for the ads people actually interact with rather than paying a fixed sum to continuously run targeted ads on online channels. It’s a little trickier to control who and when sees your advertisement.
Search engine advertising is one of the most popular PPC strategies, and as Google is the most widely used search engine, many companies employ Google Ads for this purpose. A SERP, commonly known as a search engine results page, fills a slot when one becomes available by conducting what is basically an immediate auction. Each accessible advertisement is given a ranking by an algorithm based on many criteria, such as:
Landing page excellence
When someone searches for a certain term, PPC adverts are then positioned at the top of search engine result pages depending on the aforementioned parameters.
After clicking an ad, viewers are expected to carry out 1 or more target actions that are part of any PPC campaign. These processes, which go by the name of conversions, might be transactional or non-transactional. A conversion might be anything from signing up for a newsletter to making a call to your home office.
You may monitor your campaign’s performance by tracking your target conversions through the digital marketing channels you’ve selected.
Email marketing –
The idea behind email marketing is straightforward: you send a promotional message and wait for your potential customer to click on it. The execution is considerably more difficult. You must first confirm that the recipients of your emails are interested. Having an opt-in list that does the following signifies:
individualizes the text in the subject line and the body
Clearly explains the type of emails the subscriber will receive.
an email signature with a prominent unsubscribe link
combines promotional and transactional emails
You want your campaign to be seen by your potential customers as more than just a means of advertising.
Email marketing is a tried-and-true method by itself: 89% of the professionals polled said it was their best source of leads.
Other digital marketing strategies, like marketing automation, which enables you to segment and schedule your emails so that they better serve the requirements of your customers, can make it even better.
Here are some pointers to assist you create effective email marketing campaigns if you’re thinking about using email marketing:
Segment your audience so that you can deliver the correct individuals relevant campaigns.
Make sure emails are mobile-friendly.
Make a campaign calendar.
Conduct A/B tests
Mobile marketing –
With the help of mobile marketing, you may interact with your target market via their mobile devices, such as smartphones and tablets. This can be done by SMS and MMS messages, notifications from social media, mobile app alerts, and other means.
It is essential to make sure that all material is mobile-friendly. Since 85% of Americans own a smartphone, your marketing efforts can be greatly enhanced by producing content for both computer and mobile screens.
Affiliate marketing –
Through the use of the digital marketing strategy known as affiliate marketing, one can profit from the promotion of another person’s company. The procedure is the same whether you are the promoter or the company that collaborates with the promoter.
It operates on the basis of revenue sharing. If you are the affiliate, you will receive a commission for each sale of the product you have promoted. If you are the merchant, you must pay the affiliate for each sale you earn thanks to their efforts.
Some affiliate marketers opt to evaluate just one company’s items, maybe on a blog or another external website. Others have connections with numerous retailers.
The first stage is to establish contact with the other party, whether you wish to be an affiliate or discover one. You can launch or join a single-retailer program, or you can use digital channels made to link affiliates with shops.
There are numerous things you can do as a store to make your program interesting to potential promoters if you decide to work directly with affiliates. You must provide those affiliates the resources they require in order for them to be successful. Along with marketing resources and ready-made materials, this also includes rewards for outstanding performance.
Influencer marketing –
Influencer marketing, like affiliate marketing, involves collaborating with an influencer—someone with a sizable following, such a celebrity, subject-matter authority, or content creator—in return for visibility. These influencers frequently recommend your goods or services to their followers across a variety of social media platforms.
Businesses seeking to reach new audiences, both B2B and B2C, might find success with influencer marketing. However, since they are essentially representing your brand, it’s crucial to work with trustworthy influencers. The trust that customers have in your company might be damaged by the incorrect influencer.
The benefits of digital marketing
Due in great part to its ability to reach such a big number of people, digital marketing has gained popularity. It does, however, provide a number of additional benefits that might help your marketing efforts. A few of the advantages of digital marketing are listed below.
a large geographic scope –
If you post an advertisement online, anyone can see it (assuming you haven’t geographically restricted your advertisement). This enables expanding your company’s market reach and connecting with more people through various digital channels simple.
Value for money –
In addition to reaching a larger audience than conventional marketing, digital marketing is also less expensive. The overhead expenses for television commercials, print advertisements, and other conventional marketing options can be considerable. Additionally, they give you less control over whether or not your target audiences will ever see those messages.
As long as your blog is current, you may use digital marketing to lure people with just 1 content item. It is simple to alter the timing or the substance of an email marketing campaign that is set up to send messages to certain client lists on a regular basis.
When it comes down to it, investing in digital marketing provides you a lot more flexibility and opportunities to interact with customers.
measurable outcomes –
You need to determine how many consumers and how much income your marketing approach finally brings in to determine if it is effective. But how would one go about doing that with a conventional marketing plan?
There is always the conventional choice of inquiring “How did you find us?” to every customer.
Unfortunately, not all industries can benefit from that. One-on-one interactions with clients are rare for many businesses, and surveys frequently yield incomplete information.
Monitoring outcomes when using digital marketing is easy. Whether it’s email open rates, home page views, or direct transactions, digital marketing platforms and tools automatically measure the quantity of targeted conversions that you obtain.
simplified personalisation –
You can collect client data with digital marketing in a way that is not possible with traditional marketing. Digital data is frequently far more exact and detailed.
Imagine you provide financial services and want to reach out to internet users who have looked at your products with unique offers. You choose to plan two campaigns since you know you’ll achieve greater results if you tailor the offer to the person’s interests. The first is aimed at young families who have looked at your life insurance options, while the second is aimed at millennial business owners who have thought about your retirement plans.
How are all of those statistics collected without automated tracking? How many call records would you need to examine? How many client profiles exist? And how do you know if the brochure you sent has been read or not?
You already have access to all of this knowledge thanks to digital marketing.
stronger ties to customers –
Real-time communication with your consumers is possible thanks to digital marketing. More significantly, it enables them to interact with you.
Consider your social media plan. Although it’s wonderful when your intended audience views your most recent post, it’s even better when they leave comments or share it. Every time a new person enters the conversation, your product or service will become more well-known and generate more buzz.
Customers gain from interaction as well. As they actively engage in the narrative of your brand, their level of engagement rises. A strong sense of brand loyalty may result from that sense of ownership.
Simple and practical conversions –
With digital marketing, your target audience may respond to your content or advertisement right away. The fastest you can hope for with traditional advertising is a phone call quickly after someone sees it. But when someone is busy doing the dishes, driving down the road, or updating records at work, how often do they have time to contact a company?
With digital marketing, they may quickly advance through the sales funnel by clicking a link or saving a blog article. Even if they don’t buy right away, they’ll keep in touch with you and offer you the chance to speak with them further.
Getting started with digital marketing can be challenging for many small businesses and novice marketers. However, by using the steps below as a starting point, you can develop a successful digital marketing strategy to raise brand awareness, engagement, and sales.
Set SMART objectives –
Any marketing strategy must have specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, and timely (SMART) goals. While you may have many objectives, try to concentrate on those that will advance your strategy rather than cause it to stall.
Choose your audience –
It’s crucial to determine your target demographic before launching any marketing campaigns. Your target audience is the group of individuals who share certain characteristics, such as age, gender, demographics, or shopping patterns, and who you want your campaign to reach. You can choose which digital marketing platforms to employ and what content to include in your campaigns by having a solid grasp of your target demographic.
Set up a budget –
A budget makes sure that your money is being used wisely toward your objectives rather than being wasted on digital marketing avenues that could not yield the intended outcomes. When making a budget, take into account your SMART goals and the digital channel you intend to use.
Decide which digital marketing channels to use –
You may benefit from a variety of digital marketing platforms, including content marketing, PPC ads, and more. Your goals, target market, and budget will frequently determine the digital marketing platforms you choose.
Improve your marketing initiatives –
Once the campaign is over, make sure to analyze the data to determine what worked well and where improvements could be made. As a result, you may develop subsequent campaigns that are even better. You may get this data on an accessible dashboard with the use of digital technologies and software. You can manage all of your marketing efforts in one place by using Mailchimp’s digital marketing analytics reports.
Digital marketing spurs expansion –
One of the main areas of practically every company’s overall marketing plan should include digital marketing. Nothing else delivers the amount of personalisation that digital data can, and there has never been a method to keep in such constant contact with your consumers. Your company’s potential for development will become more apparent the more you embrace the promise of digital marketing.