The birth of the Internet into the world is indeed a blessing because ever since then it has brought drastic development to every sector of life. This big globe of ours becoming a small village has served as the initiator for a lot of brilliant innovations and nobody can predict what it promises for the future. And it is so encouraging the way all aspects of life are adding (e-) to their name such as e-commerce, e-banking and so on which depicts that all these services can be provided and enjoyed through the internet without undergoing any stress. This article is about to address one of its impacts in the marketing sector, a crucial marketing strategy and a must-know for every business owner out there.
What is digital marketing?
Digital marketing is the marketing of products and services or all the marketing endeavor performed using mainly the internet and all other electronic devices such as mobile phones. In most definitions, the use of the internet only is always stressed out, but digital marketing cannot only be achieved using the internet. In addition to this claim, the advent of digital marketing could be traced back to 1896 which welcomes the invention of the first radio, and to be precise the first demonstration of digital marketing was when the radio was used to broadcast an Opera performance at the Met, however, the internet gave the subject a quantum leap.
To the businessperson, digital marketing can be defined as all the methods of using online marketing strategy to reach out to customers who perform almost all their activities on the internet. The process involves the use of any of the digital marketing strategies such as content marketing, email marketing, search engine optimization(SEO) or combinations of two or more to draw the attention and also compel customers to purchase their products.
Examples of Digital marketing:
All examples of digital marketing can be classified under two(2) categories which are online and offline marketing.
Online digital marketing
From the name “online”, we can deduce that this category deals with the use of internet platforms such as website, social media to advertise to customers. Examples of this category include:
Search engine optimization(SEO).
This is simply the activities performed to improve website rankings on search engine pages to receive more visitors on your website or blog. It encompasses all efforts taken in ensuring that the websites meet visitor’s demand and also interconnects with other websites that offer the same services. Search engine optimization can be further divided into three types which are:
This type deals with the ease at which researchers can easily find your website through its contents. Marketers in this field understand that one of the criteria that search engines use in producing results is by looking for pages with similar words that are typed in the search box and these words are referred to as keywords. Therefore, it is the work of a professional on-page SEO to use as many keywords that relates to the topic discussed while preparing a blog post or articles.
It is called off-page because it has nothing to do with the contents that are visible on your website, but it deals with building links that interconnect your website to other websites. Having a backlink that leads visitors from other high-quality websites to yours is one of the surest methods that guarantee a high ranking on search engine results pages(SERPs). These backlinks are generated by several ways which include blog commenting, competitors spying, broken links e.t.c.
Although backlinks and keywords research plays a vital role in ranking a page on search engines. However, the impact of website designing, good connection, speedy loading, and quality images cannot be overlooked in ranking a website on search engines. Therefore, technical SEO includes using a Secure Sockets Layer(SSL), building user-friendly websites and performing activities that will improve the technical characteristics of a website.
This is the marketing strategy that involves the creation and promotion of applicable, valuable, and regular content to gain the attention of visitors, generate traffic, and retain customers. Content marketing is of different types which include ebooks, case studies, white papers, checklist, social media posts e.t.c, but in the course of this article, we will be discussing three(3) common types which are blogs, videos, and infographics.
Blog posts are articles that are published on a business website. Blog posts are a very important section of online marketing, and according to Forbes, a website with blogs has a high chance of reaching the search engine first page. Blogs can either be brief or long, insightful and sometimes in conversation tone always passing across detailed and problem-solving information.
Nowadays, people prefer watching videos to ordinary reading and not considering the cost because it provides a visual orientation of all that has been said. These videos can be included in a blog or probably on a vlogging platform. This part of content marketing deals with meeting people’s needs with videos that will teach them how to use a product, understand a subject or how to perform a task.
Unlike video which is a motion visual content, infographics is another method of getting to your readers. Through infographics, you can provide a pictorial illustration of what you are passing across to them, and it is more efficient because it meets their sense of sight as research reveals that readers appreciate seeing more than reading only.
Social media marketing.
This marketing strategy utilizes social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, LinkedIn to generate leads for businesses and drive traffic to websites. It involves sharing and promoting your website content such as product reviews to the public on social media channels. By doing this, prospective buyers may sight your post, explore your site and finally order for your services.
Have you ever wondered the reason all the websites you visited recently request for your email? It is simply because they want to keep you updated on new posts or offers. Through email marketing, a business can gain its customer trust, build a strong relationship with regular customers, and convince new customers through frequent sending of messages to inform them about new products, promotions, and discounts.
In short, this is a form of marketing in which you promote other people’s products or services on your website and earn a commission in return. An example of affiliate marketing is posting affiliate link on your social media accounts.
Inbound marketing is the marketing strategy that makes use of all the methods discussed above to support, encourage, and engage customers at every stage of purchasing a product.
Other examples of online marketing include Online PR, marketing automation, native advertising, pay per click e.t.c
Offline digital marketing.
This type of digital marketing is not pronounced nowadays because people spend much time online and not giving close observation to things around them like it used to be. Gone are those days when people at the back of your vehicle keeps checking and running comments on electronic billboards along the roadsides, but you will agree with me that it has been replaced with focusing on smartphones. However, there is still a visible amount of application of offline marketing around us which includes
- Electronics or enhanced offline marketing.
- Radio marketing.
- TV marketing.
- Phone marketing. e.t.c.
Now that I have given a clear explanation of digital marketing and it’s examples above. My major aim is not to leave any stone unturned, therefore at this junction, I will like to give answers to frequently asked questions(FAQs) on the subject.
What does a digital marketer do?
Having known that a digital marketer is a person that is saddled with the responsibility of building, implementing, and managing marketing campaigns by generating leads and creating brand awareness through digital channels. The next question on the line is how do they perform their duties or what do they do to achieve their goals?
A digital marketer is a broad term as discussed above, but the volume of duties they discharge depends on the size of the company that hires them. For instance, a small company may appoint a person to manage all their digital affairs while big companies will demand professionals in different specializations for efficiency.
Specialization in the sense that a hired SEO manager will always see to the Internet status of the company in terms of website rankings, and driving more traffic to the website must be his daily objective. These can only be achieved by conducting regular website analysis using online analytic tools to know the current ranking of the website on search engines, amounts of do-follow and no-follow backlinks, and to perform keywords and competitor research. With this, he/she would know the keywords missing on the company website, techniques used by other companies in ranking higher, and make the needful to get a better internet outlook. It’s all about optimization every day.
A content manager will always be in charge of ensuring that readers are always enriched with new and up to date post, such a person must be informed of customer’s thirst, and problems encountered by product user’s to provide solutions. Meanwhile, a social media manager works together with the content manager to create a content calendar to upload on the company’s social media accounts. Little is to be said about Email marketer as I have spelled out earlier on that they are in charge of keeping the contacts of every customer, studying their level of engagement, and frequent messaging of each customer. Now, you can tell the responsibility of a single digital marketer hired by a small business.
Does digital marketing work for all businesses?
You would agree with me that it is easy to believe that businesses such as drop shipping, product finder need digital marketing more than anything, but it will be so hard to convince a small business owner such as Carpenter, spa, dentist or a lawyer the importance of digital business for their business. They tend to ask the question of how would digital marketing benefit my business? To answer this question, I would like to first discuss the impacts of digital marketing on the following businesses
This is a short form of business-to-business, and it is the type that involves the transaction between two or more businesses. For example, a product finder business is an intermediary that connects a manufacturer to a wholesaler. This business type needs digital marketing to generate leads and associate better with retailers or salespeople by using your website and social media like LinkedIn, as we all know that LinkedIn is the social media where businesspeople meet.
Business-to-consumer is that which offers services directly to final users. The need for digital marketing comes in enticing people to your website and converting a large percentage of them to customers if not all. This kind of business needs to adopt the inbound marketing strategy.
The impacts of digital marketing on companies is without limit and cannot all be enumerated. For instance, it does well in assisting the company to evaluate the outcome of all their spendings on advertisement by providing a comprehensive audit showing the number of people who have visited the website, the number of pages they viewed, and how they reach your website.
Not only that, digital marketing gives a company the chance to know the accurate number of people who viewed their last post, discount notifications, and promotions and more importantly a company can track the pathway by which buyers comes into the site, therefore assisting in maximizing the link to the best of their ability and cut expenses spent on ineffective marketing strategy.
I am very sure that you can easily place your business in any of these categories to get the answer to your question.
What type of content should I make?
The most stressful part of managing a website is the aspect of posting regular content. But the only means through which this problem can be solved is by having a good understanding of the characteristics of your customers and the problems usually encountered by customers who subscribe to your niche. Knowing these would enable you to meet up their needs with contents at each buying stage. Blogs, infographics, and videos work best in creating a new consciousness in buyers while webinars and Ebooks do well in convincing buyers who need in-depth conviction, and contents like testimonials help in making the final decision.
How long does it take to see the impact of digital marketing on my business?
The result of online digital marketing comes sooner than offline type. However, businesses do not usually exercise patient, they want to have millions of views within a couple of months. But digital marketing does not work that way, it takes time, and for this reason, business owners need to set realistic goals. If the contents satisfy buyers need, and every other factor are put in place, then the result of digital marketing should be visible between three to six months.
Do I need a big budget for digital marketing?
This depends on the number of digital marketing strategy you are planning to use. All tools/software used for creating content, acquiring ads, and getting regular analysis of your website comes at a price. And when it comes to setting up your website, the cost of getting a host and plugins may be challenging for small business owners, but there are alternative methods such WordPress and Google my business which may not give you full control over your website. The only way digital marketing could be less costly is when you are performing inbound marketing on a website which may just need the addition of a few keywords and backlinks. Be assured that online marketing is less expensive and produces long-lasting results compared to offline marketing.
How does mobile marketing work with my digital marketing strategy?
Don’t ever think of having a digital platform that is not accessible by smartphones. Mobile devices are movable and can be used at any place, therefore it contributes to a large number of internet users. For this reason, it is essential to consider them when creating a website and content for your social media account. Furthermore, having a mobile app will be of greater advantage to your business, with this on their mobile phone you are guaranteed of been their priority.
Over to you
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