TalkingDesi – Digital marketing has become a mandatory part of a business’s promotional strategy. No campaign is complete without a representation on the internet. So, first you need to understand what is digital marketing and the type of digital marketing.
What is Digital Marketing?
Digital Marketing or Internet marketing, or online marketing, refers to the promotion of goods and services on the internet. The online world acts as a medium to communicate messages that a business drafts for its audience.
It is essential to understand that digital marketing is not second to traditional marketing. Nor is it a complimentary service that you can use to boost your marketing efforts on other mediums. Instead, digital marketing is a hardcore way to promote a business and make it known to an audience that is bombarded with tons of similar stimuli every minute of the day.
Another reason why digital marketing has gained so much momentum in the last few years is that, by using this method, many companies and business owners aim to break the clutter that has piled up because of nonstop marketing efforts.
Every company and every business, in an attempt to attract customers, indulge in various marketing tactics, like an ad in the local newspaper or a TVs campaign that can be viewed on various channels.
When combined, all these campaigns lead to an overload and customers usually become resistant to such attempts. digital marketing provides a different way to do the same activities, and cash in on high consumer interest as well.
However, the dilemma comes in when owners of small business, who rightly play the part of marketer, administrator and finance office as well, voice that they do not have time to keep their online presence updated.
Not only does such a business let go of an opportunity to grow and mature with the market, it also sets itself up to lose to the competition. Businesses that compete with you, directly or indirectly, can make tremendous profits and convert potential sales leads into loyal customers by taking advantage of being present on the internet.
Therefore, it is essential for a small business working in the global economy to make use of digital marketing. Even if you do not have the resources to spend on an e-commerce website, at least make sure you are listed in the online yellow pages directory. When customers conduct a quick search for the product they want, your company name will be displayed.
Types of Digital Marketing
Being a primary source of information for millions of people, the internet opens up avenues to look for products and businesses by breaking geographic boundaries. No longer does a user have to be physically present in a locality to make use of the products sold by a local business. Tapping into newer markets is one of the biggest advantages of digital marketing.
Therefore, making sure that an online promotional campaign is thorough and appealing is essential. Sending across the same message via various techniques and channels on the internet is a must. There are many types of digital marketing that have evolved and developed over the years, keeping in mind the way this medium is used by consumers.
For instance, when the internet was a basic tool that was used by only a handful of people with access to it, digital marketing was one-dimensional, meaning, one long advertisement about a product would be put up on a single website or search engine for visitors to see.
Today, a single advert hardly suffices for the many sub-mediums that have sprung up on the internet. Social media, websites, search engines, yellow pages, and website directories are some of the many channels on which a business needs to advertise in a creative manner, keeping in mind the kind of audience that visits them.
Hence, digital marketing consists out of the following subtypes of digital marketing:
- Email marketing
This refers to marketing that is done by sending advertisements and promotional content through emails. Businesses usually maintain email directories for email marketing.
- Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
This refers to increasing the visibility of a website, its content or the words within the content so that they appear in search results. This is done using on-page and off-page optimization.
- Search Engine Marketing (SEM)
This refers to the increasing website’s visibility in the search engines using paid reach (paid advertising) and organic reach (SEO).
- Social Media Marketing
This refers to promoting a business on social media, such as Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram and Twitter.
Online Marketing Trends
One of the biggest advantages of online marketing is the flexibility it offers to businesses. Unlike the high cost and complex process typical for traditional marketing efforts, internet marketing can be cheaper and easily accessible to most web owners, who are skilled enough to take advantage of different techniques of online marketing.
While TVs and outdoor campaigns are somewhat standardized, online promotion strategies can be adjusted according to customers’ reactions and responses.
Depending on what generates the best results, online advertising follows certain patterns. While these patterns may remain the same for an indefinite period of time, usually they change and fluctuate based on how the market for particular goods and services is performing and on the way consumers behave in general.
For instance, if customers buying online diet packages are satisfied with their purchases that they made after watching videos, the trend for visuals and presentations will be at an all-time high.
Therefore, just like any other business, online marketing also experiences shifts in what is needed and what should be antiquated. Some of the most popular online marketing trends at this point, that have been highlighted by experts, based on the current developments in the online world, are the following:
- Mobile-friendly content will become a basic requirement
One of the most prominent shifts in online marketing has been from desktops and laptops to mobile devices. No longer do people sit in front of computers all day long to search for products or read reviews about a business.
In fact, the year 2016 brought a new milestone – the number of mobile users has finally surpassed the number of desktop users. Successful online businesses have foreseen this trend and have launched websites that are compatible for mobile phones.
Similarly, customizing content for smartphones and tablets is also a new trend that has been initiated by the popularity and preference for integrated device purchases in the last few years. Whatever content it may be, if it is available for your customers to view and enjoy on the go, it will be enough to sustain their interest.
If, on the other hand, your small business is not on-board for this change, it is likely to lose key customers and markets. Additionally, Google now takes “mobile-friendliness as a ranking signal on mobile searches”, which is yet another reason why mobile friendly website is a must in online market nowadays.
- Less is more
Gone are the days when the quantity of advertisements and promotions signified strength and a solid market standing.
The same applies to in-depth and comprehensive advertisement campaigns that would just go on and on! Simplicity is the key to make online marketing work for your brand. Customers are now looking for quick and short ads that are attractive and alluring at the same time.
Look at some of the most famous everyday brands that advertise online. Do they have never-ending campaigns that bore you so much that you feel like skipping the promotional message altogether?
Brands like Apple and Google create simple, straightforward ads. However, they are designed creatively, with an allure that catches customer attention. The “more is less” slogan also works so well because customers are already overwhelmed with a lot of promotional information day in and day out.
- Integrated imaging and content publication
A combination of content and images is an important shift from content-only online advertising. Placing emphasis on certain points within the content is intelligently done by breaking it up with images. Image marketing has always been a useful way to attract attention from customers who do not like to read too much content.
Using this strategy in a creative manner will definitely optimize the promotional campaigns for success. In general, websites that have a blog and publish content regularly receive more links, traffic and leads, which all together adds up to better performance.
- Evolution of video format
During the past couple of years, video as a format of content reached its peak, shifting the focus of online marketers again. Development of technology and the need for visualization, together with the evolution of social media platforms, and their live video feature enabled this trend to become dominant trend in online marketing.
Online marketing is a necessity. In a world where e-commerce has become the single biggest reason for businesses to build an online presence, the need to market products and services online is paramount.
However, it should be remembered at all times that the internet is a product of modernization and change. For this reason, it does not take long for new trends and shifts to materialize.
Being a business that markets online, you have to make sure that you innovate constantly, without letting your online presence become outdated. Since millions of businesses have made the move to the virtual world, internet marketing has started to become cluttered, just like traditional marketing.
Therefore, if you want your business to stand out amongst a million others, you will have to be at the top of your game. What businesses need to master to make sure their online marketing efforts reap results include:
- Out of the box ideas
- Constant planning
- High degree of flexibility
- Keeping up with the current trends
- Constant research and analysis
In the same breath, also keep in mind that using the many channels of online marketing is not an option. In fact, cashing in on the different dynamics, workings, and characteristics of each is essential to make sure you build an impressive reputation for the business and loyalty amongst the customers.
Lastly, being educated about the latest trends of online marketing keeps a business up-to-date with how its market thinks, reacts and responds to various campaigns.
Online marketing departs from traditional marketing in that the former is geared towards not only creating hype, but also being available whenever and wherever customers need you.