Digital Marketing: The Complete Guide
Over the past decade, the number of internet users has grown exponentially. With this in mind, it’s the obvious place for a brand to advertise and build an online presence. Whether it’s with a website, YouTube channel, a blog, or a profile on a social media platform, more and more consumers look towards online platforms before anything else when searching for a product or service.
If we bring marketing into the equation, this has always been the process of connecting with an audience. For many years, companies would rely on word of mouth advertising or billboards, postcards, and leaflets. These days, the goals of marketing remain the same, but the way we achieve these goals has changed dramatically.
What is Digital Marketing?
If you type this question into Google, you’ll find thousands of different answers. For us, digital marketing can be simplified into any form of marketing that uses (or relies on) electronic devices. Often, people think digital marketing needs to be online, but this simply isn’t true. For one thing, radios have been around for many years and they fall into the ‘electronic’ definition.
Therefore, we believe there are two sides to digital marketing: offline and online.
Why is Digital Marketing Important?
Despite the many changes we’ve seen in the world, companies still want the same thing: to reach new consumers. These days, most people spend their time on electronics whether it’s on a laptop, smartphone, tablet, computer, games console, etc.
According to one report from Statistica, Americans are awake for between 16 and 18 hours per day. Of this time, we spend over 10 hours using some form of electronic media (this includes radio, live TV, and DVD/Blu-Ray players too).
Without digital marketing in your strategy, you’re missing out on a large portion of your market. As we’re going to discover today, customers looking for restaurants or hair salons aren’t remembering the leaflets through the door anymore. Instead, they look online.
In this guide, we’re going to explain the key offline and online digital marketing strategies.
Offline Digital Marketing
Radio Marketing — Over 100 years ago, the world was shocked when the first ever radio broadcast took place from the Met. Now, a century and hundreds of thousands of radio hours later, the radio is still relevant in society. While some listeners navigated the transition to the internet, others still listen on traditional devices.
For those wondering whether you should still focus your marketing budget on radio, be aware that around half of the population listen to internet radio at least once a month. As long as you understand your market and understand what sort of numbers are likely to hear your ads, there’s no reason why radio marketing can’t form part of your digital marketing strategy.
TV Marketing — As the final type of offline digital marketing, we can’t forget the trusty television. It’s fair to say Netflix and YouTube have contributed to the downfall of live TV, but this isn’t to say it’s entirely useless. According to Statistica, the average American still spends around four hours watching TV per day.
Unfortunately, the downside to TV ads is that they aren’t targeted. During one advertisement, 35,000 could watch yet only 14 be interested. Although this is a dramatic example, it perhaps doesn’t live up to the tools we have to target specific audiences these days.
Online Digital Marketing
Which are the most effective platforms and strategies when it comes to the more popular online digital marketing?
SEO (Search Engine Optimization) — Just as the name suggests, this is the process of improving (optimizing) a website in order to rank higher on search engines such as Google. If you sell books in Los Angeles, for example, you want your name to appear on Google and Bing when prospective customers type ‘Los Angeles bookstore’ or ‘book shop Los Angeles’. With SEO, the content can be optimized on a given web page to ensure it appears in the first couple of pages for important searches.
These days, this is the best form of organic traffic your website can receive. Once the link reaches the first page, you just need to maintain this position and people will continually find your service.
Social Media Marketing — Let’s face it, social media has taken over the world. If you want to increase brand awareness, come across as a market leader, generate leads, and communicate with customers, these platforms need to be utilized. Depending on where the largest percentage of your audience can be found, we recommend trying Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Snapchat, LinkedIn, Google+, or Pinterest.
Affiliate Marketing — Still enjoying growth even in 2019, affiliate marketing will see individuals receive commission for advertising products on their YouTube channels, blogs, or social media profiles. If you want to increase awareness, you may be able to convince a personality in your niche to sell your products on your behalf.
Why not contact somebody with a camping blog to see if they want to earn commission for selling your tents? Whatever your industry, there’s normally always an opportunity with affiliate marketing.
Content Marketing — In the past, creating a website was all about getting the brand name out into the world and doing all we could to generate interest. These days, it seems consumers are looking for something more and this has opened the door for:
- Blog posts
- Online brochures
- White papers
- Articles and guides
If you can create genuinely interesting content (while also including keywords for SEO purposes), your brand will get the awareness it deserves. Additionally, you can show off your knowledge, share the content on social media, and integrate two marketing strategies at once.
PPC (Pay-Per-Click) Marketing — With platforms like Google AdWords, the next online digital marketing solution allows websites to pay to appear in LinkedIn sponsored messages, Facebook ads, and Twitter’s promoted tweets. After setting the price you’re willing to pay to appear, your ad will show to internet users and this is a great way to target those who show an interest in your field.
Email Marketing — Finally, email marketing is still alive; in fact, it seems to be making a comeback in 2019. The typical ‘salesy’ emails may not work anymore, but emails can still be great for promotions, follow-up messages, subscription-based newsletters, upcoming sales, interesting content, and more.
Digital Marketing in 2019
This year, the digital marketing world is set to expand even further. For example, we haven’t even mentioned online PR, marketing automation, AI tools, inbound marketing, search engine marketing (SEM), and others. This being said, we have introduced you to the main tools while providing you with some ideas to get started.
If you’re able to utilize the best techniques to find your audience, there’s no reason why you can’t enjoy a successful year. By embracing digital marketing, online and offline, you will increase brand awareness and give your consumers multiple channels by which to access your products and services. Why not get started today?