Digital Marketing - Marketing has always been about connecting with your audience in the right place and at the right time
Marketing has always been about connecting with your audience in the right place and at the right time. Today, that means that you need to meet them where they are already spending time: on the internet.
In simplistic terms, digital marketing is the promotion of products or brands via one or more forms of electronic media. Digital marketing differs from traditional marketing in that it involves the use of channels and methods that enable an organization to analyze marketing campaigns and understand what is working and what isn’t typically in real time. Digital marketing is embodied by an extensive selection of service, product and brand marketing tactics, which mainly use the Internet as a core promotional medium, in addition to mobile and traditional TV and radio.
Digital marketing includes a raft of Internet marketing techniques, such as search engine optimization (SEO), search engine marketing (SEM) and link building. It also extends to non-Internet channels that provide digital media, such as short messaging service (SMS), multimedia messaging service (MMS), callback and on-hold mobile ring tones, e–books, optical disks and games.
A key digital marketing objective is engaging customers and allowing them to interact with the brand through servicing and delivery of digital media. This is achieved by designing digital media in such a way that it requires some type of end user action to view or receive the motive behind that media’s creation. For example, to receive a free e-book, a customer might be required to register or fill out a form, benefiting the advertiser with a valuable customer or lead.
Digital media is so pervasive that consumers have access to information any time and any place they want it. Gone are the days when the messages people got about your products or services came from you and consisted of only what you wanted them to know. Digital media is an ever-growing source of entertainment, news, shopping and social interaction, and consumers are now exposed not just to what your company says about your brand, but what the media, friends, relatives, peers, etc., are saying as well. And they are more likely to believe them than you. People want brands they can trust, companies that know them, communications that are personalized and relevant, and offers tailored to their needs and preferences.
Digital marketing and its associated channels are important – but not to the exclusion of all else. It’s not enough to just know your customers; you must know them better than anybody else so you can communicate with them where, when and how they are most receptive to your message. To do that, you need a consolidated view of customer preferences and expectations across all channels – Web, social media, mobile, direct mail, point of sale, etc. Marketers can use this information to create and anticipate consistent, coordinated customer experiences that will move customers along in the buying cycle. The deeper your insight into customer behavior and preferences, the more likely you are to engage them in lucrative interactions.
Challenges Faced by Digital Marketers
Proliferation of digital channels. Consumers use multiple digital channels and a variety of devices that use different protocols, specifications and interfaces and they interact with those devices in different ways and for different purposes.
Intensifying competition. Digital channels are relatively cheap, compared with traditional media, making them within reach of practically every business of every size. As a result, it’s becoming a lot harder to capture consumers’ attention.
Exploding data volumes. Consumers leave behind a huge trail of data in digital channels. It’s extremely difficult to get a handle on all that data, as well as find the right data within exploding data volumes that can help you make the right decisions.
Three Keys to Digital Marketing Success
- Manage complex customer relationships across a variety of channels – both digital and traditional.
- Respond to and initiate dynamic customer interactions.
- Extract value from big data to make better decisions faster.