What Is Digital Marketing?
Just twenty-five years ago, there was no such thing as digital marketing. Computers existed, of course, and the Internet was just beginning to stretch its legs, but no one thought to advertise online until 1993, when the company Hotwired purchased masses of online banner advertisements. Since then, the world has changed significantly. Most Americans use the Internet everyday and many carry it around with them on tiny, sleek smartphones. In response, marketers have shifted a large part of their focus away from classic forms of marketing (print ads, radio spots, TV commercials, direct sales, billboards, coupon books, catalogs, etc.) and to digital marketing. With the recent progress in the field of digital marketing, businesses need to make it a priority. Digital marketing includes any marketing tactics that make use of electronic devices like computers, cell phones, tablets, digital billboards, and even game consoles. Versatile, interactive, and sometimes even personalized, digital marketing develops organizations and promotes their services in ways once thought impossible.
Using digital marketing, businesses can reach their target audience with new and exciting techniques. By understanding search engines, employing a strong knowledge of social media, and taking advantage of advertising opportunities, marketers are able to communicate the value of an organization’s product or service, helping the company increase sales and develop their brand.
There are many different types of digital marketing techniques that companies should be aware of, but most forms can be categorized as either “push” or “pull.” Basically, push marketing involves the marketer sending the consumer information without consent. This can include display advertisements on websites and search engines, commercials during video streaming, pop-up advertisements, and much more. Pull digital marketing, on the other hand, is when the consumer actively seeks out the marketing content. Anytime an Internet user conducts a web search, opens an email, or views a video or blog, they are engaging in pull digital marketing.
Recently developed and constantly shifting as technology progresses, digital marketing is employed best when marketers stay on top of the trends. When looking into digital marketing, organizations should look for a marketer who is resourceful, multitalented, and constantly adapting. For example, because of the surge in smartphone usage over the past few years, the development of mobile-friendly websites and apps is increasingly important. It’s also vital that marketers know and use the most active and relevant social media websites, which currently include Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Pinterest, to showcase their company, engage with customers, and build backlinks. Although these trends will likely shift in the future, it’s essential that when considering digital marketing firms, companies keep in mind that this is a field in which relevance, flexibility, and innovation are crucial.
Now, you might still be wondering if this “newfangled” form of marketing is vital to your business. Older, more established companies may be tempted to stick with traditional marketing—print brochures, billboards dotted along the highway, word-of-mouth buzz, coupons in the local paper—and while these techniques may be beneficial to your company, you will likely lose touch with the younger generation if you don’t embrace new technology. Without incorporating some digital marketing, businesses will frustrate and alienate their customers.
Although its shifting nature can sometimes make it hard to grasp, digital marketing is essential to the health, advancement, and relevance of modern brands.
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