As scary as it is, the internet is constantly growing with no foreseeable plans to slow down. Today, there are over 5 billion people accessing the internet, this has more than doubled over the past decade. As the world adapts to this never ending technological growth, businesses have been handed the ultimate tool for advertising, served on a silver platter.
Between the way the internet is growing and the accessibility that comes along with it, consumer behaviour is inevitably being re-shaped. How people shop and buy has significantly changed, meaning that traditional business strategies won’t be as effective anymore.
It really is a case of, ‘out with the old, in with the new’, as traditional offline marketing takes the back seat letting the digital world step behind the wheel, driving the future of marketing.
What is digital marketing?
Simply put, digital marketing is any form of marketing that exists online. With such a large presence currently on the internet, digital marketing enables you to connect with customers efficiently and effectively.
In order to take full advantage of this, it is important to understand your digital marketing assets – the tools you utilise to market your brand within the digital world. These can include, your website, written and video content, branded assets (logos, icons, etc.), images, online products or tools, social media pages and reviews. This is only a fraction of the never ending list of tools that you should take into consideration when furthering your brand with digital marketing.
Digital Marketing Strategies
Now, if we were to go into every digital marketing strategy this blog post would quickly turn into an essay, so instead, listed below are some of the most effective and commonly used digital marketing strategies.
Search Engine Optimisation (SEO)
This once optional strategy is quickly becoming imperative to your business, it’s sort of ‘boring’ but important. In order to be listed as one of the top search results within a search engine you need to have good SEO (search engine optimisation), through optimising your website’s content and pages you can ensure that your website will be able to develop organic traffic. SEO is a long term strategy that can be approached in three different ways, ‘on page’, ‘off page’ and ‘technical’ SEO. On page SEO relates to information and content that exists when looking at a website. Off page SEO is the activity that’s not on your website but still affect your ranking, such as inbound links – this is through networking with other publishers, when your websites link is referred to. Technical SEO focuses on the backend of your website, and how the pages are coded. All of these factors improve your visibility as a business, if you’re not ranking on the first page on Google, there’s a high chance you won’t be seen at all.
Social Media Marketing
Did you know that 3.96 billion people use social media worldwide? That’s more than half of the population. With so many people using platforms such as Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest etc., it is fairly obvious that social media can play a vital role in your business’s success. It does take a lot of time and effort to organically grow your business on social media, but it can be very rewarding. Consistent posting and engaging on these platforms can in-turn increase traffic to your business increasing brand awareness. You can go one step further and use paid social media advertising, this is great for when you’re trying to penetrate a new target audience, or simply trying to get your brand to reach a specific audience segment. This is usually through a Pay Per Click (PPC) method, where you pay the publisher (Facebook, Instagram etc.) to promote your content at a price ‘per click’.
Content marketing uses your brands content assets to generate traffic growth, brand awareness and customers. This strategy uses assets like blog posts, infographics, videos and ebooks, to reach customers through showcasing work and knowledge. You can connect to your target audience through these assets and potentially further generate leads. Effective content assets should show brand consistency and be very audience focused.
Digital marketing is a cost-effective way to build brand awareness, because of this, it gives smaller and newer business’s a chance to grow in industries that may already have leading competitors. Digital marketing allows for targeted advertising, you can get right into the specifics, for instance age, marital status, industries, location etc. Another massive bonus is that digital marketing is measurable, you can see real results from your advertisements in real time – no more estimating how many people will see that billboard, let alone pay attention to it.
Digital marketing opens up a new world for businesses, it brings to the table an abundance of opportunities and benefits that wouldn’t have been possible without the internet and technological advancements that we have today. At this point, it is detrimental that you utilise this opportunity and spend the time and effort into creating a solid online presence for your business, otherwise you risk becoming invisible. As Bill Gates once said, “the internet is becoming the town square for the global village of tomorrow”.