What Is Digital Marketing?
Keep your business updated with the 21st century’s marketing techniques. To keep up with the ever-growing competition, small businesses need to make their businesses Digital. There is a consistent and evident growth in the Digital Marketing industry and this is the perfect time to make your digital presence felt. Businesses leverage digital channels such as search engines, social media, email and their websites to connect with current and prospective customers. In simple terms, any form of marketing that exists online is called Digital Marketing.
Why is it important to ‘Go Digital’?
Digital Marketing has zero geographical boundaries. There is not one but many ways to expand your business digitally. Your business will reach masses considering the amount of time the world spends online and the variety of digital platforms available.
So this is how does digital marketing will help your business –
- The ability to reach a global marketplace.
- You can save money and reach more customers than traditional marketing methods.
- Digital Marketing caters to mobile consumers.
- Digital Marketing builds brand reputation.
How to create effective Digital Marketing strategies?
The first step is to do thorough background research. Explore online marketing channels. Initially, you can start with one channel to understand how Digital Marketing works. These channels include paid, earned and owned media (website) which can support a common campaign around a particular line of business.
In simple terms, a strategy is just a plan of action to achieve the desired goal or multiple goals.Here are 6 Steps for an Effective Digital Marketing Strategy
In order to build an effective digital marketing strategy, the steps mentioned below can be followed-
- Analyse your objective
As of now, you have finalised your mission. For creating brand presence you need to focus on the sale of products. For improving the sale of the product you need to expand your market means if you were focusing on the local market now you should expand.
- Set your Key Performance Indicators (KPI’s)
E.g. – Assuming that one of your KPI’s is to measure the number of people visiting your page; you can do this by using Google analytics. This will help you understand the type of audiences who are visiting your page, what are they clicking most, what is their online journey and more. Accordingly, you can tweak your offering to suit their needs and increase conversions.
- Analyse and update the strategies
Analyse your own and the competitor’s strategy carefully to avoid common mistakes. E.g. – check what is drawing customers to visit a similar offering compared to yours. Check what kind of words / images are people using / referring to, to search for products / services and how are you ranking amongst all. Re-tweak and keep analysing for better results.
- Customise your language
The content should not only be appealing but should also have a personalised touch to it. Considering your target group of customers sees that you change the tone of voice, as well as the local language, is to be considered while doing promotions. E.g. – Start with the basics and note down all the demographic information you know about your target consumers – like age, gender, education and location.
- Resource management and budgeting
E.g. – What kind of money will you require to create, say a website or a social media page and how would that be aligned to the objective set for the business is also essential. It is better to have a defined budget and allocate the resources to manage the input and output goals for any online channel management. Re-visiting promotion strategies is crucial at regular intervals, which require a budget. As you have changed your strategies it automatically affects your budget.
- Make a plan
When you change digital marketing strategies you need to plan accordingly to your goals and objectives. Digital Marketing Planning (DMP) is a term used in marketing management and it’s the 1st stage of forming a strategy for the wider digital marketing system outreach. But make sure that whenever we decide to change the marketing strategies we need to make a proper plan.
Stages Of Planning
Planning a digital marketing strategy involves three basic stages.
Redefining the strategies to broaden your brand’s reach digitally is very important. Whenever you enhance or introduce a product/service, change the strategy of what you are offering to consumers online/offline and convey it using the right digital platforms.
- Goal Definition
Businesses need to define a goal. Goal setting is very important for digital marketing. Mostly the goal is to create brand awareness into the minds of consumers using the digital platform. Redefine your goals to increase brand awareness of your products.
- Action Plan
Once you have redefined the strategies and goals, change the action plan accordingly. An action plan is to practically implement the strategies and begin the use of digital platforms.
Which are the appropriate channels?
Digital marketing has multiple channels; as an entrepreneur, one’s core objective is to find the right channels which will result in maximum two-way communication and a better overall ROI for the brand.
A few popular channels are:
Search Engine Optimisation (SEO): It is applicable to those entrepreneurs who have their own business website. Search Engine Optimization or SEO as it is popularly called is basically getting websites or specific web pages to show up on search engines (e.g. Google) when specific keywords are used as search terms. SEO helps a brand gain visibility across search engines and across online geographies.
Pay-per-click advertising (PPC): This is a model of internet marketing in which advertisers pay a fee each time a potential customer clicks on one of their ads. Essentially, it’s a way of buying visits to your site, rather than attempting to “earn” those visits through a direct type on google or any other search.
Content marketing: Content is central to all marketing campaigns and activities. Content marketing involves choosing the right content to highlight your product/service on several digital marketing channels. The content displayed in this form of marketing can be in the form of blogs, infographics or video and it must be very focused as per the target audience.
Social Media Marketing (SMM): Social Media Marketing, as the name suggests, is a digital marketing channel used to promote and market brands or businesses on various social media platforms. Some of the popular social media marketing platforms include Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram, etc. The platform you choose depends on whether you are B2B or B2C apart from a whole lot of other factors including your brand’s business goals.
The different types of social media platforms to serve Ads:
- Social networking (Facebook, LinkedIn, etc.)
- Microblogging (Twitter, Tumblr)
- Photo sharing (Instagram, Snapchat, Pinterest)
- Video sharing (YouTube, Facebook Live, Instagram, etc.)
Affiliate Marketing: It is a platform where one business is promoted on another business website and traffic is drawn through that route. Affiliate marketing is a business which brings profit at both ends. Your partners or referrals can mention your website and backlink it to your own. This way both businesses can mutually take advantage of customers visiting each other’s pages online.
Email Marketing: Email marketing is a digital marketing channel which is used to market brands and businesses through emails. It is a way to reach consumers directly interested in your business at a relatively low cost.
Display advertising: As the term infers, Online Display Advertising deals with showcasing promotional messages or ideas to the consumer on the internet. This includes a wide range of advertisements like advertising blogs, networks, video ads, contextual data, ads on the search engines, classified or dynamic advertisement, etc.
Video advertising: Where advertisements are played on online videos, this is now one of the biggest ways to advertise and promote your business. YouTube is a platform where you can upload promotional videos of your business.
What are the benefits Of Digital Marketing?
Digital Marketing is the most trending and effective way of upscaling your business. The highlights of Digital Marketing are mentioned below –
- Global reach – Your business is not only promoted locally but also establishes a global presence. A website allows you to find new markets and trade. E.g. Amazon marketplace allows you to sell your products online and this can be accessed by anyone, anywhere.
- Cost-Efficient – The cost when compared to any other mode of marketing is much lower in digital marketing. E.g. A display ad or an ad on social media will be cheaper than a print ad with a targeted customer reach. It’s also more effective than traditional ways in today’s world.
- Trackable and Measurable results – Detailed information can be tracked and measured of how customers use your website and respond to your advertising with the use of web analytics tools.
- Data and results are recorded – With Google Analytics, you can check the reach of your campaigns done and store them as well for future analysis.
- Personalization – If your customer database is linked to your website, then whenever someone visits the site, you can greet them with targeted offers.
- Interaction – By getting involved with social media, you can easily have a conversation with your customers and build a rapport which ensures customer loyalty.
- Cash Back Offers – Digital marketing allows you to create engaging campaigns using different types of media content to attract more customers. E.g. cashback offers on apps, websites, etc.
Digital Marketing v/s Traditional Marketing
A comparison between digital marketing and traditional marketing will provide a clear understanding of the benefits of Digital Marketing.
Communication through digital channels
Communication through offline channels
Social media, Web, Mobile, LinkedIn, etc.
Television, Radio, Newspaper, Billboards, Flyers, Signposts, Magazine Ads.
Communication Gap Capacity
Highly interactive and in real- time
Very little interaction
Can easily be measured
Cannot be easily measured
Can be customised and targeted towards specific audiences
Cannot be customised towards specific audiences
Ideal Target Market
Here we can choose our own target market
As it’s a generic, we cannot choose our own target market
Broad and widespread across the globe
Limited and focused in a particular zone, area
Checklist to Update Social Media Channels
This checklist will guide you about the information to be kept ready while having a Social Media Presence:
- Update a logo of your business (if necessary).
- Update tagline of your business (if possible).
- Keep uploading new pictures/images/ videos of your products/business.
- Update content regularly that needs to be published on social media. (For e.g. brief the nature of your business, information of the products /services, mission, vision, etc.)
- Relook on the list of the keywords on the internet to add to your profile for SEO (Search Engine Optimization) purposes.
- Keep ready the latest updates/offers about your business as pinned posts for the social media platform.
- Try different platforms which will match your target group. (for e.g. housewives will use more of Whatsapp, businessmen will join multiple groups on FB/Twitter/LinkedIn, etc.)
- Make an appropriate plan to manage the social media presence of your business.
- Make sure your ‘Frequently Asked Questions’ (FAQ’s) set is ready.
Information Required For Digital Marketing
The following information needs to be kept handy while planning digital marketing for your business-
- Logo or brand image of the business.
- Tagline or slogan of the business (if any).
- Details of the business (name, address, contact details, etc.).
- The objective of the business or organization (in brief).
- Pictures/images/videos of your products/business.
- Finalise the content that needs to be published. (For e.g. brief of the nature of your business, information of the products/services, mission, vision, etc.)
- Name of the products/services offered.
- Brief description of the utility of the products/services offered.
- Target customer group (E.g. teenagers, working men or women, senior citizens, etc.)
- Unique Selling Proposition (USP) of your business.
- The target area of sale or product/service.
- Special instructions (if any).
Q: Does Digital Marketing help in lead generation?
A – Digital marketing helps in the process of stimulating and capturing the interest in a particular product or service hence, it is often used for lead generation.
Q: How should I choose a Digital platform for marketing my business products?
A – To choose a digital platform for marketing one must consider:-
• Size of the business
• Nature of the business activity
• The target group of customers
Q: What are the objectives of digital marketing?
A – The main objective of digital marketing is to provide an online presence to the business through websites and social media. It also helps in spreading awareness about the business brand and products/services.
Q: What is SEO in digital marketing?
A – SEO is an integral part of digital marketing. It means Search Engine Operation which is the process of making a particular web page easy to find/locate amongst many similar web pages.