As the number of people using the internet continues to rise, businesses must adapt and meet their audience where they are – online. Fewer people watch commercials or even have cable television, let alone the diminishing percentage of people listening to the radio with ads. The further customers get from traditional marketing, the more we’ve seen advertisers and marketing experts switching to digital marketing.
Digital marketing takes advantage of online opportunities and executes marketing tactics on social media, email, search engines, and website optimization. Marketing at its core is about communicating the value of your product, service, or brand mission to potential customers while developing relationships, increasing leads, establishing brand quality and leadership, and ultimately, increasing revenue.
What is digital marketing, and why should I use it?
In short, digital marketing is the new course of marketing for brands and businesses, and it uses online platforms to promote and sell products. The same SMART marketing goals apply, but they are implemented solely through the internet, both on computers and mobile devices. Here are the seven general categories of digital marketing and how they are used to create a specific marketing tactic catered to your brand with measurable and attainable results.
Content Marketing focuses on the how, why, and what your brand is saying online. It’s not enough to say your product is great and slap a CTA (call to action) on your website. The content has to encompass your brand, show customers the brand value, be engaging, and draw the audience in. Being a unique and wanted brand takes direct communication. Otherwise, you’ll get lost in the thousands of other platforms and online channels.
Email Marketing is still a top necessity for brands. Collect an email list that provides high click-through, and you’re guaranteed to convert your audience into customers. With email marketing, remember to use the personalization features and write with a sense of urgency.
Pay-Per-Click (PPC), Paid Advertising, or Digital Advertising are advertisements displayed on the search results page. You only pay for the clicks you get, and the most common way to set up pay-per-click ads is through Google Ads.
Search Engine Optimization is the rank of your website in Google search results. If your website does not appear in search results until page 4, your website traffic will decline. The focus for any brand website should be implementing keyword research, proper link structure, and strong content.
Social Media Marketing is anything your business posts through social media channels. For social media marketing to work well, the brand’s content must be consistent, relevant, and engaging. If you want to open your brand up to social media, it is crucial to answer questions, update information often, and understand the analytics behind each platform.
Mobile marketing targets specific actions taken on mobile devices or tablets like texting, social media, mobile-friendly websites, apps, and emails.
Marketing analytics is instrumental and accessible with digital marketing. With online marketing analytics, you can track everything from website traffic to paid advertising analytics in real-time.
Brands can integrate many other types of marketing with digital marketing. For example, businesses can utilize affiliate marketing, native advertising, marketing automation, PR, influencer outreach in a digital marketing strategy.
Digital Marketing Brand Examples
Some of the top brands in digital marketing are Nike, Burger King, Target, Wendy’s, GoPro, and Ben & Jerry. Here are some strategies and examples of how these brands used digital marketing to influence their audience.
Burger King has been active on social media for the last few years. They are known to reply with funny comments, get a bit controversial, and poke at their competition. Some of their viral and captivating campaigns included revealing a ‘Burger Queen’ in 2018 via Twitter and multiple campaigns targeted at their rival, McDonald’s.
Nike takes an authentic approach to online marketing with inspirational messages, encouraging videos, taking a stance in politics, and verbalizing support for others.
Executing digital marketing strategies with user-generated content is excellent and is used by multiple brands between online channels. Target, for example, uses user-generated content on its social media pages, website, and app. When you browse through the Target app, there is a section of #Targetstyles that gives you examples of Target products in real people’s homes. This strategy is perfect for showcasing products, connecting with your audience, and building a brand reputation.
Other brands using user-generated content in their digital marketing strategy include Hilton Grand Vacations, GoPro, and Adobe.
Setting up your digital marketing
In setting up a digital marketing strategy, you want to build a strong foundation. These are the platforms that should be in place as you begin digital ads and direct online traffic to your website.
- Do you have a website up and running?
- Have you set up an email provider such as Constant Contact, MailChimp, Klaviyo?
- Does the contact page on your website link to your email provider?
- Have you claimed your business on Google My Business? (This is where you will monitor reviews and place Google Ads)
- It’s also a good idea to claim the business on Yelp.
- Have you set up a Business Facebook, Instagram, and Linkedin page?
Once you’ve built the foundation and set up your online platforms, start working on content marketing and search engine optimization. Make sure your target keywords are effective. You can add SEO plugins to the website for guidance → YoastSEO or Moz is excellent. In your new Google account, go to Keyword Planner and search for the highest searched keywords related to your business and use them in your online marketing.
How to implement digital marketing
Your digital marketing strategy should center around the buyer’s journey with a target audience and persona in mind. Hubspot refers to this process as ‘content mapping’ where you:
- Identify the characteristics of the person who needs your product or service - the persona.
- Figure out where that person is in their buyer’s journey
Awareness, Consideration, Decision
In the awareness phase of a buyer’s journey, you must educate and catch your audience’s attention. Brands can build awareness by creating blogs to increase organic traffic and inform the audience on how you’re solving a problem. Being active and on social media by posting infographics, videos, and photos about the brand with engaging writing is also a great start.
For the consideration phase, your audience is already looking at your competitor and weighing their options. For this phase, you can bump up the digital ad spend, share videos that break down a specific customer problem, and interact with the audiences you have on social and through email.
In the decision phase, customers want to know they are making the best choice for their lives. In this case, you want to google and Facebook reviews, show off testimonials and case studies on your website, and have proof of success.
Expanding your digital marketing
The main advantage of digital marketing is the ability to reach an audience you may not have access to before. You can target ads to a region, an age range, or an interest without having to prepurchase a mailing or email list.
With all the benefits of digital marketing, it can still be a lot to juggle. Margo offers accessible workspaces and clear guidance for achieving a great digital marketing strategy for your brand and without the hassle. We provide 1-on-1 assistance with marketing experts and customized digital marketing strategies to help your brand bring leads and convert them to customers.