We all cannot deny how many things have changed, and that includes marketing.
A hundred years ago, marketing was just an ad in a daily newspaper that people read first thing in the morning. Then 50 years later, running a commercial on TV was enough to entice anyone to make a purchase. Over the next 20 years, simply having a website, with some necessary keywords laced in, and you’d be ready and good to go.
The age of TV commercials and print ads is slowly losing its spotlight and turning to social media and search engines.
This shift began as technology evolved even more. The moment everyone was able to use mobile devices at any time did make a revolutionary impact on marketing. Everyone became more connected with one another 24/7.
According to a study, the average internet user spends seven hours a day doing various things, from listening to music, playing games, browsing search engines, and using social media. As for businesses, this is an opportunity to promote their products or services to their target audiences online.
This is called the digital age, and that is when digital marketing comes in. Instead of promoting products or services in newspapers or TV alone, many businesses prefer raising brand awareness through digital marketing campaigns.
What exactly is digital marketing?
Digital marketing, also known as online marketing, is the most effective form of marketing. Here, a brand could promote products or services and connect with its potential customers online.
Similar to traditional marketing, the role of digital marketing is to raise awareness of your brand. To help your business get found, noticed by your target audience, and turn them not only as paying customers but those who return to support your brand continuously.
To be successful in digital marketing, you need to have a good understanding of your target audience. You also have to grasp what digital marketing is and learn how to utilise them effectively.
You should know that the digital marketing landscape is continuously changing. Sooner or later, what we know today may not be applicable in years to come. That is why you should always watch out for the latest trends and happenings in digital marketing, whether in Singapore or other areas of the world.
Part I: Importance of Digital Marketing
A common question is, “Why is digital marketing important today?” The simple answer is that everyone is online most of the time as mentioned above, thanks to mobile devices such as smartphones, laptops, tablets, and many more.
These electronic devices are the first thing anyone would use in the morning when they wake up, and even before they go to bed and sleep. According to many studies, people nowadays are pretty hooked on the internet, especially with using their smartphone devices to search and buy things online. Here are some statistics:
- A survey from BankMyCell says, 6.378 billion people have smartphones as of October 2021.
- Expected to grow to 7.516 billion smartphone users by 2026, says Statista.
- A study shows that 92.4% of smartphone users said they use it at bedtime.
As a business owner, you should not forget the rule of the thumb of marketing: Be where your customers are. And with these numbers, it is safe to say that most of the people are on the internet. That is why it makes sense to promote products or services online and connect with them through digital marketing campaigns.
The Brief History and Evolution of Digital Marketing
If we take a look at history, marketing is as old as human civilization itself. As seen in the films based in ancient times, marketing can be traced back to thousands of years ago when bustling market stalls and traders used papyrus to promote their items. This paper serves as a sale poster, which is pretty much what we have done and still doing for years.
It was around the 1940s when marketing started to resemble what we have and know today. That was the beginning of fierce competition in the business world, which prompted business owners to change how they market their products or services.
To gain a competitive advantage against competitors, here are the things businesses did, which led to today’s digital marketing.
Since the 1990s, digital marketing has been used countless times. That was when the digital age took off as digital media became more accessible to the public. Also, the 1990s was when Google and Yahoo! was founded and became the search engines we know today.
The Types of Digital Marketing & Usage
There are many types of digital marketing channels, and each has its purpose and usage. Knowing what they are and their differences would help you use the right one for your business. As such, you would be able to market your products and services more effectively.
Listed below are the types ofdigital marketing that you need to know and how to use them.
Having a website means you are providing an avenue for your potential customers. With this platform, they could see what your brand is all about and learn more about the things you offer.
However, having a website alone is not enough. These days, your website should be aesthetically pleasing and easy to navigate. Otherwise, people visiting on your platform would leave right away. Chances are they would go to another brand similar to yours.
To prevent that, you should guarantee your website includes the following. Doing so should help your other digital marketing strategy work better as well.
- Fast loading time is around or under two seconds.
- Has security measures
- Mobile friendly
- Simple and easy navigation
- Compelling content
- Strong call-to-actions
- Perfect for search engine optimisation (SEO)
These things are necessary since website visitors often judge a brand’s credibility based on its web design and functionality. According to a study from Stanford University in California, 75% of internet users do that.
That is why before you start your digital marketing campaign on any platform, you need to improve the way your website looks and functions. As such, your target audience would have a different impression and perspective about your brand.
If you successfully leave a positive impression on your customers, that would help boost the favourability of your products or services.
Search Engine Optimisation
SEO, is the process of optimising your website so it would rank on search engines. Many SEO vendors define this process as the art and science of improving a website and increasing its visibility.
Once you successfully optimise your website for SEO, you can expect your website to rank higher on search engines results pages. The higher they become, the more people would notice your brand, along with your products or services.
Think of it this way. Whenever you need to know something, you often search for things online. The same goes for your target audience. When they type something related to your products or services, they will find it right away if you are on the first or second page of search engine results pages.
However, you should know that employing SEO on your digital marketing strategy is easier said than done. You should know that there are vital elements you need to consider when optimising the web pages of your website. Here are just a few of them that you have to keep in mind.
- Quality and relevance of content
- Level of customer engagement
- Quality amount of inbound links.
Make sure you use these factors strategically since, with SEO, there are no consistent rules. Search engines like Google often change their algorithm, so you have to watch your web performance regularly.
Your monitoring and adjustments would help maintain and improve the rank of your web pages. Though not right away, since SEO takes time, which is why it requires a lot of effort and patience until you can see the result of your hard work.
Another thing you should take note of when you employ SEO is the location. Adding a specific location on your content or campaign would help it become more visible when someone searches it online.
For example, when it comes to local SEO, you have to add the place of your business. In our case, we always add in Singapore, so people searching for SEO services would find us right away. The search engine would then consider our content as relevant to what the user is searching online.
Unlike optimising your website and SEO, pay-per-click or PPC is a more straight forward. You intend to let your customers know you are promoting a product or service.
When you opt for PPC marketing, expect to pay for the number of clicks when your advertised ad gets clicked by someone online.
It is the fastest way to attract more traffic and gain leads to your website since they are the ones that show up on the top or bottom of search results. Take this picture below as an example of PPC marketing.
However, you have to keep in mind that the traffic from PPC marketing is not considered organic. Even if that is the case, this is also essential because SEOalone takes time to work. That is why if you do not have long patience, you can use PPC to raise your brand awareness, but take note you have to pay for every clicks your online paid ads would have
Social Media Marketing
Another effective digital marketing is the use of social media platforms. With 4.48 billion users and counting, you would be able to reach your target audience and expand your online presence.
If you do social media marketing correctly, your campaign could even become viral. That means many people would know about your content and share it with others and on the rest of their social media accounts such as on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and many more.
READ MORE: The 5 Pillars Of Social Media Marketing
Viral Digital Marketing Examples
Jennifer Lopez’s #InTheMorningChallenge
To promote her new song, Jennifer Lopez created a dance challenge on her Instagram account. Because of this, many of her fans do the same as what she did in the video. They danced while wearing pyjamas and OOTD clothes.
If you have not seen it, now is your chance. See her actual post below:
This digital marketing example was a success as it garnered more than 14 million views and thousands of shares and posts across different social media platforms. And this proves that using social media is a fun and interactive way to engage your target audience to try and support your brand.
Lego’s Rebuild the World Campaign
Another good example of digital marketing is Lego’s campaign about rebuilding the world. Besides promoting their products, they took this chance to showcase their advocacy about global issues.
Lego taking a stance on it helps them connect more to their target audience much closer and personally. This campaign becomes an eye-opener to everyone who has seen it and nudges them to make a move.
If you also want to do the same with your digital marketing campaign, you should think through what kind of advocacy you would like to share with your customers. Research if your views and opinions do align with them. If it is, then it would create a considerable impact on them.
Part II: Understanding the Differences
The key for effective and successful publicity of products or services online is to understand the differences in digital marketing.
Grasping every concept would give you a greater perspective on how you should create one for the right target audience. Your broad point of view would help produce a more engaging digital marketing campaign that can move and make people take action.
Look through the following to understand the differences.
Inbound Marketing vs Digital Marketing
Even though both occur online and focus on creating digital content, they are not the same.
You should know that inbound marketing is a methodology that utilises digital marketing elements. It consists of several moving and interrelated parts, which can be blogging, content offers, etc. And also, to do these, it requires particular expertise to implement each one correctly.
Meanwhile, digital marketing is a general term for elements used to connect with consumers digitally. It is a practice to use across digital platforms, from banners, brand recognition to advertisements.
In simple terms, inbound marketing is all about attracting and engaging potential customers. While digital marketing is an umbrella term that describes what online marketing tactics are, whether inbound or outbound marketing.
LEARN MORE: How To Create An Inbound Marketing Strategy?
B2B vs B2C Digital Marketing
Digital marketing may work for any business regardless of industry, but you should not assume that all brands will perform the same digital marketing strategies.
As a business owner, you should know that there are two types of customers: businesses and consumers. Knowing the difference between them would help the way or approach on how you promote your brand.
B2B Digital Marketing
First of all, B2B stands for business to business. It is a digital marketing practice involving all sorts of industries, from establishments to startups. That means two companies are commercially transacting with each other.
The goal of B2B digital marketing is to attract a specific audience, primarily other companies. For example, if you are a B2B company that makes corporate gifts for businesses, your prime target is those who need to send corporate gifts to their clients, employees or business partners.
Make sure when you are a B2B company, your website should be business-focused like LinkedIn. Doing so should help your target businesses to understand your niche.
B2C Digital Marketing
On the other hand, B2C digital marketing refers to business to consumers. It is a strategy that involves selling and promoting your products or services to a consumer market.
For example, if you are a furniture shop, your prime target audience is the public. To be more specific, people who would move into a new home or need to update old pieces of furniture.
When you are more on B2C digital marketing, make sure your website has category filters so your consumers would find what they are looking for. Also, the best channels to promote your niche are Pinterest and Instagram.
Part III: How to Do Digital Marketing?
Your digital marketing strategy depends on what industry your business is in and the products or services you offer. To guarantee you would do a good job with your digital marketing campaign, follow the steps below. Make sure to take your time on each step before you move on to the next.
5 Steps of Digital Marketing
1. Define Your Goal
To get started with your digital marketing, you need to determine your objective. You should know that having solid objectives could make the difference since you have a clear direction.
For example, if you desire to raise awareness about your brand, create a campaign that attracts attention. Perhaps, conduct a contest or ask your target audience what they want to see on your platform. For sure, many people would love to participate, especially if they have something to gain, like promotions.
Also, when you have a definitive goal, you are less likely to lose focus with your digital marketing campaigns.
2. Know Who Are Your Target Audience
It will be easier to create a digital marketing campaign if you know who your customers are. Make sure to determine them before choosing which social media platforms to carry out your digital marketing campaigns.
Keep in mind that your target audience may vary depending on which channels you use for your digital marketing campaign. For instance, your customers on TikTok might belong to Gen Z, while on Facebook, they are more likely millennials or older.
That is why before you create a digital marketing campaign, do market research and find out which channel your target audience is most active in.
3. Set a Budget for Ads
Most digital marketing channels are free to use. However, to see the immediate effect of your campaign, you would need a budget to run ads.
When it comes to online ads, there are two types to consider: PPC marketing and social media ads. Even though both seem similar to one another, they are not the same.
In PPC marketing, you have to pay for the ad by the number of clicks. On the other hand, social media ads like on Facebook vary depending on campaign objectives.
Just remember to adjust your budget depending on the results you expect to have within a given timeline. To do so, make it a habit to monitor your paid campaigns from time to time.
4. Choose Which Channel You Should Use
As mentioned above, there are many channels that you can use to promote your digital marketing campaign.
For example, if you are a B2B company, the ideal platform for your business would be on LinkedIn since it focuses on professional networking and career opportunities.
Meanwhile, if you are a B2C company, it would be a good idea to promote your products or services on Facebook. This platform tends to focus on community building. Thus, running your campaign there would attract a lot of people if you do it right.
Nevertheless, you should post your digital marketing campaigns on the right social platform that fits your business as a whole.
5. Manage Your Social Media Profiles
Once you know which channels you should use, make sure to set up your social media profiles. Start by writing a bit about your brand, link your website and other social media platforms, and most importantly, add the review tabs, so your customers there can share their options about you.
Make sure to insert your logo both on the banner and profile picture so anyone would recognise your brand right away. And when posting a campaign or ad, you should follow the character count limit for each platform and use a hashtag to increase customer engagement.
Also, guarantee to post regularly so your customers would learn more and get news about your products or services. If you cannot do it each day, posting every other day would do.
Digital Marketing Creates Growth
As internet users continue to increase, digital marketing will remain and stay for good. That is why it should be one of the main focuses of businesses in their marketing strategy.
The more businesses embrace the possibilities of digital marketing, the more they would be able to reach out to many people and show the potential growth of their brand. Doing so should help expand and increase their online presence.
The same goes for you, so invest your time in digital marketing. If you need help, get in touch with a digital marketing agency. With their skills and years of experience, they can raise your brand awareness and search engine rankings.
Contact OOm now to create growth for your business through digital marketing.