As we all know, marketing is an important facet of any business and speaking of the literal meaning of marketing refers to actions that help a business sell its products to consumers and companies. The marketing function includes important strategic business units in a company such as advertising, selling and delivering products to consumers or other businesses.
Hence, looking at this we can see that marketing is an integral part of operations for a company due to it consisting of tasks that help decide what products consumers need, all the way to finally selling the finished product. This directly ties into Digital Marketing, which was a term first used in 1990 as the first internet platform was released to the public. When Web 1.0 was launched, it created an opportunity for companies and businesses to advertise and sell to various new customers across the internet to consumers they did not even identify before as an audience. In 1993, the first ever banner promotion went live and marked the beginning of a digital era we know now as internet advertising.
Even though now we have a brief understanding of where and how Digital Marketing began, we must understand the proper function and use of it. Online Marketing uses the internet, social media, phones, search engines, subway platforms, video games or apps to reach new consumers in a variety of ways.
It is also important to mention that it differs from internet marketing as internet marketing is solely based on advertising on the internet whereas Digital Marketing uses the various channels listed above and leverages this to create a more interactive experience for the receiver.
An example of this could be the influencer marketing channel; which is rising to become the hottest category of digital marketing over the years. Affiliate marketing consists of partnering with key figures in your industry and provides access and trust of an affiliate’s audience. This, therefore, makes it easier to sell products or services through a reputable, and trusted individual as consumers look up to this person for advice and ideas for the products and services they should buy.
We have constructed this chart to make a clear distinction between the differences of Traditional Marketing and Digital Marketing. This is because it will allow you to understand the four key advantages we were able to analyze that Online Marketing has over Traditional Marketing which gives it an edge to attract and retain consumers attention and loyalty.
|Traditional Marketing||Digital Marketing|
The traditional style of marketing allowed the brand to communicate to consumers or their target audience through mass media such as a TV ads
Online Marketing has allowed a multi-directional communication via social media that allow consumers to discuss their needs and wants with the brand
The message of products and services were controlled by the brand in a top-down manner
The brand can work with consumers and understand the real meaning of their products
Maximizes reach via mass communications such as radio and TV ads for mass markets
Allows intimacy/engagement via personalized communications in niche markets
Traditional marketing leaves with passive customers that have minimal opportunity for interaction or feedback
Creates customers who are brand loyal as they feel they are co-creating products with the company and engage/interact with the brand
As we can see Online Marketing has a clear advantage for businesses looking to improve and connect with their target audience. This allows the brand to not only tailor to their customers needs and wants but allows them to be sustainable in the long run as it becomes a competitive advantage over other competitors in the industry.
As we have discussed the clear advantages of Digital Marketing over Traditional Marketing, we now shift our focus to the wide array of categories that is encompassed in the world of Online Marketing.
In the previous example, we gave an idea of how the category of affiliate marketing is one of the channels in digital marketing. However, there are known to be seven big categories of digital marketing that include:
We have created a great infographic for you that sums up all the kinds of Online Marketing and a brief description to help you understand their use and function. We, likewise, must point out that new categories are evolving as technology and consumer demands for innovative ways of marketing increases, therefore this list may change in the coming years.
Now that we understand the key differences between Traditional and Digital Marketing and have seen the types of Digital Marketing categories there are – we would like to share how Digital Marketing may help you and your business to become a competitive force in your respective industry.
Most businesses owners believe that Digital Marketing is costly and time consuming; while also not providing a return on investment for the hard work that is put in. However, this is far from the truth; as Online Marketing opens a business to new potential customers that are sitting online but are not aware of the business’s existence. The modern-day consumer looks for a credible website and a social media presence to validate the quality of the businesses they want to go into. Without a website or good reviews on Google’s search engine, customers may find your business illegitimate and take their business elsewhere.
This clearly shows that Online Marketing is important to the survival of a business in today’s tech-savvy market. This idea is further reinforced by how a business should understand their core competencies and understand the strengths and weaknesses of their competitors. By looking at your competitors you can get an idea of what is working and what is not, and this will allow your business in conveying your brand and products through the right mediums.
Clearly, we can see that no matter the size of a business, each business should have an emphasis on Digital Marketing. It not only provides credibility and competitive advantage over competitors but also provides access to a wider potential audience than before.
As we can see the benefits of Digital Marketing is immensely beneficial to a business, there still may be uncertainty in your mind as you would have to start from scratch to understand Online Marketing and the nuances of marketing on digital channels.
This can be dealt with by simply hiring a digital marketing agency that makes a huge difference to your business in the digital space. The three reasons a digital marketing agency can do this is:
Skills and Experience: Digital Marketing Agencies have the manpower and skills such as running SEO campaigns at a different time in the year and then shifting focus on social media posts during the holiday season, which will allow them to cover a wide spectrum.
Budget: Digital Marketing Agencies know when to spend on paid ads and which mediums such as Google, Facebook and Instagram to use when promoting a business. This will allow you to save costs as only Ads that will yield returns are used and allows for guaranteed results.
Scalability: As a business grows, so does the demands of operations and challenges. Hiring a Digital Marketing Agency allows you to outsource a section of your business and an agency can adapt to the needs of the market and your business accordingly as they can apply their expertise, insight, and software solutions to help grow your businesses through different stages.
As you can see Digital Marketing can improve your business’s revenue and create a much larger audience then first perceived with Traditional Marketing. It enhances the business’s reach and gives credibility to the business in the digital world, which is an attribute, consumers look for in today’s market.
Therefore, we hope to see everyone leveraging the power of Digital Marketing either through self learning and development or through the services of a digital marketing agency that may launch your business through digital marketing.