Digital marketing is an umbrella term that encompasses all marketing performed using electronic media. Digital marketing offers several tactical options for businesses to connect with customers. From the business’s website itself to online advertising & branding, email marketing, online brochures, and more.
Here are some commonly used digital marketing strategies that business owners and entrepreneurs can employ for their businesses:
Email marketing helps to connect the audience to promote the brand and increase sales. It is one of the most effective digital marketing of sending emails to prospects and customers. With this strategy prospects can be converted into customers, turn one-time buyers into loyal recurring customers. This strategy allows the marketeer to create targeted and personalized messages which helps to build a relationship with prospects/ customers. The marketeer should also be careful of not overusing this strategy since receiving marketing emails can irritate most people if its irrelevant or too frequent.
Email marketing is cost effective, when compared with some other marketing strategies available. There are no marketing fees, media fess or any printing costs. This method is based on the receiver’s permission. Which means the marketing list will be made of names of people who have actively chosen to receive email messages from the marketer. This is a statement which states that the customers are genuinely interested in the products or services that been provided and are more likely to engage with the business.
It is the type of marketing which rewards one or more affiliates for each visitor or customer brought by the affiliates own marketing efforts. Affiliate marketer earns a commission by promoting other people’s (brands or companies) content/ products. This marketing strategy is extremely profitable and beneficial for both the affiliate marketer and the brand/company. According to bigcommerce.com.au there is a 10.1% increase in affiliate marketing spending in the US each year. By 2020 the number will reach $6.8 billion.
Just as email marketing, affiliate marketing is a low-cost marketing strategy. The only thing that’s needed to be done is to create an affiliate website, choosing a familiar product/ service to the one that’s been provided and are relevant to the market niche. The beauty of affiliate marketing is that you don’t have to be an expert at the start of the service, and its easy to learn along the way. This strategy is quite convenient and flexible. You can create multiple affiliate campaigns on different affiliate websites and landing pages to market your own affiliate link, thereby having the flexibility to abandon poorly performing links and focus on optimizing successful links.
It is marketing that involves the creation and distribution of online materials that does not explicitly promote a brand but is intended to stimulate interest in its product and services. Content marketing is a long-term strategy which helps to build strong relationships with the audience. The content provided to the audience should be of high quality and it should be relevance to them on a regular basis.
Content marketing allows to build the brand awareness, trusts and loyalty. This strategy allows to build an impression for the brand that’s been advertised. Creating informative, relevant and well researched content will show that the business is trustworthy and authoritative. More the audience rely on your content for information the more likely that they will do business with the brand. Using content marketing allows to avoid traditional advertising blockades such ad blocks.
Social Media Marketing
It is the use of social media platforms to promote a product or a service and to connect with the audience and build the brand, increase sales and drive website traffic. This strategy involves the publishing of content on social media profiles, listening to and engaging the followers and running social media advertisements. It is a powerful marketing strategy to reach prospects and customers.
Since people spend a lot of time on the internet and around social media, implementing a social media marketing strategy massively improves the brand recognition. Marketing on social media platforms such as Facebook or Instagram can get an immediate boost in getting brand name popularized. This strategy also allows better customer communications. The brand can immediately respond to customer queries and issues. Quickly resolved issues means there is more time for the products/ services to be purchased.
Online PR is the use of internet tools to communicate with potential and existing customers as well as with the public to increase brand awareness. It is closely associated with improving results from many of the other digital marketing communications techniques with social media, SEO, partnership marketing and word-of-mouth marketing.
In traditional PR the brand needs to be in networked with the journalists in order to be featured in any printed publications, radio and television. But using online PR there are more possible avenues to promote the brand. Online PR allows a wide variety of marketing possibilities such as being interviewed by online publications, increased online interaction with potential customers.
This is a great low-cost technique for making more people conscious of your brand or the website. If done right, it can gain a wide spread popularity where money can’t buy on a wide range of platforms. A successful online PR campaign lead to requests for marketing partnerships including affiliate marketing strategies, endorsements, sponsorships etc. Online PR specialists uses a variety of strategies to improve the brand awareness;
- Prepare online press releases
- Building relationships with online journalists and bloggers*(See Influencer Marketing)
- Publishing online content to gain a wide range of brand recognition.
- Organizing online reviews and profiling
Influencer marketing (IM)
Influencer marketing is a marketing strategy used by brands that uses endorsements and product mentions from influencers to promote their product to the audience of the influencer. This strategy offers brands to unify the process of sales, PR, social media, digital marketing through powerful relationship-based communication. The influencers are more likely to be a public character (celebrity/ famous person), an online blogger or any person who have an influence on people’s opinion and not a person presented by the brand itself. Online influencers typically have a sway of the things their followers purchase. This makes it perfect for a brand to grasp a much wider audience and promoting their product.
According to a survey one by Mediakix LLC (US), marketers feel more confident about influencer marketing as a marketing channel. 80% of marketers find influencer marketing effective than other methods. 89% says ROI from influencer marketing is comparable to or better than other marketing strategies. Nearly 2/3 of the marketers are increasing their influencer marketing budgets in 2019. The most effective content formats are Instagram posts (78%), Instagram Stories (73%) and YouTube videos (56%).
Native advertising means a method of marketing products and services by streamlining the content along with the platform it appears on. These kinds of ads can be often seen in social media feeds or as “recommended content” on web pages. Native ads do not display itself as traditional display ads or banner ads. These ads look more like the content included in the flow of the webpage. Native ads are non-disruptive, and it exposes the user to the adverting content without trying to get attention like a toddler. Native ads function and behave just like the natural content.
According to an AppNexus whitepaper the click-through-rate of a native ad is 8.8 times higher than that of display and banner ads. Most of them being pets, food and drinks and family services brands. Native ads perform better in mobile platforms. According to Mobile Marketing Association research, mobile native ads perform 10 times better and gain 3 times more time and attention that the other counterparts. A study done by Facebook and HIS Inc. shows that by 2020 media buyers will spend $84.5 billion on mobile advertising. 63.2% of that will be native mobile advertising.
In-app advertising is the most common strategy for the app developers/publishers to monetize their app. The app developers get paid to display advertisements on their app. Since apps drive the mobile usage and the global media consumption, this makes it convenient for the businesses to market their product through in app advertising. The advertisers can target specific users through sophisticated data tracking.
In app ads are populated through a mobile app advertising network. This network connects all the advertisers and the developers. The app requests an ad from this network and the network uses a specific algorithm to identify and deliver the highest paying advertiser and display the advertisement to the mobile app user.
A research done by Ipsos suggests that in-app ads are more effective in driving action. This is because these ads are more memorable. A study found that these ads are more memorable than ads seen on a desktop. 47% of the participants of the study says they can remember finite details of an ad viewed on a mobile device.
Pay Per Click Advertising
Pay per click is a model of internet marketing in which the advertisers pay a fee to the search engine each time of their ads are clicked. It is a way of buying traffic to the site rather than earning the visits organically.
The main goal is to lead the person viewing the search result to click through to the advertiser’s website or an app. The search engines allow the advertisers to display the ads that are relevant to what the users are searching for. Whenever the ad is clicked, the advertiser is charged, for a small fee each time. Search engines like Google, Bing and Yahoo operate with real time bidding, where the advertising inventory is sold in a private automated auction (Ad Auction) using real-time data. This is an automated bidding system where the search engine determines the validity and the relevance of the ads that appears on the results page.
The advertisers set up their ads in search engines (Google, Bing), and add relevant keywords that the wish to trigger and set bids for how high up in the ads section their result will show. The keywords are found using tools which helps to identify the right keyword with the right volume and average cost per click. The search engines also look for the quality score and extensions to determine which ads suits the top position. The quality is based on factors such as the ad relevance, landing page experience and click-through- rate. Ad relevance is extremely essential because the higher quality score the lower the cost-per-click will be. If anyone bids on keywords with low quality scores by rarely showing their ads, search engines do penalize them even if they have higher bids. Therefore, it is very important to have an engaging and relevant ad that includes high quality keywords. The landing page should also have high quality content. Ads will show less often if the landing website provides a poor user experience where users will spend seconds of the site. The website should be able to provide sufficient information for the user where the user will spend a considerable amount of time reading or navigating through the website. The webpage should load fast and provide a smooth experience on all types of devices and screen sizes.
Because of this PPC can be very competitive. If someone’s paying high enough price for the top spot, then their competitor may pay even a higher price and a much better quality to top up the position.
Facebook advertising is pretty much a same as Google advertising. The only difference is that through Facebook the advertisers want people to see their posts and content and then drive more traffic to their website. Using Facebook advertising helps to generate new leads, increase the reach of the Facebook content, increase brand awareness and boost engagement of the Facebook page. When creating a Facebook ad, the advertiser is given the option for choosing an objective for the ad. The objective helps Facebook to have a better understanding of the requirements of the advertiser so that they can provide with the best suited ad option. The ad options include;
- Brand awareness
- Website traffic
- App installs
- Video views
- Lead generation
- Catalogue sales
- Store traffic
Facebooks ads allows to target specific audience for the advertisements. This allows the advertiser information to be directly put up onto potential prospects.
The audience can be customized based on the;
- Languages spoken.
- Interests and behaviours.
- Their connections to your other business-related pages on Facebook.
Search Engine Optimisation
Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) is a method of internet marketing in which a website owner optimises their website to appear higher in the organic search results of Google and other search engines. All traffic attracted through the higher organic listings achieved through SEO is free and isn’t limited by the website owner’s budget.
Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is the process of getting traffic or increasing the quantity and quality of traffic to the website through search engines. This can be from “free”, “organic”, “editorial” or “natural” search results on search engines. SEO focuses on improving the rankings in the organic search results which means these results are non-paid results.
Most of the traffic originates from the Google search. Which is nearly 60%. If you combine popular search engines like Yahoo, Bing and YouTube it is almost 70.6 % starts from a search engine.
Both SEO and PPC are concerned with the promotion through search engines, therefore it can get confused between them. PPC advertising is generally paying a quick buck to get in top of the search engine results list, which is often shown as “ads” in green in Google or in grey in Bing. Once the PPC budget is over the position gets vacant and the next bidder gets the position. Therefore, PPC’s results are based on how much are the advertisers willing to pay for the search engine.
The main selling point of PPC is the position of the page. When someone searches for something on the search engine, at least the first 4 result are ads. The will always see the paid ads, even if they scroll past them. PPC allows to have a more granular control and spacing of the brands content. Contact details, locations, process, sitelinks, open hours and bullet points are some options that helps the brand to dominate the page.
If a business needs to promote their product in the search result, this can be done by using the visual shopping ads (Product Listing Ads/ PLA) option provided by Google. For example, if someone is searching for running shoes, Google will show ads for running shoes from different sellers, on the top of the page.
One upside to PPC over SEO is that it allows a targeted way to get in front of potential customers. Ads can target customers based on specific search keywords, location, language, device, based on previous visits etc. If a user searches for cricket bats, once after the search is done, the user can get ads based on the search query. It doesn’t have to be the Google home page. Even just bowsing the internet there is a chance that the user will run into an ad based on the recent search. This is due to the re-targeting ability of PPC, which follows around potential customers. Unlike SEO where keyword data are hidden due to privacy reasons, PPC has no such restriction. With good analytics software, the search engines could determine what keywords convert and at what percentage.
When considering Google AdWords, the AdWords doesn’t run into any trouble when ever Google decides to make any changes to the algorithm. Where as in SEO, there needs to be a substantial amount of change that needs to take place to align with the new implementation. Still some changes do affect the PPC campaign, but their impact on the performance of PPC is much lower and are easily managed by Google it self since it is one of the primary sources of revenue.
Developing good organic visibility can take quite some time. But a PPC campaign can be created in a couple of days. This is the fastest way to get in front of the customer or to enhance the audience. Brands can also get rapid feedback on short term products or a completely new product. The desired product can be put in front of the audience to get quick feedback and make any necessary changes as required.
Unlike PPC, SEO doesn’t guarantee the first position on the search result immediately. It takes at least 6 months to get into the first page of the results. But with proper SEO integration and given time the website can reach the top spot. SEO is all about making certain changes to the website design and content that make more attractive to the search engine. Doing this will guarantee at least a spot on the first page.
When a user searches something on the search engine, the top results that come up are adopting the best SEO practices according to the search engine (Apart from ads). This happens because the search engine uses web crawlers to gather information on websites relating to the query. Then an index of websites is created which the indexes position is based on the build quality of SEO of the websites.
The outcome of making a website SEO optimized is that the website will load faster, easy to read and surf and can be viewed in any mobile device. Websites with such characteristics are more than likely to get more attention from visitors and readers.
SEO provides quantifiable and trackable results. The website owners can view and increase rankings and traffic. For more comprehensive analytics, SEO can provide granular-level data about the customers and their level of engagement.
All these search engines have a web crawler. Its job is to gather information about all content that’s published on the internet. Once the results are in the search engine builds and index. This index is then run through an algorithm which tries to match all the results with the query of the user.
On page SEO
Ranking a website depends on many factors. One of them is on page SEO. These are the factors that the website builder can influence from within the website. The factors include the code of the website (title tags and meta descriptions), site speed, structure of the website etc. The most important of these
Off page SEO
These factors include the social media presence, links from other web sites and marketing activities carried out outside the own website. Off page SEO factors are rather difficult to control, manage and influence. The links from other websites play a major role in off page SEO.