Marketing overall is certainly not a new concept, but there are some distinct differences in marketing now versus the strategies and tactics used in previous decades. Understanding how best to reach your audience has always been a key challenge for marketers, and it’s one that continues to gain complexity in today’s digital-based world. With marketing tactics such as advertising in magazines and newspapers becoming increasingly obsolete, marketers are reaching deep into their bag of tricks to find new market opportunities.
As digital adoption rates increase and consumer tastes change at the speed of light, it’s vital to have a solid understanding of digital marketing strategy and the frameworks that smart marketers utilize to impact revenue and drive new business opportunities.
How is Digital Marketing Different from Traditional Marketing?
Digital marketing, altijdgeil also known as eMarketing or internet marketing, has some distinct differences from traditional marketing methods. Marketing has long been a way to interrupt consumers – capturing their attention through massive billboards, television and radio ads, postcards, newspaper ads and more. These disruptive influences are most successful when marketers are able to present their stories in a way that is compelling for consumers as a way to solve a problem. Otherwise, these marketing tactics were simply considered a frustrating diversion from what the consumer was attempting to accomplish.
The Rise of Digital Marketing
With Digital Marketing, the paradigm shifts from talking “at” consumers to speaking “with” them, creating a two-way conversation that allows consumers to have input into the ongoing dialog with brands. Technology has provided a vast range of capabilities that brands can take advantage of, including everything from social media engagement to educational media. Printed advertisements can be traced back to the early 1400s when Gutenburg invented moveable type.
While magazines didn’t emerge until the 1730s, posters and billboards rose to prevalence in the landscape throughout this era and through to the 1940s. Radio and television advertisements dominated consumer minds through 1970 when the first telemarketing began to enter the scene. It wasn’t until 1994 and the rise of the digital age that marketing opportunities for businesses truly began to transform from marketing to “e” or “electronic” marketing.
Digital Democratization of Marketing
As the widespread use of the internet and digital devices such as cell phones began to soar in the late 1990s and early 2000s, marketers knew that this was a tremendous era of opportunity to reach new audiences more effectively and cost-efficiently than ever before. Avenues of reaching millions that were previously only open to companies that had millions to spend on television or radio advertising suddenly existed on the internet.
Companies that had a modest marketing budget were able to dramatically grow their audiences through the use of email marketing and simply by creating educational content that was appealing to search engines and website visitors alike. By 2003, it was obvious that email spam was becoming a problem, which quickly shifted the focus to social media outreach.
The Explosion of Online Marketing Activity
During the early 2000s, online sales began to skyrocket as consumers gained greater trust in online retailers and the brands they were selling. The interest in analytics continued to grow, allowing marketers to identify market opportunities and react to them more quickly than ever before. By 2010, 90% of U.S. households had a mobile phone and Google began to integrate information from their Google+ and other social media platforms into their search engine results.
Fast-forward to today, and marketers have near-limitless options for reaching their target audiences through social media, blogs, online advertising, mobile advertising and more. With hundreds of millions of individuals having immediate access to smartphones, laptops, desktops, tablets — and 88% of commerce happening online — the marketing toolkit continues to evolve.
With all these diverse marketing options, how can marketers drill down and identify specific opportunities that will increase awareness and sales?