digital marketing

Digital Marketing Explained in Simple Terms

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The evolution of digital marketing and its integration

 

Do you wish to cut the noise and stand out in today’s digital world? This article is being written to equip you with the confidence for testing out and investing in the right direction when it comes to digital marketing strategies. Marketing is all about connecting with the right audience at the right time, using the right message. This means you need to meet them where they are spending their time the most: The Internet. I earnestly hope this post will greatly benefit all the digital users, whether you are doing freelancing, working for a business, running a business or into mentorship.

It is improper to dive right into digital marketing trends without having a proper understanding about the aspects of marketing. If you get the below concepts right, you can have a mastery over digital marketing and reach your set goals successfully.

The Fundamentals of Marketing

cavemen selling
PC: retentionscience.com

Marketing is all around us. We have been accustomed to it for so long, that we take it for granted. The history of marketing dates back to the evolution of mankind. With the development of voice and language, word of mouth marketing evolved – and it is still here to stay as the best channel of marketing.

“Marketing is the science and art of exploring, creating, and delivering value to satisfy the needs of a target market at a profit.  Marketing identifies unfulfilled needs and desires. It defines, measures and quantifies the size of the identified market and the profit potential. It pinpoints which segments the company is capable of serving best and it designs and promotes the appropriate products and services.”

– Dr. Philip Kotler, American Marketing Author, Consultant, and Professor

Marketing is all about making change happen – whether it is about changing your superior’s mind or bringing about a change to your local non-profit. How does marketing start? Well, it starts even before the product is created, and extends even after the sale is made. You might think it a bit contradictory, but that is the true fact – the process of marketing starts right when you start analyzing your customers and their needs in order to create your product. And it continues post-sales by turning your customers into your brand advocates with lifetime value.

An important aspect to remember is, do not oversell your product – if you create a great product, it sells itself. For instance, Apple’s original iPhone was created at a time when there was complete dissatisfaction with the existing mobile phones. The product was expertly crafted and solidly designed, along with word-of-mouth marketing which turned its users into its brand ambassadors. The key to success is to customize your technology to the local market, rather than waiting for the market to adapt to your technology.

Why Communication is Important

How to communicate effectively is an important life skill to learn. Effective communication helps a lot in marketing. Communication can be verbal (word of mouth), written (blogs, emails, newsletters, books and eBooks), via audio (podcasts, audio books) or visual (images, infographics, videos).

What is stopping you from communicating effectively?

The best place to start, without question, is to start! Joseph Sugarman gives a good suggestion in his book The Adweek Copywriting Handbook – “Copywriting is primarily the mental process of first getting your thoughts organized in your mind and then eventually transferring them onto paper.”

Keep your communication simple and write like you talk to the person next to you. Join the conversation in the receiver’s mind, so you fit into their shoes and convey the right message at the right time. Do not do multitasking while communicating – it is best to avoid distractions and stay focused. An important aspect that is overlooked in communication is that you should listen more and talk less. By being an engaged listener, you not only understand people better and make them feel heard, but also build a stronger connection with them.

Here are some of the benefits of effective communication in business:

  • It helps build strong relationships with anyone – be it a customer or an employee
  • It helps with building trust
  • It facilitates creativity and innovation
  • When the message is clear, there are less chances of misunderstanding
  • It aids in the overall organizational growth

Digital marketing vs. Traditional marketing

Traditional marketing is one of the oldest forms of marketing and has been widely adopted by marketers since it is a tried and tested method. Traditional marketing is everywhere and is inbuilt into our daily lives, such as the mails we receive and the newspapers we read (not to mention the pamphlets that accompany these newspapers). Traditional marketing can be implemented through direct sales, direct mail (postcards, brochures, letters, fliers), tradeshows, print advertising (magazines, newspapers, coupon books, billboards), referral (also known as word-of-mouth marketing), radio, and television.

Here is a creative billboard by BBC World – a corner board educating the readers on viewing the news in an unbiased way – to see both sides of the story.

According to statista.com, Television Advertising across India generated the highest revenue amongst all other ad mediums in 2019, amounting to 320 billion Indian rupees. Print and Digital Advertising revenues made up the top three that year. The significance of traditional marketing can be understood by this figure. The advantage in traditional marketing is that it is the quickest and effective route to your local audience, and the marketing material once created can be re-used.

In a world where over 170 million people are consuming digital content on a daily basis, marketers found their opportunity to meet their customers where they are. This marked the evolution of digital marketing.

Digital Marketing is defined as a marketing approach that primarily relies on the internet to connect with the target audience through various digital media channels and platforms.

These are the different components of digital marketing:

“In the digital economy, customers are socially connected with one another in horizontal webs of communities. Companies may continue to use segmentation, targeting and positioning as long as it is made transparent to customers.”

Philip Kotler in Marketing 4.0

First, you need to set your digital marketing goals – whether it should be for increasing your brand awareness, growing your community, etc. Once this is done, select the right marketing channels for achieving the set goals. For example, if you want more sales, then running paid ad campaigns on Google and Facebook would be ideal. The next step would be to plan your process using the marketing channels you have chosen. Create a digital marketing strategy that is aligned with your set goals.

Now that we have understood what traditional marketing and digital marketing are, the question shouldn’t be “To market traditionally or to digitally?” but rather, “How do we use both tactics to market effectively?”

CATT Marketing Funnel

Here is an effective marketing funnel created by digitaldeepak.com – the CATT model. How does this function?

  • The CATT model works on the formula Wealth = n^CATT 
  • [n] = Niche: This is the crux of your success. Identify the niche with a hungry market – these people have a problem that you would be able to solve.
  • [C] = Content: Create valuable content that attracts people from your niche, so they become your tribe.
  • [A] = Attention: Drive attention – and thereby traffic – to your content using SEO, Social Media, Paid Ads and Referrals.
  • [T] = Trust: Build trust with your audience. Start with building your familiarity and have transparency. Some of the methods to build it are trip wires, marketing automation and retargeting. Sending out very personalized communications based on your target audience helps a lot with gaining trust.
  • [T] = Transaction: Convert your leads into customers with natural sales methods – when your target customers already trust you, sales will happen naturally.

Integrated Digital Marketing

You would wonder how to arrange your different marketing channels to work in order to promote your products or services. Integrated Digital Marketing gives you the exact process for it. It basically aligns the message of your marketing channels, so you have a unified marketing voice.

Integrated Digital Marketing is the art and craft of using all the digital marketing methods available today in such a way that each digital marketing channel complements the other by playing its strengths rather than trying to reach the goal of increasing revenues and customer base on its own.

This process flow explains how Integrated Digital Marketing works. You could notice here that content occupies the centre-seat. It is important to address the needs of your audience in your content – the process starts with it. Research the right keywords to write your content. You could publish it to your blog, your YouTube channel and other platforms. Then drive attention to your content using paid ads, SEO and social media. Whenever you publish content, send it to your email list. This is how you build trust using email marketing. When trust is built, it becomes easier to transact with them, amounting to sales and conversion.

An integrated digital marketing strategy is very powerful in that it can ensure you are the first brand a consumer thinks of when the need arises. Just make sure to implement a long-term, consistent marketing approach to it.

Personal Branding: MassTrust Blueprint

I would like for you to think about this for a moment.

What do you want to be known for?

You would like to be known as a painter, a marketer, a doctor, a lawyer, an architect, etc.

If you are good at something and the world does not know about it, then you cannot become successful. This is where Personal Branding becomes essential – to share your story with the world. When people market themselves and their career as brands, that is Personal Branding.

“People interested in personal branding need to start marketing themselves like the celebrities and influential people that they look up to every day.”

– Jason Wong, CEO of Wonghaus Ventures

People always want to hear from people. Create a story around your brand that captivates your audience. The impact you leave on others matters most, so ensure to leave a positive impact. If you keep a positive attitude, your audience will automatically help you grow your brand. A personal brand can give rise to many brands from your influence, so be prepared to leave a legacy!

How to evolve your personal brand? Here are the steps to achieve mass trust:

This is how a personal brand is successfully evolved.

  • Learn – Learn a new skill. For example, if you would like to learn digital marketing, understand its concepts and put it to practice.
  • Work – Implement what you have practised. This will help you have an authority in your field.
  • Blog – When you learn your skill well and work on it, proceed to write about your learning and experiences. This will make your content very unique and help with building your personal brand.
  • Consult – Once you have you publish consistently on your blog and establish your authority in your niche, you could start to consult other businesses with your gained expertise. Execution will be at a minimum level at this stage.
  • Mentor – Start mentoring others who want to become like you. Once you start mentoring, you would also be scaling your knowledge. At this stage, you could start training programs for your niche.
  • Startup – At this stage, you have the expertise in your niche, have an understanding of your market and its challenges, and you are ready to start your product/service business.

The technologies of today will greatly determine the shape the digital marketing of tomorrow. Knowing what the next big trends are will help you stay ahead of the curve. I hope you find the evolution of digital marketing journey an exciting one! Please leave your comment below if you like the post, and for any suggestions you might have. I wish you well in your marketing efforts.

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