The Internet of Things (IoT) is the new air we breathe now. It’s there everywhere. In our daily lives, in business processes, in selling products, in offering services, etc. The entire world is now more or less digital. Businesses are transforming their traditional processes and adopting digital methods; banking, matrimonials, and shopping happen online; new jobs are created, etc. All this is possible because reaching out and getting in touch with the customers is now easy, thanks to digital marketing. Businesses now have different avenues to know and understand the consumer better, and the service offered is catering to the consumer’s needs. Let’s understand the digital marketing fundamentals.
Digital marketing is not a standalone effort, but a culmination of various different marketing methods, taking place online. Each of the marketing strategies below is an important attribute and contributes to the success of marketing digitally, as a whole.
SEO and SEM
You go and search for a particular term on Google. Say, ‘buy health insurance’. When the search page comes up, you’ll see the first few links generally which say Ad in a small box around them (Refer to figure 1). They are a result of SEM (Search Engine Marketing). The businesses want their products/services to be visible at the top of the search results so that it gets the maximum reach possible. Hence they advertise on the internet using tools like Google Adwords, Bing Similarly, getting your product/service page on the 1st page of any search engine organically is called SEO (Search Engine Optimisation), wherein you’ll make tweaks to your website, optimize it with the help of keywords so that it automatically ranks higher. The search results which appear on the 1st page below the ads are websites that have a very sound SEO in place.
Content is very integral to digital marketing. In the very initial stages, content wasn’t given much importance due to the consumption of time to create it, unsatisfactory ROI, and a lack of understanding of the audience. Then, with the emergence of better technologies and platforms like Facebook and Instagram, the audience became wider and reach became easier. Consumers started to look for content which would please them and make them connect with the brand. That’s when businesses started creating content to build brand loyalty and awareness. Content creation in its various forms is blogs, emails, newsletters, website landing pages, Instagram captions & stories, Facebook updates, YouTube videos, etc.
Emails are a very effective way to reach millions of people, for FREE. It involves sending emails to a database full of contacts, who can be subscribers to your weekly blogs, or people who’ve clicked on your ad and registered, or people who’ve signed up to your product updates, etc. The emails can then be monitored as per how many people opened it (tells you if your email subject was effective or not), how many people clicked on the link inside the email, how many people responded or how many unsubscribed. This forms the basis of email marketing strategies for brands.
Social Media Marketing
Social media is a necessity for brands nowadays because not only does awareness take place there, but the building of customer trust, query response, and even brand PR is handled via social media only nowadays. A brand's reputation can be improved or degraded in a matter of a second, online. For instance, the latest tweet by actor Rahul Bose on JW Marriot’s billing him INR 442 for a pair of bananas, went viral. Many brands took to the opportunity and sold their products/vouchers at INR 442. There are 3.2 billion social media users worldwide according to the statistics by Oberlo. That kind of presence is powerful, and it is a great place for the businesses to engage in meaningful conversations with their audience present on the platforms. Facebook ads, Twitter Ads and Instagram ads also allow advertisers to reach wider geography and demography than the ones already subscribed.
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