You’ve probably heard that Digital marketing can help you grow your business. But if you want to put it to use you need to first understand exactly what is digital marketing. And if you want to learn what it is you’re in the right place. In this “Ultimate Introduction Guide to Digital Marketing” we will cover what digital marketing is, why it is important, what the benefits are, and more. So keep reading if you want to learn what digital marketing is, or why you should use it instead of or in addition to traditional marketing.
Definition of digital marketing
First, let’s define what digital marketing is, shall we.
The term digital marketing is an umbrella term that covers a wide variety of activities, all of which can be used to do digital marketing. These activities may be done on an individual basis (such as doing email marketing alone). Or they can be done on an interconnected basis (such as doing many digital marketing activities as part of a larger strategy).
It is hard to truly capture what digital marketing is in a few lines. This is because it includes a wide variety of activities, each different and unique (ex: email marketing vs advertising vs SEO). But providing a definition is a good place to start. Later, we will dive into it in more detail.
So let’s look at some definitions of the term “digital marketing” from some different sources on the web:
Wikipedia defines digital marketing as the following:
And the American Marketing Association defines digital marketing as:
Most definitions on the web are similar.
So it’s fair to say that digital marketing is a form of online or digital marketing that utilizes the internet and electronic devices to promote something, whether it is a brand, product, service or person.
Digital Marketing synonyms
It is also helpful to learn synonyms of digital marketing because different people refer to it by different names. It is sometimes called online marketing or internet marketing if being referred to as a discipline in general.
Of course, you may also hear people refer to it by the name of one of its sub-disciplines, such as email marketing, content marketing, social media marketing, etc. Just be aware that these are components of digital marketing, but no single one of them makes up digital marketing as a whole.
What can you promote with Digital marketing?
Now that you have an idea of what digital marketing is it is helpful to understand what you can use digital marketing for. You can use digital marketing to promote and sell products, services, a brand, or even an individual. Below we give more detail into the use of digital marketing for each of these purposes.
- Businesses that sell physical goods can use digital marketing to promote individual products or groups of products.
- Service-based businesses can use it to promote individual services or groups of similar services.
- A business can promote their brand and build brand awareness.
- Lastly, you can use online marketing to promote individuals (also known as individual or personal brands).
What else can Digital marketing be used for?
So what can you do with digital marketing? Or in other words what can you use digital marketing to accomplish? Great question! Here are some examples. Companies can use online marketing to:
- establish and grow their brand
- grow traffic
- generate leads
- nurture leads
- convert prospects
- build communities of engaged followers
- retain customers
- delight customers
Categories of internet marketing
Technology keeps advancing so marketing online is also constantly changing. So this list will evolve and change over time. However, there are main categories that most digital marketing activities fit into. These include the following:
- Web design and development
- Search engine optimization (SEO)
- Pay-per-click (PPC) / search engine marketing – think anything you pay when someone clicks, such as Google Ads, Bing Ads, display ads, Facebook advertising, etc.
- Social media marketing
- Email marketing & automation
- Content marketing
- Inbound marketing
- Influencer and Affiliate marketing
- Video marketing
- Mobile marketing
Digital Marketing FAQs
What is digital marketing?
Digital marketing uses the internet and online (digital) platforms to promote products, services or brands/individuals. Digital marketing can be executed on many devices, including computers, tablets or mobile phones.
Businesses use digital marketing strategies to establish and grow their brand, promote their products or services, attract and convert prospects, and retain and delight their customers after a sale.
Many different digital marketing technologies and strategies can be used to accomplish these goals. And many different channels can be utilized, such as search engine, social media, email marketing, etc.
How is digital marketing different from traditional marketing?
To understand what digital marketing actually is it’s important to understand how it is different from traditional forms of marketing.
Digital marketing is different from traditional marketing because it is purely online in digital formats using digital channels and digital content (via content marketing).
Traditional marketing includes offline marketing activities, or in other words, anything that is not online. Examples of traditional marketing are direct mail marketing, billboards, television, radio, trade shows, etc.
What is a digital marketing agency?
A digital marketing agency is a specific type of business (known as an agency) for hire that performs digital marketing services for clients.
Agencies can either be focused on one specific area of digital marketing or they can be full-service agencies that offer many different services.
Likewise, clients may hire or retain an agency to perform a single service or multiple services, depending on their needs.
Why is digital marketing important for small businesses?
We hear many times that small businesses cannot afford or handle doing digital marketing. We feel the truth is the complete opposite. Digital marketing is critically important for small businesses. So in this quick Digital Marketing 101 article we answer the question “why is digital marketing important for small businesses?”
Digital marketing allows small businesses to reach a much larger audience then they would be able to without digital marketing.
Smaller businesses benefit from digital marketing because it gives them exposure that would be hard to gain using only offline, traditional marketing methods.
By using Local SEO and SEO local businesses can show up in local search results and organic search engine results.
Social media marketing allows small businesses to create an online presence, increase their exposure and build an engaged following.
A high converting, optimized website and other digital marketing techniques allow small businesses to capture contact information and communicate (and keep top of mind) with their customers.
As a result, Digital marketing puts small businesses on more of a level playing field with their larger competitors.
Starting digital marketing activities can be tricky as there is a learning curve. In turn, in order to effectively implement digital marketing small businesses should consider hiring a digital marketing agency.
What is the role of digital marketing to a company?
Digital marketing plays an important role in companies today. It helps businesses in many ways. Digital marketing can increase a business’s digital (online) brand exposure, promote their products and services, convert prospects into customers, and help them stay engaged with their target audience.
Digital marketing can be used for many different goals, such as communication, brand awareness, lead generation, lead nurturing, conversion, and delighting customers.
What are the benefits of digital marketing?
If you are not already active in digital marketing you might wonder if it’s right for your business. So it’s important to understand the question “what are the benefits of digital marketing?”
Digital marketing allows you to reach a large audience efficiently. The reason is because most people today spend a lot of time online and use some form of the internet to get their information, news, updates, etc.
Digital marketing allows you to strategically place and promote your brand, products, services, etc. online in front of a large or niche audience. This can help your businesses reach your specific target audience that would otherwise be more costly and difficult to reach.
Get Started With Digital Marketing
So as we learned digital marketing is a great tool for promoting your business, products and/or services. It is also great for growing your brand, generating and nurturing leads, and converting leads into customers. It is even helpful for boosting customer loyalty high and keeping customer happiness at a high level.
But there is a lot that goes into effective digital marketing. Putting time, effort and money into ineffective efforts makes it hard to get your business real results. So if you need help with your digital marketing then contact us. Let our agency help you. We provide a full-suite of digital marketing services. Contact us for a 100% free consultation to get started.
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