First used in the 1990s, the term ‘digital marketing’ has since evolved to encompass many different strands of online selling, growing more sophisticated during the first decade of the 21st century.
The evolution of digital media and the proliferation of devices to access it have created many new avenues for the promotion of products or brands, which in turn has fuelled the rapid growth of digital marketing.
Digital marketing differs from traditional marketing because it involves the use of channels and methods that enable a company to analyse its marketing campaigns and understand in real time what is and isn’t working.
Digital marketers can monitor things like what is being viewed, how often and for how long, what content works and doesn’t work, sales conversions and a myriad other website related and Internet based analytics. Although the Internet is most closely associated with digital marketing, other channels include wireless text messaging, mobile instant messaging, mobile apps, podcasts, electronic billboards, digital television and radio channels.
All businessmen know they need to market, but the trick these days is to split a marketing budget between traditional and online marketing, then to allocate the online budget across the various channels. Worldwide, digital marketing spend is forecast to increase to 35% of total budgets by 2016 and 28% of marketers have reduced their advertising budget to fund more digital marketing.
This is an important move away from traditional marketing towards marketing online where success comes down to the analytics. It’s much easier to track performance and measure ROI with reliable website traffic numbers which provide a clear picture of an online campaign’s viability. Digital marketing is very flexible and with the ability to track success within hours, companies can quickly turn around changes or update strategies faster than ever before.
Online display advertising such as banner ads, re-marketing, and re-targeting also capture a hefty 34% of total online spend and about 10% of total marketing budgets. Organic search is the ideal however, because it means customers are finding you by themselves. But it takes lots of different threads like social media shares, word-of-mouth, engaging cross-platform content, and consistent fresh content to get them there.
Digital media is everywhere and consumers have access to information any time and any place they require it. It’s an ever-growing source of entertainment and news, shopping and social interaction. When all the threads you weave along the way come together, it can have a big impact on the bottom line. It also makes all the digital marketing data you collect that much more valuable in determining your content strategy, especially as we enter a new year.