How Does Digital Marketing Work?
If you run a business, you’ll know about digital marketing. Also called online marketing or internet advertising, it’s a big deal today. What you may not know is that you don’t have to be a large national company to benefit from digital marketing.
While internet use doubled over the past decade, the web changed the way people shopped and connected with businesses. When the global pandemic hit, it forced even more Americans online to get the things they needed. In other words, local companies have to meet their customers where they’re hanging out. And right now, that’s on the internet.
We all know old-school marketing. Billboards, print ads, TV commercials, and radio are all types of traditional marketing. This was how you used to get your products or services in front of the people who would buy them. Digital marketing has the same goals, but you have to do it online. It’s a powerful, cost-effective way to advertise your business.
What exactly is Digital Marketing?
Like the other types of marketing, digital marketing is a way to reach out to your would-be customers. The difference is you are reaching out to these potential customers online.
How you do this is up to you. Since digital marketing can mean any internet marketing asset or strategy, there are many ways to go about it. Starting with your website, it’s as simple as blogging about the services and products you sell. A social media account linked to your website lets you interact with customers and clients. Email marketing and pay-per-click advertising kick it up a notch to actively start growing your business.
These are all excellent examples of digital marketing. And they’re great ways to introduce people to your company and persuade them to buy.
Online Marketing Assets
A digital marketing asset is simply a marketing tool you use on the internet. However, many people don’t grasp the number of digital marketing assets they have available. Businesses use these common digital marketing assets and strategies to reach people online.
Some common examples of assets:
- Your company website
- Written content–blog posts, product descriptions, and eBooks
- Social media pages
- Images such as product shots, company photos, or infographics
- Branded assets, including logos, acronyms, or icons
- Video content like video ads or product demos
- Reviews and testimonials
These are the basic digital marketing categories into which most assets fit. As long as smart marketers invent new ways to connect with customers online, the list will grow.
Digital Marketing Strategies
You’ve got your company website but is it actively working to grow your business? For those just starting with digital marketing, there are a variety of cost-effective strategies. Above all, a growing business can invest more in a strategy to build its customer base.
Here is a list of strategies companies use, starting with the most basic first:
Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
SEO uses keywords and key phrases to get pages or blog posts on your site to rank organically. Organic ranking is also known as natural search results. When a search engine like Google or Bing gives results from a search, you will get two types, paid-for and organic.
Organic search results are the web page listings most relevant to the user’s search query. Although it takes time and effort to get a page to rank organically, you won’t have to pay to show up in the search engine results pages (SERPs).
Search Engine Marketing (SEM)
The digital marketing strategy called search engine marketing (SEM) promotes a website’s visibility in search engine results pages (SERPs). It is also referred to as paid search or pay per click (PPC).
When one website links to another, it creates a backlink, and they are an essential element for SEO. By having backlinks to your site, the search engines see that others find your content valuable. Your website will rank better with the more high-quality backlinks you have.
Content marketing is how many people first encounter digital marketing. Reading an article on a webpage or finding reviews of a product are two ways customers consume content. Using content assets like blog posts, ebooks, infographics, or videos builds brand familiarity and leads to clicks or sales.
Social Media Marketing
Want to know a free, organic way to market your business? Social media marketing uses social media platforms like Facebook or Instagram to put your business in front of potential customers. Organically marketing your business takes more time and work, like SEO. But, if you’re willing to put in the effort, you’ll get great affordable results.
It’s not surprising that email marketing is the oldest form of digital marketing. It was the first way most of us communicated on the internet, and it’s still flourishing.
Digital marketers use email marketing to contact subscribers, promote new content, advertise special deals, or promote events.
Pay-Per-Click (PPC) Advertising
PPC advertising is an all-encompassing term for any digital marketing where you pay every time users click on your ad. There are two categories of this form of digital marketing:
· Paid Search Advertising
Search engines like Google, Bing, and Yahoo all allow text ads to appear on their Search Engine Results Pages (SERPs). This is called paid search advertising and is the best way to reach would-be customers trying to find a service or product like yours. For example, Google AdWords is a type of paid search advertising.
· Paid Social Media Advertising
Social media platforms like Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest, and Snapchat sell advertising space on their sites. Paid social media advertising makes new audiences aware that your business, service, or product exists. Facebook Ads are an example of paid social media advertising.
As you can see from our list, there are multiple ways to market your business on the internet. Successful digital marketing is complex, and there’s a steep learning curve. Because of this, many companies find an agency that will handle their online advertising in the most cost-effective way.
Does Internet Marketing Work?
All businesses can reap tremendous benefits from digital marketing. The best advantage of advertising online is that you can target anyone, anywhere, with digital marketing.
It isn’t rocket science. Most companies are simply trying to sell their products or services. If you can get your business in front of the people who want what you’re offering, the sales will follow.
Companies often get great results from marketing strategies like social media marketing or paid social advertising. Social media does an ideal job of putting your business front and center where customers-in-the-making can find you.
But, different types of digital advertising indeed fit some companies better than others. Because of this, strategies like content marketing or email marketing that take longer to develop aren’t the best choice for a local locksmith.
The whole purpose of multiple marketing strategies is to find the right mix for your particular situation. Of course, the best digital marketing tactics will vary depending on the industry or business.
Knowing that these strategies are tested and proven to work for businesses everywhere, you can experiment with confidence. Not all of them will be right for your company, but with trial and error, you’ll find what works best for you.
Cost-Effective for Your Business
Small, local businesses face a universal problem when it comes to marketing. They need to get the customers’ attention, but traditional advertising is eye-wateringly expensive. This is where digital marketing levels the playing field. It lets local businesses compete with larger companies, even when the budget is limited.
Digital marketing platforms like social media are an affordable and highly effective advertising solution. With these channels, your local business could reach the same number of eyeballs for a much lower cost. It’s a win-win; your company gets excellent exposure without having to spend much money.
Getting Started with Online Advertising
It isn’t hard to get started with digital marketing. Even if you’re beginning from scratch, setting up your online presence is easy. With a website and a business social media account, you have the assets and platform to get going.
Social media marketing and paid social advertising are great options if you want to pick one strategy, to begin with. Later you can add in other digital marketing strategies like SEO or paid search.
You can always do the DIY route, but it takes time and effort. So, if you can’t afford to make newbie mistakes, you need to turn to a company you can trust. My Basic LLC gives you digital marketing that makes your products and services get seen by the customers. Since 2008, we’ve been helping businesses like yours move into online advertising success.
There’s no question that digital marketing is the future of marketing. The benefits are enormous, and it’s easy to track how your digital marketing efforts are paying off. In addition, you can see which strategies need tweaking and which are producing money-making results.
If you would like to get started with digital marketing or kick your online advertising up a notch, we’re here to help. We love growing businesses, and we’re good at it. At Stew’s Digital Marketing we make companies prosper and grow, using high-quality assets and world-class strategies. Call us: 404-477-4512