Being a digital marketer in Lansing, Michigan often means that working with clients outside of our area and answering the question - “What is digital marketing?”
If you do a good deal of media buying, you are probably aware that the most common misperception is, that digital marketing is limited to the offerings that media reps are out selling to businesses. These offerings tend to be advertising on content networks and websites, search engine optimization, and some social media. But digital marketing offers much broader and far reaching opportunites. People are amazed at the depth and potential of digital marketing. So, what is digital marketing?
Digital marketing makes use of devices. You will see digital marketing on computers, smartphones, cellphones,
tablets, and game consoles. By it’s vey title, digital marketing is electronically formatted marketing that lives on electronic units.
Digital marketing is online advertising. Some people call it internet advertising. You see and interact with digital
marketing whenever you are on websites or using applications that allow messaging, tile ads, corner peels, or pop-ups. Search engines (Google, Yahoo, Bing, etc.) make their revenue by presenting adds along side search results.
Digital marketing moves off-line. When you interact with a marketing entity online by telling someone your email address, you have given them access to you off-line. They can now email you. If you give them you address or phone number, they can market to you through your telephone or mailbox.
Digital marketing is content. When you read a blog, that blog is often optimized for search. In other words, smart bloggers write and present their blogs on content management systems (WordPress, Blogspot, Squidoo, etc.) or landing pages that are built in a way that search engines (Google, Yahoo, Bing, etc.) can read the keywords that the blogger is writing about.
Digital marketing uses software solutions. At InVerve, we happen to use HubSpot. But, there are many marketing software tools (Constant Contact, Maketo, Vocus, etc.) available. HubSpot happens to be the best priced option with the most robust function for medium sized businesses, which is where we do much of our consulting. Marketing software allows for companies to match up with consumers who are searching for their business category online and get found in search results. It’s often the mechanism that drive lead generation through websites.
Digital marketing is both push and pull. Push marketing is when an ad is pushed to the consumer without the consumer’s consent. Push ads can be tile ads on a website, text message, web feed, or a video ad that plays before you can view something that you want to see on YouTube. Pull advertising is now called inbound marketing. In pull or inbound, the consumer is seeking marketing content and finds it from a marketer. Common kinds of inbound content can be white papers, e-books, guides, reports, templates, and recipes. Again, the content found would be presented on an optimized page in order to be found.
Digital marketing is SEO. This is the process of getting free traffic from search engines from the keywords and phrases that are used by searchers. It is organic and not paid. When you market, you market to both people and to search engines. Search engines have to be able to find you in order to present to you users who are searching for you. So, you have to optimize everything. This includes making sure that your content is key worded, you are building links to and from your point of origin, and that you match up with what your audience is searching for in titles and the first sentence of a written piece.
This is really a good place to end this blog. The conversation starts to get long winded when we go much beyond this. For now, digital marketing is viewed by almost everyone, heard of by most of us, talked about by business people, but only understood by marketers.