Digital Marketing Strategies and Channels

Marketing has always been about finding ways to reach your audience at the right place and time, and nowadays, this means reaching people where they spend the majority of their time: online.

If traditional marketing was all about creating exchanges that simultaneously satisfy the firm and customers, digital marketing is the process of building and maintaining customer relationships through online activities to facilitate the exchange of ideas, products, and services that satisfy the goal of both parties.

In contrast to the one-way mass promotion that characterised much of traditional and modern marketing, digital marketing also enables firms to engage in individual, personalised dialogues with their customers.

Adding full digital power to your marketing mix helps not only drive sales, but also builds brand identity and awareness, as well as building your relationship with consumers and achieving different other project-specific goals.

What is digital marketing?

Digital marketing refers to any form of advertising or promotion on the internet with the aim of reaching consumers. Also known as online marketing or digital advertising, this type of marketing encompasses all promotional strategies that take place in the online environment through various digital channels such as search engines like Google, social media platforms like Facebook, email, mobile applications, and websites accessed by a specific target audience or a broader audience, depending on the marketing objective.

The core principles of marketing remain the same regardless of the channel used. Essentially, marketing is based on identifying and understanding the needs and desires of customers, and then creating, delivering, and promoting products and services that fulfill those needs and desires.

Companies often combine traditional and digital marketing techniques in their activities, and digital marketing involves some of the same principles as traditional marketing:

– Market segmentation and identifying the target audience
– Creating customer value through products and services
– Promoting and communicating the value of products and services
– Building and maintaining customer relationships
– Monitoring and measuring marketing performance
– Optimizing through adjustments and improvements.

Specific to the online environment, digital marketing strategies include SEM (Search Engine Marketing), SEO (Search Engine Optimization), ASO (App Store Optimization), PPC (Pay-Per-Click), SMM (Social Media Marketing), Email Marketing, Remarketing, Affiliate Marketing, AI Marketing, CPA Marketing, and others that we will discuss further.

What is digital ADVERTISING?

Digital advertising generally follows the same principles as traditional advertising. It is a paid or unpaid form of promotional communication through a medium, used in order to increase an awareness of the product and the number of sales. To achieve its goals digital advertising also tries to favourably persuade addressees using primarily written language, graphics, and to a lesser extent, sound.

With regards to presentation, digital web ads, like print ads, are transferred by a carrier medium. For technical reasons, the whole monitor screen cannot be used as an advertising surface. Thus, only parts of a website serve for advertising purposes. This spatial limitation is identical to traditional media advertising. Print ads also have limited sizes within their carrier medium.

Nevertheless there are remarkable differences. Digital advertising is interaction-oriented. Digital ads are meant to be directly activated. This activation of digital advertising is a form of interaction, a kind of user response which provides evidence for the novel role of addresses. But not only the communication process is interaction-oriented. Different types of web ads allow different degrees of interactivity.

Digital advertising offers advantages over other media in that:
– It is interactive. Consumers can pick and choose the information, sales message, and buying modes that fit their individual needs.
– It offers the best push and pull advertising in that merchants can pull consumers in based on their advertising and push material out to them once they have created a relationship.
– Because users select the sites they visit, advertisers are almost guaranteed highly qualified prospects.

What is digital strategy?

The digital marketing process occurs in seven stages. The process begins with the formulation of corporate and business-unit strategy, then moves to framing the market opportunity, deciding the marketing steps, designing the customer experience, designing the marketing program, crafting the customer interface, and evaluating the results of the marketing program as a whole.

The AIDA formula (Attention, Interest, Desire and Action) also works for the explanation and structure of digital marketing, although with a slightly different polarization. Great emphasis must be placed on the first step, getting attention. Comprehensive information that might show a product’s advantages and users’ benefit is difficult to be given on the small space of web ads. Often, the linguistic strategy of persuasion follows the principles of simplicity and uses imperative instructions to initiate action, supported by graphic to create interest and desire. Nevertheless, it seems almost impossible to draw a line between defining which elements are accountable for the initiation of each AIDA step.

The internet has and will continue to affect marketing strategy for new-economy firms in four broad ways:
1. through finer gradations of segmentation
2. through faster cycle on marketing strategy development
3. through increased accountability of marketing efforts
4. through increased integration of marketing strategy with business strategy and operations

The internet offers a rich supply of tools to reach and influence targeted demographic groups. Each service has its strengths, weaknesses, and audiences. By understanding these differences, online marketers can find the right markets for their products.

What are digital channels?

Marketing channels, the place element of the marketing mix, are ways of making a product or service available for the target audience.

A firm can have an excellent product at a great price, but it will be of little value unless it is available where the customer wants it, when the customer wants it, and with proper support and service.

A company can choose not to use any channel intermediaries but, rather, to sell to its customers through digital direct channels (owned media: website, social accounts, newsletters), but sometimes resellers (virtual shopping malls, comparisons shops, and affiliates and other types of paid media) are critical to the success of a company’s marketing program.

The distributor channel in a well-integrated marketing program also serves as a form of reminder advertising. The consumer sees the brand name and recalls the advertising. More about this in a future article on the process and benefits of remarketing.