Digital marketing is advertising and promoting your products online through different channels. Digital marketing aims to target mobile users and attract potential customers to your business. Marketing is all about connecting with your audience in the right place at the right time. In the age of digitization, your best strategy would be to meet your customers online where they are already spending much time. Digital platforms are increasingly getting associated with marketing schemes and everyday life. In such circumstances, it’s essential to understand the key benefits of digital marketing. By incorporating technology-focused strategies into marketing, business owners can gain better outputs easily.
What Exactly is Digital Marketing?
Digital marketing is the promotion of products/services via various forms of electronic media, mainly based on the internet. Basically, the definition of digital marketing refers to all of your online marketing efforts. Many businesses have already experienced advantages of digital marketing over traditional marketing. Unlike traditional marketing, it involves the use of channels and methods for a proper understanding in the real-time scenario. Thus, organizations can analyze marketing campaigns and implement necessary steps accordingly. Regardless of what your company sells, digital marketing can work effectively for any industry. With digital marketing, you can see results much faster than you might with offline marketing. The interactive nature of digital marketing strategies helps companies to grow their client base in a short span of time.
Advantages of Digital Marketing
The main advantage of digital marketing is that targeted audience can be reached in a cost-effective and measurable way. Other digital marketing advantages include brand loyalty and driving online sales.
The benefits of digital marketing include:
- Global reach – a website allows you to find new markets and trade globally for only a small investment.
- Lower cost – a properly planned and well targeted digital marketing campaign can reach the right customers at a much lower cost than traditional marketing methods.
- Trackable, measurable results – measuring your online marketing with web analytics and other online metric tools makes it easier to establish how effective your campaign has been. You can obtain detailed information about how customers use your website or respond to your advertising.
- Personalisation – if your customer database is linked to your website, then whenever someone visits the site, you can greet them with targeted offers. The more they buy from you, the more you can refine your customer profile and market effectively to them.
- Openness – by getting involved with social media and managing it carefully, you can build customer loyalty and create a reputation for being easy to engage with.
- Social currency – digital marketing lets you create engaging campaigns using content marketing tactics. This content (images, videos, articles) can gain social currency – being passed from user to user and becoming viral.
- Improved conversation rates – if you have a website, then your customers are only ever a few clicks away from making a purchase. Unlike other media which require people to get up and make a phone call, or go to a shop, digital marketing can be seamless and immediate.
Disadvantages of Digital Marketing
Some of the downsides and challenges of digital marketing you should be aware of include:
- Skills and training – You will need to ensure that your staff have the right knowledge and expertise to carry out digital marketing with success. Tools, platforms and trends change rapidly and it’s vital that you keep up-to-date.
- Time consuming – tasks such as optimizing online advertising campaigns and creating marketing content can take up a lot of time. It’s important to measure your results to ensure a return-on-investment.
- High competition – while you can reach a global audience with digital marketing, you are also up against global competition. It can be a challenge to stand out against competitors and to grab attention among the many messages aimed at consumers online.
- Complaints and feedback – any negative feedback or criticism of your brand is visible to your audience through social media and review websites. Carrying out effective customer service online can be challenging. Negative comments or failure to respond effectively can damage your brand reputation.
- Security and privacy issues – there are a number of legal considerations around collecting and using customer data for digital marketing purposes. Take care to comply with the rules regarding privacy and data protection.
Marketing’s job is never done. It’s about perpetual motion. We must continue to innovate every day.
earch engine optimization is important for the success of any online business. Every webmaster should understand what is SEO, how it works and the traffic potential it could generate for all website types.
In this SEO guide you will learn:
- What is SEO?
- Why is SEO important?
- An introduction to SEO for begginers
- Best way to learn how SEO works
- SEO and Search Marketing
What is SEO?
SEO or search engine optimization it is a set of rules for optimizing your website so that it can achieve higher rankings in search engines organic results. It is a great way to increase the quality of a website by making it user-friendly, faster and easier to navigate. SEO can be considered as a complete framework since the whole process has a number of rules (or guidelines), a number of stages and a set of controls.
Why is SEO important?
In today’s competitive market, SEO marketing is more important than ever. Search engines serve millions of users per day looking for answers to their questions or for solutions to their problems. If you have a website, blog or online store, SEO can help you get targeted free traffic from search engines. It is strongly recommended and important because:
- The majority of search engine users (more than 65% – see graph below) are more likely to click on one of the top 5 suggestions in the search engine results pages (SERPS). To take advantage of this and gain visitors to your website or customers to your online store, your website needs to appear in one of the top positions.
- SEO is not only about search engines but good SEO practices improve the user experience and usability of a website.
- Users trust search engines and having a presence in the top positions for the keywords the user is searching, increases the website’s trust.
- SEO is good for the social promotion of your website. People who find your web site by searching Google or Yahoo are more likely to promote it on Facebook, Twitter, or other social media channels.
- SEO is important for the smooth running of a big website. Websites with more than one author can benefit from SEO in a direct and indirect way. Their direct benefit is an increase in search engine traffic and their indirect benefit is having a common framework (checklists) to use before publishing content on the site.
- SEO can put you ahead of the competition. If two websites are selling the same thing, the search engine optimized website is more likely to have more customers and make more sales.
An introduction to SEO for begginers
In simpler terms, Search Engine Optimization is a way to improve your website so that it will appear closer to the top positions in the search results of Google, Yahoo, Bing or other search engines. When you perform a search on Google the order by which the returning results are displayed, is based on complex algorithms. These algorithms (also known as search engine rankings) take a number of factors into account before they decide which web page will be shown in the first place, second place, etc. Optimizing your website for search engines will give you an advantage over non-optimized sites and you increase your chances to rank higher.
What are the main stages of the Search Engine Optimization process?
As I mentioned above, SEO is not a static process but rather a framework with rules and processes. For simplicity though, SEO can be broken down into 3 main types:
- Technical SEO – With technical SEO you can ensure that search engines can crawl and index your website without any issues. This is the first stage in the SEO process. As the name implies, technical SEO has nothing to do with the actual content of a website or with website promotion methods. It has to do with settings you need to configure to make the job of search engine crawlers easier. Usually, once you get your technical SEO correct, you may not have to deal with it again. On the other hand, if you have problems with crawling and indexing, it can negatively impact your rankings.
- On-site SEO – Rules to apply on your site and content to make it search engine friendly. On-page SEO has to do primarily with the content and other elements found on a page. Unlike technical and off-page SEO, the main focus of on-page SEO is to provide search engine crawlers enough signals so that they can understand the meaning and context of your content. Remember that search engines don’t read a page like a human so they are looking for signals to figure out what a page is all about. It is at this stage that you will deal with website structure, SEO keywords title optimizations, headings, internal links, image SEO, structured data markup and other techniques that can send the right signals to search engines. If followed correctly, on-page SEO will also improve the usability and credibility of a website or blog.
- Off-site SEO – Ways to promote your website or blog so that it can rank higher in search results. Besides the changes you can do to your website (on-site SEO) so that it ranks higher in the SERPs, the other way to improve your website’s ranking position is by using off-site SEO techniques. Generally known as link building but we prefer to use the term website promotion since a proper way to promote a website involves many more methods and techniques than building links. When a user types a search query, search engine algorithms look into their index and try to find the best pages that can satisfy the intent of the user. Pages that are good candidates appear to the first positions of the search results.
What is the best way to learn how SEO Works?
The best way to learn how SEO works is to practice SEO. Besides learning the different concepts and theories, the only way to find out if what you’ve learned works, is to apply the various SEO techniques on a website and monitor your rankings. If your rankings and organic traffic are increasing, then this means that you are in the right direction. If not, you will have to revise your SEO strategy and action plan.
The following resource can help you get started:
What is the difference between SEO and Search Marketing?
The difference between SEO and SEM is simply that Search Engine Optimization is part of Search Engine Marketing or Search Marketing as it is widely known. Both processes aim in increasing visibility in search engines. SEO is about optimizing your website to get higher rankings in the organic search results while SEM goes beyond SEO. It involves other methods that can get you search engine traffic like PPC advertising. For the purpose of doing a comparison between SEO and SEM, it is important to start with the definition of SEO, so that it is clear for everyone what the difference between the two is:
- SEO is the process of optimizing your website for the purpose of getting free traffic from search engines.
- SEM or Search Engine Marketing is over and above SEO but it’s only a subset of your overall Digital Marketing Strategy. Also is a digital marketing process with the goal of increasing visibility in search engines either by getting organic traffic through SEO or paid traffic through PPC advertising.
Google will know that you are hungry for sushi before you do.
Content Marketing helps to improve conversions because it allows you to connect with and educate your leads and customers. Not only are you working to build trust and relationships, but you are also encouraging conversions by giving consumers the information they need to make an educated purchasing decision.
Content marketing is a strategic marketing approach focused on creating and distributing valuable, relevant, and consistent content to attract and retain a clearly defined audience — and, ultimately, to drive profitable customer action.
The Top 20 Benefits of Content Marketing
This inbound marketing tactic helps you attract, engage, and delight customers and prospects by delivering quality content that provides value for everyone who visits your site. As with any new marketing craze, you may be wondering, does this strategy really have staying power?
The short answer is: Yes.
Content marketing is one of the most effective, practical, and useful digital marketing strategies that your brand can use to reach and engage more quality leads and customers. Below, we’ll cover the top 20 benefits of content marketing and explain how this powerful inbound marketing tactic can help transform the way your organization reaches and engages your target audience.
- (1) Content marketing drives conversions – Perhaps one of the greatest benefits of content marketing is that it helps your company drive more conversions over time. Research shows that companies who create consistent marketing content experience conversion rates that are nearly 6 times higher than their competitors who don’t focus on content marketing. This shows that tough content marketing often requires a significant investment of time, money, and resources, it eventually pays off by leading to more conversions.
- (2) Effective content will bring more traffic to your site – Publishing consistent blog posts that are engaging and effective can help you bring more traffic to your site over time. In fact, according to HubSpot, companies that published more than 16 blog posts per month got almost 3.5 times more traffic than those that only published 4 or less posts. If you want to improve site traffic, publish quality blog content more often on a more consistent schedule.
- (3) Build brand awareness with useful content that engages target buyers – Let’s face it. There are consumers out there who are a perfect fit for your products or services, but they haven’t yet gotten the opportunity to learn about your brand. By creating useful content that provides value for your target buyers, you can work to engage these leads and help build awareness for your brand. Brand awareness is one of the most important benefits of content marketing.
- (4) Your company can use quality content to educate your customers – Your customers and leads have a problem that your brand can solve. What better way to educate them about their challenges and your solution than to provide them with engaging content? Be sure to develop content topics around your customers’ biggest pain points to help them better understand what steps they need to take to solve their problems.
- (5) Content can help you build trust with your target audience – The more that you educate and provide value for your target audience, the more trust you can build over time. By educating and informing your target audience about their biggest challenges and pain points through blog posts and other types of content, you start to establish a relationship with customers and work to build trust based on the value that your content provides.
- (6) Good content helps you build and foster stronger customer relationships – Speaking of relationships – if you want to encourage repeat business and turn customers into brand advocates, it’s vital that you nurture your current customer relationships. One of the best ways to do this is to continue to provide value for your customers through quality, engaging content. Whether you keep them updated through email marketing content or educate them on important topics through your blog, you can work to build and foster these relationships through relevant content.
- (7) Valuable content helps you build credibility and authority – As you start to create quality content that provides value for your leads and customers, you work to build credibility and authority with your target audience. For instance, writing blog posts about common challenges that your customers face or issues that pertain to your industry helps show site visitors that you really know your stuff. This will encourage them to trust your advice and guidance when it comes to products and services that can add value to their lives. Valuable content will help you leverage all of the benefits of content marketing.
- (8) You can use quality content to position your business as an industry expert – By using engaging content to build credibility and authority within your customer base, you can start to position your brand as an industry expert. Consumers look to thought leaders in the industry to get relevant information that helps them better understand their needs and challenges. By creating quality content that others find valuable, you can start to position your business as an industry thought leader that others can look to for guidance and support.
- (9) With great content, you can help move buyers through the buyer’s journey quickly – Every consumer goes through stages before they make a final purchase. First, they need to recognize their challenge, then they need to identify and evaluate potential solutions. And finally, they will make a purchasing decision based on their research. By providing content that engages consumers during each step of the buyer’s journey, you can help guide them to making a purchasing decision more quickly.
- (10) Blogs and other types of content continue to generate traffic long after they’re published – Blogs are a lot like a gift that keeps on giving. According to HubSpot, 1 in 10 blogs are compounding, which means that these blogs help increase website traffic through organic search over time. What’s more is that though compounding blog posts only make up 10% of all blog posts, they still generate 38% of all traffic. The key to creating blog posts that continue to bring organic traffic to your site long after they are published is to focus on topics that will remain relevant to your target audience forever. This is what we call evergreen content, and it can help you get the most out of your blogging efforts.
- (11) More content gives your site visitors a reason to stick around – Your company has a short amount of time to engage consumers once they’ve landed on your site. Based on a recent Microsoft research, human’s attention span is only less than 12 seconds. Basically, that’s shorter compared to a goldfish. So it only makes sense for marketers to give it their all in creating compelling content. The more quality, engaging content that you provide on your website, the more reasons your visitors have to stick around. Content helps engage, entertain, and educate them so they better understand the value that your brand can provide.
- (12) Content helps you improve search engine optimization (SEO) and online visibility – Many consumers turn to the search engines when they are looking for a product or service. Search engine optimization (SEO) is the process of optimizing your site to rank higher on the search engine results page (SERP). The more quality content you have, the better your SEO. The more optimized your site is for search engines like Google, the more visibility you will have online. For instance, if someone searches for “What is an air compressor?” on Google and they find a blog you’ve written with the same title, this will help bring this interested person to your site to learn more about their inquiry but also find out more about how your brand can help answer their questions and solve their challenges.
- (13) Content marketing is cost-effective – Content marketing is more cost-effective than many traditional outbound marketing tactics. Since content marketing is typically easier to get started with and more popular with customers who are tired of traditional advertising messages, this tactic can often help reduce the amount of money that marketers need to spend when engaging leads and customers. In fact, according to Content Marketing Institute, content marketing costs 62% less than outbound marketing even though it generates more than 3 times as many leads.
- (14) Targeted content can help you reach a specific audience – When it comes to reaching consumers online, you need to be picky about who you attract to your website. Not every online consumer is interested in your products or services. Content that is created with your target audience in mind helps you better reach those who are most likely to be interested in your products.
- (15) Blogging and other content creation helps you bring in more qualified leads – Blog posts and other types of content not only help you bring more leads to your site, but they help ensure that these leads are relevant and qualified to buy. By creating content around topics that are relevant to your products and services as well as important to your audience, your business can work to bring in more targeted, relevant website traffic.
- (16) Publishing blogs and other types of content helps you remain competitive – Did you know that 53% of marketers say that create blog content is their top inbound marketing priority? That’s because blog content is so effective at attracting, engaging, and delighting your site visitors and customers. If you want to remain competitive in the busy online marketplace, you will need to make publishing blog content and other content assets like e-books and infographics a priority.
- (17) Buyers are checking out your content before contacting sales – Yet another one of the powerful benefits of content marketing is that it allows you to start a conversation with potential customers before sales physically reaches out. According to a 2016 Demand Gen Report, 47% of buyers view between 3 and 5 pieces of content before they engage a sales rep. This shows just how powerful of an impression your content can make before the customer is actually contacted by a real person. Make sure that you’re making the right first impression by publishing quality content that helps leads better understand their greatest challenges and how your company fits into the process of solving them.
- (18) More content gives you more touchpoints with your leads and customers –
f you want to spend less in engaging your audience, try creating enticing content for them. It has been proven to cost less than 60% compared to other standard outbound marketing techniques. And it can also generate more than 3 times the leads. The more content you have published on your site and shared on other channels such as social media, the more opportunities you have to engage your target audience. Considering that most customers will visit your site a few times before making a purchase, you will want to make sure that you have the chance to engage them and start a conversation to help guide them down the conversion path. Content marketing offers you many touchpoints where you can communicate with leads before they make a purchase.
- (19) With content marketing, you can provide value without any strings attached – Another valuable benefit of content marketing is that it allows you to provide value to your leads and customers with no strings attached. Often, businesses will only help those consumers who are actively buying their products. Though this may seem like it is in the best interest of the company, it can actually impact their ability to attract new customers and build relationships with leads. Content marketing allows you to provide value to your customers through informative and interesting content without asking for anything in return. This increases your chances to engage consumers who are not yet ready to buy.
- (20) Content is shareable – One of the best ways to increase visibility online is to get your current customers, leads, and brand advocates to share your business with others. Content just happens to be very shareable. Whether consumers forward one of your email marketing messages to a co-worker or share one of your social media posts with their friends, getting your content shared is a great way to increase visibility in the marketplace.
Content is fire. Social media is gasoline.