The concept of marketing has been in existence since the beginning of time, but it was during the Industrial Revolution when industry dynamics began to shift that the purposeful practice of marketing started. During this time, the world began to experience social, scientific, and technological advancements – one that Stephen Gardiner, The Former Lord High Chancellor of Great Britain would describe as: “another of those extraordinary jumps forward in the story of civilization.”
It was during the Industrial Revolution that ‘purchasing goods began to be easier for the consumer.’ It was also during this time that competition between industries in the business world began to intensify, as they now noticed the need to use alternative means to boost sales – the birth of marketing. Companies began dedicating resources, manpower, and other specialists with the sole responsibility of convincing customers or consumers that their own products are significantly better than their competitors.
Marketing has been that tool for generations that has created visibility for companies by reaching potential clients or consumers interested in their products and services. Dr. Philip Kotler, popularly referred to as ‘the Father of Marketing’, defined it as “the science and art of exploring, creating, and delivering value to satisfy the needs of a target market at a profit. Marketing identifies unfulfilled needs and desires. It defines, measures, and quantifies the size of the identified market and the profit potential. It pinpoints the segments the company is capable of serving best and it designs and promotes the appropriate products and services.”
Marketing has gone through a series of evolution, from door-to-door sales to the printing press, the electromagnetic telegraph, telephones, radio, televisions, direct mail, flyers, posters to billboards, and these mediums to get people to patronize businesses have also evolved over the years. The problem with them was that they consumed too much manpower and resources but were not as effective at bringing in the numbers, due to the limitations of their time.
Thankfully, due to technological advancements (mainly through data mining and data analytics) and accessibility to the internet, digital marketing has paved the way for efficient techniques to reach a wide demographic of people through websites, blogging, email, article marketing, social media marketing and more. More so, it has broadened our horizon of possibilities and further expanded our market from just small communities to quite literally, the entire world.
What is Digital Marketing?
Digital marketing is the use of the internet by businesses to promote their products or services by leveraging digital tools. In today’s space, marketing is the emotional connection established between your consumer and the product.
“Digital marketing, electronic marketing, e-marketing, and Internet marketing are all similar terms which, simply put, refer to “marketing online whether via websites, online ads, opt-in emails, interactive kiosks, interactive TV or mobiles” -Chaffey & Smith.
With over half the world’s population on the internet – together with the impact of covid 19, Global Digital Ad Spending is estimated to reach $389 billion in 2021. While worldwide digital ad spending achieved a modest 2.4% increase in 2020, it’s expected to shoot up 17% in 2021 according to statistics from eMarketer. Although digital marketing tools are easy to use, one needs to be cautious in their approach in order to achieve the best results. Certain requirements need to be fulfilled for ‘a successful digital strategy should revolve around adding value to the audience and creating meaningful connections with them for a long time.’ According to statistics, only 61% of marketers believe their marketing strategy is effective, regardless of this over $378 billion was spent worldwide on marketing alone in 2020.
In order to launch a successful marketing campaign, here are some marketing tips to sell your products in a digital world:
- Know Your Target Audience and Market
It goes without saying that you need to know the people you want to reach before you can tailor your product to suit them. Therefore, before you lunch your online campaign, it is important to do detailed market research. This research will not only identify possible audiences but also know who else is selling similar products, how they market them, and if the marketplace is saturated or not.
The easiest way of doing this is to put yourself in the customers’ shoes. Have you ever received bad customer service before? If yes, use this experience to learn what not to do and to know what works.
- Make Use of Content Marketing
“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.”
Content marketing uses a mixture of storytelling and information sharing to increase brand awareness, with the premise of having the viewer take action towards becoming a customer. “Content” can mean videos, skits, podcasts, infographics, articles. More and more audiences are enjoying many different content forms, and slowly moving away from written content in some markets.
As a general rule, your content should provide value to the consumer, not just advertise the brand or try to make a sale.
- Use Social Media Marketing.
Every year, social networks become more and more relevant in terms of marketing and sales. Social Media Marketing is the easiest way to reach a wide range of consumers with over 3.8 billion people using social media for an average of 2hours 24minutes daily, the odds are not against you. However, this number is constantly growing — since 2019, social media use has grown by 9.2%.
Social Media Marketing usually involves, social strategy, planning and publishing, listening and engagement, analytics, reporting, and advertising in order to build a brand, increase sales, drive traffic to a website, and build a community of followers to share and engage with content.
- Track Your Data
Data tracking is the practice of measuring and analyzing the performance of your marketing programs in order to gauge progress and success. These are measurements of marketing efforts, successes, and failure that depends on collecting data related to marketing actions and the journey of your buyers. This can include everything from website traffic to likes and engagements on social media. The ability to “collect, aggregate and calculate this data allows insight into what’s working, what can be improved, and the return on your methods.”
It’s incredibly important to have a strong marketing strategy. It is equally important to be able to track your marketing plan to maximize your results. Making use of analytical tools such as Google Analytics to track web analytics and traffic, Ad Network Conversion, KPI, Social Media Engagements, Cost-per-Click and ROAS.
- Use Search Engine Marketing
Search Engine Marketing (SEM) is a digital marketing strategy used by businesses to increase the visibility of a website in search engine results pages. Search engine marketing involves “keyword research, competitive analysis, paid listings, and other search engine services that work to increase search traffic to a website.”
Search Engine Marketing (SEM) is a broader term than Search Engine Optimization (SEO), but the two go hand-in-hand. Search engine optimization might be considered a subset of search engine marketing and aims to provide better organic search results, whereas search engine marketing helps websites attract targeted search engine users through organic searches and paid links in search results. The goal of SEO is to get a business to rank higher in Google search results, ultimately increasing search engine traffic to the business’s website.
Conclusively, you don’t have to be a rocket scientist to understand digital marketing. If you’re looking for marketing tips to start your business with in 2022, the aforementioned tips will help you sell your products in any digital space.