THE IMPORTANCE OF DIGITAL MARKETING
WHY IS DIGITAL MARKETING INDISPENSABLE IN TODAY’S AGE?
We all have a fair idea about the importance of digital marketing in today’s times. There has been an enormous shift in the way consumers prefer to derive information about a particular product or service nowadays. Moreover, the mushrooming of social media channels and the ever-changing trends owing to consumer demands have compelled business houses to spread out it branches to digital mediums for maximum reach and conversion. Today, digital marketing with all its varied types and forms constitutes a very vital part of the marketing process for any brand whether product or service-based.
Just think for a moment about a scenario where your business doesn’t have any digital presence today. You guessed it correctly. It’s unthinkable now.
Let’s take another example from our day to day lives. You will realize just how and why digital marketing is the most essential form of marketing nowadays.
When we travel by tube or bus or any other means of public transport and we look around, you will notice most heads are buried in their phones or tablets. Almost everyone is glued to their phones either on an app or surfing the web. Therefore, you have your consumers right there on their mobile devices. This is precisely why digital marketing today takes precedence over any other form of marketing.
Digital Marketing is the need of the hour
Digital marketing has become integral to the success of a business overall as well as the accomplishment of its various goals individually. The various digital marketing research institutes carry out minute research and provide data relating to the use of the internet on a daily basis. The sheer amount of time spent on the internet nowadays is baffling, to say the least. Teenagers today spend up to 9 hours on the internet, most of the time dedicated to the use of social media. Therefore, the different channels in digital marketing can be successfully utilized to better position your product among target groups.
Customers heavily rely on the data provided on the internet before making purchasing decisions and zeroing in on a product or service. Reviews from fellow consumers play a huge role in purchasing decisions. Positive reviews can turn leads to consumers quite effectively and in a big way.
We are always turning to the internet before making a decision. For instance, before ordering food from a restaurant we check the reviews on the various sites about that restaurant. It is the same in the case of home appliances or an agency for a particular service. Therefore digital marketing, or precisely, a positive impact digitally is a must for a business to earn revenues and turn target groups into happy customers.
Remember, the three most intrinsic part of digital marketing are
- Consumers – The number one priority for any enterprise whether big or small
- Content – The base/structure with which you are going to attract your leads and convert them into buyers and maintain their adherence to the brand. Content should be a mix of various elements to draw their attention to your product.
- The suitable Platform – Digital Marketing can be carried out through the various platforms available for a business entity. Whether it’s a social media platform or your own website, you need to be clear about the way you want to promote your work. A sound strategy combining the various channels is the most appropriate way to go about communicating your product to your target group.
10 reasons why digital marketing is important in today’s age
Digital Marketing provides equality of opportunity
Digital Marketing has proved to be a beacon of light for medium and small-sized businesses. One of the main features of digital marketing is a direct message. The scope of the direct message has made it possible for small and medium-sized enterprises to enter into a market that was previously dominated by only the big business houses. Digital Marketing has opened up avenues for these budget-driven enterprises to a huge extent. The personalized interaction feature makes it easier for these businesses to communicate with their leads and customers. It also results in higher conversion rates.
On top of it, digital marketing comes with a variety of tools and techniques that help these businesses to thrive and carve out a niche for themselves in the market. The only thing required from small business enterprises is adaptability, innovation and the will to take into account emerging trends. The aspect of digital marketing being quantifiable makes business a lot easier to carry on.
The different assets and tools that were earlier concentrated only in the hands of a few business houses are now available for small and medium-sized businesses which help them to gain maximum leads.
Hence digital marketing provides the option of competing with the known and elite business houses and offers an equal window of opportunity for all business houses alike.
The conversion rate is much higher and quicker
The conversion rate is the percentage of visitors that complete your desired objective on your website amongst the several visitors coming to your site. The objective can be your subscribers, your leads, your sales or your fans. The whole purpose of going digital is to create visibility so that your website can help in quick conversions. When you don’t have conversion, then your efforts, no matter how sincere they are, are moot. Therefore, it is imperative that you employ CRO ( Conversion Rate Optimisation) tools to achieve your goal.
Some effective CRO (Conversion Rate Optimisation) tools are
- Pop-ups. They ask for user information so that the site can disseminate relevant information to the visitor about the products and services offered. Exit pop-ups are known to be very effective in this regard.
- A/B testing
What is A/B testing?
In simple terms, A/B testing is the process of creating two, sometimes more versions of a page on your website to show them to your users. The users’ preference can then be measured with statistics and the page that hinders sales or conversions can be done away with. The page that provides more conversions is retained.
It is one of the best methods of creating quick conversions because it is spot on and leaves no room for guessing. In this way, there are no loopholes where the pages of your site are concerned.
Google analytics and optimization of organic and paid searches, email marketing are also examples by which you can optimize your conversions.
- Some CRO tools are Google Analytics, Mixpanel, SurveyMonkey, Sumo, Unbounce, Woopra, etc that can effectively help in changing leads to potential customers based on data.
A cost-effective way of marketing your product
Digital marketing is a boon to small businesses that can rely on heavy capitalization for Return On Investment (ROI). The different marketing channels provided by the digital medium are financially more feasible for small and medium enterprises.
According to Hubspot’s research, Digital Marketing incurs better Cost-per-lead (CPL) than other marketing channels.
Not only Digital Marketing proves to be cost-effective but it also saves a lot of time with the whole marketing process yet gives the highest returns with very little effort.
Digital Marketing automation helps in eradicating the repetitive task of sending emails, curating social media and content and helps in executing your work efficiently.
For example when a customer makes a purchase on your website, and if you install an automation software, it will automatically send an email to the consumer giving details of the purchase along with other relevant details. Invariably it helps in streamlining your entire marketing efforts and keeps a neat record of every action that has been taken on your website, Thus, saving you labour and money.
Some very prominent digital marketing automation tools are
- Active Campaign
- Infusion Spot
- Constant Contact
We talk about digital marketing being the more worthwhile and practical approach for marketing where small businesses are concerned. But is it really a more economical alternative? The answer is a definite yes.
So, how exactly is Digital Marketing cost-effective?
The expenses made for promoting your business or brand through the different marketing channels in the digital world like Email marketing, blogs, articles, social media interactions are negligible considering the immense traffic that these methods can generate for your website. The conversions a brand can make by effective positioning their product/services is huge rendering the expenses made to achieve the results meagre in the face of profits. Thus, the Cost of Acquisition is very low through Digital Marketing.
The other means of cost-effective digital marketing are as follows:
- Social Media interactions
- Pay per clicks is absolutely integral to any small business. It is what gets you noticed and the results are very encouraging. SO, every small business should keep PPC as a vital part of their digital marketing technique. That is what gets the attention of the online users long before organic search(SEO) does.
- There are other very effective email marketing tactics. With the help of tools like Mailchimp, SendInBlue, Marketo audiences can be effectively targeted.
The advantages of low-cost digital marketing techniques can be very successfully leveraged provided you have the gift of perception and a great business sense. An attractive website, an engaging landing page, good content filled with cogent and compelling texts, images and Infographics, clarity and brevity and an effectual Call To Action (CTA) are some of the key skills you have to hone to influence your visitors positively.
Another great technique is to collaborate with influencers on social media to create a positive evaluation of your product. It doesn’t cost as much and the profits derived from such influencer marketing is enormous. It helps to create great Brand Recognition and reliability.
Precision in Identifying target groups
Digital marketing provides businesses with the advantage of measuring different metrics through several tools. These metrics help to focus on target groups and leads. Based on the statistics and the Data available small businesses can create buyer persona/ personas and take decisions regarding how much they want to spend and exactly where they want to allocate that money.
The accuracy of whittling down target consumers is so perfect in digital marketing that businesses can yield high ROI in the least amount of time possible.
The target groups can further be dissected by the consumer behaviour on your website and by placing cookies so as to monitor their purchasing choices and preferences. Surveys, Instant feedback, analyzing competitors also work great to the advantage of these small businesses and can be achieved with digital marketing without any hassles.
Target groups can be identified based on
- Education Level
- Buying decisions
- Preferences relating to Brands and different products.
There are some very effective tools that help to assess target audiences with absolute clarity and precision. Google Trends, Alexa, Quantcast, Google Insights, Facebook Audience manager, AgoraPulse (Social Media) are some of the tools to help identify that niche consumer for your enterprise.
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Connect with Mobile users
As per the ICUBE report 2018, approximately 40% of India uses the internet on a daily basis. As per reports, 97% of internet users use mobile phones as one of the devices for their daily internet consumption. Now can you imagine the humongous prospect mobile marketing has in contemporary India?
Owing to the tremendous technological advancement, the usage of smartphones has increased manifolds in India. Therefore, mobile marketing is now one of the top 5 elements of digital marketing to boost the growth of business small or big. The different enterprises should put a lot of emphasis on promoting their products and dispersing information on the same through mobile marketing. The content, website, Application should be mobile compatible. Steps should be taken for smooth e-commerce transactions through digital payment methods.
Mobile Marketing makes it easier to engage with potential and existing consumers. Instant feedback helps to develop and upgrade your content catering to your focus group. Smartphones are convenient to use today for most people due to the user-friendly interface. Advertising your product to your target market becomes a lot more convenient. The main responsibility for businesses in mobile marketing is to customize the app or website for positive user experience.
Approximately 51% of users have discovered a new company or product while searching on their smartphones (Google 2018). 68% of brands use digital marketing to promote and communicate about their product or service to online users. So, just think about how effective mobile marketing can be used to publicize these businesses to focus on consumers.
Some of the advantages of Mobile Marketing are:
- Potential of going Viral
- Results Instant
- Influencer advantages
- Direct contact with leads and existing customers
More personalized medium/Ready Customer Support
Digital Marketing always aims to personalize your experience no matter which application you are in. With the help of virtual assistants like Google, Siri, and Alexa, Digital Marketing has seen an extensive upgrade in modern technology. Music applications like Spotify, Gaana provide us with personalized playlist recommendations. Same in the case of different interactive social media channels like Facebook, Instagram that recommend us videos/images/links based on our history.
Customer support is a 24×7 feature in digital marketing. whether its a small chat box or a separate icon on a website indicating were to communicate if any problem. Digital marketing gives consumers the assurance that their grievances will be heard and addressed.
In fact, according to Salesforce,
55% of consumers expect to be provided with customized suggestions
58% of consumers feel it is customary for companies to provide personalized recommendations
52% of consumers are likely to switch to competitive brands when no personalized offers are made.
The above is in the case of B2C. The percentage is even higher in the case of B2B transactions.
Increase in the trust of consumers on your product
A lot of emphases is put on the data and consumer feedback in the case of digital marketing. The plethora of social networking channels gives businesses a major chunk of data as to what is working and what is not. The reviews of the consumers on the digital medium also prove beneficial for the brand. According to a report, more than 85% of people trust products that come with a positive review from people they know or fellow consumers. Hence, testimonials, references go a long way to endorse a product organically. And they can be best found by Digital Marketing.
A great place for B2B marketing
B2B marketing is the method of business marketing where one business entity sells its products and/or services to another business entity for the latter to resell, or use them for their own products or to support the former business entity in business.
B2B marketing has great prospects in digital marketing. They have been known to leverage the use of SEO, SEM, impressive landing pages and social sites like LinkedIn, to create a network and community groups of similar businesses for transactions. It is to be noted that B2B business is a lot different in its core than B2C business.
The fundamental goal of B2B business is profit generation and the buying of quality products that can boost their businesses.
The 5 most important strategies for B2B success in digital marketing are
- Demographic targeting and SWOT (Strength, Weakness, Opportunities, and Threats) Analysis
- An attractive and engaging website delineating your expertise and innovative mindset
- Creating model customer profiles keeping in mind the business demands
- A combination of different types of content catering to your focus groups
- Client engagement and surveys
- Referrals and Backlinks
Social Media, the Goldmine in Digital Marketing
Social media constitutes a large portion of the digital world. Now, it has become an indispensable part of digital marketing.
Some of the reasons for social media’s popularity with digital marketers are as follows:
Most of your leads are found in social media
Today every potential consumer can be found in one or the other social media platform. By 2021, the number of social media users is expected to be 3.1 billion (Statista.com). Today’s consumers are aware and very judicious with their spending. They thoroughly search the net before making a purchasing decision. SO it is an excellent medium to engage with potential consumers.
A brand is more alluring if the marketing is done via social media
Social Media is primarily a place to interact with. This is why it is one of the most suitable places to market your product. a winning content and some interesting engagement strategy will work wonders if a brand markets the products on social media. The nature of social media allows an informal conversational approach about the brand and can contribute to the brand’s value.
Brand Recognition, and brand authority and brand loyalty is achieved with social media
Visibility and the easy accessibility through the different social media channels help the reputation of the brand leading to greater brand recognition, authority, and loyalty for the brand.
Targeting and retargeting customers become a whole lot easy
Social Media platforms like Facebook, Instagram help to identify ideal leads. The choices and preferences of the consumers help to place targeted ads to the potential leads. And through retargeting ads to them, businesses can ensure that the brands stay in the minds of the consumers. This way, you can effectively drive traffic to your site.
Much Higher Conversion Rates, hence larger ROI
If promoted properly on social media, a brand takes minimum time to get a consumer base. The conversion rates are huge and it results in achieving break-even point very easily.
Gaining accurate feedback and consumer insights in real-time
A brand can measure the impact of its services and products in real-time on social media. They can communicate easily with consumers and address issues and questions relating to their products.
Observing the competition which is more likely to be on social media
In all likelihood, your competition will have a social media presence. You can assess and make changes as necessary to create engaging content to drive traffic to your channels.
Mirroring your existing consumers becomes convenient
Since social media is a conversational platform you can have a fair idea about who is engaging with your existing customers. With that data available to you you can make efforts to reach out to more people and convert the leads into potential consumers.
Specific segmentation of target groups is possible
Your target audience for each social media is likely to be different, their choices and preferences varying in nature. The different social media and their character give you a fair idea about who you are targeting and tailor your content according to that social media channel. In this way, companies can customise and generate content keeping leads in mind.
When you market your product through social media the followers, friends, relatives of your potential consumers will likely be recommended your brand. As a result, they might seek out your brand on various social media platforms. Thus you must have an up-to-date social media channel available to promote your enterprise.
The advantage of IoT (Internet Of Things)
IoT (Intenet of Things) is a term that describes the communication between several internet-enabled devices. The interconnected network can be a great source of data in the coming years for digital marketers. The devices connect with via embedded sensors, Bluetooth devices, beacons, and the Cloud and can help in transmitting a huge collection of data. It’s called M2M (Machine to Machine) communication. IOT though now in its developmental stages will soon become a vital part of digital marketing. This, in turn, will open up a whole lot of opportunities for digital marketers. They will help in collecting vast amounts of data about target groups and will provide accurately and focused information on consumer taste and preferences, locations and so much more.
They will help digital marketers in minimizing operational costs with more targeted content generation, developing a strong foothold in the digital market by leveraging the data and information collected. All of these steps will result in greater productivity thereby increasing the Return On Investment.
To stay ahead of the competition and to have recurrent goodwill in the digital world, marketers must understand the immense potential of IoT in the contribution of identifying leads and making efforts towards making new sales.
Some of the benefits of IoT are
Procuring a huge amount of information on customer behaviour
IOT can help in procuring huge amounts of advanced data relating to a consumer’s behaviour. attitudes. preferences etc that can help in focussed targeting of your brand to the concerned parties i.e. the leads. it will help in charting out new ideas and providing even more relevant ads than before.
Interactive Business Model
The various devices like Smartphones, tablets, iPads with its specialized features of digital speakers and chatbots help users with all kinds of chores even things related to daily mundane stuff like shopping and paying bills. They can help in locating stores, status checks of ordered products. With IoT, it will further create a network of devices meshed to interact with consumers in a more detailed and specific manner.
IoT enables personalized targeting by tracking and monitoring the habits of the consumers, leads and existing while in turn leads to modelled content delivered for the consumers’ benefit. Personalized E-mail campaigns, tailored videos, apt recommendations that are sure to get hits, and related push notifications are some of the measures possible with IoT.
IoT results in superior dissemination of data to target groups. As a result, it is possible to better engage with leads to draw traffic to your website and create brand awareness. Also, consumers today want better transparency and wish for the companies to communicate the unique qualities of their products. There is so much competition in the market that it becomes essential to stand out. For that purpose, a novel approach to engagement is necessary. You cant be just a brand out there. You have to connect with your focus group. IoT helps in doing that.
Building Community Relations
IOT can also help in building and developing a community of like-minded individuals with similar tastes and preferences. The sharing feature in the devices can help people to share their experiences of brands with people with similar and compatible devices. The sharing can be traction for these brands and can help in identifying focus groups with much more clarity than before.
Some proven statistics from Research Institutes to prove Digital Marketing is the primary step to success in the coming years for business enterprises.
- “By 2021, Global Retail E-commerce sales will reach 4.5 trillion” (Shopify Plus 2018)
- Video Advertising will grow to a 22 billion industry by 2021 (e-marketer 2018)
- B2B is expected to outgrow B2C e-commerce sales by 2020
- 70-80% of search engine users are only focussing on the organic results
- 90% of searchers don’t make their mind up about a brand before starting the search (Status Labs 2018)
- 61% of marketers say “improving SEO and growing their organic presence as their top inbound marketing priority.” (Hubspot 2018)
- The number of voice queries increased by 3400% between 2008 and 2018
- Consumers put a lot of value to Content Marketing. According to Hubspot 2016 report, companies that published more than 16 blog posts per month got almost 3.5x more traffic than companies that published up to 4 blog posts,
- Content Marketing gets 3x more search than paid leads.
- Google drives 96% of mobile search traffic
Now some statistics related to Social Media
- 22% of the world population is on Facebook. 76% of Facebook users and more than 60% of Instagram users are on these channels every day.
- In 2019 the average online user is present in more than 5 social media channels.
- This is a very relevant piece of data. 37% of social media time is spent on interacting with content from popular brands.
- 57% of the Millennial says that social media has resulted in more relevant ads for their consumption
- As reiterated, no company can successfully function productively today without the presence of digital marketing in its strategy for overall marketing techniques for their brands. The key elements essential to optimize your business so as to generate the maximum rate of return are the following
- Email Marketing
- Mobile Marketing
- Social Media Marketing
- Search Engine Optimisation
- Search Engine Marketing
- Multimedia Marketing
- Content Creation
- Online infrastructure
- Joint ventures
- Affiliate Marketing
- Automation and Outsourcing
- Branding/Influencer Marketing