Digital marketing allows you to connect with your target audience in the right places, at the right time. More and more businesses are utilising strategies such as SEO, Paid Search and Paid Social to reach customers online and grow their businesses. In this guide, we'll have a look at what digital marketing is and what the benefits are.
More and more consumers are researching, purchasing and interacting with brands online. In fact, in 2020, 87% of consumers made a purchase online, an increase from 62% in 2010.
As a result, more and more brands are utilising digital marketing strategies such as SEO (Search Engine Optimisation), PPC (pay per click), Content Marketing and Social Media to reach customers online and grow their businesses.
No matter which strategy you use, the objective of marketing its to connect with your target audience, in the right places, at the right time. And, at the moment, those customers are online so a digital marketing strategy is a cost-effective and measurable way to do that.
Let’s have a look at what digital marketing is and what the benefits are:
Digital marketing refers to any marketing that is conducted using the internet and electronic devices. This includes channels such as search engines, social media, email, applications, websites and any new digital channels that arise and offer the chance to advertise your business.
Let’s have a look at the top 10 benefits of digital marketing for your business:
Traditional marketing makes it difficult for small to medium sized businesses to compete with larger businesses with huge budgets who are able to pay for TV adverts, radio spots and more.
Digital marketing provides an affordable and cost effective way to market your business to interested customers who are actively searching for and looking for your products or services. You can start many digital marketing campaigns with a small budget, depending on the channels you use and the results you’re looking to achieve.
For example, PPC allows you to choose and set your own budget. The amount of money you spend will affect the success of your campaign, depending on the competition in your market. If you partner with a digital marketing agency with experience in this channel, they will work with you and your budget to achieve the results you need.
The results of your digital campaigns are measurable so you’ll be able to see exactly what your return on investment looks like for each channel.
The most significant cost of digital marketing is your time investment. Implementing, tweaking and analysing your strategies can take time but, the results far outweigh the investment of your time.
The overall cost of your digital marketing campaigns can be lowered by optimising them as you learn more about what works and what doesn’t work. Some digital marketing strategies such as SEO, social media and content marketing cost nothing but your time to implement and run.
One of the biggest benefits of digital marketing is that it can level the playing field for small and large businesses. Large companies have large budgets that they can invest into television adverts, radio adverts and print advertising.
Digital marketing makes it possible for large and small companies to reach their customers in the right places, at the right time.
With SEO and Content Marketing, the investment doesn’t have to cost the earth. If you create high quality content that helps to answer the questions potential customers are searching for online, you can rank in the top of the search results for long-tail keywords.
In addition, when you run Google Ads (known as PPC) the money you invest is not the only determining factor when looking at where your ad ranks in the search results. If you have a highly relevant ad that provides searchers with what they’re looking for, you can be placed in the top of the SERPs. A larger company could invest a huge amount but, if their ad is not relevant, it’s not going to appear in the search results above a smaller brand who has a highly relevant brand but bids a smaller amount.
One of the biggest benefits and the biggest difference between traditional marketing and digital marketing, is the ability to measure and track results.
To get the most from your budget and to know whether your strategy is driving business growth, it’s extremely important to track the results while the campaign is running. Whilst traditional marketing can be effective, it's extremely hard to measure its effectiveness.
Traditional marketing doesn’t provide you with a way to track the origin of each lead without asking every person who interacts with or buys from your brand.
On the other hand, every type of digital marketing campaign has a tracking system so you can see exactly how your campaigns are performing, where your leads are coming from and the campaigns that are not working. Platforms such as Google Analytics, allow you to see where traffic is coming from and how customers are interacting with your brand at key touchpoints.
Metrics you can track include:
Tracking your results as you go along allows you to see what’s working for your business and what isn’t and tweak campaigns as you go along so you’re not spending money on campaigns that are not driving results.
For any marketing campaign to be successful, it’s important to reach the right people, on the right channels. A huge benefit of digital marketing is that it allows you to specifically target your audience based on demographics, location and interests.
Traditional marketing involves using channels that reach a range of people and hoping that someone who might be interested in your business will see the ad and engage with your business. It can be hard to generate enough leads to generate enough leads to justify your marketing costs.
Digital marketing allows you to target and reach people who are more likely to be interested in your business or who have already interacted with your business. This is something that traditional marketing cannot achieve.
When you create any marketing strategy, you will create a buyer persona that mimics your ideal and existing customers. These personas should then be used to target the people who are most likely to buy your products and services.
You can define your audience by the following attributes (these are just some of the targeting options you can use):
Platforms such as Facebook allow you to be extremely specific with the audience you target. Narrowing your focus in this way will help you to reach more of the people who are interested in your business, allowing you to spend your budget more effectively and gain more valuable leads for your business.
Before digital marketing, it was difficult to understand or analyse the customer journey because customers would likely visit a physical store after seeing an ad on TV or in a newspaper and make a decision there and then. It was difficult to know which touchpoints a customer would interact with a brand before buying.
Digital marketing allows you to track every single step a customer takes in the path to purchase. This can be as early as the moment they are triggered to find a product or solution.
It’s common for consumers to see an ad online, search and compare prices with different brands, go to a store to see the product and then buy online. Most customers now start their journey by searching online and if you’re there while they’re searching, you’re likely to be included when they’re considering a purchase.
Your leads may not convert straight away but they’re likely to remember your business so, once they get closer to conversion, they will remember you and choose you over your competition. As long as you’ve met them at the right touchpoints throughout their journey.
Whether people are sharing content on social media, engaging with blog content or browsing your website after clicking on a paid ad, digital marketing is a much more engaging form of marketing than any other type.
The biggest benefit of this engagement is it allows you to create more loyal customers and increase repeat business. The more engagement and repeat business you get, the more you can harness the power of word of mouth and attract customers without spending anything to get them.
Digital marketing allows you to create retargeting campaigns which allow you to generate maximum engagement with your brand and will help you to get more from your online activities.
Instead of a scattergun approach to targeting, digital marketing allows you to target specific people which means digital marketing offers much better conversion rates. When you focus on the people who are more likely to be interested in your brand, you increase the chances of being able to convert them. Digital marketing offers a much more targeted way to reach your ideal customers in the right places, at the right time.
You can track every single interaction someone makes with your brand online so you know instantly how many people are viewing your ad and the actions they’re taking.
Creating an effective sales funnel is the key purpose of marketing. It helps you to generate leads and sales from the traffic you drive through digital marketing.
Digital marketing allows you to build brand awareness and start driving traffic to your website. Once you have attracted this traffic, you then have a chance to convert them and a chance to keep reminding potential customers of your brand until they’re ready to buy from you. Then, once you’ve converted them, you can build loyalty and keep them too!
Retaining existing customers costs much less than trying to convert new customers so building customer loyalty will help you to spend less on trying to attract and convert new customers.
Customers that you build a relationship with and retain may go on to make another purchase or recommend you to others which helps to increase sales without spending on marketing budget. Research shows that 41% of an ecommerce store’s revenue is created by 8% of its customers so, as you can see, it’s more important than ever to retain your existing customers.
To retain your customers, you need to keep in touch with them on a regular basis and digital marketing makes this easier than ever. Channels such as email marketing, social media and retargeting allow you to offer exclusive discount codes and keep customers engaged with helpful and relevant content until they’re ready to come back to you.
Digital marketing provides a range of different strategies for different businesses to help achieve the right goals. Not every channel is suitable for every business so it’s important to think about your target audience and what’s most likely to work for your business.
For example, a B2B business who is looking to attract leads globally will have different goals and strategies to a local clothing company. The key to finding out which strategies are likely to work for you is running the campaigns you think will work for your business and analysing the results so you can improve your strategy and results over time.
Here are some of the most common digital marketing strategies you can use for your business:
Each of these strategies will allow you to reach an audience at different stages of the customer journey and lead customers through your sales pipeline.
If you want to build a successful business, digital marketing has become a must. With a wide range of benefits, digital marketing can help you to reach a range of goals, from growing sales and leads to building brand awareness.
Digital channels will continue to emerge and audiences will continue to grow so knowing the best ways and channels to use to promote your business will help you to remain successful and competitive in the future.
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