What is Digital Marketing and why do you need it?

What is Digital Marketing and why do you need it?
  • Written by
  • Harri Sharman

Getting ready for Web 3.0…

More than 80 per cent of consumers do research online before making a purchase decision – which is pretty much everyone, right?

They read reviews, compare prices, download information, and check out company websites and social media – all before even getting in touch with a business. And with the rise of web 3.0, artificial intelligence and virtual reality technology, and the “metaverse”, there’s a lot going on in the digital space.

So, are you putting your best foot forward online? If you’re not, digital is where you need to be, because it’s the most measurable and therefore effective advertising medium – if you do it right.

What Exactly Is ‘Digital Marketing’?

The term covers all types of marketing that businesses do online – from websites to search engine optimisation (SEO), paid digital ads, social media, video, blogs, email newsletters and more.

For those who are still adjusting to what being online means, it can be rather overwhelming.

But as they say, the best way to get something done is to start.

Buyer Journeys

To better understand how to capture more customers, it’s a good idea to find out how your current ones made it to you, and why they decided to buy from you, and not your competitors. This is called a buyer journey – with your business as the end destination!

The three main stages are:

Awareness – the buyer realises they have a problem or need.

Consideration – the buyer knows what they need and research solutions.

Decision – the buyer decides what they want and commits to a specific solution.

The Importance of The Customer Experience

The customer transaction is no longer just a sale. It’s an experience building a relationship, and the potential for repeat business – if you play your cards right. Brands can no longer just “shout” at their customers through traditional marketing – they need to create a space to invite their potential customers into, to engage with the brand and each other.

Remember that buyer journey? This is about considering what people ‘feel’ when they interact with your business. Use digital marketing in the right way and you can influence decisions which are often based on an emotional response to your online presence. Simply put; If someone likes what they see and read, they are more likely to buy from you.

How is digital marketing changing in 2022?

One of the biggest changes is the dominance of video. TikTok is now the fastest growing social media network, with other networks now scrambling to keep users interested with short-form video content. According to TikTok, 39% of users say their purchasing decisions are directly influenced by what they saw on the platform. If you’re not using video in your digital mix, you’re missing out on high-quality engagement with your audience.

Another important area is the rise of AI – how big tech is using that to assess your marketing and websites, and how businesses can leverage that technology in their own advertising. For example, did you know that search engine AIs like Google can read the text on your website and assess how “human” it sounds, with penalties for those that don’t read fluently? No more “keyword stuffing”!

Google are also launching a new type of campaign that uses machine learning and AI to give advertisers access to this technology and use it in their own smart advertising campaigns. This will mean they will be better at showing the right 27

ad to the right person on the right platform, at exactly the right time, by using AI to work out where they are in the buyer’s journey.

Companies like Apple and Google have also announced a shift away from third-party cookies, which is likely to cause the biggest upset in digital marketing in 20 years. Brands that nurture their audiences online, keeping them engaged through personalised email marketing, social media, and their owned digital channels, will be the ones that win out.

Better Measurement

There’s no point in all this work if you don’t know what’s working, how it’s working, and what you can improve. And luckily, digital marketing is one of the easiest to measure, with accuracy too. View your revenue numbers, conversion rates, return on ad spend, and any other metric you can think of, from centralised dashboards.

Consistency Is Key

Other kinds of marketing and advertising (print, radio, signage etc.) are not obsolete – in fact they are a great accompaniment to digital marketing. Potential customers often need at least three ‘exposures’ to a brand and/or product before being engaged with it, so providing a variety of touch points is crucial.

But here’s the key to this aspect being successful – it must always be consistent. Whatever appears in a magazine, newspaper, on a display ad, or any other marketing activity, it must provide the target audience with the same message, look, and feel. And if you don’t see immediate results, be patient – sometimes it can take a few months before they start to work.

How Can You Improve Your Online Presence?

The digital space can feel like a black hole when you don’t know the ins and outs of it. It takes time and effort to set it up right, maintain it, and make the right decisions based on the analytics in front of you and the constant new technology and updates. So, don’t hesitate to get help where you need it – that’s what the digital marketing specialists at ninetyblack are here for.

For digital marketing strategy and advice contact us:
P: 0800 90 2522
W: ninetyblack.com

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