Every business operates with the intention of boosting its sales, expanding to different regions, and increasing its brand awareness and value. Today, with growing competition and the abundance of information, marketing a company’s offerings has become the most vital task. There has been quite a tiff between the two ways of marketing: traditional and digital. However, if one examines the two forms of marketing, they will find that both have their pros and cons. Many organizations still use traditional marketing as it is a more impactful, memorable, and permanent way of advertising. A billboard advertisement or a TV commercial with a celebrity endorsement is definitely going to stay with the audience for a long time. However, what comes in the way of traditional marketing is the need for big budgets and costly resources. This impactful media of advertising is not possible for all businesses owing to financial issues. Moreover, companies have no method of knowing that they are going on the right track. They might have spent millions in marketing campaigns, but none of these campaigns reached their target audience or generated any sales or leads.
On the other hand, digital marketing is a savior for all scales of business. The 21st century has witnessed a digital revolution, and many entrepreneurs have come up with digital business models. Digital Marketing is not only the best option for them but also helps them to compete with large corporates and carve out their own space in the market.
The different reasons why digital marketing is necessary for small and large business alike are the following:
- Affordability – Traditional marketing techniques involves print media (newspaper, magazines), emails, phones, radio, as well as outdoor advertising like billboards. These means of advertising require costly resources and weigh heavily on the pockets of the marketer. Although traditional marketing is a tried and tested formula, the large budget it asks for makes it a less attractive option for small businesses. Here comes digital marketing, the new-age form of marketing, which guarantees success with minimal investment. Thus, the ROI for digital marketing is quite high, making it highly profitable. Companies need to decide on their Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) before calculating the ROI. KPIs include general performance indicators (website traffic, leads generated, customer reach) and campaign-based performance indicators (conversion rates). It also involves source-based performance indicators (organic search, referrals), and channel-based performance indicators (social networks, search engines, independent blogs).
Another aspect of digital marketing that makes it cost-effective is the ease of tracking. Analytics tools help in ascertaining if the marketing campaign is working or not. The company can re-strategize based on the channels and campaigns that are yielding positive results. It ensures that resources are directed to the right places, ensuring optimum ROI.
Pay per Click Advertising (PPC) has become a popular means of advertising. It not only targets the relevant audience but is also the right option while having budget constraints.
Digital Marketing has low customer acquisition costs (CAC). The channels it uses mostly for customer engagement and acquisition (blogs, social media posts, online interactions, emails) have negligible costs. Thus, the overall CAC is also minimal.
- Use of Analytics improves the business models – Various analytics tools available not only help in optimum allocation of resources, but they also help in improving the business model. All digital platforms have built-in dashboards that help in measuring the KPIs and analyzing them. It has all the data available and provides reports which can give an accurate picture of the various performance indicators. Thus, the marketers don’t have to guess which part of their marketing strategy is working and which part is not. They know which social media channels, what kind of content is gaining maximum attention or leading to the highest number of conversions. Accordingly, marketers can alter their strategy or tweak their business model to attain the best business results.
- Better targeting of customers – Traditional marketing, with its use of newspaper or billboard advertisements, focuses its entire energy on building the campaign, remaining clueless whether their efforts will reach the right audience or not. What digital marketing offers is a platform conducive for interaction between the companies and their prospective customers. Each social media site has its niche audience and brands who see this audience as their target group flock to these sites and showcase themselves. Thus, a person with an Instagram account clicking on an ad displayed there would be genuinely interested in it, and automatically the chances of conversion increase. If not conversion, it drives website traffic and brings the right audience in contact with the brand. In comparison with traditional marketing, digital marketing performs much better in the first stage of the Marketing Funnel (Lead Generation). Since the audience coming in contact with the marketers is already interested in the product or service, building brand awareness and nurturing the leads becomes comparatively easy.
- Personalized attention and better engagement – The main aim of companies is to provide customer delight. The way to do this is by offering customized services. All digital marketing companies use customer tracking tools to know their customers better. Starting from their lifestyle to challenges faced, demographic details to psychological attributes, brands want to know all about their customers. It helps them in providing customized services, building trust and connect with the customers, and closing more accounts. Account-based marketing, which uses personalized messages, is highly targeted and helpful while dealing with B2B accounts. Customer engagement is another parameter in which digital marketing scores more than traditional marketing. A majority of the world’s population is on social media, and they use this platform not only for socializing but also for making purchases, brand comparisons, and enhancing their knowledge about various brands. Thus, a positive recommendation for a product/ service on social media is instrumental in increasing its sales. Similarly, constant engagement with customers in the form of videos, blogs, posts, interaction on various social media sites helps brands to retain and increase their customer base. Building on the Network Effect wherein an increased number of participants enhance the value of a product or service, digital marketing (using the internet and social media) attracts better customers and drives up the sales and outreach of a company.
All forms of digital marketing, be it SEO, PPC, Social Media Marketing, Email Marketing, are all done with a common purpose of increasing the website traffic. The company’s website is the face of the brand, and digital marketing helps in getting more and more people in close contact with this face. 88% of customers search online for a brand or its product before making a purchase, and their go-to destination is the company’s website. As soon as an individual hears a positive review of any brand or chances upon an ad by the brand, his first reaction is to check the company’s website. The website should be competent enough to hold the attention of these first-time visitors.
The consumer journey is a long one, starting from brand awareness to making a purchase, and an amateur website can stall all the progress made in this journey. If the consumer doesn’t find the website engaging enough, after witnessing heavy advertising on social media or emails, he will be disappointed, and it will create a negative impression. Thus, website design is a big task, and companies should take the help of professional and experienced web designing companies. Companies providing web design services in Wollongong ensure that the website is not only visually appealing but also meets the business needs.
Just like how one strategy doesn’t fit all businesses, one standard website design doesn’t cater to all business requirements. From the structure of the website to its content, everything should be in line with the company’s target audience and their purpose. The website design should follow the latest technology and be regularly updated, both on the technical front as well as the content present on it. Today, when people are always on the run, their sole companion is the mobile phone. Gone are the days when consumers methodically use the desktop PC to avail the internet. Now, internet surfing is done readily on mobile devices, and consumers obtain all the information with the swipe of a finger. Hence, all brands should ensure that their website is mobile-friendly. Also, the website should be fast as delay by even a few seconds is enough for the consumer to switch to the next option. A fully responsive website, adjusting to the device the consumer is on, helps in providing a positive customer experience. Digital Marketing, being the most measurable form of marketing, should be able to utilize the data on the website. Thus, all the digital marketing companies in Wollongong use analytics engines to analyze the website traffic, and it helps further in strategy design. Online advertising has become a priority now, and the website design should be such that it can handle traffic brought in by online ads. The ads need to be displayed in the right places on the website for them to have the desired effect.
Just when growth and innovation were the buzzwords, the year 2020 has brought the world face to face with the most unanticipated challenge. The Coronavirus has plagued not just one nation, but the entire world, with its devastating effects on all fronts – economic, health, social. Businesses all around the globe have been affected by it, and everyone is still trying to come up with damage control strategies that help them to sustain this crisis.
The prolonged Lockdowns taking place in different parts of the world have brought about a paradigm shift in people’s lifestyles. Confined to their homes and with restrictions on travel, the internet has provided them with respite. Internet consumption worldwide has also increased quite a lot in the past few months. A survey by Forbes reveals that internet hits have increased by an amount of 50-70% during the lockdown. Every cloud has a silver lining, and this is one such opportunity for digital marketers. They have to make use of the surge in internet consumption and turn it to their advantage. With consumers spending more time on the internet, driving customer engagement becomes easier for brands. They need to build an emotional connection with their audience. In the wake of Covid-19, the human spirit is low, and the brands should aim to energize their customers. They need to build the trust and assurance that they are always there to support their customers. Also, spreading awareness about health and sanitation is the need-of-the-hour, and all brands are practicing it through their social media channels and websites. Brands nowadays are promoting social distancing by changing their logos or coming up with innovative social media campaigns to showcase the need for staying at home or using masks and sanitizers.
The pandemic has closed doors for traditional marketing, and thus digital marketing has immense opportunity to flourish. Hence, brands should have a significant online presence. Also, featuring ads on social media sites and search engines has become cheaper now. PPC has become the best way to drive website traffic and increase the conversion rate. All companies have to convert their retail services into online services. The pandemic might have imposed boundaries on travel and gatherings, but the basic consumption needs of customers can never subside. Utilizing this opportunity, brands must reach the doorstep of their customers. Many customers might be making the shift from offline shopping to online purchases, and brands need to aid them in this process. The brand’s website, app, and online content should facilitate this switch from offline to online shopping.
Content generation is another pivotal factor in keeping customers engaged. The content should be more personalized and sensitive, keeping in mind the restrictions and health hazards posed by Covid-19. Marketers can ensure that customers stay connected with the brand by sending personal emails, newsletters.
As mentioned before, digital marketing is the most trackable marketing form, and hence, marketers need to use analytics tools to track and analyze customer consumption patterns and their data usage.
Thus, digital marketing is the consumer’s guide and the biggest asset for brands in these changing times.