The changes in marketing over the last two years have been greater than all the innovations over the previous 100 years and like many things before, it is all thanks to electronics, computers and the Internet.
By now you will have heard the phrase ‘digital marketing’ although there are still those who consider this type of marketing a bit ‘too modern’ or ‘too complicated’. In fact, it is neither of those things and those individuals or companies who do not participate in this type of marketing risk being left behind.
Nowadays, the first thing that any business person has to ask him or herself is ‘Do I have a digital marketing strategy?‘ Believe it or not, about 50% of all businesses do not yet have a digital marketing strategy.
As a matter of interest, only five years ago, about 75% or three quarters of all businesses did not have a marketing strategy, so obviously the trend is in the right direction.
At this stage it is important to say that as far as the mid to long-term future is concerned, digital marketing strategy is not an option. It is going to become an absolute necessity as the global market expands and businesses need to reach potential customers well outside their normal sphere.
I’m going to assume, based on current statistics that half of you reading this know very little about digital marketing and perhaps that may be because of the phrase itself.
So what is digital marketing all about?
It is no more than managing your customer relationships across all channels that are available to you-and most of those nowadays are to be found on the Internet.
Both trends and customer needs are changing at an ever increasing rate. So what you do need is an accurate, up-to-date and day-to-day consolidated view of your customers’ expectations as well as preferences.
Gone are the days of people with clipboards interviewing potential customers in the streets. The sophistication of information-gathering is at such a level now, that it can not only tell you what your customer is buying and what his tastes are but it can often even tell you where they are, where they are shopping and why.
The general principle is that the more you know about your customers, the more likely you are to interact with them profitably. That principle has not changed. What has changed is that you are no longer going to be using historical data, but data which is gathered and reacted to in real time.
You may also have heard or used the phrase ‘digital channel’. That simply refers to all the software that you either use or hear about, ranging from Facebook and Twitter through to Google+ and YouTube with hundreds in between. This is the vast resource which digital marketing is plundering on their client’s behalf in order to give them that competitive edge.
There are only three things that you have to bear in mind in order to generate digital marketing success or advantage – and this is obviously best achieve by experts in the digital marketing field. I’m not talking about somebody who ‘knows a bit about computers’. I’m talking about a professional digital marketeer who will help you to:
- Collect data on your behalf and extract value from it in order to help you to make the correct marketing decisions.
- Maintain contact with your customers and your potential customers and manage what could potentially be a complicated customer relationship across a whole array of Internet channels.
- Help you to respond immediately to any changes in trends.
You may recall that 15 years ago, email marketing was all the rage and companies were pumping out emails to customers and potential customers in order to engage with them. You may be interested to know that if you do have an email list, you will probably find that over three quarters of it is redundant as customers and potential customers are so used to receiving hundreds and hundreds of emails that they no longer bother to read them. Nowadays, through digital marketing, you can engage with customers without sending annoying emails.
You may have noticed the companies who embraced digital marketing at a very early stage are the real winners. Amazon is just one example, and in fact, the founder, is now the richest man in the world.
If you have children, you’ve probably complained about the fact that they spend most of their day staring at a little screen on a smartphone. That is where the marketing needs to take place.
You may also have noticed that when you search for something on one channel, as if by magic, something similar appears on another channel to tempt you. That happens without research and without clipboards and questionnaires. It is immediate.
The present generation of buyers leaves massive data trails on those digital channels. They leave the sort of (often personal) information that they would never consider giving to a market researcher.
As a business, THAT is the information that you need to be effective, and there is only one sure-fire route you need to travel in order to optimise your chances.
Believe it or not, the equivalent of a huge marketing campaign is now within the smallest businesses reach – Digital Presence is an expert, reliable and honest digital marketeer who understands the whole new marketing ecosystem. Contact us now!