What Is Digital Marketing?
Digital Marketing is the art of getting new customers, retaining old customers and satisfying active customers mainly by means of digital channels and platforms like website, mobile applications, Google my business, social media, search engines, emails, etc.
Why Is Digital Marketing Important for Local Businesses?
Benefits Of Digital Marketing For New Local Businesses
- Get New Customers - Getting new customers is essential for a newly launched business. Traditional marketing like TV ads, or posters and banners are no longer cost efficient in today's digital age. Digital marketing will cost a lot less than traditional marketing and provide a lot better result as well. This was, as a new business you can carry out frugal marketing and still attract customers to your newly launched business.
- Increase Awareness - Your prospects need to know your business exists. Hence running an awareness marketing campaign in your neighborhood is an absolute requirement for a new business. Running a digital marketing campaign for the awareness of your business will put your business in front of unaware prospects in your local area and help your business get started.
- Build A Community - Digital Marketing can help you build an online community of your new customers and prospects. By building a community like a Facebook page or a group, you can stay in touch with customers and prospects in a very cost, energy, and labor efficient manner. An online community of loyal customers and fans will bring your future marketing cost to almost zero as you can update them for free via multiple digital means like Facebook, WhatsApp, and emails, etc.
- Test, Analyze & Optimize - When you carry out marketing digitally, you can track all activities to the last click and expenses to the last dime. This way you will know exactly which ad, strategy or campaign is working and which is not. This will help you fix your marketing and optimize it in very cost, labor and time efficient way relative to traditional marketing.
- Scalable Marketing - Digital marketing is very flexible when it comes to marketing expenses. With digital marketing, you can start with a budget as low as Rs. 50/day. Traditional marketing can never provide such frugal marketing experiences. As your business grows, you can increase your marketing budget accordingly.
Benefits Of Digital Marketing For Established And Old Local Businesses
- Save Time, Money & Energy - As an established business you must be spending tons on traditional marketing like print ads, TV ads, etc. When you upgrade your traditional marketing to Traditional + Digital Marketing, you can get much better results at a much lower price. Digital marketing will also consume much less time and energy compared to traditional marketing.
- Broaden Your Reach - An established business can reach an entirely new set of prospects with Digital Marketing. Traditional marketing is limited in its reach whereas digital marketing can help you reach out to any age group, and gender, and location, any group with a particular interest, etc with just a few clicks.
- Resume Growth - Most of the traditional businesses have reached a saturation point. These businesses have grown to a particular point and are now completely stagnant in terms of growth at that point. Digital Marketing can help such local businesses break this growth barrier and take the stagnant business to new heights.
- Avoid Decay - A lot of successful businesses that were thriving merely 10 years ago are nowhere to been seen today. Even giant businesses like Kodak, Yahoo and Nokia face this decay if they don't evolve with time and technology. Consider Nokia's case, they failed to evolve their operating system and they didn't even upgrade to android. This led to their gradual decline and even today they are struggling to get back their market share. Digital marketing is the upgrade in marketing that established businesses need to make today to avoid decay. If you haven't already started marketing your established business digitally, you should start it immediately. Get our Free Consultation to help you get started.
- Build A Brand - Digital Marketing can help you build a brand of your local business. Building a brand can a hectic, confusing and resource intensive process. With digital marketing, you can upgrade your local business to an internationally known branded business in just a couple of months.
Examples Of Digital Marketing
Some of the examples of Digital Marketing are:
- Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
- Content Marketing
- Pay Per Click Advertising (PPC)
- Social Media Marketing
- Email Marketing
- Affiliate Marketing
- Native Advertising
- Online Public Relations
- Marketing Automation
- Inbound Marketing
Refer to our Digital Marketing post for a detailed understanding of each of the above example.
How Can A Local Business Implement Digital Marketing?
Starting with digital marketing may feel like taking a dive into the abyss for many local business owners, especially if you are new the world of online marketing. But relax. Nobody knows everything at the start. Digital Marketing is one of those things where you learn as you go and the learning process never truly ends.
Speaking of budget, Digital Marketing can be started with ZERO budget. A lot of digital marketing activities can be done without spending a penny like social media pages and groups, Google My Business listings, guest blogging and many more.
Basic Terms Used Below That You Need To Familiarize Yourself With:
- Digital Marketing: Digital Marketing is an umbrella term for all your online marketing activities. Every marketing effort you put on your website, social media, blog, Google my business, etc is considered Digital marketing.
- Inbound Marketing: This is a type of Digital Marketing where prospects and approach the business for its product and services instead of the business approaching its prospects. Sounds interesting right? Inbound marketing basically involves providing free educational content such as this article to provide value to the prospects for free and establish trust. This way the prospect recognizes you as a leader in the industry and approaches you to get his problems resolved.
- Content Marketing: This is a subset of Inbound Marketing where you publish high-value blogs, ebooks, articles, videos, etc and provide this value-packed content to your prospects for free to build trust and authority. Content marketing also helps you to increase awareness about your business and brand.
- Buyer's Journey: The process through which each buyer goes through to eventually buy products or services from your business is known as Buyer's Journey. This journey consists of three main stages:
- Awareness Stage - The buyer realizes they have a problem.
- Consideration Stage - The buyer defines their problem and researches options to solve it.
- Decision Stage - The buyer chooses a solution.
Set Your Digital Marketing Strategy
This the stage where you set your digital marketing strategy and decide what result you are planning to get from your digital marketing efforts within a set timeframe and budget.
- End Result - Decide what result you want from your Digital Marketing campaign
Three main results you can choose from are:
- Brand Awareness
- Lead Generation
- Reactivation Of Or Growth From Existing Customers
- Set A Measurable Goal - Add a metric to your end result.For example:
- X Number of leads from a piece of downloaded content in 1 month
- % of old customers buying a secondary product within the year
- % Follower growth on social media within 2 weeks
- Know Your Audience - Before you spend any money on ads you should know who should be the target audience of your ads. What are the demographics that define the perfect audience for your business? Focus on the age, sex, location, etc of your previous clients to get the best idea of a perfect audience for your business.
- Know Your Brand - Your brand is how and why your customers choose you over your competitors. Think of it as your company's personality.These questions can help you know your brand:
- Who is your customer?
- What problem do you solve?
- What is your unique selling proposition?
- What is your brand promise?
- From the answers to the above questions, write a description of your business.
- Make the description in the last step shorter.
- Watch Your Competition - You should know what you are up against so you can learn from their triumphs and mistakes.There are three types of competitors:
- Direct Competitors: The brands that offer the same products or services as you.
- Indirect Competitors: Those brands that may offer a different product but compete for the same budget or space as you.
- Comparators: These might have a similar look and brand to you, or be other brands that your target customers use frequently too.Not sure how to gather intel on your competitors? Get a Free Consultation from an ABS expert Digital Marketer and get a jump start.
- Get Ready To Measure - Measure every measurable aspect of your digital marketing campaign. If you don't measure you can nither understand nor improve your digital marketing.For Example: If you posted a new blog post that included some video
content on the page, look at how many:
• Views you get
• Views of the video
• Engagement with the video (likes, comments, shares)
• Clicks to your blog CTA
• Leads from the post
• Increase in leads from the post vs. posts without videos
Digital Marketing Techniques
Now that you have your strategy in place, you know who you are marketing to and what goal you are planning to accomplish. It's time to get started.
The different techniques or channels you can employ are:
- SEO Audit
- User Experience
- Paid Search Ads
- Display Advertising
- Sponsored Social Post
- Email Marketing
- Native Advertising
- Content Marketing
- Affiliate Marketing
Refer to our Digital Marketing post for a detailed understanding of each of the above technique.