What actually is Digital Marketing?

Many of our clients (prior to working with us!) have an incomplete view of what Digital Marketing is and therefore tend to have a limited understanding of what we, as digital marketers actually do and how we can help them. So we thought we’d outline exactly what digital marketing is (from our perspective), and also highlight some of what we might do for you, as digital marketers, to help you grow your business. 

It can be said that Digital Marketing has its own unique place within the marketing industry (Mark Riston may not necessarily agree here!) where the required skills needed for online success go far beyond traditional marketing strategies and creativity. It is hard to imagine a world without the internet, so it makes sense that the role of digital marketers within a business becomes both more prominent, and essential. 

With over 4.5 billion active users across the globe, the web has become the main hub for sharing and dispersing information.  This transition to the online world has also changed the way businesses promote their products and services. Like most things, the field of marketing has come to revolve around the internet – with website creation, social media and online ads largely taking the place of billboards, cold calls and print ads. 

Digital Marketing Defined 

In basic terms, digital marketing is the use of digital channels to promote a product or service. The main goal of a digital marketer is to connect customers with brands online – the main place they seek information. 

Digital marketing is a broad practice. This is largely due to the plethora of online channels that exist within the digital sphere. Here at Adventure Digital, we like to call this sphere The Digital Ecosystem. 

A digital ecosystem is the interconnectivity of elements that come together to form your digital strategy. Your elements – web, social, search and content – need to work in sync with each other with a common purpose. In this case, that common purpose takes its cues from your business goals. 

Each business will have their own unique digital ecosystem. It’s important to note that you don’t need to include every single facet in your digital strategy, however, you do need to include something from every different element. 

The Benefits of Digital Marketing

Every business – from large international organisations, to independent start ups – can gain from promoting their brand online. Here are some ways your business can benefit from digital marketing: 

  • More cost effective compared to traditional marketing methods – evens the playing field for small businesses to compete with larger companies 
  • Build brand awareness by putting your stamp on the web
  • Accurately track ROIs through digital analytics 
  • Guide your customers through the marketing funnel, from the first touchpoint to the sale

Different Facets of Digital Marketing

As stated above, digital marketing isn’t a single practice, but rather the sum of several different elements of the Digital Ecosystem. In digital marketing you can choose to be a jack of all trades or focus on a couple skills that will set you apart. Whilst our team does have some specialists, we believe in a more holistic approach to digital marketing, where people need to be across all areas of the digital ecosystem, so that we can achieve better outcomes for our clients. 

We’ve put together a list of some of the key skills and areas of expertise that a digital marketer needs:

Search Engine Optimisation (SEO)

SEO is a foundational element of digital marketing. It is the practice of optimizing your website to rank better in search engines. When your website is at the top of a search engine like Google, people are more likely to click on it, familiarise themselves with your brand and hopefully even become customers. 

There are three broad ways to improve your website’s SEO. Firstly, on-page SEO – this involves optimising the content within your website by conducting keyword research. Secondly, off-page SEO – this allows you to improve your SEO by looking at pages external to your website. Thirdly, there is technical SEO – this deals with the backend elements of your site such as coding, image compression, structured data and more. 

Content Marketing

Content is closely related to SEO and is also a core component of digital marketing. You create content with the goal of building brand awareness, generating leads, increasing site traffic and finally nurturing and converting customers via funnels. Content comes in a number of different forms such as blogging, email campaigns, podcasts, lead magnets, webinars and so on.  

This is the fuel of your lead generation processes. Content marketing is a critical part of not only attracting the right people to you,but it is also the way you nurture thej to a sale and also help stay top of mind with them when they come to make a buying decision. Creating solid, consistent content is a critical part of any digital marketers daily list of activities. 

Social Media

Social media is another key pillar of your digital ecosystem. Often people think that this is all a digital marketer does! It is, however, a place where many of your potential clients will spend a huge amount of their time, so it’s essential that your business is visible there. Although, it is not enough to just be visible. You need to ensure that you are sharing valuable information and getting your story out there in a way that is engaging, educational and entertaining. 

These 3 ‘E’s of social media content (or any content really) is what helps frame your social media strategy. Your posts can include anything from insightful blogs to funny videos. Just make sure you are posting content in line with your business goals and to platforms where your target audience are active – this will generally be determined by their demographics, such as age and location. 

It’s our role as digital marketers, to help you identify what channels are best for your business, and advise you on the appropriate place within those channels that you need to be (so have you started to use TikTok yet? Reels? And are you prepared for more video in your business this year?)

Online Advertising

There are a number of different types of online advertising and it’s important to choose the right one for your business, your goals and your digital ecosystem. Platforms like Facebook and Google are giant databases of humanity and, with the right type of targeted ads, allow you to reach exactly the people you want to talk to. It is also important that you understand the time and place for each. 

Looking to get people when they are at the top of your funnel?

 – then Facebook/Instagram ( or Meta ) are likely to be your first point of call. 

Wanting to target people closer to the decision phase?
– then Google Ads are likely to be your goto. 

Our team has years of experience in this area to help our clients understand when to use what platform and to get in front of the right people, at the right time, with an eye on your budget.

Data and Analytics:

Google analytics is central to many facets of the digital ecosystem. It allows you to track reports and monitor your campaign performance based on consumer behaviour. These insights allow you to come up with better solutions that will increase conversions and drive traffic. Gathering and using this data is also essential. The data collected by today’s businesses is like a gold mine that has to be used in innovative ways to collect and retain new customers. 

We make sure that our clients have the data they need at their fingertips utilising Google Data Studio to see what is most relevant to their business.

Tech knowledge:

Technology is the driving force in the digital world, therefore, having an understanding of the latest technology and how it is being used is important for a digital marketer. Being able to adapt quickly to changes within the industry and having knowledge of what’s ahead (or having an idea of what’s coming!) is important for any savvy digital marketer. 

Our team keeps abreast of all changes in our industry so that you don’t have to! And yes, it can be exhausting! We literally learn something new every single day!

How we can help 

Digital marketing is no longer a niche concept. It has become an integral part of marketing activities across most industries. Having a strong strategy that draws from all elements of the digital ecosystem will set your business apart from competitors.

If you are an entrepreneur, small business owner or a start-up, and are wondering how you can better equip your business digitally, take our short scorecard today. It will expose your blindspots while providing instant, actionable steps that will boost your marketing results. 

For professional service businesses, Adventure Digital has also developed a short test that allows you to benchmark your current marketing performance and identify opportunities for profitable payback. 

If you are wondering how your business could benefit from digital marketing, get in touch with us today, and let our team start working on your unique digital strategy. 

Author

Clare Weeks

Marketing and Content Co-ordinator
Share This:
Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on pinterest
Share on linkedin

Related Reading

Want to get started but aren't sure how?

Arrange a 20 minute discovery call. Let us help you get on the right track.