Digital Marketing and Some of Its Popular Channels

First of all What is Digital Marketing? How did this term derive and what are some of its popular components or channels. If you're looking out for the right answers then this blog is a must read for you. Digital Marketing is a term used for advertising of products and services through various digital channels like social media, mobile applications, email, web applications, search engines, websites, blogs, affiliate marketing etc. Over the last few years digital marketing has been enormously growing and the simple reason behind it is, everything being online. At present most of the people spend more time online through their smartphones. Gone are those days when businesses actually thought that marketing through digital mediums is reserved only for medium and big enterprises who have the right resources and budget to do it. Instead digital marketing permits even the small enterprises to choose and target their right market to touch base with the right audiences, through online marketing one can reach their customers in any corner of the world in no time. In a nutshell marketing through digital medium helps even the smallest business to grow exponentially in a big market place. So let's go ahead and take a sneak-peak to know some of the ways how digital marketing plays a pivotal role in shaping a business through some of its popular channels.

The number of social-media users is growing enormously and is expected to increase up to 26% more. Digital marketers and businesses should continue to ride the bandwagon, and more than 50% are planning to increase their Social Media Marketing (SMM) budgets this year. However, digital marketers should select the most appropriate social network for promoting their business to a particular type of targeted audience.

1. Email Marketing:-
When a business performs lead generation and other marketing strategies, they collect information like email addresses and contact numbers from potential customers, including permissions to send updates and any other relevant  information through emails. Email marketing is one among the several effective digital marketing channels that can give business ROI of up to 4,300%.
Businesses with in-house digital marketers using email marketing, 66% rate this tool as excellent for delivering ROI. This is why up to 56% of businesses highlighted that they are planning to expand email-related marketing activities by 2014. Examples of emails sent include emails for conversion, newsletters, and brand building.

2. Pay-Per-Click (PPC) Advertising:-
Paid advertising channels like Pay-Per-Click deliver highly targeted traffic of potential customers within a very short span of time. This method, however, is driven by how much you are willing to invest in bidding and placing ads, as well as how much you are willing to pay for acquiring one customer.
Still, your advertising budget is within your control, enabling you to set as much budget as you want to spend for a day, a week or a month to run your PPC ads. The effectiveness of pay per click ads relies on how well you choose the keywords for targeting customers as well as optimizing the contextual and visual information in the ads.

3. Search Engine Optimization (SEO):- 
People using the Internet are making use of search engines to search for any particular information they would like to know. Upto 93% of online experiences happening to people using the internet usually begins by using a search engine. People practice search engines to look for any particular information about a particular product, brand, or service and up to 59% of search engine users every month find a local business to satisfy their particular needs. SEO involves several activities like keyword searching, making use of both off-page and on-page optimization, organic link building, linkable assets creation, and other related activities.

4. Display Advertising
Many people visit forums, blogs, and other websites that are interesting or useful for them. Digital marketers can reach out to their potential customers by placing relevant display ads on these third-party sites. These include boxes, banners, interactive ads, interstitial ads, video ads, overlays, and other similar ads that are linked to a website or a landing page. Display advertising creates greater brand awareness and also generates highly targeted traffic that may convert into leads/ sales. Payments for these display ads are normally based on Cost-Per-Impression (CPM). CPM is usually more cost-effective compared to Cost-Per-Click (CPC) scheme, which is typically done in  PPC advertising.

5. Social Media Marketing (SMM)
Social media is one of the most remarkable things to happen in the digital arena that business owners and digital marketers can leverage to create brand awareness for their products and services. Through Social Media Marketing, digital marketers can reach out to highly targeted potential customers through direct engagement.
The number of social-media users is growing enormously and is expected to increase  up to 26% more. Digital marketers and businesses continue to ride the bandwagon, and more than 50% are planning to increase their Social Media Marketing (SMM) budgets this year. However, digital marketers should select the most appropriate social network for promoting the business to a particular kind of targeted audience. 
A simple guide is as listed below:

  1. LinkedIn – If you want to reach out to professionals, business owners, and other B2B leads and targeted customers, then LinkedIn is the perfect social network for your SMM strategy.
  2. Facebook – Businesses can reach out to almost all kind of consumers via Facebook; all you need to learn in which pages and groups your targeted customer stay and frequently go to.
  3. Twitter – If you’re trying to develop new business and want to reach out to early adopters, then Twitter would be the best platform for you, particularly for generating fast brand awareness.    
  4. Pinterest – This social network niche is excellent if you’re focusing on visuals for promoting your brands  products and services. Majority of users are women on this platform, so if that is your market, then SMM on Pinterest will fetch good results for your business.

6. Affiliate Marketing
If you need to reach to a wider and global audience, you need not hire someone from other locations. All you need is to work with affiliate marketers who can do the job for you for a certain percentage in commissions when they sell your products or services – a perfect example of the pay-per-performance online business model. According to eMarketer, global e-commerce sales exceeded 1.2 trillion dollars in 2013, with affiliate marketing doing its share to boost the market up.

7. Content Marketing
In SMM, content is at the heart of every digital marketing campaign, and it is the one essential element that will remain constant despite the many changes that occur in the marketplace. With high-quality, and relevant content, your website and other Internet marketing real-estate will generate considerable inbound traffic from targeted audiences – all of which can be potential customers. Up to 73% of digital marketers in B2B are increasing content marketing activities this 2014. Content includes text, videos, graphics, and other related material people are looking for and are very interested in.

8. Online Public Relations
Online PR is considered a part of Content Marketing in general as the main task is to create promotional content to be used for creating traffic and branding through exposure in online PR networks. Some of those channels are free to join while others require some joining/subscription fees before you could publish a press release. 



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