Digital Marketing as a key differentiator
“Amazon and Netflix shares are up 52 percent and 58 percent respectively through some recent days compared to the S&P 500’s 15.5 percent”. News like this is becoming more and more normal. In fact, many finance and business experts agree that these two technology companies will dominate the future like Starbucks, Tesco and other multinational giants.
But, if there is something common to all of them, is their ability to master the sophistication that the use of digital marketing requires.
According to market research company Forrester, digital marketing expenditures in the UK are on pace to reach levels near $21 billion by 2020. Let us try to understand how this huge amount of money is spent and how those technology and consumer giants plan their strategies.
Think about the last purchases you made. Perhaps you bought a phone, an airline ticket or simply made a reservation to have dinner in a fancy restaurant. Chances are, you consulted the Internet to read reviews, get recommendations from friends and family on social sites like Facebook, and compared the features, options, and price of the product or service before you made your choice.
Today, purchases and purchasing decisions are increasingly made online. Therefore, regardless of what these giants sell, a strong online presence is necessary in order to capitalize on this trend.
This new digital landscape is impacting organisations in more than just the lead and sales generation departments, though. Experienced companies use the Internet to drive awareness and interest in what they offer, but also to convert casual buyers into brand advocates who buy more and encourage members of their network to do the same.
Hundreds of students and future graduates like us will be part of these companies and will be required to have the capability of organizing and managing digital marketing campaigns to acquire new customers or keep satisfied the existing ones. The role of such people is key in moving the customer from one stage of the customer journey to the next, attaining clarity on the characteristics of the ideal customer.
A variety of digital marketing techniques that help us consume and spend more money on their products like:
SEO / Search marketing: What solutions is your potential customer searching for on search engines like Google, YouTube or Bing?
Content marketing: What blog posts, videos, podcasts, and so on should you create to attract and convert your potential customer?
Email marketing: Which potential customer should receive a specific email marketing campaign?
Paid traffic: Which ad platforms should you buy traffic from and how will you target your potential customer?
Copywriting: How should you describe offers in your email marketing, ads, and sales letters in a way that compels your potential customer to buy?
Social media marketing: What social media sites is your potential customer spending time on? What topics does your potential customer like to discuss?
Analytics: Who is visiting your site? Where are they coming from? What they view most? How long they stay?
Advertising: What is the best combination of network ad programs (Facebook ads, promoted tweets, and others) that allow increasing the brand awareness
Digital marketing can still act as a key differentiator as many companies have not started to use it yet. Nevertheless, the use of digital marketing as a normal part of the selling process will be normalized as time goes by.
Even though the development stage of digital marketing is arguable, it is a fact that it will be moving towards understanding the customer in order to create even more personalized content that will build deeper relations with these customers.