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Digital marketing is the act of promoting and selling products and services by leveraging online marketing tactics such as social media marketing, search marketing, and email marketing. When you get down to it,digital marketing is simply marketing.

Types of Digital Marketing

We’ve arrived! It’s time to dive head first into 9 types of digital marketing. Types of online digital marketing include:

  1. Search Engine Optimization (SEO)

Search Engine Optimization or SEO refers to the process of growing your online visibility in non-paid (organic) search engine results. SERPs or search engine results pages appear to users after they search for a given set of keywords using a search engine like Google or Bing. Each user receives an individualized results page based on keywords, the user’s location at the time of searching, and their browsing history.

Organic search results appear in a list and are ranked using the search engine’s algorithm. As users change the way they search and engage with online content, these algorithms change. The higher you rank on a SERP, the more traffic is directed to your site and the more chances of making a passive visitor an active customer.

  1. Search Engine Marketing and Pay-Per-Click Advertising

Search engine optimization includes many factors from keywords within your content to links to your website around the web. It includes both On-page and Off-page SEO. On-page SEO refers to the steps you take on your own website to boost your SEO. Off-page refers to the relationships you make and actions you take outside of your website to fuel SEO.

SEO trends change as algorithms change to fit user needs. In this way, SEO is never about building a website for the sole purpose of ranking high on a list results. At its core, SEO is about crafting the best possible website for your user. If you stay on top of SEO trends, you’re that much closer to more visibility online and traffic to your site.

  1. Social Media Marketing

Using social media marketing you’ll gain more reach when you post quality content. Everything you do to increase traffic or business on your social media channels is social media marketing. Whether you’re on Facebook, Twitter, Snap chat, or LinkedIn these efforts all amount to social media marketing.

  1. Content Marketing

Content marketing refers to the practice of delivering a quality piece of content to your users to generate sales and leads. This content can live anywhere online. Tweets, a YouTube video, and blogs on your website all comprise content marketing. Content Marketing works because it melds together exceptional content with other types of digital marketing like SEO and Social Media Marketing.

  1. Affiliate Marketing

Affiliate marketing refers to the process of paying for conversions. Think of it like hiring a sales person for your product or service. That affiliate earns a commission. You determine the rate for affiliate marketing.  You only pay for conversions. This means there is no upfront cost to affiliate marketing. Many bloggers or e-commerce websites use affiliate marketing.

  1. Influencer Marketing

Influencer marketing is among the newer types of digital marketing. Influencer marketing uses people with an enormous online reach considered experts by your target market to drive traffic and sales.

Influencer marketing is popular on social media channels like Instagram and Snapchat. Companies hire Instagrammers with large followings to promote their brand by posting one or more photos with the product. Companies now engage in Instagram or Snapchat “takeovers” where the hired influence controls the company’s social media platform for a given amount of time, most often a day. These social media takeovers drive the influencer’s following to your social media channels increasing your new followers and unique views.

  1. Email Marketing

Email marketing allows you to update your email subscribers on a regular basis about your company. This fosters a relationship unlike any of the other types of digital marketing. Your email updates provide value to your consumer. As a result, you build brand trust and brand loyalty.

  1. Viral Marketing

Viral marketing refers to a post of some sort that is trendy, funny, or strange enough to garner a massive amount of shares online. Viral marketing causes an enormous spike in website traffic over a short period of time. This is hard to do but the benefits alone make the effort worth your time.

  1. Mobile Phone Advertising

Each of the types of digital advertising can happen on a mobile device. Some types of marketing using a mobile phone do not fit the above types of digital marketing.

These include SMS advertising which could prove an asset to local marketing efforts. You can prompt your consumers to use SMS to receive special offers, coupons, and updates from your company.

Offline Digital Marketing

  • Radio marketing, television marketing, and phone marketing also comprise offline digital marketing.

Advantages of digital marketing

  • The main advantage of digital marketing is that a targeted audience can be reached in a cost-effective and measurable Other digital marketing advantages include increasing brand loyalty and driving online sales.
  • The benefits of digital marketing include:
  • Global reach– a website allows you to find new markets and trade globally for only a small investment.
  • Lower cost– a properly planned and well-targeted digital marketing campaign can reach the right customers at a much lower cost than traditional marketing methods.
  • Trackable, measurable results– measuring your online marketing with web analytics and other online metric tools makes it easier to establish how effective your campaign has been. You can obtain detailed information about how customers use your website or respond to your advertising.
  • Personalisation– if your customer database is linked to your website, then whenever someone visits the site, you can greet them with targeted offers. The more they buy from you, the more you can refine your customer profile and market effectively to them.
  • Openness– by getting involved with social media and managing it carefully, you can build customer loyalty and create a reputation for being easy to engage with.
  • Social currency– digital marketing lets you create engaging campaigns using content marketing This content (images, videos, articles) can gain social currency – being passed from user to user and becoming viral.
  • Improved conversion rates– if you have a website, then your customers are only ever a few clicks away from making a purchase. Unlike other media which require people to get up and make a phone call, or go to a shop, digital marketing can be seamless and immediate.

Together, all of these aspects of digital marketing have the potential to add up to more sales.

Disadvantages of digital marketing

  • Some of the downsides and challenges of digital marketing you should be aware of include:
  • Skills and training– You will need to ensure that your staffs have the right knowledge and expertise to carry out digital marketing with success. Tools, platforms and trends change rapidly and it’s vital that you keep up-to-date.
  • Time consuming– tasks such as optimizing online advertising campaigns and creating marketing content can take up a lot of time. It’s important to measure your results to ensure a return-on-investment.
  • High competition– while you can reach a global audience with digital marketing, you are also up against global competition. It can be a challenge to stand out against competitors and to grab attention among the many messages aimed at consumers online.
  • Complaints and feedback– any negative feedback or criticism of your brand is can be visible to your audience through social media and review websites. Carrying out effective customer service online can be challenging. Negative comments or failure to respond effectively can damage your brand reputation.

Security and privacy issues – there are a number of legal considerations around collecting and using customer data for digital marketing purposes. Take care to comply with the rules regarding privacy and data protection.