Seeing the value in digital marketing when you don’t understand technology

So you’ve heard that more and more businesses are exploiting the internet to grow, but you just can’t understand how social websites, where people talk about what they had to eat and laugh about cat videos, are going to have a significant impact in growing your business. You probably have been hearing from other business owners that SEO has helped them grow their business, and you wonder what SEO is. So you ask, only to be introduced to words like “organic,” “sponsored link,” “meta tags,” and you ask yourself: what is all this? You may not even have a website for your business, and this quest will introduce even more words like “design sprint,” “UX”, “technical SEO.” You probably are used to advertising using radio, TV, direct mail, newspaper, and telemarketing. You pay a fee and get calls. Simple. But as years pass, you notice these methods become less and less effective, hell, you’re probably down to telemarketing at this point.

Why must marketing change? The old ways worked just fine.

Change is hard. Especially when experience keeps telling you what has worked in the past. All this “new marketing” feels too damn risky. You do not understand it. You do not have the time to understand it. But you are beginning to feel that if you don’t adopt these new ways, your business may stop growing, or even worse, perish. Why must marketing change, you ask? Because of on-demand content and the proliferation of mobile devices with internet access.

How On-demand Content is changing marketing

Do you want the news? Open twitter. The “news” paper is 24hr behind. Want to watch your favorite TV series? Binge watch on Hulu. Prefer to watch a movie? Open Netflix, or HBO GO, or Amazon Video, etc. Want to listen to music? Youtube or Spotify are your friends. Want to find something? Google it (Sorry Google, nobody says “Google Search”, you’re that good”) In this day and age, we want our content on-demand. And if you can think of a kind of content, then there is a digital platform providing it on-demand. Content is what gets people’s attention. And when businesses want people’s attention, businesses pay to place advertisements in the content. Now that the content is in digital form, businesses have to insert their advertisement in digital form. On-demand content is rapidly transforming marketing into digital marketing. Do you want to know what people are up to? Well, the information you are seeking is on these digital platforms.

How the proliferation of mobile devices with internet access is changing marketing

Not only is content available on-demand, but it is also becoming more accessible and portable. This means people are able to consult the internet to make decisions while on the go, so it is very important to keep your online reputation impeccable. News, trends, and fads have a shorter expiration time. If you want to take advantage of them, you have to be on the lookout and be prepared to act quickly. People carry a device with them capable of consuming digital content at all times. As a business, figure out what to send them when they are on the road.

Having to adopt what you do not understand

There is no going back. The number of mobile devices connected to the internet will continue to increase, presenting an even greater demand for on-demand content. By not adopting digital marketing your business is accumulating technical debt. Debt that, if left unpaid, will result in sticker shock. Many businesses have implemented ad-hoc digital solutions to stay afloat. Solutions like hiring a freelancer or digital agency to build a website or app. Some of these businesses have seen some kind of result, others abandon or neglect their website or app over several months after disappointing results. These ad-hoc solutions worked for some businesses because of the low number of businesses competing digitally and the high demand for digital content. But in 2018, businesses are beginning to feel the growth in digital competition, and ad-hoc solutions are no longer cutting it. Businesses that see digital marketing as an investment rather than an expense will dominate their markets.

Digital Marketing is an investment rather than an expense

Digital marketing is an investment because:
  • Your website gets better at selling over time
  • You build an audience specifically tailored for your business
  • You collect data necessary to make strategic decisions
  • You build and improve your brand

Integrating Digital Marketing

As you see, consumers use multiple digital platforms to consume content. In the process, they will interact with many businesses. Ad-hoc solutions will become cost prohibitive or perform poorly. Integrating digital marketing means making digital part of:
  • Business Goals and KPIs
  • Building a team
  • Processes
  • Operations

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