What is Digital Marketing in 2013?

At its core, digital marketing is the use of electronic media to promote brands, companies or services. It’s all about increasing one’s visibility and being found on the Internet. However, digital marketing isn’t so simple (There’s no “easy” button for this!).

The ultimate goal of online marketing is to generate leads or sales for your company, but that can’t be accomplished if customers can’t find you in the vast, ever-expanding Internet. To do so, this medium involves many different facets and strategies related to internet marketing.

Essential Components of Digital Marketing

So what is digital marketing exactly? Basically, we’re talking about a robust field with many different subsets. Here are the key players:

  • Web design and user experience (UX): The functionality and design elements of a website that work together to increase conversion.
  • Search engine optimization (SEO): The process of gaining “organic” (unpaid) traffic by ranking in major search engines Google, Yahoo and Bing.
  • Pay-per-click advertising (PPC): Paid advertising on search engines, in which advertisers bid on keywords or phrases related to their product or service. Advertisers only pay when the ad is clicked on.
  • Social media marketing: The use of social media channels (Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, YouTube, etc.) to engage potential customers and audiences.
  • Email marketing: The strategic use of email to directly reach potential customers and audiences.
  • Affiliate marketing: Performance-based marketing where third-party affiliates drive traffic to a company or brand through their own digital marketing efforts. Affiliates often receive a commission for each successful conversion.
  • Content marketing: The development and promotion of content that influences and engages consumer behavior. This includes blogging, web copy, white papers, e-books, digital content management, and more.

Each subset has its own role and purpose, but there is considerable overlap between fields. Many—if not all areas of digital marketing—rely on each other for a successful, well integrated campaign. For example, effective SEO relies on strong content marketing. Pay per click, on the other hand, requires a strong, conversion-centric landing page with excellent UX and content.

What is Digital Marketing: Staying Ahead of the Trends

Digital marketing is complex and always changing. For example, SEO practitioners are be challenged constantly with cryptic Google updates (With Pandas and Penguins, it’s a zoo!). Also, in the last several years, digital marketing via mobile devices (smartphones, iPads, etc.) has increased at warp-speed rates. This area can be an uncertain, but if one thing is constant, it’s an ever-evolving and varied playing field.

As you can see, digital marketing is quite dense—we’ve only scratched the surface! If you’re still wondering, “What is digital marketing?” or you would like to talk about this industry over a three-hour coffee session, give us a ring or Tweet us (@MabblyTribe). We would love to talk more!