7 Types of Digital Marketing (Definitions and Benefits)
By Indeed Editorial Team
Updated September 8, 2022
Published January 3, 2022
The Indeed Editorial Team comprises a diverse and talented team of writers, researchers and subject matter experts equipped with Indeed's data and insights to deliver useful tips to help guide your career journey.
With the evolution of technology, digital marketing is becoming one of the major ways companies market their products. Businesses can adopt digital marketing types that are suitable for their product type and can allow them to engage with customers. If you're considering a career as a digital marketer, learning about the different types and benefits of digital marketing can help you get started on your career path. In this article, we discuss seven types of digital marketing, share steps on adopting a digital marketing type, and review the benefits of digital marketing.
Types of digital marketing
There are several types of digital marketing that businesses can leverage to increase the demand for their products and services. Here are some popular digital marketing types:
Search engine optimization (SEO)
SEO is a form of digital marketing businesses adopt to ensure their page ranks high on search engine result pages (SERP). These businesses use SEO to increase traffic to their website. The objective of using SEO is to have their websites on the SERP first page when prospective buyers search for a particular keyword. To achieve this, businesses create SEO-optimized content, adopt effective keyword research and strategy, use suitable link-building strategies, provide a seamless user experience, and employ the help of technical SEO experts.
Social media marketing
Social media provides an interactive platform for customers and businesses. Various social media platforms are available and companies can leverage this to forge an interactive relationship with their customers. Using this type of media platform allows businesses to advertise their products directly to prospective buyers and ask for feedback from the buyers. With social media, companies can promote their products on their business page, use paid ads or use sponsored content. When businesses use sponsored content and paid ads, these media platforms display ads to prospective buyers based on the interest, age, and location of users.
With email marketing, businesses can stay connected with prospective buyers by sending customized newsletters or special offers based on the customer's shopping history. The primary objective businesses hope to achieve using email marketing can be to boost their customer's interest and create awareness for their brand. Companies build an email list by creating engaging content and using compelling subject lines to get customers' attention.
Brands create compelling content to answer customers' questions and address their other concerns. The marketing team creates content using videos, write-ups, and other visual representations to assist customers through their shopping journey. The content may include webinars, e-books, blogs, podcasts, and online tutorials. Content marketing aims to create high-quality content and resources to help customers solve problems and make decisions.
Affiliate marketing is a way businesses outsource the marketing and promotion of their products. With this type of digital marketing, individuals and outside companies get a commission from promoting and selling a brand's products or services. For example, a beauty spa can compensate their regular customers by giving them a discount on the spa's services for each customer they introduce to the resort. Another example is a stationery brand offering a bookstore a percentage of the sales made on each product.
With pay-per-click, businesses purchase traffic to their website by placing ads on search engines and paying a stipulated amount every time users click on the ad. Depending on the keyword, you can find this type of ad on the top of the search results page. PPC campaigns usually involve a thorough keyword analysis and optimization relevant to the business's products or services.
Businesses can promote their products and service by partnering with celebrities, other brands, or experts in a particular field. With this type of digital marketing, these brands can advertise their products to the influencer's audience or followers and target a specific audience. For example, a cosmetic brand can partner with a famous beauty expert with a large following on social media. This expert can use and recommend the brand's products to followers. As the followers trust the expertise of this influencer, they may purchase the product the expert recommends.
How to determine a suitable digital marketing type
The steps to follow when implementing a digital marketing strategy are:
1. Set a goal
Before adopting a digital marketing type, setting a clear and concise goal may be helpful. Digital marketing goals vary from creating awareness for an existing product, introducing a new product, to targeting a specific audience. The set goals serve as a guide for choosing a suitable marketing strategy.
2. Determine your target audience
Your target audience is critical to your choice of digital marketing. Knowing the marketing goals and target audience is essential to determining appropriate digital marketing platforms and strategies. For example, an e-learning site can use social media marketing to place ads and create awareness for its service. The business may use professional social media sites for advertising deals like special offers on courses, and discounts to advertise directly to its target audience.
3. Use a compelling headline or ad
Depending on your choice of digital marketing strategy, a compelling headline can be helpful in attracting customers to click on your ads. When using digital marketing such as social media marketing and email marketing, you can make the headline compelling to captivate customers' attention and interest in a company's brand or products. A compelling ad for marketing types like pay-per-click can also be beneficial to businesses as it may persuade customers to click on the ad and increase traffic to their sites.
4. Optimize your content
With digital marketing, it's crucial to fit your content to the platform you're using. Depending on the digital platform, use appropriate vocabulary, image dimension, tone, and format. You can research the platform you intend to use to discover different types of content you may create or share. It can also be helpful to create a content schedule. Monitoring the time you advertise or post content and the period between these ads can boost strategic audience targeting.
5. Measure your KPI
Businesses can monitor their key performance indicators (KPI) with digital marketing. For example, you can compare the number of people clicking on the ads with the demand for the product with pay-per-click marketing. This step is to determine if the marketing type you're using is efficient and yields positive results. Depending on the KPI, you can either continue with your current process or adopt a new one.
Benefits of digital marketing
Digital marketing offers several benefits to businesses and can help them achieve their marketing goals. Expected benefits are as follows:
Reach a larger audience
You may be able to reach your target audience regardless of their location with digital marketing because there is no proximity constraint with this form of advertising. Digital marketing spreads across a large audience, as people can share content with their friends and family. When you post an ad on a social media platform, partner with an influencer, or use the pay-per-click marketing type, it reaches a large population instead of just people within that vicinity.
Retain existing customers
Marketing strategies like social media marketing and email marketing can help businesses retain customers. These marketing strategies provide a platform they can use to constantly update and interact with customers, notifying them of special offers, and discounts. This can create a sense of value in the customers. With affiliate marketing, customers may likely keep sporting the brand because of the commissions and deals they enjoy.
Target specific audience
With digital marketing, you can advertise products or services directly to prospective buyers. It's possible to leverage the diverse digital marketing types and platforms available to ensure you share product information through suitable media. Search engines typically optimize a user's search history, age, and location to display ads to them.
Engage with customers
Digital marketing provides a platform for businesses to interact with their customers. These customers can leave reviews, share their opinions, and detail their experience concerning products. These reviews are advantageous as companies can use this feedback to upgrade their products and services to ensure customer satisfaction. This engagement can also serve as a form of advertising as prospective buyers may likely purchase the brand's product if there are good reviews on it.
Minimize advertising cost
As different marketing types are available to businesses, you can choose a suitable type that fits a company's budget. Digital marketing can provide a medium to reach and interact with prospective buyers at a relatively cheaper cost. There might be no limited ad space like conventional advertising, as you advertise on a digital platform and not a physical one.
You can monitor the effectiveness of your strategy with digital marketing. It's possible to know the number of clicks on an online ad, determine the number of sales, and monitor the number of people that viewed your content. With this information, you can analyze the effectiveness of your strategy and decide to keep investing in it or not. You can also choose to improve the quality of your content to increase its effectiveness.
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