Here’s a little piece of trivia. Everyone you know and the millions of people you don’t know are either on Facebook or Twitter or Instagram or are on all three platforms and more. When you try to translate that into what it could mean for your business, the possibilities to soar in sales is phenomenal.
It wasn’t that long ago when traditional marketing was the way to sell your products or services. Traditional marketing is still around like billboards, TV, newspaper and magazine ads, or even word of mouth. But tremendous advancements in technology have changed the way we communicate. Digital marketing is the way to do it. The way to do it best.
Digital marketing is basically making use of any type of internet marketing available to target an audience for your business. Internet marketing comes in several forms such as, posts on social media platforms, ads, banners, email, content management, SEM (Search Engine Management) SEO (Search Engine Optimization) Pay-Per-Click (PPC) and more. Though more and more businesses were entering and have already entered into digital marketing, they may also use other forms of traditional marketing together.
Digital marketing is a science to be learned because there is more to it than meets the eye. To really get down in it, digital marketing courses such as digital marketing course Belfast and what you learn in them can take your business up to an entirely new level that business owners never thought they could reach previously.
Since you don’t have all day free, let’s get to the real deal advantages of taking a course and learning how digital marketing can give your business much more exposure leading to more sales.
First off, if you like statistics then you’ll like to know that research shows that 82% of all consumers run a search online, and 79% of consumers buy online. Let’s go back to the billboard ads. What are the chances that the consumers you want are the ones who will notice your business from the billboard ad? And what are the possibilities that you can reach 82% of all consumers from a billboard ad, or an ad in the local, community newspaper? Not very high. Not very high at all. The only way to reach this amount of people is via digital marketing. This becomes even more crucial if you run a small or medium-sized business. Just knowing this little bit of information should be enough that you take advantage of this potential growth. Whether you are an owner of a business or an employee it’s time and past time to take advantage of learning digital marketing.
Digital marketing is one of the least expensive ways to reach an audience. Many business owners just don’t have the budget to place ads with traditional means. In the US, you can pay anywhere between $200 – $1500 for a 30-second ad. Thirty seconds is barely enough time to sneeze and grab a tissue let alone sell something. A 30-second Super Bowl ad in the States costs $5 million. Peak rates in the UK can be anywhere between £10,000 £30,000. For less than $3, you can reach 1000 people through digital marketing. You would spend $28 to reach the same amount of people through TV.
Of course this is great news for the small business owner who does not have the budget for printed ads. Generally, you are able to reach more people with less money. This allows you to spend less money on advertising and more money allocated to other aspects of your business.
Being cost effective means you can compete head to head with bigger companies. Why do that? Simple, because you can now. Like we said, traditional marketing comes with a hefty price tag. While big companies can afford it, small companies can be considered nearly out of the picture. Yet digital marketing has changed all that. You, as a business owner, will find affordable means of digital marketing that suit your business.
Measuring the Effects of Your Marketing
Sorry, but the billboard is such a great example to use again. After all, with auto-driven cars coming in, one would probably prefer to read a book than look up at billboards. Sure billboards are large and eye-catching but do you know who saw it? The same is true for most other types of traditional advertising. Do you know who saw your ad in the newspaper, or in a magazine? There’s no way to really measure that and the best you could do is take an estimated guess. But digital marketing takes the guessing game out as every tactic you use is measurable. In traditional marketing, you would have to wait weeks or a period of time after your campaign finishes to know its results and to reap its benefits. But with online marketing, you can gather your facts in real time.
Using Google analytics you can find out crucial info about:
- How many people have visited your site
- Age and gender of those who visited
- The source of where your traffic is coming from
- The increase or decrease or standstill of visits to your sites.
These are very vital points of knowledge. The best part is when you learn about them by taking a course, you can change and modify your business strategies on the spot. There is no reason to wait, since the information is right there in front of you. And in this heavily competitive market of the online world, time is of the essence. The right timing will give you an edge over competitors.
Reach a large audience
Traditional marketing limits you to a specific geographical area. For a small business, that would just be their state, their city, county or town. For macro businesses, that area just might be their local community. Digital marketing breaks those boundaries, so you can reach to people and areas not possible before. Take a closer look at the dropdown menu during an online purchase. Nearly every country is on it.
Besides a large audience, you are also reaching a diverse audience. With offline marketing which is more costly, it is one message that you send out to everyone; one message because it is so costly, whether the message is a radio, TV or print ad. With digital marketing, you can create different messages for different groups of people. This allows you to control the language you use to sell. Language and keywords is a major function of digital marketing. The words you use and wherein sentences they are placed are read by Google, and this is part of what creates high ranking on Google pages. It’s every business owner’s dream to rank on the first page. But even if your ranking is not in the first page, you can still reach a much larger audience than you have now.
Engaging a Target Audience
In digital marketing, you don’t just want to reach a target audience, you want to be engaged with them. Consumers want someone to talk to, to answer their questions and provide solutions or answers to their concerns. If you use internet marketing, you can be online 24/7 and customers love that. Customers want swift replies to their questions and they want a real person to talk to. Getting to know your customer or client, understanding them and what they want automatically gives you an edge on how to satisfy them.
Understanding the Modern Customer
The digital age is relatively new so it understands the modern day customer. A long time ago, actually not that long, consumers were like fish and marketers were the fishermen waiting to see which fish would take the hook and grab the bait. This cold, formal and rather degrading way of marketing is see-through now, and consumers don’t buy it and don’t like it. Consumers want to make their own decision on what to buy, who and where to buy it from, and how to receive information about a product or service.
Cold calling, for example, is a very intrusive marketing strategy that many if not most people find disturbing. There are higher chances that you would get the phone shut in your face than making a sale. A magazine ad can easily go unnoticed. Or, what happens often, it does not reach the right customer. With many options of digital marketing, you are not bothering anyone or forcing anyone to take an action.
Digital marketing is all data-driven. It is just up to you how and where to put that data, and the consumer will come to you if you have a good strategy. All those people you don’t know and the ones you do know, all those people scrolling up and down, hopping from one site to another; all of them are searching for something. And that something might be your product. Marketing has always meant that you must be visible to others. Digital marketing means that visibility has become much easier, much cheaper, and raises the chances of success much higher.
These three factors represent opinions. Not yours. Consumer opinions. While anyone knows a harsh or terrible review or comment can damage a business, it is a must to have these factors and the reason is related to the modern day consumer. People now will not buy anything just based on product information. They are more willing to buy on other consumers’ experience. This would include their whole shopping experience with you if you are selling online products, for example. This is not really as possible to have via traditional marketing.
In seconds, people can put a comment that will affect your business either positively or negatively. It can be seen as a double-edged sword if your business is not up to par. But on the bright side, a business owner is supposed to use those comments to their advantage. A review or comment will show you where your business is souring and where it is doing well. You have the opportunity to engage with customers and see what these problems are and how you can fix them. It’s really a mind-blowing thing to learn how business are now run, how feedback is used, and how they are adapting and benefiting from the digital age.
Since there are many analytical tools you can use in digital marketing, the information you receive is immediate. Say, you’re running an online campaign for a product or service, and you find a certain ad you placed is not running as well as expected. You can adjust that with almost no problems. You can even delete it all if worse comes to worst. To change something in the midst of a traditional marketing campaign is not possible in many of its forms. We often hear of huge TV campaigns or ads that were unplugged for one reason or another. Those are big bucks down the drain. The process of change or modification is much more rigid in traditional marketing and often involves a lot of legal and paperwork.
All these advantages can lead to better branding of a business. All businesses want to grow and get branded. There are almost no reasons left why they cannot these days. With the right strategy and choosing the best online marketing means for you, branding is a real thing. Your strategy is important and that’s why you need courses to understand it better. Digital marketing is not just piling up content after content. It’s a mix of factors, each one dedicated to a part of your business.
Actually, the list of advantages of digital marketing goes on and on. Some years back, people might have thought online marketing was only for the eccentric loonies of this world. But now, it’s considered a must-have and if you don’t have, well, your business might not grow or even survive. You would be missing out on a world of opportunity to improve your business and be a force to reckon with online.