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What exactly is digital media - Lessons from around the world

There has been a lot of talk about digital marketing but few people understand what this 'digital marketing' thing is all about. This article is going to give you a brief overview of what this type of marketing is all about and five things that, as an entrepreneur, you must know about it.
At the most basic level, digital marketing is the promotion of products or a brand through electronic media. It is different from traditional marketing in that it involves the use of avenues and methods that give the organisation the ability to assess their marketing campaigns.

Here lies the major advantage of digital marketing over traditional marketing. With digital marketing, it is possible to figure out what is working for your business and what is not. You can do this in real time. It is not a trial and error thing because you can capture lots of data which will enable you to make informed decisions concerning your marketing plan. Another benefit of digital marketing is that it is able to reach out to larger populations with such impressive ease.

Why is it important?

Digital media has become exceedingly prevalent to the point that consumers are able to access information at any time and from anywhere. These are not the days when you had to wait for that particular mail at the end of the month to tell you of a company that is selling certain items. It is also not the era where people got to know about your products only from you. Consumers are now able to access tons of information regarding a brand and if you do not run a proper marketing campaign, they will get this negative impression of your brand.

The importance of digital marketing lies in the fact that information is easier to get today. People are able to get in touch with you with such impressive ease. If you use it properly, you can reach out to populations all over the world and you will not have to spend a fortune in the process. You will be able to build a trusting relationship with your customers with personalised and relevant communications.

Stories of great success

Firstly, it is worth pointing out that you can never be successful in digital marketing if you do not have the right team for the work. A fantastic digital marketing team like the ones at Telenet in Belgium, Air Asia in Malaysia, Taco Bell in America, Safaricom in Kenya and a whole lot of other companies. Each of these companies has made use of digital marketing in ways that you cannot believe. The ideas behind their marketing campaigns are impressive and they are not limited to just one channel. They all employ multiple digital avenues with a strong inclination to social media marketing.

For instance, Taco Bell made use of Twitter to recreate and promote their brand image. The image of the brand was lagging behind in terms of performance and they had to do something. For this reason the company took to Twitter and re-engaged with the Twitter influences (users who have more than 10,000 followers). This move really did work for the company. The campaign was able to reach out to more than 600,000 people all over Twitter.

There are four principles that Taco Bell captured concerning digital marketing and that is why the campaign was a great success.

1. Digital marketing is more than PPC ads

There used to be a time when PPC was the real deal in digital marketing. Nowadays, it does not have such an impact as it used to. Today, it is more of a hole than a digital option. There are so many other methods that you can employ and some are even more effective than PPC marketing. This is not to mean that you should ignore PPC marketing. It is possible to bid on a few select keywords but it is also helpful if you venture into other strategies in the world of digital marketing.

2. It is costly

If you thought that digital marketing is going to cost a few coins, then you should revise your marketing plan one more time. It is not cheap at all. It does not matter whether you are running a campaign on Twitter or you are doing content marketing, it is going to cost you quite an amount of money.

However, it is worth noting that some marketing strategies are cheaper than others. Advertising on cable TV, for example, is going to be more costly than running a serious Facebook campaign.

3. Content is key here

There is no way that you will survive with poor content on the internet- people just do not have time for content that is cliché or just plain boring. People want something that captures their curiosity to the point that they would want to find out more. Taco Bell does not compromise on its content quality. The same is the case with Telenet. The TNT Add Drama stunt of 2012 was seriously out of this world. It was creative and excellently executed. The ad has more 51 million view on YouTube. It was meant for launching TNT in Netherlands and it got 14.7 million views. The same is the case with Safaricom- this campaign makes advertisements that will leave you rolling on floor in laughter. Having quality content is paramount.

4. Mobile optimisation is vital

Taco Bell’s website is mobile friendly. Every site has to be mobile-friendly if there is to be hope for its success. When you see their product link on Twitter or some other platform, it will take you to their site. It does not matter whether you are accessing it through your smartphone or laptop, you can also access the site. Running a site that cannot be accessed through a smartphone is online suicide. No one will have time to struggle getting to view your site.

Bottom line

There are many things that you stand to benefit from when you employ digital marketing strategies. Furthermore, there are several digital marketing strategies. If you want to capture the attention of people from across the globe, this is the avenue that you should employ. Taco Bell is just but one of the many companies that have made serious use of social media and broadcast media to fulfill the goals of their digital marketing campaigns.

If you would like to compete favourably on a global scale, then you will have to implement an excellent digital marketing plan because as you can see, digital marketing is being used on every continent. There is no two ways about it.

About the author

Jack Dawson is a web developer and UI/UX specialist at He works at a design, branding and marketing firm, having founded the same firm 9 years ago. He likes to share knowledge and points of view with other developers and consumers on platforms.