Why digital marketing is no longer just about websites and being top of Google
Digital marketing is still a young field and for its professionals, it is a field which is rapidly and constantly evolving. The need to stay on top of developments means that new opportunities often arise and there is the potential to spot great new ways to conduct digital marketing.
Digital Marketing and Search Engines
To date a lot of digital marketing has revolved around search engines. There’s a lot of sense to this; if a customer searches for a product, the companies who sell that product want to be at the top of the results page. If a company is buried halfway down page seven of the results, who is ever going to see them? This has led to a lot of emphasis on search engines, especially the omnipresent Google, and on reaching the top of the results through means such as Search Engine Optimization (SEO).
That’s still a very useful way to get people to know about you, but it’s far from the only way and too much focus on search engines and websites could mean missing out on a lot of potential customers and connections. Even success on Google may fall short of its potential if other digital marketing methods, such as those outlined below, go neglected.
Blogging and Social Media
Blogging and social media are great ways to conduct digital marketing because they are among the most interactive with the customer. Look at the example of someone like George Takei – he is a very well-known Internet personality and he has leveraged this into strong commercial success of books and media appearances. He has not done this with SEO, but through communicating with his Facebook followers, providing humorous comments and pictures, and in part by not shying away from his own personality. This is more difficult for a company to achieve than an individual but the idea of providing a sense of community and exchange that lies outside the direct realm of trying to sell a product is one that has a lot of potential. Furthermore, when a product does exist to be sold, it can be talked about with ease to a large existing base of followers.
Mobile apps are a big deal now that smartphones and tablet computer are commonplace. In fact recent surveys show that more people use apps than browse the web on their devices. Apps are special programs designed to run on mobile devices, and they can be a very good way to help customers find what they need to find and do what they need to do. Digital marketing can take huge advantage of this by providing such an app to customers. The purpose of some apps is only themselves, such as games, but many are linked to other purposes such as replacing the need to go to a website through a browser, providing information, or being a means of conducting transactions.
An app needs to be well designed and properly programmed, but if these requirements are met they can be a powerful way to connect with and retain customers.
It would be unwise to either take down your website or dismiss the importance of search engine ranking. But it would also be unwise to give too much priority to search and forget the other ways digital marketing can be conducted such as those discussed above.
A complete and holistic approach has far more potential to help a business than success in any one particular type of digital marketing.