What Is Digital Marketing and What Does It Mean to My Business?

What is Digital Marketing?

Digital Marketing is the use of digital technology to deliver your marketing messages and to allow your customers to interact with your business.

Traditionally marketing has been about pushing your messages to your customer. With technology, now you can enter into a dialogue with your customers and deliver what they actually want and not want you think they want. Often there is quite a gap and digital marketing is what allows you to communicate one to one with your customers and on a mass scale.

So what areas does digital marketing cover?

For me Digital Marketing includes:

  • Web Sites which includes:
    • Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) – Getting found on Google etc
    • Pay Per Click (PPC) – Paying for somebody to find you on Google etc
    • Banner Adverts – Paying for banners to get visitors to your site
    • Ecommerce – The ability to buy and sell products, services and information over the Internet.
  • Consumer Reviews – Consumer reviews are a powerful way to get consumers on to your eCommerce site as they make the purchasing decision easier as the reviews are by consumers who have purchased the product. Whole businesses are built around this concept such as TripAdvisor.
  • Blogs. Personal web sites with stories, expert opinion etc that you believe will help your readers, customers and stakeholders.
  • Social Media. Twitter, Facebook, Linkedin, YouTube, Google+, Ushi, Xing etc. These are web based systems that allow you to connect and share information such as ideas, links, photos, videos with like minded people. They can also generate income for your business and so can be routes to market for your business. They can be great ways to connect with people who you may not be able to get to by any other means. Twitter can be a great source of publicly available real time information and has reported major global events ahead of the world’s press.
  • Social Media News. Mashable is by far the biggest social media news site.
  • Online PR. There are specific web sites for making press releases available to the press. Prlog.org and helpareporter.com are examples.
  • Webinars/Events – Webinars are one to many seminars distributed across the Internet. This allows you to present to a large number of people independent of location. Events are traditional meetings or workshops but are marketed through Social networks such as Linkedin.
  • Email Marketing – The sending out of bulk emails which you believe are relevant to the people you are sending the message to.
  • Lead Nuturing – This is where a prospect gives you their email address in exchange for something free. This is usually an eBook (in pdf format), video, course of emails on how to do something.
  • Viral Marketing – The sending out of a message which is so compelling that people forward it on to other people unknown to you. A great way to send out a message if you get it right.
  • Video – Increasingly popular method of sharing ideas, passing on information and selling on the web. Great for selling more complex products or services. YouTube is the most popular at the present but video is becoming embedded into more digital media.
  • Music/Podcasts. Spotify is becoming the most popular legal file sharing system as it gives you access to a large range of music. Podcasts are voice recordings about a particular subject. They can be download for listening to on computer or MP3 players at a later date. Great for relaxation or for learning about a new subject whilst travelling.
  • Chat/Instant Messaging/Skype. Chat and Instant Messaging are systems for conversations using a keyboard which are done in real time. I.e. one person types something and the other responds. Both need to be present and online for this to work. Users of Facebook, Bebo etc use this, especially the younger generation. Skype is an internet based video and phone system that allows Skype users to call each other for free or at lot low cost and is becoming increasingly popular for business use and will grow now that the video version is available on Facebook.
  • Smartphone or Mobile Apps. Smartphone or mobile apps (or software applications which is where the term is derived from) are small pieces of computer software that run on your phone that allow you to do things that you would normally do on a computer. The need to work anywhere, anytime means that these will become increasing popular with business systems starting to appear on them. Great for anybody who works away from the office including executives, technical and sales people. Also watch for a growing number of consumers using their mobiles for online purchases as they fill their time waiting for something.
  • Cloud based storage/File Sharing. The Cloud is for most purposes another name for the Internet. So Cloud based storage is the ability to store information on the internet including backups and sending large files to customers and suppliers. DropBox and Yousendit are examples of systems for sharing large files between unrelated users. There are a wide range of suppliers of remote backup systems now with most corporates including them in their backup strategies. Personal File sharing is also available for two or more computers to be linked together to share information including music and videos. Personal File Sharing is generally not a business tool for larger corporates.
  • Cloud based systems. These are systems that allow you to work anywhere. Google has Google Docs, Microsoft has Office 365. A lot of third party software providers are moving their systems onto the Cloud so that customers can access them from anywhere and don’t have to worry about their own IT infrastructure. Companies are moving their IT infrastructure on to the Cloud in order to reduce costs as all the infrastructure is managed by a third party.
  • Extranets/Web based Systems. Companies are now looking to give customers and suppliers access to their information (through Extranets) and their systems (through Web based systems). This allows customers and suppliers to access to information relevant to them and enables them to do any processing on a DIY basis saving you both time and money such as the entering and progressing of orders and checking stock levels.
  • Remote Access. The ability to work anywhere means that you sometimes need access to your computer at home or work. Remote access through web sites such as Teamview and Logmein are a great way to get at critical documents away from the computer. Some of these systems allow you to do on line demonstrations of your product and service. This saves you and your customer time and money.
  • Online Games/Gaming. More gaming companies are moving their operations on to the web so that their services can be accessed anywhere anytime. Also notice that more consumer applications have games technology or ideas built in to them in order to make it more fun to buy. The term is called gamification. This could be a challenge for parents as the line becomes blurred between buying something and playing a game.

In an age where systems are everywhere businesses need to understand how to exploit Digital Marketing as it is a means to improving the service to your customers, driving down costs and making your organization more agile.

All organizations large and small need to understand Digital Marketing and have a strategy of how they are going to exploit the opportunities that Digital Marketing has to offer.

eBay Profits – Getting Traffic From eBay to Your Niche Market Product Targeted Email Subscriber List

You should use eBay to advertise your businesses off eBay by mentioning your other businesses to your buyers every time you make a sale. Naturally this technique will include the costs of listing products for sale on eBay, but the amount of traffic to your niche market product targeted email subscriber lists and websites that you get from doing so can be immense. This is why it is important to set a budget for this form of eBay advertising.

Your goal using this method is to get buyers on eBay over to your own website where you can make other sales to them for many years, free from eBay’s rules, regulations and above all else – fees! If you can get them opted into your niche market product targeted email subscriber lists then you can promote products to them they are extremely likely to want to purchase.

This is much more freedom and greater profits selling them products from your own website, but you must consider the costs involved of selling them that first product on eBay – and that first eBay product sale is the only way you can take advantage of eBay’s massive traffic.

Set a budget for your listing fees and product fees and stick to this budget. You may have to carefully tweak your sales price to maximise the number of eBay sales you make in order to get the most contact details and begin marketing your higher value products.

If you start to overspend on your budget you have to adjust the number of listings you make or the selling prices you charge without affecting the number of sales you make, as this only lowers the number of potential future marketing prospects you will have.

Do all this with experimentation to find what works for your particular niche market products. Your goal is an acceptable budget and maximum number of sign ups to your niche market product targeted email subscriber lists (where you will promote your more valuable products and make back your costs)

Don’t allow a selling price that is too low to be perceived as low value, and also don’t allow your selling price to be too high or no one will buy from you AND YOU WILL HAVE PAID LISTING FEES FOR NOTHING.

If you can get a product which is in short supply you can comfortably charge more for it, whereas a product that is available anywhere will sadly have to be sold for less money – that’s life!

In the case of selling eBooks to get traffic to your website you have much greater control of costs. All you need to do is burn a copy of it onto disc and post it off to the buyer – all very cheap as the eBook can be copied as many times as you like, and blank discs are inexpensive.

Look how popular 1 cent eBooks used to be on eBay. They are perhaps not the best quality product, but everyone was selling them because they were a great way of getting a customers contact details purely for future marketing purposes.

The price you charge should reflect the value of the product – the only exception to this is when you are promoting a sale where everything is on discount for a limited time, then you are doing this simply to create a feeling of urgency within your buyers.

If you sell a product that you promote as part of a series (like eBook part 1 of 8) you are likely to get buyers who will want to purchase the other 7 parts of the series as well, so this is an excellent trick for getting them to your website where they will purchase the other 7 parts and whilst there sign up for your niche market product targeted email subscriber lists.

All this selling on eBay also provides you with the advantage of creating a higher feedback rating – which in itself is useful for creating future sales as people will become more and more comfortable buying from you.

Taking Your Marketing Products to the Next Level

In our day and age, competition is becoming increasingly high when marketing products and the use of proper marketing techniques and strategies is a must. So how do we advance to the next level of having a successful business and keep it at the top?

Various methods have been used by top-rated companies over the years with maximum success, however, these strategies are not always long term, but instead offer only a short term solution to rapid business growth. A good example of this would be making use of advertising solutions, whether on a billboard, newspaper, or even television. These methods of advertising are extremely effective, but very costly and only short term. Most consumers does not remember as one’s sensory memory forgets an advert within a quarter of a tenth of a second, while if it was a good advert on a billboard for example, it can last between 20 and 30 seconds according to leading experts in the health industry.

Branded products have proven to be extremely effective over the years with regards to returning customers, and the return on investment. These personalized products, or more commonly referred to as promotional products leave a long-lasting impression that is sure to leave a positive impression.
For many top-tier companies, the ability to be able to hand out personalized products with a company logo or brand name is of great asset and these branded products are very affordable and easy to come by. Most commonly used promotional marketing products include, but is not limited to; coffee mugs, calendars, pens, glasses, and anything small and of value to the average person.

Calendars for example, if designed well, make a great personalized product as it will ensure people will see your name or logo on a regular basis for an entire year. Much more cost-effective than other advertising means and has a greater impact on the potential customer, who will subconsciously memorize your company name, if positioned strategically.

The same goes for an impressive, professional-looking pen, which will sit on the desk of your potential future client, and give them enough time to read the business name written on it. This method of advertising has been used for decades due to it’s effectiveness, and branded products will never go out of style, as long as it is free and of use to the client.