Digital Marketing: Defined

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Digital marketing is a broad term that encompasses all marketing efforts that use an electronic device or the internet. Businesses leverage digital channels such as search engines, social media, email, and their websites to connect with current and prospective customers. The advent of digital marketing has revolutionized the way businesses strategize and implement their marketing campaigns, enabling them to reach a global audience, measure their results in real time, and adjust their strategies based on the performance of their campaigns.

With the increasing use of the internet and technological advancements, digital marketing has become an indispensable part of every business's marketing strategy. It offers numerous benefits over traditional marketing methods, such as the ability to interact with your audience in real time, the ability to target a specific audience, and the ability to track and analyze the performance of your marketing campaigns. This article aims to provide a comprehensive understanding of digital marketing, its various components, and how it can be effectively used to achieve business objectives.

Understanding Digital Marketing

Digital marketing is not just about selling and buying of products and services, but it is about providing a personalized online experience to your customers that is integrated across all digital channels and platforms. It involves understanding how your customers interact with your brand online, what kind of content they respond to, and how you can engage with them in the most effective way. It is about creating a digital marketing strategy that aligns with your business objectives, integrates with your overall marketing plan, and helps you achieve your business goals.

At its core, digital marketing revolves around the internet, which defines and uses the internet to reach out to the customers. It focuses on marketing of products and services using digital technologies, like mobile phones, display advertising, and any other digital medium. While the internet is the most closely associated with digital marketing, other forms include text messaging, instant messaging, apps, podcasts, electronic billboards, digital television and radio channels, etc.

Importance of Digital Marketing

In today's digital age, consumers have access to information any time and any place they want it. The days when the messages people got about your products or services came from you and consisted of only what you wanted them to know are long gone. Now, consumers are exposed not just to what your company says about your brand, but what the media, friends, relatives, peers, etc., are saying as well. People want brands they can trust, companies that know them, communications that are personalized and relevant, and offers tailored to their needs and preferences.

Digital marketing allows businesses to tailor their advertising techniques to suit the preferences of their target audience. It also allows businesses to personalize their marketing messages to specific audiences, ensuring that your marketing message reaches the right people at the right time. Digital marketing is not only cost-effective but also offers a great return on investment (ROI) compared to traditional marketing channels.

Components of Digital Marketing

Digital marketing is made up of a number of components, each of which plays a crucial role in helping businesses achieve their marketing objectives. These components include search engine optimization (SEO), content marketing, social media marketing, pay-per-click (PPC) advertising, email marketing, and more. Each of these components serves a specific purpose and can be used in conjunction with one another to create a comprehensive, effective digital marketing strategy.

For instance, SEO involves optimizing your website and content to rank higher in search engine results pages (SERPs), thereby increasing the visibility of your business online. Content marketing, on the other hand, involves creating and distributing valuable, relevant, and consistent content to attract and engage a clearly defined audience, with the objective of driving profitable customer action. Social media marketing involves promoting your content and interacting with your audience on social media channels like Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, and Twitter.

Search Engine Optimization (SEO)

Search engine optimization, or SEO, is one of the most important components of digital marketing. It involves the process of optimizing your website and its content to improve its visibility for relevant searches. The better visibility your pages have in search results, the more likely you are to garner attention and attract prospective and existing customers to your business. SEO is about understanding what people are searching for online, the answers they are seeking, the words they’re using, and the type of content they wish to consume. Knowing the answers to these questions will allow you to connect to the people who are searching online for the solutions you offer.

SEO is made up of multiple different elements, and knowing what they are and how they work is key to understanding why SEO is so important. In short, SEO is significant because it makes your website more visible, and that means more traffic and more opportunities to convert prospects into customers. It’s also a valuable tool for brand awareness, building relationships with prospects, and positioning yourself as an authoritative and trustworthy expert in your field.

On-Page SEO

On-page SEO is the practice of optimizing individual web pages in order to rank higher and earn more relevant traffic in search engines. On-page refers to both the content and HTML source code of a page that can be optimized, as opposed to off-page SEO which refers to links and other external signals. It involves ensuring your website's visibility in the search engine result pages (SERP's) as well as improving its chances of being found by users.

On-page SEO includes a variety of different elements, including title tags, meta descriptions, content, internal links, URL structure, and more. Each of these elements plays a crucial role in how search engines understand and rank your content. For instance, title tags and meta descriptions tell search engines what your content is about, while your content provides valuable information to users and helps to establish your authority in your industry.

Off-Page SEO

Off-page SEO refers to all the activities that you and others do away from your website to raise the ranking of a page with search engines. While many people associate off-page SEO with link building, it goes beyond that. Many activities that don’t result in a standard link on other sites are important for off-page optimization. On-page search engine optimization happens within the site, while off-page SEO happens outside the site. If you write a guest post for another blog or leave a comment, you’re doing off-page site promotion.

Off-page SEO includes activities like link building, social media marketing, and influencer marketing. These activities help to build your brand's reputation and authority, which search engines take into account when ranking your content. For instance, if a reputable website links to your content, it signals to search engines that your content is valuable and trustworthy, thereby improving your chances of ranking higher in search results.

Content Marketing

Content marketing is a strategic marketing approach focused on creating and distributing valuable, relevant, and consistent content to attract and retain a clearly defined audience — and, ultimately, to drive profitable customer action. Instead of pitching your products or services, you are providing truly relevant and useful content to your prospects and customers to help them solve their issues.

Content marketing is used by leading brands. Research shows the vast majority of marketers are using content marketing. In fact, it is used by many prominent organizations in the world, including P&G, Microsoft, Cisco Systems, and John Deere. It’s also developed and executed by small businesses and one-person shops around the globe. Why? Because it works.

Types of Content Marketing

There are several types of content marketing, each of which serves a specific purpose and can be used in conjunction with one another to create a comprehensive, effective content marketing strategy. These types include blog posts, videos, infographics, case studies, ebooks, white papers, and more. Each of these types of content can be used to attract, engage, and convert your audience, depending on their preferences and where they are in the buyer's journey.

For instance, blog posts are a great way to provide valuable information to your audience, establish your authority in your industry, and improve your SEO. Videos, on the other hand, are a great way to engage your audience and provide them with a more interactive experience. Infographics can be used to present complex information in a visually appealing and easy-to-understand format, while case studies can be used to showcase your success stories and demonstrate the effectiveness of your products or services.

Content Marketing Strategy

A content marketing strategy is a plan for building an audience by publishing, maintaining, and spreading frequent and consistent content that educates, entertains, or inspires to turn strangers into fans and fans into customers. Great content marketing strategy should be rooted in a deep understanding of your audience — their wants, needs, questions, and pain points. Good content marketing strategy drives profitable customer action and uses content to deepen your relationship with your audience.

To create a successful content marketing strategy, you need to understand your audience, create valuable and relevant content, distribute your content through the right channels, and measure the effectiveness of your efforts. This involves conducting audience research, creating a content calendar, promoting your content through social media and other channels, and tracking your performance using various metrics and analytics tools.

Social Media Marketing

Social media marketing is the use of social media platforms to connect with your audience to build your brand, increase sales, and drive website traffic. This involves publishing great content on your social media profiles, listening to and engaging your followers, analyzing your results, and running social media advertisements.

The major social media platforms (at the moment) are Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest, YouTube, and Snapchat. There are also a range of social media management tools that help businesses to get the most out of the social media platforms listed above. For example, Buffer is a platform of social media management tools, which can help you achieve success with your social media marketing. Whether you want to build a brand or grow your business, we want to help you succeed.

Benefits of Social Media Marketing

Social media marketing offers numerous benefits to businesses, making it an essential component of any digital marketing strategy. It allows businesses to reach a global audience, interact with their audience in real time, and tailor their marketing messages to specific segments of their audience. It also provides businesses with valuable insights into their audience's interests, behaviors, and preferences, enabling them to create more targeted and effective marketing campaigns.

Furthermore, social media marketing is cost-effective, offering a great return on investment compared to traditional marketing channels. It allows businesses to create and share content with their audience for free, and offers affordable advertising options for businesses of all sizes. With the right strategy, businesses can use social media marketing to increase their brand awareness, generate more leads and sales, and improve their customer service.

Social Media Marketing Strategy

A social media marketing strategy is a summary of everything you plan to do and hope to achieve on social media. It guides your actions and lets you know whether you’re succeeding or failing. The more specific your strategy is, the more effective the execution will be. Keep it concise. Don’t make your social media marketing strategy so lofty and broad that it’s unattainable. The plan will guide your actions, but it will also be a measure by which you determine whether you’re succeeding or failing.

To create a successful social media marketing strategy, you need to understand your audience, set clear objectives, create engaging and shareable content, and measure your results. This involves conducting audience research, setting SMART goals, creating a content calendar, promoting your content through the right channels, and tracking your performance using various metrics and analytics tools.

Email Marketing

Email marketing is the act of sending a commercial message, typically to a group of people, using email. In its broadest sense, every email sent to a potential or current customer could be considered email marketing. It involves using email to send advertisements, request business, or solicit sales or donations. Email marketing strategies commonly seek to achieve one or more of three primary objectives, to build loyalty, trust, or brand awareness. The term usually refers to sending email messages with the purpose of enhancing a merchant's relationship with current or previous customers, encouraging customer loyalty and repeat business, acquiring new customers or convincing current customers to purchase something immediately, and sharing third-party ads.

Email marketing is a highly effective digital marketing strategy of sending emails to prospects and customers. Effective marketing emails convert prospects into customers, and turn one-time buyers into loyal, raving fans. Despite the rise of social media and unsolicited spam email (which is never a good marketing strategy), email remains the most effective way to nurture leads and turn them into customers.

Benefits of Email Marketing

Email marketing is one of the most cost-effective marketing tools for small businesses. According to the Direct Marketing Association, email marketing on average sees a 4300 percent return on investment (ROI) for businesses in the United States. This is because email marketing is easy to manage, gives you full control, and allows you to establish direct contact with your customers.

It's important to understand that a lot of your success with email marketing depends entirely on the email marketing software you choose because they are responsible for making sure that your emails actually get delivered. If you aren't careful, then you will end up paying a lot more money for fewer features and terrible deliverability (which causes you to lose even more money).

Email Marketing Strategy

An email marketing strategy is part of your overall marketing strategy and business plan. It helps you market your products and services with the use of the email channel with the best chances for making a profit and reaching your goals. That is because an effective email marketing strategy takes into consideration what your target customers are, their preferences and benefits they are looking for as well as your products services and industry and which email marketing messages are most effective.

An email marketing strategy is an important part of any marketing strategy. Email is the most cost-effective way to promote your products, communicate with your customers and reach your business goals. And on average, for every $1 you spend on email marketing, you can expect an average return of $38.


Digital marketing is a vast field, encompassing a variety of different components, each of which plays a crucial role in helping businesses achieve their marketing objectives. From SEO and content marketing to social media marketing and email marketing, each component serves a specific purpose and can be used in conjunction with one another to create a comprehensive, effective digital marketing strategy.

Understanding the various components of digital marketing and how they work together is crucial for any business looking to create a successful digital marketing strategy. By leveraging the power of digital marketing, businesses can reach a global audience, interact with their audience in real time, and tailor their marketing messages to specific segments of their audience, thereby increasing their chances of achieving their business objectives.

About the author

Hi, I'm Justin and I write Brand Credential.

I started Brand Credential as a resource to help share expertise from my 10-year brand building journey.

I currently serve as the VP of Marketing for a tech company where I oversee all go-to-market functions. Throughout my career I've helped companies scale revenue to millions of dollars, helped executives build personal brands, and created hundreds of pieces of content since starting to write online in 2012. Thank you for reading and feel free to connect with me on LinkedIn.

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