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Digital marketing is a broad concept with many different elements.
Digital marketing is a broad concept with many different elements.

The simplified guide to digital marketing

Beth Walker presents a concise guide to the world of digital marketing for business owners, from content marketing to SEO and social media.

When I tell people I work in digital marketing, they often respond by saying they don't want to sell their products or services on social media.

This reaction is understandable.

These days, social media isn't always kind, and the algorithms used to determine which accounts and posts reach the most eyes are unpredictable.

For this reason, I advise businesses to think of social media as the icing on the multi-layered cake of their digital marketing strategy.

One definition of digital marketing is that it is the strategy of using the internet to market a business.

The goal of digital marketing should be to create and optimise information that helps a business’ ideal customers understand everything about the business, which then makes them more likely to trust – and therefore purchase – from that business.

It is a broad concept, and includes content marketing, search engine optimisation (SEO), social media marketing, website development and design, pay-per-click (PPC) advertising, lead generation, lead nurturing, and email marketing.

These elements can be grouped roughly into two sections – content marketing and website development.

Content marketing
”The goal of digital marketing should be to create and optimise information that helps a business’ ideal customers understand everything about the business”

Content is the most time-consuming and often the most expensive part of a digital marketing strategy but it is key to engaging and exciting potential customers.

When a business provides valuable information and keeps its online audience informed about its activities, it adds value.

There is a lot of ‘noise’ on the internet and content marketing helps you to distinguish your business as a space where customers won't have their time wasted.

As the business owner, you will know the types of content your customers need. Using keywords, you can create content about the most important topics for your business.

When you develop a library of assets that are well-written or produced, authoritative, relevant, and attract your audience's attention, you will quickly become an authority in your field.

Content marketing assets include:

  • Web page content
  • Blog posts
  • Emails
  • Infographics
  • Whitepapers
  • E-books
  • Videos
  • Podcasts
  • How-to guides
  • Webinars

Content marketing also includes social media, lead generation, lead nurturing, and email marketing.

Website development

Your most important digital asset is your website. It is vital to have a website that presents a clear message and has easy navigation.

User experience is something that can't be overlooked, so it is critical to seek a visually appealing design.

It's also necessary that your site is fully optimised for SEO, providing you with the best opportunities to rank highly in relevant Google searches.

Incorporate SEO best practices into your website’s content, meta descriptions,
and titles, incorporating key terms your customers – and potential customers – are using to search for businesses like yours.

Finally, you'll need to connect your website to Google Analytics and Search Console
– formerly known as Google Webmaster Tools – so you can ensure your site is being found on Google.

Measurable results

To ensure your digital marketing strategy is successful, it's important to analyse each element. This ensures your effort, time and resouces are actually working to connect you with your desired audience.

However, the prospect of managing a digital marketing strategy may seem daunting, and you may want to seek further assistance.

If you start searching for the terms and strategies highlighted in this article, you will find thousands of get-rich-quick pitches, hundreds of websites with people stating they are digital marketing experts, and just as many videos and webinars.

Each will have a different way of doing things. So, who do you trust?

If marketers are willing to teach you what they know to help you get started, that is a good sign. It is also a good idea to listen to a company that can prove its methodology with case studies.

If a business cannot transparently show that its strategies work, why should you waste your time?


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Beth Walker

Beth Walker writes for US-based SMA Marketing, which specialises in digital marketing strategies for businesses. Visit: smamarketing.net

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