29 Jul Recap: L2TMedia @ Loyola University Chicago!
Last night I had the opportunity to visit my alma mater, Loyola University Chicago, to speak about digital marketing to students in Stacy Neier Beran’s Principles of Marketing course. We discussed how digital marketing has changed integrated marketing communications, its effects on business, and why it’s more important than ever to maintain a quality online presence. See the recap from my presentation below!
What is Digital Marketing and IMC?
Marketing is more than just tactics: it is an integrated, strategic practice with defined goals like generating quality business leads, sales, and promoting user engagement. This is known as integrated marketing communications, and my simplified definition is:
Tactics and strategies across traditional and digital media that are combined to produce the best possible results.
A successfully integrated, holistic marketing campaign strategically captures consumers’ interest (and business). Simply put, although media and technologies change, marketers must focus on how the user is driving the change, so that we capture their search intent and business!
However, there has been a business-to-consumer communication paradigm shift. Consumers’ buying and search habits are telling businesses what they want to see and consume. This is why digital marketing (and search marketing, specifically) is so important – users are looking for YOU, even when you’re not looking for them.
This new consumer-to-business communication paradigm is the child of Google’s ZMOT – Zero Moment of Truth (click link to read the full ZMOT study) – which says that consumers will automatically research a product or service before buying it.
This makes the best point for why digital marketing is an important investment. With limited user-engaged space in search results, having your business populate for organic, paid and social results makes you easier to find in your area and industry.
Pay-per-click (PPC) advertising, search engine optimization (SEO), social media management and online reputation management can improve a business’s online reach. Obviously as an SEO specialist I believe SEO is one of the most important. Businesses need to focus on the content. Provide the content your target audience is looking for. Results and success will be defined differently for each business. It’s how you identify and track those results that will tell you how successful your digital campaigns are.
What About Results?
There are many ways to measure your success, and for PPC and SEO you’ll turn to Google AdWords and Google Analytics. The data from these tools can show you exactly where improvements can be made, as well as where you’re achieving your results.
Digital marketing has expanded significantly in recent years – its continual practice, implementation, and strategy definition will only grow more advanced and more holistic as time goes on. It’s important for the marketer to understand the nuances of the digital landscape, how it relates to traditional media, and how to best integrate traditional and digital marketing tactics.