Digital Marketing – What is it and do you need it?

In Canada alone, digital marketing accounts for nearly 55 percent of total ad spending. That's over $8 billion that companies are investing in their digital marketing efforts.

And the number of consumers going online regularly is still increasing. The Pew Research Center found that 85 percent of people go online several times a day. That includes 31 percent who say they are online constantly.


These numbers have caused more and more businesses to beef up their digital marketing efforts. The last thing you want is to be left behind while your competitor boosts their online sales.

What is digital marketing?

Investopedia defines marketing as "activities a company undertakes to promote the buying or selling of a product or service." They define digital marketing by the channels used to reach customers, such as the internet, social media, search engines, etc.

While a large component of digital marketing is advertising, the concept goes much deeper. To attract and engage with their online audience, organizations need to find ways to stand out online. Digital marketers must move beyond advertising to help companies boost sales. It includes finding ways to engage with an audience and accompanying them on their buying journey. For example, your organization could publish informational content that educates your audience about an issue or problem. While you are not directly selling your solution, you are encouraging your audience to look to you when they need help to solve that problem.

Digital marketers also collect information on consumers that they can use to adjust their marketing efforts to be more appealing and relevant.  As technology advances, so too does digital marketing. It can now incorporate mobile platforms, artificial intelligence, virtual reality, etc.

Digital marketing is not always about attracting online sales. You can advertise in-store deals with the same methods. However, many customers who are shopping online are ready to make a purchase. You don't want to lose that momentum by asking them to leave the comfort of their home and visit your brick-and-mortar store.

Types of digital marketing

Digital marketing incorporates different formats and techniques to attract buyers. Here are some of the most common channels used in online advertising:

Pay-per-click (PPC)

PPC is a paid form of digital advertising that sends users to a specific web page. It involves buying space on a search engine results page (SERP). With PPC, your ad will appear either at the top of the search results or on the side. These ads can be targeted for specific keywords and search terms so your ad will be relevant to what the user is looking to find. Just like the title implies, you pay each time someone clicks on your ad.

Social media marketing

Marketing effectively on social media means so much more than just having accounts and posting content. You need to be actively engaging with users on various platforms and encourage peer-to-peer sharing of your content. As your brand is shared with friends, family, and followers, you'll find your customer base growing.

Email marketing

An email is still an essential tool for reaching your audience. But you'll need to be engaging, informative, and entertaining, or your email could end up lost in your customer's inbox. Whether you send out a monthly newsletter or targeted sales messages, email marketing is a fast and direct way to retain your customers' attention.

Content marketing

Creating engaging and relevant content allows your brand to stay top of mind for customers. It can also be a strategic way to grow your audience. Content marketing does not primarily promote your products and services. Rather, it is used to position your company as a thought leader and a brand that consumers can trust. Whether you create blogs, videos, podcasts, or other content this form of digital marketing is ideal for self-directed shoppers.

Benefits of digital marketing

Promoting your brand and boosting your sales are likely the two most pressing reasons to engage in digital marketing. When done correctly, digital marketing can help you reach a bigger audience and connect with those ready to buy. But it also has other benefits, such as:

Cost effective -compared to traditional advertising methods, digital marketing can be done at a fraction of the cost. You'll also be able to track the success of your campaigns on a daily basis and make adjustments. For example, if you find that one channel is not performing as well as you'd expected, you can reduce your spending in that area. Whereas, when you buy advertising in a newspaper or a billboard, the price you pay is not directly related to how many people engage with it.

Keeps you competitive - in the world of traditional advertising, it was always the larger companies with a bigger budget that could benefit. But, in the digital world, many smaller brands can compete with larger companies. One of the keys to online advertising is search engines. If your company can identify the best keywords to use in your content, you could outrank more prominent brands.

Easily measurable - with digital marketing, you'll be able to measure various metrics that matter to you. Doing this can help you see immediately what is working and what is not. You'll be able to track marketing campaigns over time and see your success daily.  Some of the metrics you should be following include:

    • Website traffic
    • Content performance


Boost your digital marketing efforts with SOAP Media

SOAP Media has built a team of marketing specialists that can generate leads and boost your digital marketing efforts. Whether you want to increase web traffic, start selling with social media, or build a content strategy that attracts, we can get you there. We are dedicated to helping companies succeed online. Contact us for your free 30-minute call today. Let us show you how to garner more sales for your business.