Online Marketing: What Is It?

What is online marketing?

Simply put, online marketing is the marketing of products or brands via the internet. However, this definition is quite broad and can encompass many different roles and responsibilities. An individual may perform online marketing in a sales capacity, while another may specialize in SEO (search engine optimization) or PPC (Pay-Per-Click) marketing.

Why Do I Need To Know This?

Knowing how to perform online marketing can be quite helpful in today’s ever-evolving digital landscape. Thanks to the expanding internet, more and more people are gaining access to powerful marketing tools like social media and email. As a digital marketer, you will be responsible for adapting these tools to effectively promote your clients’ products or services.

What Does A Digital Marketer Do?

A digital marketer primarily works with digital marketing agencies or in-house marketing teams to plan, analyze, and optimize marketing campaigns related to web, mobile, or social media.

As part of their role, they will develop and oversee marketing strategy, as well as monitor and optimize marketing initiatives. They will also conduct market research, analyze marketing data, and advise on future marketing plans and strategies.

In addition, since marketing on the internet is so broad, a digital marketer will regularly field clients’ questions and provide advice on social media platforms, email marketing, and SEO (Search Engine Optimization).

The Difference Between A Digital Marketer And A Social Media Marketer

As the name implies, a social media marketer typically focuses on the various social media platforms like Twitter, Facebook, and YouTube, which are often considered the “big three” when it comes to social media.

A social media marketer creates and fosters community on social media platforms, with the aim of increasing brand awareness, engaging potential customers, and encouraging them to take action – like making a purchase or signing up to a newsletter.

This process, known as “prospecting,” can be quite challenging. The challenge, however, becomes more complex when you take into consideration that not all social media platforms are created equal. Some are far more effective than others when it comes to marketing efforts.

Determining The Relative Importance Of Each Social Media Platform

When implementing a social media marketing plan, it’s important to consider the various platforms and how each one can best be used to reach your audience. This involves understanding key metrics like reach, engagement, and response rates associated with each individual platform.

For example, if you are looking to target women in their 20s with your product or service, you might decide to use Twitter. Simply by making this choice, you ensure that your target audience is easily accessible via this particular platform. You can then use tools like Google Analytics to track the behavior of your audience on Twitter and optimize your content based on this data.

Search Engine Optimization (SEO)

Search Engine Optimization, or SEO, is a form of online marketing that can help drive traffic to a website or blog. In other words, SEO allows you to improve your website’s ranking in search engines like Google.

SEO often entails working with a SEO agency that can conduct an analysis of your current web content and make recommendations for how to improve your website’s SEO – typically, with an eye towards driving more organic traffic from search engines.

There are many different types of SEO, involving various methods to artificially increase the popularity of your website or blog. Some of the more popular and effective types of SEO include:

  • Link Building: Boosting your website’s Google ranking through external hyperlinks (connections to other websites) that point to your website. This can be achieved organically, by acquiring high-quality links naturally through content marketing or by purchasing sponsored links.
  • Content Marketing: Creating and disseminating valuable, informative content that is relevant and appealent to your target audience – as a form of marketing.
  • Influencer Marketing: Using popular, trusted individuals to help promote your products or services via social media.
  • Video Marketing: Using video content, whether it is recorded live or pre-recorded, to attract, engage, and educate your target audience.
  • Opinion Article Marketing: Using editorial statements or reviews to recommend products or services.
  • Product Trials: Providing customers with an opportunity to try out new products or features before making a purchase decision.

In order to succeed as a digital marketer, you must have the ability to effectively balance many different tasks that may include, but are not limited to, website building, copywriting, digital marketing strategy, market research, and web design. While it’s not impossible for a lone wolf digital marketer to succeed, it’s certainly difficult to be effective without significant training or ongoing professional assistance.

Pay-Per-Click (PPC) Marketing

Often considered the “in-house” or “hybrid” form of marketing, PPC marketing is a type of online marketing that involves paying the search engines (like Google or Yahoo!) when your website or blog is “clicked” on in the search results.

This form of online marketing is most effective when used in conjunction with sales funnels, such as landing pages, which guide website visitors (and potential customers) to take an action (like making a purchase or subscribing to a newsletter) via a specific call to action (like a button, link, or area to fill out a form).

Since websites and blogs usually appear in the search results at the top, PPC marketing is often used to “surface” competing websites, product pages, blogs, and more in the search results so that site visitors can easily find what they’re looking for.

PPC marketing is quite affordable, especially in comparison to other forms of online marketing, but it can get quite complex and require a significant amount of ongoing professional assistance to succeed. In addition to implementing a PPC campaign, you will also need to keep track of a large amount of performance data, analyzing keyword and LLS (landing page) performance over time for each campaign.

Traditional Marketing

Traditional marketing, as the name implies, entails marketing products or services that are not digital. This may include radio ads, TV commercials, magazines, newspapers, and more.

While there are many different types of traditional marketing, the name itself typically implies that marketing involves some sort of face-to-face interaction. This can happen in a number of ways, but usually entails some sort of sales presentation (e.g., a radio ad that invites listeners to call in or an email campaign that includes a mailing list and a newsletter).

Even though marketing via the internet is quite popular and effective, many businesses still rely on traditional marketing to generate leads and ultimately find customers. This is mainly because face-to-face interaction is still quite important in marketing. In other words, while you can learn a lot from a TV commercial or a radio ad, you can also learn a lot from a well-executed sales presentation.

Different Forms Of Online Marketing

As you would guess, the definition of online marketing isn’t absolute and can vary from person to person. This is quite common when it comes to defining roles and responsibilities within a marketing team or agency, making it quite difficult to know where to start when it comes to learning the ropes.

To make your role as a digital marketer even more complicated, there are several different forms of online marketing. Below, you will discover some of the more popular ones. However, this list is far from complete, as the definition of “online marketing” is constantly evolving and expanding. We can’t cover every single role and responsibility that a digital marketer may have, but we can give you a good starting point for your research.

Email Marketing

Email marketing, as the name implies, involves sending out mass email messages to a potential audience with the aim of encouraging them to take some sort of action, like making a purchase or signing up for a newsletter.

Thanks to the prevalence of smartphones and tablets, as well as the fact that many people now work remotely than ever before, there has been a resurgence of email marketing, especially as a form of promotional marketing. Simply put, businesses and brands are realizing that everyone and their grandmother is likely to be receiving or reading email messages all day long, so it’s best to keep the content interesting, digestible, and relevant.