Purpose or Nature of Your Business in Online Marketing?

If you’re reading this, I assume you’re either a marketer or someone who knows one. Or maybe you’re a business owner who wants to understand online marketing better or for the first time.

Regardless of your role or level of experience, you’ve probably considered marketing to be some combination of:

  • Fun.
  • Creative.
  • Instagrammable.
  • Viral.
  • Money-maker.
  • Lifesaver.

While marketing can be used to justify or explain almost any business or marketing decision or activity, that doesn’t mean it has to. What’s more, not all marketing tactics or activities can or should be applied to every business. This post will help you figure out what you need to know and what approach to take to fit the nature of your business.

The Evolution of Marketing

In the world of marketing, the basic rules haven’t changed much over the past few decades. You’ll always need to have some kind of marketing plan in place and you’ll need to follow the rules of engagement to make sure your strategy is effective. But despite some common misconceptions, modern marketing is quite diverse.

From the traditional radio ad to YouTube vlogs and Instagram stories, marketing has changed dramatically in the digital age. With the click of a button, you can now directly connect with potential customers wherever they are in the world. This makes the nature or role of your business in online marketing much more complicated. Depending on your industry, you may not always need to market to the masses but instead can tailor your strategy to specific groups or channels.

To make things even more complicated, not all digital channels or audiences are created equal. YouTube videos with catchy jingles and flashy graphics can gain popularity in a matter of months, while others may take years to discover. So knowing the right place and the right time to promote your business can be tricky.

Traditional versus Digital Marketing

With the rapidly evolving world of digital marketing, it’s important to keep in mind the differences between traditional and digital marketing.

If you’re reading this, you’re probably already aware that not all online marketing is created equal. While it’s true that much of the content you see online will be influenced by digital marketing, the line between the two is a little blurred. What’s more, traditional marketing tactics can and often do play a significant role in the success of a digital marketing strategy.

One of the biggest differences between the two is the access to and the analysis of data. Traditional marketers deal with smaller data sets that are more difficult to analyze. Even then, they may only have access to a small percentage of the audience they aim to reach. This makes it more difficult to determine what works and what doesn’t. For example, do you spend enough on radio ads to justify the investment? Or should you try a different tactic like web banners or Facebook ads?

With digital marketing, you can answer these questions and more with the click of a button. Even better, you can track the results of your efforts in real-time. This makes it much simpler to determine the effectiveness of any given tactic or channel.

Ultimately, the decision-making process for most businesses will be simplified by the presence of reliable, real-time data. This isn’t meant to be an either/or proposition; you’ll often need to draw on data from both sources to get the full picture. But at least you can have confidence that the numbers you see on your screen represent what’s actually happening.