When Marketing Is Done Online – How Must Disclosures Be Provided?

The year is now well into its stride, and it’s time for some reflection on the last 12 months, particularly as it relates to marketing and advertising.

The old maxim ‘always bet on the house’ has never been more fitting than now, as interest rates have hit record lows and the financial landscape has completely changed. While it’s still possible to make money from home, the traditional route of gaining a passive income stream no longer suffices. As a result, a new type of entrepreneur has emerged, one who is more focused on creating value than on trying to time the market.

This shift has been propelled largely by the digital sphere and the changing habits of consumers, who are now empowered to be much more discerning about how and where they get their information. In the past, consumers may have turned to traditional media, like television, for answers. Today, with so much information readily available online, they are much more likely to turn to the digital sphere for solutions.

So, what does all this mean for marketers? Above all, it means that traditional marketing media, like television and magazines, no longer hold the same weight. In today’s economy, consumers are much more discerning about what content they want and where they get it. As a result, marketing budgets and the focus of campaigns must change too.

Bold And Challenging

Bold and challenging marketing is back with a bang. While it’s never been more important to have a sound marketing platform, it’s now vital to engage with your target audience in a way that is both innovative and insightful. In other words, to stand out from the crowd.

What does this mean for marketers? It means that old paradigms, like advertising on television, must be disrupted and that campaigns should be built around content that is both engaging and valuable.

The best marketers will be those that can engage with potential customers in a way that is both bold and challenging – and, ultimately, profitable. Consumers, especially today, are looking for brands to stand for something more than simply satisfying a need. They want to be inspired, thought-leading creatures that challenge the status quo, offer unique insights and ultimately make them feel like they’ve discovered something valuable.

The Importance Of Authentic Conversation

The conversation is changing too. No longer content to take up space on social media platforms, companies are now finding success in being a part of the conversation – and not just a silent consumer or customer on social media. Those that want to be most effective in engaging with customers will be the ones that can spark interesting and valuable conversations on their behalf.

To do this, marketers must find a way to be both genuine and unique. One way of achieving this is by actually having a conversation with the person you want to engage with. Not only does this provide a sense of authenticity that can make all the difference, it can also lead to much more valuable connections and engagement.

The Rise Of The Influencer

Influencers have been gaining in popularity and have rapidly become a powerful marketing force, capitalising on their connections with a very specific niche audience. Typically, an influencer will have tens or hundreds of thousands of followers, many of whom are already very engaged and consume their content regularly. As a result, influencers can have a significant influence over a company’s bottom line – both directly through their own promotional activities and, to a lesser extent, through retweets and mentions.

The attraction of this seemingly glamorous job is that you get to share your expertise with a very attentive audience who is often uniquely passionate about the topic you’re discussing. While it might be difficult to relate to the average person, once you’ve established yourself as an expert in your chosen field, the limelight becomes all the more attractive.

Branded Content

Branded content is content (written, edited, or produced) that is specifically commissioned by a company. Simply put, it’s content that is designed to look like it was produced by a trusted brand, but it was actually produced by someone else.

The key to effective branded content is being able to combine compelling content with a polished and professional image. When done well, it can be a powerful tool that will make your target audience stand out from the crowd. Additionally, companies can utilise branded content to establish credibility, verify their expertise, and strengthen their relationship with consumers – provided, of course, that they do this in a tasteful and tasteful manner.

Customer Care

Customers have become more discerning too. While most will still be happy to browse online retailers, those that want to be kept in business must offer an exceptional level of customer care, responding quickly to any queries that arise and ensuring that their customers feel heard, understood, and valued.

The best way of providing customer care is through a dedicated customer service team that is available to take phone calls, respond to emails, and provide live chat assistance to customers as needed. Additionally, firms must ensure that their staff can identify with and understand the needs of their customers. To ensure this, regular communication both within the company and between its employees and customers is essential.

Technology, Location, And Cost

Location and cost are probably the least exciting and most practical elements to consider when planning a marketing campaign. But, without them, your campaign will likely fail. Consumers want to be able to get what they want when they want it, and they want to do so at a price that fits their budget.

As a marketer, it’s essential to have a clear understanding of your target audience’s technology preferences. Do they prefer desktop or mobile devices for accessing the internet? Are they on social media, or do they prefer to seek information from traditional media, like television and magazines?

With this kind of information, you’ll be able to select a platform that is accessible and appropriate for your target audience, as well as one that you can budget for and manage effectively. Additionally, you’ll need to consider where you’re located, as different geographical locations will impact the pricing and availability of services like social media marketing and search engine optimization (SEO).

Digital Marketing Vs Traditional Marketing

While the above changes have massive implications for marketers, it’s still important to understand the differences between traditional and digital marketing. Simply put, digital marketing is a type of marketing that uses digital tools and platforms to get the word out about a brand or product. Some of the more common examples of digital marketing include:

  • Web banner ads
  • Mobile app banner ads
  • Social media banner ads
  • Text ads
  • Email marketing
  • Blog posts
  • YouTube videos
  • Instagram stories
  • Snapchat stories
  • Videoconferencing

While all of these are forms of digital marketing, it’s important to remember that not all forms of digital marketing are created equal. For example, web banner ads are practically worthless and mobile app banner ads, while quite popular, can be a financial drain. Even the most basic form of digital marketing – using social media to keep in touch with and engage with existing and potential customers – is a form of marketing that is effective, quick, and relatively inexpensive.

In contrast, other forms of digital marketing like email marketing and search engine optimization are much more expensive and require a significant marketing budget to be effective. The key is to understand what form of digital marketing will be most effective for your brand or product.

The Changing Face Of Marketing

The above changes are causing the traditional face of marketing to change. Instead of focusing on mass media advertising and relying on general demographics to reach the target audience, marketers must now become more tactical, focusing on specific groups and targeting individuals within these groups.

The most effective marketers will be the ones that can use the tools at their disposal to target individuals and engage with them on a more personal level. Additionally, while the above may be a lot for one person to take on, marketing as a whole is a field that is evolving and changing as quick as technology is evolving and changing.

What does this mean for marketers? It means that the job will be far more difficult than it has ever been – and far more rewarding too.