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5 Types of Digital Marketing Strategies for 2018

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1.) SEO (Search Engine Optimization) 

A. Quick Stats

In 2018, the average firm is expected to allocate 41% of their marketing budget to online, and this rate is expected to grow to 45% by 2020. (Source: Web Strategies)

Marketers see SEO as becoming more effective, with 82% reporting effectiveness is on the rise and 42% of this group stating effectiveness is increasing significantly. (Source: MarketDive)

61% of marketers say improving SEO and growing their organic presence is their top inbound marketing priority. (Source: HubSpot)

In 2017, Google accounted for over 79% of all global desktop search traffic, followed by Bing at 7.27%, Baidu at 6.55% and Yahoo at 5.06%. (Source : NetMarketShare)

72% of marketers say the single most effective SEO tactic is relevant content creation. (Source: MarketingProfs)

Google changes its search engine algorithm roughly 500 – 600 time per year. (Source: Moz)

B. The State of SEO at Present and Why is it Important?

SEO is back and is back with a bang like never before. All those who say, SEO is dead, stop living under the comfortable rock that you refuse to move out of. SEO is in the main lead when it comes to Digital Marketing.

Gone are the days when hackers grew up like mushrooms with cheap SEO tricks to build useless links and who would stuff the content with keywords like it was no one’s business.

People would try to hack their way into SEO in such a way that the websites started becoming a keyword caricature. And to everyone’s horror, such websites managed to rank higher in Google search results.

User experience started getting compromised and how!

That’s when Google had to step in. Because the sole purpose of Google’s existence is to provide the right and relevant results to its users. It took matter into its hands and started changing it algorithm and started punishing the bad websites of the cyber world.

Now as Moz confirms that Googles changes its algorithm so fast that these hackers have to be on their toes all the time.

Where does that leave the real digital marketers?

SEO needs to be managed regularly, and it needs to be managed in the right ways and according to the guidelines of search engine. Above all, websites need to provide superior experience and contextual content to the search engine users. This is the golden age of SEO specialists.

And if you’re thinking that why are we talking all about Google instead of all encompassing search engines, then you need to go through the quick stats once again and carefully.

C. Who is it for?

SEO marketing is important for any business or individual who has or wishes to have a web presence that would benefit from inbound organic traffic on their web property.

If you don’t rank in the relevant search query results on Google, your web property doesn’t really exist for the netizens.

D. Quick Tips for SEO in 2018

  • User experience is the SEO. Slip on this and you’ve lost already.
  • Mobile friendliness can’t be ignored anymore. People are practically living on their mobile screens.
  • Cut the crap on your website. Keep only what’s valuable to your visitors and leave the unnecessary fluff outside.
  • Make your website load superfast. People are impatient than ever and have choices beyond imagination.
  • Befriend Long Tail keywords and use with right context through your website. Think like human beings, we’re still humans.
  • Build quality backlinks. In backlinking quality always trumps quantity.
  • Google considers Social Media for SEO ranking, so should you.
  • Content rules SEO. Get your content right and half the battle would already be won.

2.) Social Media Marketing

A. Quick Stats

22% of the world’s total population uses Facebook. (Source: Statista)

As the number of advertisers on social media increases, so will the cost of social ads – for context, spending on Facebook alone increased 74% year over year in 2017. (Source: Social Media Today and AdWeek)

It’s estimated that by 2019, video will account for 80% of all consumer internet traffic. (Source: Social Media Today)

Research by Rakuten Marketing revealed that UK marketers are willing to pay influencers more than £75,000 for a single Facebook post mentioning their brand.  (Source: Our Social Times)

B. State of Social Media Marketing at Present and Why is it Important?

types of digital marketing

                                                                                Social Media Marketing in 2018

As a Digital Marketer, you wouldn’t be new to Social Media Marketing. What’s new is the absolutely crazy growth of Social Media. Videos have just added a whole new dimension to this growth and have single-handedly contributed more to this addiction than any other content format.People are addicted, and we sure are in middle of a Social Media apocalypse.

Before Artificial Intelligence or AI could take over humanity, looks like Social Media already has, well for time being at least. And that’s not an exaggeration by any measure. The above statistics are provided to give context to this mind-boggling growth only. Don’t believe me, let the data speak for itself.

Well, it goes without saying that marketers and businesses can’t leave that kind an engaged audience out of their business and marketing strategies. So more and more businesses are including Social Media as one of leading promotional platforms in their marketing budgets.

Businesses are literally lining up with their money to spend at Social Media platforms.

It means that if you’re a digital marketer with killer social media skills then your career is headed in the right direction. Keep flexing that social media muscle and you’re going to be in huge demand.

C. Who is it for?

It’s for everyone. In fact, that’s no longer even the right question to be asked. The question that you should be asking is, who it isn’t for.

If you’re a business then you would benefit from Social Media presence. If you’re a marketing professional, Social Media Marketing is the skill to have on your profile. The key is to make and execute the right strategy for it.

D. Quick Tips for Social Media Marketing in 2018

  • Know your audience before and better than they know themselves. Understand what kind of content they like and at what time they like to consume it.
  • Know various content formats across Social Media channels and understand the relevance for your business.
  • You don’t need to be on every Social Media platform. Analyze which platform is the right one for you to promote your business to the right audience.
  • Don’t go overboard with your Social Media excitement. Avoid bombarding your audience otherwise, it might backfire. 
  • Create valuable, useful and engaging content for your audience and see how they love you back.
  • Experiment, experiment and experiment until you get it right. And then keep experimenting some more.

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3.) Content Marketing

A. Quick Stats

Content marketing generates over three times as many leads as outbound marketing and costs 62% less. (Source: DemandMetric)

Almost half of 18- to 49-year-old people get their news and information online – and those numbers are growing. (Source: Pew Research)

Small businesses with blogs get 126% more lead growth than small businesses without. (Source: ImpactBnd)

Content marketing rakes in conversion rates six times higher than other methods. (Source: ABGEssentials)

B. State of Content Marketing at Present and Why is it Important?

Good content is what sits right at the heart of good marketing. This has always been true and couldn’t have been more relevant than it is now in this new digital world that we’ve inhabited, consciously or subconsciously.

Almost all of the Digital Marketing is driven by some kind of content.

Do you want to do Email Marketing? Well, you first gotta create a compelling email body.

Do you want to run a lead generation campaign? Well, you would first need to create some useful and attractive content so that people would like to share their data with you.

Do you need Social Media Marketing campaign? The first thing you would need is content to distribute and build an audience.

Do you want to drive a PR campaign? Well, you better create a good PR deck to distribute.

Do you want to start a blog? Well, first write something.

You get the drift!

If you haven’t paid attention to your content marketing strategies yet, you’re already losing your marketing game. So get going right now.

C. Who is it for?

If you’re a Social Media Marketer, then it’s for you. If your business relies on Emails for marketing and promotion then it’s for you. If you run paid ad campaigns on digital platforms then it’s for you. If you’re an aspiring influencer, then it’s for you.

If you’re a marketer, then content marketing if for you.

D. Quick Tips

  • Before you start creating content, spend some time into knowing your target audience.
  • Don’t be in a hurry to create loads of content and end up making it useless or even worse, crappy. Quality and contextual content is the proverbial tortoise that slowly and steadily wins the race.
  • Don’t go crazy with keywords. SEO is no longer about meaningless keyword stuffing. Build the right context, go deeper with long tail keywords and see the magic happening.
  • Balance your content with different formats, textual, graphic, video, ephemeral. Experiment with these formats and get insights on to how your audience responds to each of these.

4.) Influencer Marketing

Types of Digital Marketing

                                                                                        Influencer Marketing in 2018

A. Quick Stats

Influencer marketing on Instagram is currently a $1 billion industry, and it could reach $2 billion by 2019. (Source: MediaKix)

While there was a 90x increase in Google searches for the term “influencer marketing” from 2013 to 2016, interest around the topic has doubled in the first nine months of 2017. (Source: MediaKix)

74% of people trust social networks to guide them to purchase decisions. (Source: The Leverage Way)

49% of people rely on influencer recommendations. (Source: The Leverage Way)

B. State of Influencer Marketing at Present and Why is it Important?

Influencer Marketing has come a long way in last five years alone. From being just an experimental short-term tactic for marketing campaigns, it has come to be a full-fledged marketing strategy and sometimes even a full-fledged marketing campaign on its own.

Marketers have evolved from just being lured by vanity metrics like the number of followers and likes etc. to looking at the quality of the followers for each influencer. Relevance is of prime importance too.

Now that businesses are allocating serious money to engage influencers for their campaigns, they’re also started looking for accountability and measurable Return on their Investment.

Gone are the days when Influencers with huge following were charging insane fees with no concrete return on that fees. Influencer Marketing is serious business now and slowly and steadily it’s moving from being unorganized to getting organized.

The impact of including right influencers in your brand promotion strategy can’t be overlooked now. People are consistently ignoring blatant and in-your-face advertising communications.

Digital Marketing also has brought forth the classic marketing strategies of Word-of-Mouth and Advocate Marketing. An influencer advocating and using your brand to their followers can do wonders into getting organic adaptation and acceptance from untapped audience.

C. Who is it for?

  • If you’ve a brand that could benefit from some real-life advocacy then using Influencer Marketing is useful for you.
  • If you can build a strong and vast community of netizens around a niche and can keep the communication going then you have all the makings of an influencer.
  • If you’re looking at indirect and innovative methods of marketing and promotion to reach out to your target audience on Social Media then you could benefit from Influencer Marketing.

D. Quick Tips

Relevance is of prime importance while considering Influencer Marketing. If you’re a food brand and you’ve roped in a fashion influencer without any relevance to back it up then no matter the number of people reached, you’ve a dud campaign in your hands.

  • Subtlety and organic integration is what your communication needs while working with Influencers. They should be genuine in their approach and usage of your brand otherwise they would come across as fake and people can easily see through fakeness.
  • Get your story and messaging right while working with Influencers. Don’t turn them into yet another promotional mouthpiece for your brand otherwise, your campaign would fall flat.
  • Get your Influencers engaged with your brand even before they engage their followers. If your influencers believe in what they are talking about, they would be credible and authentic source to talk about it. Credibility and authenticity is what makes Influencer Marketing work, don’t let this aspect get ignored.

5.) Digital PR

A. Quick Stats

80% of business decision-makers prefer to get company information in a series of articles versus an advertisement. (Source: Content Marketing Institute)

B2B researchers do 12 searches on average prior to engaging on a specific brand’s site(Source: Google)

93% of B2B buying processes begin with an online search. (Source: HubSpot)

70% of consumers prefer getting to know a company via articles rather than ads(Source: Content Marketing Institute)

96% of B2B buyers want content with more input from industry thought leaders(Source: Demand Gen Report)

B. State of Digital PR at Present and Why is it Important?

Types of Digital Marketing

Digital PR in 2018

Though Public Relations is not a new or strictly digital marketing strategy, it certainly can’t be overlooked while talking about the key digital marketing strategies for 2018. With people spending more and more time-consuming content and news on digital platforms, getting the right exposure on digital media platforms becomes very crucial for brand and businesses.

PR is all about getting the right exposure. And nothing helps increasing the quantum of exposure more than digital media. Being visible to the right audience in the right light can be very crucial for businesses and PR on digital platforms helps to do that.

And the most important thing is that Digital PR, in most cases, comes at a fraction of the cost and complexity that traditional PR would otherwise require.

Digital has made PR accessible to all kinds of businesses. PR is very important for new businesses and they’re the ones who find it extremely difficult to get good media coverage in traditional marketing. Not anymore with digital PR coming to the rescue.

News is also one of most consumed type of content on digital platforms and it would really help to get featured at the right outlets and become a known name in your chosen segment.

C. Who is it for?

Though good PR could be of great help to all kinds of businesses, it’s most useful to upcoming brands and businesses. They are the ones who need visibility, who need to get their story out, who need eyeballs and exposure, who could benefit from reaching to a vast audience in the right light.

PR could also help those who are looking to build a personal brand for themselves. Getting featured as a leading voice is the first step towards building a strong personal brand. We, the digital marketers, also call it thought leadership.

D. Quick Tips

  • Track, follow and make a list of media platforms where getting your brand featured would be the relevant exposure to your business.
  • Identify the digital news platform that your target audience consumes and include those in your strategy.
  • Find out the niche platforms which are not media platforms in their approach but serve the stories to the audience that they care about and have built a loyal readership around the niche that you operate in.
  • Look for the communities that are relevant to your business and are also open to featuring brands to their members.
  • The most basic and the most important strategy is to build a strategy for getting PR exposure via digital for your business. Don’t ignore the power of right exposure.

Which of these Digital Marketing strategies are you going to work within 2018 for your brand and business?

Leave your answers in comments and let’s keep the knowledge sharing flow freely and widely.

Image Courtesy: 3StepDigital.com, Influencer Marketing Hub, PR University

About the Author Ritu Jhajharia Founder – Rolling Circle Pvt Ltd | Communications Consultant | Aspiring Writer Ritu has dabbled into various roles across functions in marketing, brand management, communication, public relations, content management, consulting, technology & entrepreneurship for over a decade. She is currently working as a full-time entrepreneur heading her venture Rolling Circle Pvt Ltd, an Integrated Marketing Communications firm. She likes to help growing start-ups with marketing strategy and thought leadership via content. She likes to write on various topics, is a successful blogger and is an avid traveler.
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