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How does an intern for a firm that assists clients with online advertising intelligently compose 600 words about marketing in such a way that upholds said firm’s excellent reputation?
He dives in headlong, of course. No pressure, kid.
For a relatively young industry (it dates back, what, 100 years?), marketing has undergone substantial change since its inception. When this business first became hot in the post-war streets, the telephone was the name of the game. You wanna sell your product? Spam those landlines like the world is ending. Simpler times. Simpler times indeed.
Mass media was hot on the telephone’s tail, of course. Print, radio, and television enabled (and continue to enable) advertisers to communicate their messages to millions of eyeballs and eardrums at any given time. What’s more, with the rise of mass media emerged the capacity for cross-channel marketing: the advertisement of the same brand or product across different media outlets. That’s more exposure to more consumers who are more likely to convert and spend their money.
If the intersection of TV sets, radios, newspapers, magazines, and journals sounds like a marketing home run, imagine what you could do with a global computer network that places information and commerce at consumers’ fingertips. Something to capture and hold their attention for hours upon hours per day.
Oh, right. If you’re in the business of selling stuff, the Internet is a glass-shattering 360 windmill on the surface of Mars. And the basketball is on fire. But in a cool, safe way.
Why? Because with the advent of the Internet came digital marketing, and with digital marketing came a whole new slew of channels through which you can reach your target audiences: social media platforms, email, search engine results pages (SERPs), you name it.
Social media is the most common daily activity in the U.S.; the majorities of Facebook and Instagram users check the platforms every single day. Each social channel reserves space in their feeds for advertisers to post promoted content. If your brand successfully cultivates a natural and appealing social media presence – whether it’s through quick Facebook videos, clever tweets, or aesthetically pleasing pins – your promotions will attract consumers rather than annoy them. Oh, and the cost per thousand impressions (CPM) for social media ads is super low. We’re talking about the odds of the Gallagher brothers reconciling their differences and reuniting Oasis for a never-ending intergalactic tour. That low.
Email marketing is huge, too. Billions of people use email and billions of messages are sent on a daily basis. The vast majority of retailers identify promotional emails as their primary mechanism for customer loyalty. Those who buy stuff through email promotions spend more money than those who buy stuff through other means. Most importantly, the ROI on email marketing is great: $44 per $1 spent.
Paid search is another crucial tool of digital marketing. Take, for example, Google AdWords, the dominant platform for pay-per-click (PPC) advertising. Basically, you get ad space on SERPs, and Google gets paid whenever someone clicks on your ad. It’s a great way to complement search engine optimization (SEO) tactics, especially if your business is new and you want to see instantaneous returns on your marketing budget. AdWords is a highly flexible and measurable tool, and you can expect profits to outpace costs as you continue to increase your budget.
While we’re here, let me elaborate a bit on SEO. When executed consistently and appropriately, SEO practices improve the SERP rankings of your website; if you conduct rigorous keyword research and publish great content that is relevant to whatever keywords people are searching, your website will perform better in the organic results. As Google continues to tweak the algorithms that determine the relative importance of different ranking criteria, SEO best practices change, too. Stay up to date with the WordStream blog to learn how you can maintain high organic traffic.
Even if you’re self-sabotaging and looking to bury your site into the darkest depths of the Web, you should check out the blog nonetheless. I hear they’re cookin’ up some good stuff over there.