What is Digital Marketing?

Jason C. Chavis

Using a variety of digital mediums, digital marketing is a form of advertising directed at those who use any type of new media resource. The concept of digital marketing is to leverage the vast array of media such as radio, television, Internet and mobile devices to expose a certain demographic to a product or service, with a particular emphasis on brand marketing. Using just one or a combination of these resources allows for greater customer engagement in a more timely and cost-effective manner than other forms of marketing such as newspapers or magazines. In addition, the different types of marketing available to the industry allow for better targeting approach, essentially providing the consumer with brands that fit his or her particular interest rather than large-scale advertising plans that target a whole audience. Thus, digital marketing can guarantee a better return on investment than old media.

Digital marketing may be displayed on a tablet computer.
Digital marketing may be displayed on a tablet computer.

The unique facet of digital media advertising is the fact that it does not simply rely on one form of marketing to achieve its goals. Strategies can cut across mediums and work together to provide the consumer with a variety of takes on the same product. For example, a car company can use a combination of text messages sent via mobile phones, banner ads on websites and large outdoor digital billboards to announce the release of a product. All of these techniques can be planned to occur at the same time, making the announcement much more of a media event than simply placing an advertisement in the mail.

SMS marketing is a marketing tool in which professionals send clients and potential customers text messages to their phones.
SMS marketing is a marketing tool in which professionals send clients and potential customers text messages to their phones.

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According to the industry, there are two distinct forms of digital marketing: the push and pull methods. The push methodology uses the concept of direct marketing to the consumer through some sort of digital medium. Marketers push a message to the consumer that can be targeted to a specific demographic and easily tracked for later analysis. The pull method, on the other hand, involves the consumer seeking out the information. While this has limited tracking potential, it allows for very cost-effective advertising campaigns that utilize the desires of the consumer for the information rather than forced marketing techniques.

A very prevalent advantage digital marketing has over other forms of advertising as well is the concept of geo-targeting or geo-marketing. This makes use of the Internet and mobile devices working with the push method of advertising. Essentially, marketers can choose a specific geographic location of IP addresses to target certain advertising. For example, if someone comes across a travel website, it may have banner ads that display information about hotels in his or her area.

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