Digital marketing offers extensive customer reach

Digital marketing, if used well with the available technological tools, will empower marketing efforts to effectively attract customers.

Digital marketing specialist Nimmala Shanmuganathan cited three factors to illustrate the differences between traditional and digital marketing, during an online talk on “Digital Marketing” organised by the School of Digital Technology (DiGiT) on 15 April 2023.

Nimmala is a certified trainer with extensive experience in digital marketing.

“In digital marketing, you are driven by a host of evolving technologies that enhance the changes your customers experience and their engagement levels,” she explained.

Next, digital marketing is powered by relationships, she added. “You have to build a two-way communication with your customers. And thirdly, it is optimised by analytics, where you use data to understand your customers better, and come out with better solutions for them.”

She said anyone seeking to venture into business must understand the content marketing model since marketing today is mainly content marketing.  She said it is now increasingly easy to create content but “you must know what you are doing with your content”.

Explaining about the content marketing model.

Nimmala recommended finding a balance between what to publish and what customers want in order to create content that is relevant and desirable for the target audience.

She gave four main elements to make your content effective – an offer, call to action, landing page, and a form. She continued, “What exactly do your users get from communicating with you? You must also have a call to action, such as read more, click on a link, find out more, or download the brochure, to get users to engage with your content. Next, you need a landing page or form for them to fill out their details.”

She discussed the different content types that can be used to achieve specific goals. They are the video tutorials, success stories, and testimonials to promote brand awareness; newsletters, offer letters and guest blog posts to drive website traffic; product offerings, demonstrations, webinars and contests to generate leads; and offering something valuable to increase sign-ups.

Different content types can be used to achieve specific goals.

Nimmala found video, especially short videos with subtitles, to be the most popular content type currently as it gets very good traction. She noted that the most basic content type is the blog post, adding, “If you create a good blog, it may even be read years after the article is created, to draw readers or leads.”

She informed that marketers can use various platforms such as Google Keyword Planner, Buzzsumo, Portent’s Content Idea Generator and social media listening tools like Talkwalker and Social Mention to find topics that interest people, and to track metrics like downloads, sign-ups and page views.

She shared that marketing agencies typically follow the 70:20:10 rule for content creation – 70% is curated from various sources, original content accounts for 20%, and 10% is dedicated to sales and product offerings.

Businesses must have a clear idea of their brand identity, says Nimmala.

She urged businesses to know their target audience and tailor their content accordingly. One common practice is to have a content calendar that includes festive or recurring events, public holidays and special events with some space for spontaneous events, so to consistently deliver messages for long-term engagement.

With visibility on social media platforms becoming increasingly challenging, Nimmala said businesses need to invest in content promotion.

A content calendar is an effective way for brands to plan ahead.

She stressed that search engine optimisation (SEO) plays an important role in content strategy because all content elsewhere eventually leads back to the brand’s own website.

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