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The Small Business Guide to Digital Marketing


What is Digital Marketing?

Digital marketing is a form of advertising utilizing digital technology, mainly the internet. It is a much cheaper way to reach a larger, more targeted audience. It has other names and is commonly referred to as Internet Marketing or Online Marketing. It also happens to be one of the fastest growing industries in the world now, and, it is the need of the hour for businesses everywhere!

You ought to develop your online-advertising know-how and embrace the digital age. As we “digitalize” more and more each day, your competition inches in front little-by-little taking advantage of the benefits provided by digital marketing.

We cover why you should at least know about digital marketing & some of its channels in this article.

Why’s it important?

Traditional marketing methods (print, broadcast, direct mail, and telephone) can be expensive and most often will fail to result in a positive return only due to the substantial investment involved.

Traditional marketing v Digital marketing (Costs)

Arguably the most frustrating and challenging component of traditional marketing techniques is the lack of ability to analyze the results effectively. Let’s take for example a television commercial. Say we pay $20,000 to have our commercial advertised on tv over the space of two weeks. Sure, we can have set KPI’s or metrics that we’d like to meet, maybe 1000 sign-ups at $50. Now, let’s assume that we have hit this target. Great! We’ve made money. That’s what it’s all about, right? Well, sure. But, we are missing a significant amount of information that tells us how the campaign REALLY did. An important factor for this campaign would be; how many people viewed the commercial? What if it were a million people? You’ve only generated the attention of 0.01% of the targeted market. Immediately we see that there are a lot more questions to be asked. Maybe the product isn’t of the expected quality, or perhaps the assumed target market is incorrect.

The point is – it’s hard to gauge the metrics without the ability to view the information. Most of it is guesswork. With digital marketing, analytics reports are generated in an instant. The ability to effectively leverage different digital marketing channels can help you build a very clear picture of your consumer.

But, how do you do that?

Digital Marketing: Digitized Channels!


Search Engine Marketing (SEM) is an effective online advertising method that utilizes platforms such as Google’s AdWords (soon-to-be Google Ads) or Bing Ads. These platforms allow you to market your business online through major search engines, like Google or Bing, straight to your customers! You can quite literally target the keywords you believe they’re putting into the search engine to find businesses like yours. Of course, this comes at a cost. Companies that use SEM essentially bid’ for the search queries they’d like to show up for. Who are you bidding against? Other businesses!


Search engine optimization (SEO) is a tool used to influence the caliber and quantity of your website traffic organically. SEO should be thought of as an umbrella term, encompassing all aspects of optimization regarding your website & digital presence. Why it is imperative to any business online is due to the results that are generated by successfully implementing it. Free traffic. Plain and simple. Ranking in the first position of Google will see you gain 30-40% of ALL traffic.

There are two main components of SEO that businesses should focus on.

  1. On-page optimization
  2. Off-page optimization

Put simply, ensure that your website is free of errors, is clean & tidy, easy to navigate, loads quickly and is responsive to varying device screen widths.

For off-page optimization, be sure to obtain links from other websites that are similar to your industry (that have some authority) and that you also link to other sites that better inform your visitors on particular subject matters.

It is important to note that unlike SEM, SEO takes a while to “ramp up” and begin working. In essence, correcting a website with many errors can take a while to fix while Google crawls new edits to your site. This also applies to any new links that are pointing to or from your website. Websites that have more authority get crawled regularly.

Email Marketing

Email marketing remains a favorite channel to acquire new leads and nurture current clients. It’s extremely popular with business models that utilize sales funnels. With services like MailChimp and Constant Contact, it’s easier than it ever has been. The method of email marketing is an excellent form of communication for informing your audience of exciting news, not to bombard them with annoying messages or useless information. That is a one-way ticket to Unsuscribeville. An example of a great email-campaigning comes from The Body Shop, and you can check out an article here on one of their campaigns sent out for Halloween. They have informative emails, catchy headlines “It’s not a trick, it’s a treat” and they don’t spam your inbox! Your emails don’t need to be lengthy, but they need to be practical to your subscriber and have a strong call-to-action. The Welcome Email is an excellent opportunity to set the tone for most future email correspondence (like letting them know you won’t shove products down their throat).  Therefore, while email remains a universal procedure of communication, marketers still ought to look to refine their email advertising strategies to offer the most personal, relevant and timely experiences for its customers.


Social media marketing (SMM) is an advertising medium by which you can capture the immense attention of your customer base by making use of social networking sites. It is basically the process of utilizing social media sites as a tool to obtain traffic or attention. Thus, your social media marketing might help you figure out how to acquire much better strategies for your organization through customer feedback. It allows the business to post in real time and stay in the consumer consciousness. By polling, quizzing, engaging or interacting with customers, you’re able to generate relevancy for your business online. Of all the many explanations for why social media marketing is in such a boom, the suitability, and time-saving factor it supplies as a direct-marketing-medium is the most important one.

Digital Marketing. It is undoubtedly a powerful tool for any business.