The topic of online marketing is now relevant as ever, with most companies being represented on the Internet in the form of a website, blog, or social network page. Yet, despite the recognition it is getting from business experts, a lot of entrepreneurs still don’t know what online marketing is, beyond the fact that it’s “marketing done online”. As a result, they limit themselves to creating a webpage and uploading a bunch of company-related information on it, hoping that it will lead to an increase in sales and a rise of the organization’s popularity. However, if you’re planning on actively using online marketing strategies in your business, this kind of approach won’t be enough. Read on to get a deeper understanding of what online marketing stands for.
Online Marketing Definition
There are a lot of definitions surfacing around the web, but in its essence, online marketing can be defined as “business activities dedicated to promoting products or services on the Internet, with their main purpose being the transformation of website visitors into active buyers and their end goal being an increase in the company’s profitability.”
It is known that traditional marketing relies on four Ps: Product, Price, Promotion, and Place. And while online marketing uses the same four Ps, it also possesses some key characteristics of its own, including:
It’s a soul of Internet marketing, and it has to be closely tied to products and services offered by an enterprise.
The content produced by a company should prompt the audience to make an action, such as subscribing to an organization’s mailing list, sharing information on social networks, or actually making a purchase.
It allows an organization to communicate with its customers without the constraints of physical presence, increasing the ability to improve the products it offers.
In online marketing, it’s a lot easier to focus a company’s advertising activities solely on the audience that is interested in them.
Having a specially assigned employee analyzing a company’s online performance can help a company improve its Internet marketing strategies and attract more visitors.
This list may be not as eye-catching as the four Ps one, but it holds true to what pillars the online marketing approach stands on. Neglect to account for either one of those elements, and your Internet marketing campaign is doomed to fail.
Types of Online Marketing
Online marketing isn’t limited to a single form. In fact, it consists of several types that can all be equally effective in boosting a company’s profitability, including:
Search Engine Marketing
This marketing approach consists of two major processes: a) SEO online marketing, which relies on optimizing the content and structure of an organization’s website according to the current search engine algorithms so that the website could be found by a larger number of potential customers, and b) SEM, which is a paid service provided by Google and other search engines and implies displaying a company’s website as an advertisement when an Internet user searches for one of its keywords.
This method consists of sending out newsletters containing information about any discounts or innovations offered by a company to an ever-increasing mailing list of customers and subscribed website visitors.
Social Media Marketing
SMM involves using social networks such as Pinterest, Facebook, Twitter, and others for spreading the word about a business as well as establishing and improving the relationship with its customers.
This approach includes contextual advertising, banners, interstitials, text ads, and numerous other options an organization can make use of to widen its visibility on the internet.
Local Online Marketing
This strategy includes Internet activities used by small businesses to increase the chances of being found by searches performed by potential customers residing in the same area where a business works.
In conclusion, it’s important to note that a successful online marketing campaign isn’t a result of chaotically mixing all the methods listed above. In reality, each organization has to determine which type of online marketing suits it best and devise appropriate strategies and content to engage visitors and transform them into active buyers.