In a world where over 170 million individuals regularly use social media, every working professional should know the basics of Digital Marketing.
The advertising of items via the internet or other electronic media is known as digital marketing. It is defined as “the use of digital channels to promote or market items and services to targeted consumers and enterprises.”
HISTORY & BACKGROUND
WEB 1.0 AND DIGITAL MARKETING
Digital marketing was coined in the 1990s. The internet and the Web 1.0 platform launched the digital age. Web 1.0 enabled users to find information but not to share it.
Marketers around the world were still apprehensive of digital.
After the first clickable banner went up in 1993, HotWired bought a few for their advertising. This ushered in the digital era of marketing.
Due to this steady transformation, new technologies entered the digital marketplace in 1994. In the same year, Yahoo was born.
In its first year, Yahoo received about a million hits, earning it the nickname “Jerry’s Guide to the World Wide Web.” In response, businesses began optimizing their websites for search engine rankings.
HotBot, LookSmart, and Alexa were all launched in 1996.
Google began in 1998. Microsoft introduced MSN search, and Yahoo introduced Yahoo web search. Two years later, the internet bubble burst, leaving smaller search engines behind or wiped out, giving way to the industry’s titans.
In 2006, search engine traffic reached 6.4 billion in a single month, a record for digital marketing.
WEB 2.0 AND DIGITAL MARKETING
Then came Web 2.0, when consumers became participants rather than passive users. Web 2.0 enabled users to communicate with businesses.
The internet was dubbed a ‘super information highway. As a result, information flow volumes expanded exponentially, and by 2004, internet advertising and marketing generated $2.9 billion in the US alone.
Then came social networking sites. First came MySpace, then Facebook. Many businesses understood that all these new sites were opening new avenues for marketing their products and brands.
It offered up new commercial opportunities and marked the start of a new chapter.
WEB 3.0 AND DIGITAL MARKETING
Web 3.0. is a current concept in motion. While there is no specific definition for Web 3.0., it does point us to the potential of the World Wide Web.
The arrival of Web 3.0 has metamorphosed the digital marketing sector and brought it to the next level of evolution.
With the rise of Web 3.0, access to the internet won’t be restricted to just virtual platforms. Soon it will transcend to the physical medium around us, paving the path for 3D marketing.
Likewise, with the decentralized Web 3.0 in full flow, marketers will have to look for innovative digital
marketing strategies to engage with the audience in this new dimension. Many brands, i.e. Nike, and Amazon are already investing in these new dimensions.
In fact, Digital marketing is going 3-dimensional. We are already seeing this in action. Facebook is investing its time, energy, and money into the Metaverse, a Virtual Reality environment supported by Oculus. Our access to the internet is no longer restricted to the screen in front of us.
Soon, it will be all around us.
DIGITAL MARKETING EVOLUTION (5 KEY TURNING POINTS)
Tweets, videos, podcasts, emails, blog posts, and PPC advertising are all examples of digital marketing. To highlight the reach of digital marketing, nearly half of the world’s population uses social media.
It’s also getting harder to market to millennials. It takes a lot to persuade people to buy. It will help you reach and sell to them over time.
Having examined the current status of digital marketing, let us now examine its evolution across time using examples of key historical milestones.
1. THE SEARCH ENGINES
The World Wide Web was founded in 1991, but it wasn’t until 1994 that the first popular browser, Netscape, hit the market. As more individuals used the internet, search engines like Google appeared in the 1990s and early 2000s.
Search engines crawl web pages and store them for subsequent retrieval depending on search phrases. This has given rise to Search Engine Marketing (SEM), the practice of promoting websites and blogs by enhancing their prominence through SEO and paid advertisements.
2. REVOLUTION IN SOCIAL MEDIA
The World Wide Web was designed to be a collaborative information-sharing tool. You’ll probably agree it’s become much more. Social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, and others have made it feasible to communicate with others.
Businesses can also reach worldwide audiences. Brands can achieve this by paying to advertise to general or specific audiences, working with influencers, and more.
3. MOBILE MARKETING
Google’s Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP) project necessitated mobile SEO improvement. This program aims to improve page loading times on mobile and tablet devices. It also considers elements like User Experience (UX).
This is noteworthy given recent mobile usage statistics. Mobile devices accounted for 52.2% of total web traffic in 2019, up from 16.2% in 2013.
4. CAMPAIGNS BASED ON CONSUMER DATA
Another key digital marketing milestone is the use of data to create targeted marketing efforts. CRM, for example, is a business process that enables firms to build long-term relationships with customers through data-driven marketing.
CRM technologies allow you to iterate depending on performance data. This can help forecast client purchases, narrow target audiences, and improve overall customer happiness.
CRM tools like regression and statistical analysis can detect changes in consumer behavior. This improves business impact models for measuring marketing performance.
5. INTERACTIVE VOICE SEARCH CONTENT
Brands want to increase customer involvement, community, and loyalty. This has led to high-quality interactive content including games, social media contests, and more. These not only attract but also hold the audience’s attention.
Voice search, on the other hand, is a new approach to conducting searches and advertising businesses.
As the world becomes more digital and more connected, the way that we use marketing has to change and adapt accordingly. Snapchat launched shortly after Instagram, providing the first real experience of real-time visual conversations.
In 2019 Google introduced an update called BERT, which aimed to help improve results by focusing on search intent and content context. SEO was another huge part of digital marketing in the 2010s.
SEO will change in ways that we can’t even imagine predicting. TikTok looks likely to continue as a big and exciting new platform, with the Chinese-owned video community app becoming a mainstream marketing tool for brands and influencers alike.
But what’s next for the evolution of digital marketing? Share your thoughts.