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The Rise of Digital Marketing

My name is Jax and I am the founder of Sun Creative, a Brand and Marketing Strategy Consultancy. I love sport, food, travelling and spending time outdoors.

I have been involved in varying aspects of business and marketing for the last 22 years, working for global brands such as Adidas and Oakley. Whilst the vibe of the corporate marketing industry and the long hours were appealing in my younger days, I felt that I was destined to do more with my life.

I absolutely love how marketing has evolved. When I go back many years to my university days, marketing was based around the 5 P’s (price, product, place, people, promotion) and the strategies related to those points.

Graphic design was an entity on its own, as was Videography, Copywriting, On-air recordings, Editing etc.

These days with the rise of Digital Marketing, your digital marketers and social media specialists need to have the “know-how” on all the above entities, plus more.

The need for continuous education is absolutely necessary, in order to keep up with the ever-changing trends and algorithms and stay ahead of your competitors. This is what keeps me excited.

When we look at creating Digital Marketing strategies, we follow a 12-step process to see where we need to grow or develop our clients’ marketing footprint.

In this article, I am going to focus on 3 areas:

  • Websites
  • Social Media Marketing
  • Advertising

Websites

We are still believers in websites, be it a 1-pager or a multi-page site. To be recognised on Google is the best way to be found. It is also a fantastic way to build your e-mail list. Why an E-mail list; I have 10 000 followers on my social media platforms? My answer to that is; what if Mark Zuckerberg or Kevin Systrom decided to focus on other things and these platforms collapsed, what would become of your thousands of followers?

E-mail marketing is NOT dead! If your E-mail sequences are professional and not outright sales driven, the response from possible clients is still high.

My next plus of a website is Search Engine Optimisation (SEO). This is the current go-to word, and everyone wants to jump on the bandwagon, without realising the work and implications which happen behind the scenes to get optimal results, let alone the cost factor. That said, if budget is an issue, if you get a reputable web design company to build your website, they will probably take SEO into account when creating your content, which will help you to rank organically. You won’t be at the top, however by utilizing keywords across your digital marketing spectrum, you will still get recognised.

Social Media Marketing

Since the COVID-19 pandemic, social media platforms have made it that much easier to communicate and engage with other individuals and businesses, worldwide, on the web. They are now key factors in connecting with possible clients, maintaining relationships with currents clients as well as being used as key retail points.

The more popular Social Media platforms are Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn and TikTok, to name a few. Pinterest and Google My Business are actually Search Engines, although often grouped as Social Media platforms.

Content can be published on these platforms in either blog/ content posts, videos, photos and infographic formats.

A question often asked is how many platforms we need to appear on, what formats do we use, how many times do we need to post etc?

We believe in focusing on one or two platforms that will work for your niche market. Where does your target market hang out, what genders are they, age groups and what is your product or service is? This is where analysis of your target audience is key to determining your social media marketing strategy.

Once you are “crushing it” on these platforms, then looking at alternate platforms is an idea. After a while, when your content library has built up, re-purposing content on other platforms is a definite option.

My most important factor is that whatever route you choose to take, be consistent.

Advertising

Social Media advertising is an often complicated topic of discussion. I am sure you have heard varying opinions of Paid For vs Organic. Your top social media strategists will opt for both. It all comes down to the size of your current audience, what your product/ service is, what platforms you are targeting and of course, your budget.

You don’t need to throw in the towel if budget is currently not an option, with the right Organic strategy, you can just as easily reach your key audience.

When it comes to paid advertising, one must pay attention to the overall design and content used in your adverts. With the advertising market being totally flooded, to get noticed you have to stand out, both in look and the call to action utilised. Also, do some research into what the algorithms on the various platforms are doing and what people are saying. There are currently platforms, I would steer clear of, as money is being spent and there are no investment returns.

I can go on for days about anything Digital Marketing related, but I hope you have picked up on a few points.

If you would like any assistance or advice, please send an e-mail to jackie@suncreative.co.za or visit our website at www.suncreative.co.za.

Please follow us on Facebook (@SunCreativeza), Instagram (@jax.suncreative), Pinterest (Jax. Sun Creative) and LinkedIn (Jax Longworth and SunCreativeza)

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