It all started thousands of years ago when farmers, blacksmiths, and merchants set out to sell or trade their goods and crates to make a profit in return. Since then, retailers began to realize that they needed to somehow attract people and build a kind of bond with them to make them want to buy their products and continue to do so. Carts and shops were set up, and people kept on trading. From then on, new methods started to occur, and gradually people came up with more practical and proper systems, more sophisticated advertising happened, and as time passed, a multibillion-dollar industry started to unfold. Consequently, a great deal of the economy is heavily relied on and dominated by marketing and advertising today.
So, what is the definition of marketing again? Marketing is the process done by someone or a group of people like in an organization to promote their products so that they could sell them better. Advertising is another concept that can be a part of marketing. The terms which some might think belong to the modern era of human civilization. Interestingly though, they have existed a long time ago when no one had yet had the tools to even comprehend what those terms mean.
The origins of marketing and advertising
The story goes back to ancient times. Around the 11th and 7th century BC, back in ancient China, the first prints were made and used for specific purposes. There were also flutes made of bamboos that created a pleasant sound when blew into, absorbing the nearby people's attention to want to buy or trade their products which were supposedly candy and other forms of consumables. In ancient Egypt , at about 3000 BC, people would regularly use sheets of papyrus to lay out some sort of message for their people to get aware of, installing them on walls as posters. Similar things were used in other ancient civilizations like Greece and Rome. While they too used papyrus as forms of prints, they would also carve on rocks and buildings to display and advertise their merchandise. Sellers and other traders would use such instances to not only sell their things but also to keep the customers satisfied enough for a possible future return. Later, the strategies evolved and propelled the printing press and newspapers to come into a role, which brings us to today and the revolutionary digital marketing (which we will come back to shortly). With all the evidence everywhere, the idea that marketing is a new thing, not having been initiated from long ago, is ruled out by the fact that the concept has been here, arguably, since forever!
Birth of digital marketing
In 1894, Guglielmo Marconi, an Italian inventor, put the idea of long-distance wireless radio transmission into action. What happened next was astounding. Long story short, a live broadcasting session took place in which information about some shows was given, and people went on to buy tickets! Thus, the first digital marketing strategy is said to have happened then but, it was not until the early 2000s that people started to call it Digital Marketing. Although Marconi is known to be the inventor of the radio, his wireless radio signal creation made him be acknowledged as the first digital marketer ever. With all being said, now let's focus on what digital marketing is.
Finally, what is digital marketing?
Digital marketing is defined as marketing, that is, promoting and advertising products, using digital channels and platforms, i.e., the internet, social media, mobile apps, or websites. Even though some people may only acknowledge marketing through online channels as being digital, in reality, tools like text messaging, LED panels, or even TV and radio are regarded as digital and they too fall under digital marketing's category , in that they all have a digital communication in common. Comparing a billboard and an LED screen would make a fine example. While the billboard is considered a way of traditional marketing, the LED screen is said to be a medium in digital marketing simply because it carries the quality of being digital; Moreover, think of advertising boards stretched along the field in football stadiums which anytime a match is on the corner, marketers race to reserve a spot on those digital boards at a price from $2000 to $15000 (per match). Therefore, any sort of multimedia could be a part of digital marketing. Sometimes, in a company, different people like the SEO manager , social media manager, and other specialists are in charge of different aspects of their digital channel.
Why digital marketing?
The reason why digital marketing is so important today is quite evident: More than half of the world's population uses the internet daily. In fact, as of August 2021, around 60% of the population are active users of the internet. That is 4.73 billion people! And it is not just that; More than 90% of these people connect to the internet with a mobile phone. In addition, the average user checks their phone from 50 to 300 times range per day. Now, with all the focus on digital screens and multimedia, wouldn't it be wise for a marketer to use the opportunity and try to capture as much attention as possible, instead of choosing old traditional marketing methods? There is no denying that. For instance, you want to, say, promote an app to get the best results (in French: Promouvoir une application pour obtenir les meilleurs resultats ), you are most likely to get there by going through a proper digital channel like a web-based medium. Once you realize how this matters so much, it will be clear why digital marketing has dominated the world of marketing worldwide and will probably continue to do so in the future.
The Importance of digital marketing
- It is more cost-efficient compared to traditional marketing, in that you can choose to go for channels and campaigns that have a high ratio of return of investment (ROI), and only pick the ones which carry out well enough not to waste your money on.
- You have more control over who your target audience be, and as a result, you raise the possibility of a purchase. For instance, based on the age or interests of the potential customers, you know better about when, where, and how to advertise to get the optimal result.
- Having already known what digital marketing has to offer, you can always keep track of the viewers' behaviors on your products and gather customers' data via analytics which is a desirable advantage over other forms of marketing. To exemplify, you would never precisely know how many people have looked at your billboard, whereas you could make the best of that quality in digital marketing .
- In digital marketing, you have a wider touch with people from all over the globe. It knows no border.
- Your customers can have more interactive communication with your organization. Basically, everything happens in a dynamic environment.
- Even with a low budget, it still lets you exceed in your marketing, to some extent, in comparison to a company that is spending millions of dollars on other types of marketing.
While marketing has been evolving throughout history, it is reasonable to think that the change will not stop anytime soon, and even more reasonable to point out that if an idea wishes to succeed, in the age of technology, it must somehow entangle with the elements of technology. Although we clarified some of its most highlighted benefits, the list goes on. With that said, there is no wonder why the leading companies spend a huge amount of money studying it. Perhaps the most important factor of the phenomenon that makes it an essential part of any organization, is that it brings growth. Digital marketing is everywhere now, and although it is just the tip of the iceberg, it brings with it benefits whenever marketers set them as one of the preliminary priorities - if not the most important one - in their strategies. However, with the concept being laid out, there are still points to follow on digital marketing; it comes in different types and calls for various skills. So, stay tuned for further articles on the topic.