Digital strategist Dr Dave Chaffey is co-founder and Content Director of marketing publisher and learning platform Smart Insights. Dave is editor of the 100+ templates, ebooks and courses in the digital marketing resource library created by our team of 25+ digital marketing experts. Our resources are used by our Premium members in more than 100 countries to Plan, Manage and Optimize their digital marketing. Free members can access our free sample templates here. Dave is a keynote speaker, trainer and consultant who is author of 5 bestselling books on digital marketing including Digital Marketing Excellence and Digital Marketing: Strategy, Implementation and Practice. To learn about my books, see my personal site Digital marketing books by Dr. Dave Chaffey. In 2004 he was recognised by the Chartered Institute of Marketing as one of 50 marketing ‘gurus’ worldwide who have helped shape the future of marketing. Please connect on LinkedIn to receive updates or ask me a question.
By using Internet platforms, businesses can create competitive advantage through various means. To reach the maximum potential of digital marketing, firms use social media as its main tool to create a channel of information. Through this a business can create a system in which they are able to pinpoint behavioral patterns of clients and feedback on their needs.[32] This means of content has shown to have a larger impingement on those who have a long-standing relationship with the firm and with consumers who are relatively active social media users. Relative to this, creating a social media page will further increase relation quality between new consumers and existing consumers as well as consistent brand reinforcement therefore improving brand awareness resulting in a possible rise for consumers up the Brand Awareness Pyramid.[33] Although there may be inconstancy with product images;[34] maintaining a successful social media presence requires a business to be consistent in interactions through creating a two way feed of information; firms consider their content based on the feedback received through this channel, this is a result of the environment being dynamic due to the global nature of the internet.[31] Effective use of digital marketing can result in relatively lowered costs in relation to traditional means of marketing; Lowered external service costs, advertising costs, promotion costs, processing costs, interface design costs and control costs.[34]
As the total number of active users on these 3 channels combined is 4+ Billion, more businesses are going to expand their customer engagement channels and adopt at least 1 to 2 new messaging platforms in 2020. This will help them effectively communicate with their audience and improve their personalization strategies. This also allows customers who are worried about anonymity to directly reach out to brands and interact using their preferred channel.
For example, running a paid ad campaign requires many components such as a landing page, a form and a lead data platform before delivering the lead to a nurture workflow. Not to mention, analytics and data consolidation needs to be handled externally and requires manual work to put together. This process depends on at least 3 tools communicating with each other as well as tons of redundant work each time they want to launch a new campaign.
But what kind of information should you gather for your own buyer persona(s) to inform your digital marketing strategy? That depends on your businesses, and is likely to vary depending on whether you're B2B or B2C, or whether your product is high cost or low cost. Here are some starting points, but you'll want to fine-tune them, depending on your particular business.
#1 Content marketing - this has featured consistently in the top 3 for several years. I think it's number 1 since content marketing can be applied by all types of business regardless of their sector or size and if the right strategy is followed can make an impact that supports communications across all touchpoint of the customer lifecycle. It fuels all digital channels from search, email and social media marketing. This makes having a defined content marketing strategy essential to competing in many sectors.

The third and final stage requires the firm to set a budget and management systems; these must be measurable touchpoints, such as audience reached across all digital platforms. Furthermore, marketers must ensure the budget and management systems are integrating the paid, owned and earned media of the company.[67] The Action and final stage of planning also requires the company to set in place measurable content creation e.g. oral, visual or written online media.[68]

Unlike most offline marketing efforts, digital marketing allows marketers to see accurate results in real time. If you've ever put an advert in a newspaper, you'll know how difficult it is to estimate how many people actually flipped to that page and paid attention to your ad. There's no surefire way to know if that ad was responsible for any sales at all.


Understanding your audience is key to your brand’s success in social media. The B2B buying journey, from discovery to conversion, may extend over weeks or months of information gathering, consumption and for the good stuff, sharing. Put our pioneering combination of traditional marketing, search marketing and social media to work for your brand, to improve direct website traffic, brand buzz and search engine rankings.
Yoast - a very useful and FREE (or freemium) WordPress plugin which analyses page copy in a traffic light signal basis for how SEO friendly the copy is based on keyword density, alt-attributes, SEO titles and Meta descriptions, slug etc. It cannot guarantee ranking, as it in no way affects search engine algorithms, but gives a great estimate of how well your copy is written based on your keyword. This is great to use as a guided SEO editor whilst you write and makes you aware of key on-page SEO techniques you should be utilizing.
Having the right set of software tools to manage data insights, content and digital marketing is essential! Without the right ones, you won't be able to create a strategy which reaches target customers and follower them through the customer journey - giving you insights into customer journeys, personas, conversion rate optimization and many more digital metrics essential to staying ahead of competitors.
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