Q&A: The Latest Trends in Digital Marketing

Even though digital marketing has become more difficult over the years, it has also become more mandatory than ever.

Dale Keipert, CEO of 3Sixty Interactive, a full service marketing agency based in Flint, talks about the latest trends in digtial marketing.

In your opinion, what is the current state of digital marketing?

DK: Online marketing can be described as a rapidly changing. This rapid change causes confusion and frustration for many businesses looking to stay up to date with their online marketing. Most people take a tactical view to online marking. This means they are chasing the latest technology. Once a new trend becomes apparent, people are dumping their “old” marketing tactics, and flocking to the new one. Instead, what they need to be doing is cementing their procedures and processes to include all marketing channels.

Digital marketing is also currently very confusing. We are seeing fragmented customers that are literally everywhere. How do we reach them all?

DK: Customers want information handed to them on a silver platter. They want to hear your message when they are ready, and on the channel they think is appropriate. This is a frustrating concept for businesses. If your customer is everywhere, how do you find them all? The answer is online.

 Even though digital marketing has become more difficult over the years, it has also become more mandatory than ever. It is time for businesses to get serious about digital. It can no longer be a second thought. It has to be built into their marketing campaigns with synergy across all their channels-online and off line.

What’s the next big thing?

DK: Relevancy is the next big thing. Without relevancy you don’t get conversion. Without conversion you don’t get a healthy Return On Investment (ROI). Your marketing efforts have to be relevant to your customer. Talk to your specific customer and find out what they’re interested in, when they’re interested in it, and what space they want it in. Knowing exactly what the customer wants and expects will allow you to market relevant content to them.

What can companies do to improve their digital marketing effort?

DK: Companies need to start with a plan. There is a quote from Alice in Wonderland that I use when explaining the need for a marketing plan “If you don’t know where you’re going, any road will take you there.” Figure out what you want your results to be, and then figure out a step-by-step plan of getting there.

Secondly, start analyzing your digital campaigns more closely. Start your marketing efforts with a metric in mind. After your marketing campaign has completed, go back and analyze what happened throughout the campaign, and what the results were. Also, don’t think the job is done because you started the campaign. Online marketing is a living breathing animal that has to continue to evolve. This means making digital marketing a priority.

Is there a difference in marketing a B2B business verse a B2C business?

DK: Ultimately the answer is yes. There is a difference in marketing a B2B business verse a B2C business. The customer is different, and so are the marketing channels you employ to reach the customer. The language used to speak to B2C customers is different from the language used to speak to B2B customers.

Even though there are differences in B2B marketing verse B2C marketing, in the end, B2B and B2C businesses have the same strategy. They are both trying to reach their customer in the digital space, and both use online marketing tactics such as SEO, PPC, Social Media Marketing, Email Marketing, etc., to see better ROI. The strategy employed by both B2B and B2C is to use relevant content to reach their customer and see conversions.

What’s the biggest mistake marketers are making in the digital marketing field?

DK: The biggest mistake marketers are making is underestimating the time required to run an online marketing campaign. Many marketers think that simply sending out an email blast, or updating social networking sites a few times will increase their ROI. This is just not the case. It takes time to find your niche, and reach your customer base in the digital world.

Another mistake is not having a plan. As I mentioned before, starting a campaign without a clear plan of what outcome you want, and the steps needed to reach that outcome, you will not be successful.

 3Sixty interactive is a full service online marketing agency in Flint, Michigan that offers development, web design, search marketing, email marketing, and social media marketing. Rather than  an “us working for them” mentality, the company works with clients to improve their online marketing tactics. The company’s website includes a resources section that offers case studies, white papers, and on-demand webinars. The site also host a webinar series called “Digital Lunch Break” where various digital marketing topics are discussed. The next webinar is entitled “The Current State of Online Marketing” and is taking place at noon on  March 21. To sign up, click here: http://www.360interactive.biz/?page_id=2351