Digital Marketing

what is digital marketing

By Dan Barraclough | Updated: 30 November 2020

How can digital marketing services help you find new customers and increase profits? You’re about to find out…

What is digital marketing?

Digital marketing is promoting your business and communicating messages with your audience, via the internet. Unlike traditional marketing methods, which include newspaper ads, flyers, and billboards, digital marketing uses online platforms such as social media channels, email, and search engines. For more information, check out our explainer video below…

What are the benefits of digital marketing?

Digital marketing can bring many benefits to the business table. Here are the most important four:

Reach new customers

As of 2020, there are 5.15 billion unique mobile users, and 3.96 billion people using social media. Expert digital marketing services can help your business reach those users through online advertising, whether it’s via social media posts, email campaigns, or search engine marketing (more on that later).

Increase profits

Digital marketing can help boost your bottom line. On average, email marketing generates an ROI (return on investment) of £42 for every £1 spent – so you can see how an expertly crafted digital marketing campaign could help your profits soar.

Save time

Digital marketing is time-effective and cost-effective. Social media tools like Hoosuite enable you to schedule social media posts and campaigns quickly and easily, and you can use social listening tools to understand what internet users are saying about your business online, which can help inform your next marketing decision.

Easy to get expert help

At times, running a business can feel like spinning plates. So, if you don’t have the time or necessary skills to create a digital marketing campaign yourself, you can hire affordable digital marketing experts to handle everything for you. These agencies can grow your business for you, while you focus on other important endeavours like pitching, invoicing, and networking.

What are the types of digital marketing?

Now you understand the main benefits of digital marketing, let’s take a look at the different ways you can implement it. Below are the six most common strategies that you should consider for your next campaign.

Social media marketing

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In a recent survey, 73% of marketers said social media marketing had been ‘very effective’ for their business. Whether you advertise through Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, LinkedIn, Snapchat, or YouTube (the list could go on), social media marketing, more often than not, brings excellent results.

Since the COVID-19 pandemic began, social media marketing has become an essential communication tool, too. Adam McKinley, Head of Social at leading digital marketing services agency Click Consult, had this to say:

“Social media marketing in 2020 is more important than ever. With brands having to adapt their strategy based on the COVID pandemic, audiences are coming straight to social media for updates and news from the brands they usually purchase from.


“It is important for brands to keep that personal connection between themselves and their audience, and to keep that trust. Regular updates on how your brand is getting on and how you've adapted to meet new guidelines are the new marketing strategy, and social media is the perfect place for it.”

The most common type of social media marketing is called paid ads. This is when you pay the platform to have your advert appear on its feed. The more you pay, the wider the audience your content will be shown to.

You also need to make sure that you’re advertising on the social media platforms that your audience uses frequently. It’s no use spending hundreds of pounds on a Twitter campaign when all your customers are using Snapchat instead. To help you understand who your target audience is, we recommend using a social media monitoring tool.

Facebook has the largest and most diverse audience of all social media platforms, so we suggest starting there for your next digital marketing campaign.

PPC (pay-per-click)

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Pay-per-click involves paying some kind of publishing software – most commonly a search engine like Google or Bing – each time an internet user clicks on your link or advert.  You’re paying the search engine to have your link appear higher up on the SERPs (search engine results pages) by offering more money than your competitors for a particular keyword or phrase that your target users are searching for. It’s like a bidding battle and Google’s the judicator.

With PPC, you can choose exactly who you advertise to, which is known as demographic targeting. When creating your PPC campaign on Google Ads or Bing Ads, you can select certain metrics such as age, location, or job title, and have your content shown only to users who fit the bill.

PPC is so effective because you’re advertising to people who are already searching for the product or services that you offer. Those users are more likely to click your link and convert – whether that’s purchasing an item or signing up to your newsletter – which makes PPC one of the most cost-effective types of digital marketing. In fact, advertising on Google delivers $8 for every $1 spent.

As we mentioned earlier, you can easily outsource your digital marketing services to a professional agency. These companies can build and monitor a bespoke PPC campaign for you, helping to bring more clicks and pounds to your site while you work on other areas of your business.

SEO (search engine optimisation)

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Search engine optimisation is the process of improving the ranking of your website on search engines such as Google, using ‘organic’ – meaning non-paid – means. The most popular method of SEO is integrating keywords into your content.

Keywords are the most popular words or phrases that internet users are searching for – the more effectively and naturally you use relevant keywords in your online content, the more likely your websites will appear high up on the SERPs when users search for those keywords.

SEO is popular because it’s largely free to do. However, you'll need to purchase tracking software – such as Google Analytics or SEMrush– in order to keep on top of your performance online.

Email marketing

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With almost four billion daily email users worldwide, email marketing is a goldmine of opportunity. It can help you connect with new customers, retain current ones, and regain lost sales.

And when we said email marketing is cost effective, we meant it. Remember that it generates an ROI of £42 for every £1 spent? Well, marketers have also said that segmented email campaigns (emails that are sent to certain users based on certain criteria, similarly to demographic targeting) have noted as much as a 760% increase in revenue.

Email campaigns allow your business to send newsletters, share your latest blog posts, or even encourage users to finalise purchases if they abandon their online shopping cart.

Display advertising

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Display advertising, also known as banner advertising, involves promoting your brand message on another website to encourage internet users to click your link and visit your own website.

This type of advertising enables you to promote your brand on the most popular and busiest (in terms of visitor traffic) websites in the country. The more traffic on the website you’re advertising on, the more likely it is that people will click on your ads.

To encourage users to click on your display ad, we recommend designing it with a clear CTA (call to action) button, and with a persuasive value proposition – in other words, a reason why they should click on your advert and visit your website.

By 2021, display advertising spend is expected to rise to $26 billion in Western Europe, and we’d suggest that your business considers adding to that figure in order to reach new customers and boost profits.

Digital marketing costs

Digital marketing agencies typically offer bespoke pricing on a client-by-client basis, so it’s hard to pin down an exact price. Roughly, you can expect to pay anywhere between £1,500 and £10,000 per month, depending on what you need.

The overall cost will come down to the types of digital marketing services you want to use, the type of content you want to create, and the volume of content you want to send out.

The quickest and easiest way to remove all the pricing guesswork is by comparing free quotes from digital marketing agencies. We can match your business with experts that best suit your needs – all you need to do is tell us what you’d like from your next digital marketing campaign.

We’ll then match your business with digital marketing experts who will be in touch with information about their services and free, non-obligation quotes. It couldn’t be easier, and it’s free to get started.


Which digital marketing services do agencies provide?

Digital marketing agencies provide many different services, including social media marketing, SEO, content marketing (e.g. blogs and article-writing), PPC, and even video production. All of these services can help you find new customers, boost your brand image, and increase sales.

Which are the most important digital marketing strategies?

Brands that have nailed their digital marketing strategies usually create personalised content, user-generated content, live chat bots, social influencer marketing, and segmented emails, which are some of the hottest digital marketing trends for 2020 and beyond.

What are the most popular digital marketing tools?

We recommend using social media scheduling tools like Hootsuite to help with your social campaigns, and MailChimp for email marketing. As for digital marketing tools as a whole, we also recommend using Google Analytics, Search Console, Google Ads, and SEMrush.

Why should I hire a digital marketing agency?

Hiring an agency to create and manage your next digital marketing campaign can make your life easier in different ways. It will allow you to focus on other areas of your business, you’ll learn new skills from your own experts, and, most importantly, your business will be empowered by the expert digital marketing insight it needs to attract customers and grow.

Dan Barraclough

Dan’s a Senior Writer at Expert Market, specialising in digital marketing, web design, and photocopiers, amongst other topics.

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