Moving From Traditional to Digital Marketing

Last updated: Jan 17, 2023

The process of moving from traditional to digital marketing may feel a little overwhelming, particularly if you’re new to the game. There’s a dizzying array of options, and new platforms, tools, and tactics seem to pop up every day.

Fortunately, you can quickly get a handle on your online options if you’re ready to make the switch from billboards and magazines to paid ads and email marketing. Keep reading to discover some important steps for making the leap from traditional forms of marketing to the digital realm.


Take a Second Look at Your Website

Your company website is the digital home of your business, so it needs to effective. Because it’s yours, you entirely control the messaging on it, which means there’s no excuse if it’s not a great experience for visitors.


To ensure your website is helping, not hurting, your cause, there are some important elements you need to pay attention to:

  • Mobile friendliness: Sites without a mobile-friendly design aren’t just despised by consumers. They’re actually penalized by search engines.
  • Search engine optimization (SEO): Although your website isn’t the only way to impact SEO, it’s a big part. Using the right keywords on your website helps you rank higher in search results.
  • Content marketing: Using your website to feature high-quality blog articles, whitepaper content, and videos can help attract prospects and encourage them to take a specific action.


User interacting on their phone sharing information that can be used in measuring digital marketing.

Gain Control of Your Local Listings

Did you know that if you haven’t claimed your Business Profile on Google, someone else can take it? Once in control, this individual can change your contact information, phone number, website, and business description. This is particularly devastating because your local search profile is so valuable to your SEO, brand, and sales.


According to experts, mobile searches where users are traveling now outpace desktop searches, and these users often rely on your local listings. Much of this mobile traffic is comprised of on-the-go consumers who have an immediate purchase need, making these some of your hottest prospects. For most of these searchers, they want your company name, location, and contact information so they can stop in and make a purchase. By ensuring your local listings are all claimed, consistent, and up to date, you capitalize on this search traffic that often yields fast sales.


Harness Valuable Customer Insights

In the age of big data, a major advantage goes to those companies that can skillfully collect, analyze, and use the data at their fingertips. What are the benefits of all this super-specific data? You now have the ability to produce highly targeted digital advertising campaigns that take into account many essential factors:

  • Demographic data
  • Past search history
  • Location information
  • Purchase history
  • Current device usage
  • And much more

Modern data allows marketers to understand their consumers like never before. And when you know your potential customers, you can create marketing campaigns that directly address their needs and show up where they hang out online.


Select the Right Social Media for You

The internet has democratized the exchange of thoughts, opinions, and ideas, particularly on social media. Today’s consumer now has multiple ways to talk to your company, their friends, and the global community through many platforms, including Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn, TikTok, and more.


While it may be tempting to dive in to the social media game headfirst, you’re going to want to follow a thoughtful process to get the best results:

  • Instead of starting a profile on every social media site around, pick one or two of the platforms favored by your target audience and focus your energy there.
  • Research your competitors to understand their tone, strategy, and results.
  • Craft a game plan on how you’ll use your new business profiles. Will you share promotions, industry news, or consumer tips?
  • Invest time and energy into crafting valuable content that offers value. Go for content quality over quantity.
  • Post more video and picture content, which generally yields higher engagement and results.
  • Monitor for opportunities to interact with your customers and build relationships.
  • Create a content calendar and use convenient scheduling tools.
  • Track results and streamline your strategy to include content that is similar to your most popular posts.

Although social media is technically free, it can quickly become a drain on your time that produces little value if you’re not prepared. However, going in with a solid social media marketing strategy will help ensure you get the maximum return on your time investment.


Capitalize on the Power of Email Marketing

According to experts, email marketing campaigns yield higher conversion rates than search, social media, and other forms of direct marketing. Besides generating sales, email marketing allows you to build a relationship with your prospects and customers by keeping them apprised of developments in your company and industry. You just need to follow some important rules before clicking “send”:

  • Think “mobile first” because most consumers read mail from their phones. Tailor your emails to mobile users by crafting shorter emails with snappier subject lines.
  • Follow all CAN-SPAM Act rules and regulations to prevent recipients from marking your messages as junk and jeopardizing your website domain.
  • Keep your email list updated by removing unsubscribes, bounces, and those who have not opened your messages in a long time.
  • Consider segmenting your audience to deliver the most relevant message to each contact.
  • Track your emails and analyze the results. This will allow you to capitalize on the type of content that works for your audience.

If your company’s been around awhile, chances are you may already have a list of past customers and prospects collecting dust somewhere. Resist the temptation to blast out inbox fluff just to say hi. Ensure you’re sending timely, relevant, interesting emails to recipients who actually opted in to receive these communications.


Exercise Caution with Paid Ads

Paid ads on platforms like Google, Facebook, and Bing can be a great vehicle for driving high-value leads and generating sales. However, managing paid placements, setting up your accounts, and tracking results can be extremely challenging, particularly if you’re new to the world of digital marketing.


In addition to initially setting up and managing paid ads, you’ll find that this marketing tactic can get expensive. If you don’t know what you’re doing, you can drop some serious coin on ineffective ads that don’t reach the right prospects. Furthermore, you may be competing against the big dogs of your industry who have years of experience in the SEM game and can easily outperform you. When contemplating a move to digital marketing, this may be one area where you want to enlist the help of some experts who can guide you to the best platforms, help develop your ad content, and manage your accounts.


Employees shifting from traditional to digital marketing by analyzing marketing efforts on their laptops.

Recognize That Today’s Customers Are Different

It isn’t just the tools that have shifted. It’s your customers. Your prospects probably don’t shop the same way they did 20, 10, or even five years ago. The amount of research performed and touch points have dramatically increased as information has become so readily available. The two-way communication of the internet has also opened up countless avenues to connect with your customers to build brand loyalty. When your customers have an easy way to reach your company, you can quickly address any issues, answer questions, listen to their ideas, and foster a sense of community around your business.


Are all forms of digital marketing right for your company? Probably not. But if you’re not in the digital game at all, you’re leaving countless sales on the table. Worse yet, today’s customer may not even be aware of your company if you’ve neglected your digital presence. However, it’s important you first reflect on your customers, business, and capabilities before you dive in. At the end of the day, you may find that a blended approach including both traditional and digital marketing works best for your business, so keep an open mind as you consider your options.


For details on how you can break in to digital marketing and start leveraging the many tools available, check out our Digital Marketing Certificate. This program will give you the digital marketing foundation you need to build a powerful strategy that drives company success.


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