“Don’t push people to where you want to be; meet them where they are.” - Meghan Keaney Anderson, VP Marketing, HubSpot
Over 4.6 billion people worldwide are using the Internet as of January 2021, and there’s no sign of this number going down anytime soon as more and more people learn to use it to search for products, services or whatever they need online. This means that if your business isn’t or can’t be found online, then you are missing out on the golden opportunity of reaching existing clients and attracting prospective customers.
If, on the other hand, you are already where your customers are (online), built a website, established an online presence through social media, and so on but still not generating leads, conversions and sales, then you should consider investing in digital marketing services.
How Digital Marketing Influences Consumer Behaviour?
What are the benefits of digital marketing to businesses?
Digital marketing is defined as a part of marketing that’s delivered through various digital channels such as websites, search engines, mobile and web applications, social media and other new digital channels. If the said definition confuses you, the simpler version is that it’s a form of advertising a brand, service or product that involves the use of electronic devices. With more and more people opting to use their digital devices as an alternative to visiting brick-and-mortar shops, it called for businesses to employ modern marketing approaches.
This paved the way for digital or online marketing campaigns to prevail and for businesses to utilize marketing strategies such as search engine marketing or SEM, search engine optimization or SEO, social media marketing or SMM, content marketing, e-mail marketing and many more to promote their products and services at a global level. Different from traditional marketing channels, this type of marketing offers various benefits that make it attractive to an offline and online business.
Cost-effective. Nowadays, businesses want to save money but still obtain more leads. Back then, this was not possible with traditional marketing because small and medium entrepreneurs will need to compete with large companies and they can only do so by allocating more money to radio spots, TV commercials, newspaper or magazine spaces and more. However, digital marketing managed to level the playing field between SMEs and large companies. Various marketing agencies offer their services at a reasonable price, which SMEs can avail and still get the same (or even better results) against their competitors.
Targets the right people. Another benefit is that it helps you target the right people. Unlike traditional marketing methods where you send your messages to everyone and hoping that it reaches the people who are already interested in your brand, digital or online marketing helps you reach your target market. For example, when creating Facebook or paid ads, you can set your target audience. You will be asked to define the audience through various criteria such as their gender, interests, occupation, hobbies, age and more. Because your market is narrowed down, you gain valuable leads as you’re reaching the right people who are already interested in what you offer and spend the budget allotted for the ad more effectively.
With plenty more benefits that this type of marketing can offer, it’s no wonder why it’s so popular among businesses today.
Can digital marketing affect consumer behavior?
Not a popular question to ask your choice of an online marketing agency, but a vital question worth knowing the answer to.
Consumer behavior aims to discover the cause for an organization and/or individual to buy particular products or services as well as support some brands. From psychological factors that study the way people respond to ad campaigns up to social factors that examine how the individual’s social group affect their buying behavior, knowing these can contribute to the success of the marketing campaign.
Customer engagement is a valuable factor that tests the effectiveness of the brand’s online marketing strategies. Thanks to the internet and mobile technology, people can engage with their favourite and least favourite brands actively. From visiting social media pages to participating in forums, people are now instantly and actively sharing what they think of a particular brand and its products or services. This, in return, serves as a useful source of information for other consumers who are thinking of purchasing from the same brand as well. Brands, on the other hand, can choose to answer back to these reviews and receive more engagement with the consumers.
2. Social Media Marketing
Businesses need to make sure that they are updating their social media platforms as it can serve as a bridge between their brand and their customers. People are using Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube and many more to check buyer reactions before they make a purchase. From feedback and reviews to comparisons between various products, the information they get can affect their buying behavior.
Some consider it as a factor that has the biggest effect on consumer behavior. Technology helped people access a channel where they can share their point of view on certain brands and products to a much larger audience. For example, consumers read reviews left by bloggers and other individuals on brand pages and sponsored posts. The information gathered has helped the consumer decision making process because it came from someone who has already tried the product they’re interested in buying. Hence, good or bad, word of mouth definitely has an effect to the sales of the brand.
4. Brand Awareness
Back then, people are hesitant to try new products or services unless they gathered enough information on whether it’s worth purchasing or not. But thanks to online marketing and the information available online, people eventually became good researchers to the point that it helped them make better purchasing decisions. Online marketing has helped consumers gain access to many contents about the brands, which helped the former gain more brand awareness and insight.
In conclusion, digital marketing has helped countless of businesses catch the interest of consumers but it has also changed the way consumers look at these brands. Now that customers are taking charge of their shopping experience, businesses need to study the consumer behavior to gain insight into their purchasing habits and make necessary changes.