Apparently, there is a joke among computer hardware manufacturers that, by the time a computer ships out of the warehouse for distribution and delivery, it becomes obsolete. The point is, technology is changing so fast these days that very little can be considered state-of-the-art. In the world of digital marketing, philosophy is somewhat similar. What we hold to be true today may become a myth a year later. And, what is written in this blog post may very well be challenged and debunked a year from now.
What we’ll try to do, therefore, is put some of our beliefs about digital marketing into perspective. Not to prove that this belief is right and the other one is wrong; but to show that as things evolve, so do our thinking and beliefs. It is simply a matter of shifting our thinking – and our efforts – to what will work productively for us in the future. We have the relevant technologies, social media platforms and social analytics tools to help us keep a close watch on what’s changing with our target audience and in the market place.
Myth: In digital ad revenue, Google and Facebook stand supreme
Yes, it’s true; at least for now. But, Amazon will become a force to reckon with and will challenge Google and Facebook. According to eMarketer, Amazon’s ad revenue share is insignificant at 7.6% at the moment, while Google and Facebook account for 60.9%. Although advertisers will continue to spend on Google and Facebook, Amazon will attract consumer packaged goods (CPG) brands more and more.
As CPG brands have difficulty selling directly to consumers (they can’t drive sales from their own websites), they will need to depend on Amazon. Moreover, advertisers feel less vulnerable because platforms like Amazon offer an alternative to the dominating power of Google and Facebook. Slowly, over the years, Amazon will provide a viable advertising platform for consumer brands and prove to be a recognized third digital ad revenue player.
[ eMarketer: Facebook-Google Duopoly Won’t Crack This Year, by Nicole Perrin, November 4, 2019, https://www.emarketer.com/content/facebook-google-duopoly-won-t-crack-this-year ]
Myth: Voice search has a huge impact on digital marketing
We are not sure about this, yet. The increasing adoption of voice assistants is something to be noticed. Voice search is certainly fun to use and to play with. Some people have been known to have spent a good one hour chatting with Alexa, Amazon’s voice-controlled intelligent personal assistant service. Others have shouted into their smartphones and laptops, then leaned in to stare at the search results and been surprised.
For those who enjoy the comfort and convenience of not having to move from their comfort zone and yet get things done, voice search is the best thing to happen in their lives. We are, of course, speaking from the perspective of the consumer. For brands and advertisers, it’s a different story. They haven’t found ways to take advantage of this digital technology yet. Its impact on search trends and SEO is still uncertain. This means, to digital marketing, voice search is still a ‘black box’.
Myth: Digital marketing is the answer to all our marketing needs
There’s a tendency to believe that our digital marketing plans and strategies hold the answers to all our marketing needs. With new digital tools and tactics at our disposal, this seems almost true. We have, indeed, become smarter marketing people deploying marketing campaigns at high speeds. But,
in doing so, we have lost sight of the people who actually buy and use our brands. Our relationships with them have become impersonal.
That’s why social media is so important to our overall marketing needs. It adds tremendous value to our existing digital marketing by allowing us to get closer to our customers. Campaigns that use a mix of social media platforms help us achieve more effective online reach, gain a better knowledge of our customers, and conversion to sales. Digital marketing alone cannot achieve this objective.
Moreover, in India, the distribution of goods and services to our large population relies heavily on physical retail channels. According to the India Brand Equity Foundation (IBEF), “The total number of retail distribution outlets in the country is estimated at over 12 million, mostly family-owned businesses.” In such a marketing ecosystem, brands and businesses have little choice but invest their time, effort and money on traditional (offline) marketing.
[ IBEF: India – Distribution and Sales Channels https://www.export.gov/article?id=India-Distribution-and-Sales-Channels ]