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      What Is Digital Marketing?

      Before the digital era, marketing relied heavily on print media to advertise products and services. Newspaper and magazine advertisements and even billboard signs were common marketing tools used to promote a brand. In today’s technology-savvy world, however, the emphasis is now on digital marketing strategies. 

      Digital marketing is marketing that uses electronic devices to distribute messages and promote materials while measuring the overall impact of the campaign. There are a variety of digital channels used to convey these messages from smartphones and websites to email and videos.

      Digital marketing can be extremely effective, as:

      • 31 percent of U.S. adults report they’re “almost constantly” online
      • At least 85 percent of Americans report being online on a daily basis

      Considering how much time the average American is spending online, there are a lot of opportunities to reach potential customers through digital marketing means.

      5 Types of Digital Marketing

      You may know where to find your customers online, but there are a wide variety of ways to reach out to customers through digital marketing. To find the right method for your business, you have to understand the five different types of digital marketing, including:

      1. Social media marketing
      2. Affiliate marketing
      3. PPC marketing
      4. Search engine optimization (SEO)
      5. Email marketing

      Below is a deeper dive into each of these five popular digital marketing methods, so you can consider whether they would benefit your business. 

      1. Social media marketing

      Social media marketing uses social media platforms to promote a brand, product, or service. Some of the social platforms that are great places to build a community and create brand recognition, as well as promote products, include:

      • Facebook
      • Instagram
      • Twitter
      • LinkedIn

      You don’t have to be active on every channel, but most if not all, businesses should engage on at least one of these platforms. The number of social media users is projected to reach 4.4 billion users by 2025, according to Statista. With so many potential customers in one place, it would be foolish not to invest in these platforms. 

      2. Affiliate marketing

      Affiliate marketing is a revenue-sharing model that relies on the assistance of other people to promote a business. An affiliate marketer will promote your product or service on their channels. Every time someone purchases your product through their link, the affiliate marketer receives a small commission.

      As the merchant, you’re essentially paying the affiliate marketer for the sales they help generate. This digital marketing method is a great way to reach a large audience of potential customers through a trusted source. 

      3. PPC marketing

      Pay-per-click (PPC) marketing is when you post an advertisement on a website or social media platform and are charged for each advertisement click. The cost of the advertisements varies, and an algorithm determines when your ad will appear on the platform. An algorithm will evaluate several factors, including (but not limited to) the following) to prioritize or determine ad placement:

      • Ad quality
      • Keywords density, placement and type
      • The quality of the website landing page associated with the ad

      A helpful feature of PPC marketing is that all campaigns can be easily tracked and monitored through your chosen platform. If an ad isn’t doing well, you can review the analytics and determine how to improve for the future. 

      4. Search engine optimization

      Search engine optimization, or SEO, is a necessary marketing tool that your company needs to use to improve search rankings. Google and other search engines use specific algorithms to rank website pages. The rank of your website determines where your business will appear when a person searches for a specific term.

      The goal of any business is to appear on the first page of Google search results and ideally be listed as one of the top three results. The quality of website content, mobile-friendliness, and the quality of inbound links all play a part in SEO. Ranking high on search results is vital for business viability as 75 percent of people never scroll past the first page of search results. 

      5. Email marketing

      The idea of email marketing may seem simple, but it’s much more complicated than people realize. Email marketing is when a company uses email to send promotional messages to prospects in the hopes of making a connection or selling a product. Email marketing content can feature:

      • Blog posts
      • Advertisements
      • Discounts, offers, and coupons
      • Images and videos
      • Company announcements

      Of course, you don’t want to bombard your email list with useless or unwanted information, which is why opt-in email list are important. With opt-in email lists, you can create individualized marketing content that targets a customer’s specific needs and interests. 


      When it comes to digital marketing, no one method will answer all of your marketing needs. Once you understand each digital marketing method and how it works, consider which ones are the best fit for your company. You may start by prioritizing SEO and building a lead generation strategy with email marketing. Wherever you start, make sure you monitor your digital marketing efforts. The digital world is constantly changing and evolving, so your digital marketing strategy has to grow and adapt with the latest demands. 

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      Marketing Org Chart

      Best Marketing & Demand Generation Recruiting Firm


      The experienced marketing recruiters at Cowen Partners have a long-standing reputation for excellence when it comes to connecting companies with the brightest marketing minds in their industry.

      We are up-to-date on the latest marketing trends, strategies, best practices, and technologies, and we take great care while applying deep expertise to identify the best candidates for our clients’ needs.

      That is why the executive headhunters at Cowen Partners are the partners who leaders trust and rely on for their marketing and demand generation recruitment needs. It is also why Cowen Partners is one of the top marketing recruitment agencies in the U.S.

      Check out our industry-leading executive search resources to see why Cowen Partners is a top sales and marketing executive search firm  in New York CityAnchorage, Miami, Boston, Denver, Chicago, St. Louis, Las Vegas, Seattle, Dallas, Los Angeles, San Diego, and beyond:

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