Top Digital Marketing Strategies: Expert Advice on Building Your Brand's Digital Presence

By Peck, Gretchen A. | Editor & Publisher, March 2012 | Go to article overview

Top Digital Marketing Strategies: Expert Advice on Building Your Brand's Digital Presence


Peck, Gretchen A., Editor & Publisher


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For businesses outside of publishing, creating a digital marketing strategy is a rather straightforward endeavor--use digital media to introduce and marry the supplier of the good or service with a consumer.

For publishers, however, devising a digital marketing strategy is exponentially more complicated, and even the term itself seems insufficient, given the newspaper publishing context. There is the need to promote the news brands themselves, especially burgeoning e-media publications and apps, in which publishers are heavily investing. There's the need to leverage digital tools--websites, blogs, forums, social networking, measurement and tracking software, and the like--to engage readers and build communities; to learn about their wants and desires and habits; and to drive overall circulation.

The good news for publishers? Like the adage says, "Necessity is the mother of invention." And out of these necessary marketing exercises springs opportunity--the opportunity to compel advertisers and intrigue prospective co-marketing partners.

In social circles, choose quality over quantity

It may be dazzling to publishers and advertisers alike that an entity such as Facebook would be the third most populous nation in the world if it were actually a nation. The marketing potential of social media is clearly compelling but should be tempered with an understanding that quality of relationships matters more in social circles than quantity.

Nancy Messiah recently reported for TheNextWeb.com (TNW) on a timely Semiocast (semiocast.com) study of Twitter, which currently boasts 107.7 million accounts worldwide. That's a significant number. However, when you drill further down in the data, an important distinction is revealed: Only 27 percent of those accounts had posted a tweet within a three-month period, the study revealed. This is important to note for publishers, because it shows how these masses are using Twitter--by and large, absorbing information rather than contributing or sharing it, as Messieh concludes.

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In the January issue of E&P, Scott Stines, president of mass2one, said that "authentic recommendations from a friend or everyday acquaintance are powerful forces when it comes to purchases and decision making, and positive buzz helps set a brand apart from its peers in a crowded marketplace."

"A newspaper's Facebook page should focus on engagement--contests, events, and offers--and serve to drive social media users to the newspaper's traditional and online products and services, while rewarding that behavior along the way," Stines said.

In an article titled "Digital Marketing Strategy Development: 12 Common Problems" posted on TheFutureBuzz.com, Adam Singer wrote that "it's not enough to figure out ways to gain attention from random people for fleeting moments. You need to find a way to market to target groups consistently over time. And the tactics used should be compelling enough not just to attract an audience, but inspire the audience to grow itself."

Build the archive

Adam Singer more recently wrote about "The Forgotten Value of Archival Content" for TheFutureBuzz.com. From a marketer's and e-media user's perspective, he offered important insight for publishers:

"Sites like Wikipedia, eHow, Quroa, even YouTube thrive on their archives. It's not just that this content is found via users seeking something specific in a search engine. That's extremely important on its own. But beyond that, when discovered, this content is frequently reshared back into user's [sic] streams as if it's new, or to provide context into a conversation happening now. The point is, this content has a lot of value. But if you're not vesting the effort to publish and optimize, you can't tap into it."

Singer added, "An extremely frustrating thing for me as a user (and blogger) is when a media company removes a page I've linked to without any explanation. …

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