Over the years, digital marketing has changed the buyer journey and the consumer experience drastically. In the past, marketing was all about exposing leads to as many messages as possible until they decided to buy something. Now, companies can’t just shout at their customers and hope for the best—they need to build relationships with their prospects through content marketing, social media and public relations.

In recent years, mobile searches have exceeded desktop searches, the world has become increasingly social, and influencers have risen to the top as the ultimate way of gaining consumer trust. What all this information shows us is that consumer behavior has changed. Companies can either keep up with the trends in acquisition and choice, or they can run the risk of becoming obsolete. Here are just some of the ways digital marketing has changed everything.

1. Access to analytics

Before the digital world emerged, it was practically impossible to keep track of customer preferences and trends. Now, digital marketing and analytics gives marketing experts and professionals at PR firms access to endless amounts of data that they can use to determine how clients search for products, make purchases, and interact with a company.

Analytics and “big data” allow businesses to analyze their target audience and use the insights they gather to adjust their marketing strategies to speak the right language. This leads to stronger relationships between customers and companies, and more opportunities for sales.

2. Social media for brand relationships

Ever since social media became an essential part of the digital marketing journey, it’s transformed the way companies acquire their customers and influence choice. Today’s brands know that they need to earn the respect, and trust of their audience if they want to make a sale. After all, countless customers go online to check the reviews on a product or service before they ever consider buying it.

Social media provides all companies with an opportunity to develop relationships with their prospects through credible and transparent marketing that isn’t as blunt or aggressive as “outbound” marketing techniques. Brands connect to their customer base through influencers, social shares, and viral trends, allowing for a more organic marketing experience.

3. SEO: Better rankings = better sales

Finally, despite the many ways that the digital marketing world has changed – one thing remains the same, people still rely on search engines to help them make decisions. When customers want to find out information about a brand, a product, or even a problem they’re having, they turn to their search engines for help. As such, SEO and content marketing remain crucial components of any marketing or PR strategy.

Organizations that know how to make the most of their inbound marketing efforts, create useful content, and attract backlinks will get the rankings they need to race ahead of the competition. The better a company’s ranking is, the more likely they are to generate sales. After all, customers believe in the concept of hierarchy. They’re more likely to trust a business who shows up at the top of the search results, than one that appears five pages back.

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Ronn Torossian

Ronn Torossian

Ronn Torossian is the Founder and CEO of 5W Public Relations: 5WPR is one of the 20 largest PR Firms in the United States.

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