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A Look at Digital-Age Marketing

Americans have long been more likely to see an advertisement online than on television. Even with its already well-established prominence, time "spent using mobile apps rose to new heights in 2020, and apps will likely be even more popular in 2021" as reported in Forbes. The ever-increasing popularity of online usage means continued growth for digital-age marketing.

The Decline of Newspapers and Print Media

Marketing as we know it today — targeted ads designed to influence consumer behavior — came into practice in the late 19th century, largely through ad space bought in newspapers. Marketing evolved in the mid-20th century as radio, television and magazines diversified the media landscape.

Beginning in the 1990s, widespread use of the internet again changed how marketers reached customers. According to the CEO of InMobi in a Forbes article, "Americans have been spending more time looking at their mobile device screens than they’ve spent watching TV since 2019, according to eMarketer. For media and entertainment companies (and really all advertisers), it’s critical to reach their target audience where they are: using mobile apps." As Americans gained newfound access to news and entertainment online, often for free, daily papers struggled to maintain readership and subscription levels. The loss of revenue from classified advertising was particularly damaging for print newspapers.

The Rise of Digital-Age Marketing

Beyond the opportunities created by the advent of email and the internet, social media channels such as Facebook and Instagram have become integral to digital-age marketing. A HubSpot blog post highlights the role of digital marketing professionals.

"A content marketer can create a series of blog posts that serve to generate leads from a new e-book the business recently created," the article said. "The company's social media marketer might then help promote these blog posts through paid and organic posts on the business's social media accounts. Email marketers create an email campaign to send those who download the e-book more information on the company."

Among the tactics used by digital marketing agencies are:

  • Search Engine Optimization (SEO): the use of keywords and other components to improve a website's online ranking.
  • Content Marketing: the promotion of content assets through blogging, infographics and online brochures.
  • Social Media Marketing: the process of creating brand awareness and drawing business to websites through social media posts.
  • Email Marketing: the use of email campaigns to increase sales of products.

The internet's continued dominance on the marketing stage and the recent surge in mobile devices signify a fundamental shift which means continued growth for digital marketing.

Learn more about STU's online Master of Business Administration with a concentration in Marketing.

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