How Digital Media is Evolving

People have been offering goods and services to others for decades. While that hasn’t changed, the avenue for getting the word out to potential customers certainly has.

In the early days of media, there was only print. Ads were placed in newspapers or magazines, and fliers or billboards were other methods for getting the word out. With the advent of radio and television, these tools joined the ranks of traditional media. Today, digital media is anything accessible online, which includes search engines, streaming music and TV, and more.

The Birth of Digital Media

The Internet started connecting computers to one another in 1983. The World Wide Web, aka WWW, made its public debut in 1993, allowing anyone to use a web browser.

Were you an Internet user in the early ‘90s? If so, then you probably have fond memories of plugging a computer into a phone line and listening to the screeching sounds that signaled connection to the world around you. You can also conjure up images of original websites, featuring blocks of text without graphics, photos, or much thought to overall design. They were often riddled with hyperlinks, no doubt in an effort to show just how well connected the Internet was. Unfortunately, it was ugly. Thankfully, that doesn’t have to be a problem with digital marketing today!

Keeping Up with Tech

As new technology is developed in digital media, Utah marketing firms such as Gravitate One do their best to keep up. It’s important to stay on top of algorithm updates, trends on social media, and how people prefer to consume media. 

Does this mean print marketing is a thing of the past? If you’ve ever opened your mailbox to a mountain of fliers, you know the answer to that question. In conjunction with digital marketing campaigns, traditional forms of marketing can still offer benefits. However, it’s important to utilize the resources currently available.

Search Engines

Web browser Netscape caused a big change to the Internet in 1994. Netscape meant that Internet users could search the myriad web pages published online. Netscape was followed by other browsers, including:

  • JumpStation
  • Yahoo!
  • Lycos
  • BackRub
  • AskJeeves
  • Google

Social Media

In digital marketing, it can seem like social media platforms are king. These sites evolved from rudimentary beginnings such as Friendster (2001), personal blogs, LinkedIn (2002), and MySpace (2003). The early aughts were a time to connect with people around the world without leaving the kitchen counter where the family’s PC was plugged in.

But, simply being present on Facebook (2004), Twitter (2006), and Instagram (2010) these days isn’t enough for successful digital marketing. There’s been a huge shift in reaching customers on social media; many platforms are leaning towards favoring videos when it comes to making your content visible to users. Or, you can utilize paid social media ads so your digital content is seen by the right consumers. Utilizing paid ads, social media influencers, and organic reach can allow brands to reach a global audience if desired.

Targeted Ads

In the good ol’ days, advertisers carefully crafted a radio or TV ad and then purchased a time slot for the ad to run. With market research, a brand decided on the best time to reach a target audience, such as during Saturday morning cartoons on TV or the morning commute on the radio. Today, targeted ads have evolved to allow brands to pick not just when an ad runs, but who sees it. 

Digital media has evolved to the point that a platform such as Facebook can allow a brand to select the gender, age, and location of the people who will see an ad. Targeting a niche so precisely can ensure limited resources aren’t wasted. 

Mobile Marketing

Since most of us are carrying around mobile computers in our pockets, digital marketing needs to be designed for those devices. Mobile marketing means there’s an emphasis on websites that look good on a cell phone or tablet. The sites need to provide a pleasant user experience on mobile as well as on a desktop

Customer Service Bots

Do you remember the days of having to pick up a landline telephone to call a customer service representative when you had a concern about a product or service? Now, you can log on to a brand’s social media and get a conversation going online with a robot to resolve a problem. Messenger bots can provide around-the-clock responses to customers looking for answers to frequently asked questions. Artificial intelligence technology like this makes it easier for brands to provide customer service without overextending their resources. Since we live in a world where people have grown accustomed to instant gratification, messenger bots can ensure customers feel taken care of even outside traditional business hours.

So, where will digital media head next? We’re not sure, but it’s likely that data analysis will continue to shift how we work to get brands the recognition and revenue they want.