January 25, 2022

Digital Marketing 101: Breaking Down the Basics

It would be too simplistic to say that digital marketing is marketing your products and/or services online. Just like an onion, there are multiple layers to digital marketing.

First and foremost, you need to understand that ‘digital marketing’ is simply an umbrella term used to describe the vast range of sales and marketing efforts that are conducted through digital tools accessible via the internet, with the scope of achieving your business goals.  

That can sound quite vague – and the reality is that it is. Our economy’s shift to a digital-first environment has made modern-day marketing more fragmented and fast paced than ever before. This presents both challenges and opportunities to today’s businesses – such that steering the digital environment is key not only to success, but also to survival.  

This blog post breaks down some of the top-level components to digital marketing. Our intention is to give digital newbies the toolkit to delve into further research on digital marketing and the benefits it holds.  

According to Yahoo Finance, the global market for digital advertising will growth from $350 Billion in 2020, to $786.2 Billion by 2026. This represents a staggering CAGR of 13.9% over the period.

Traditional vs digital marketing

First off, we need to highlight the key elements that differentiate digital marketing from traditional.  

With traditional marketing mediums such as TV, radio and billboards, you are mainly targeting a mass audience with a single message. Moreover, communication via traditional marketing is one-way – meaning that your audience cannot directly reply to an advertisement.  

On the other hand, digital marketing presents the opportunity to target very specifics audiences. This enables you to reach people who fit the exact profile of your target market, maximising the probability that viewers will become actual paying customers. In addition, communication through digital marketing is two-way – as it enables viewers to directly respond and engage with your content. Some primary digital marketing channels include social media, search engines and websites.  

The core components to digital marketing

Audience research and targeting

Audience research is essential and needs to be the starting point of any digital marketing strategy. Understanding the audience you are trying to reach dictates which approaches will work best, guiding you in terms of channel selection, content creation, and messaging style.  

When analysing your audience, it is key to take 3 primary streams into consideration: 

Audience segmentation is critical to digital marketing in malta

Digital channels

As we’ve mentioned, digital marketing is very vast and offers a multitude of channels to get your message across. Each channels offers its own unique benefits, whilst enabling you to cross-target people from one channel to another. A holistic digital marketing strategy will ensure your brand maximises its visibility across all digital channels, giving you a leg up on your competitors 

Some of the primary channels include:

Connecting with the customer

Customers need to feel like they are being understood and listened to. The best way to do so is to identify what stage of the buyer’s journey they fall under and specifically tailor your campaigns accordingly. This can be done through the implementation of a rigorous re-targeting setup, that ensures the adverts shown to different users are matched to that particular user’s stage in the buying process.  

We often refer to this cycle as a marketing funnel, which can be defined as below:  

Digital marketing funnel

Organic marketing and paid marketing

Put simply, organic marketing refers to any form of ‘free’ marketing – posting on your social media pages, optimising your website, and so on. Organic marketing enables you to publish content online without the need to spend any funds on purchasing media placements. Moreover, organic marketing is effective to build a clearly defined brand identity on your digital platforms.  

The downside to organic marketing is that visibility from such an approach tends to be limited. This is where paid marketing makes its way. Online platforms like Facebook and Google enable you to purchase space, in the same way you would on traditional channels like TV. In purchasing this space, you will obtain high levels of visibility, that are directly proportional to your budget and the overall market prices for advertising space in your sector and country.  

Facebook™ report that over 160 million businesses use their platform for marketing and advertising purposes. 

The 3 pillars to a successful digital marketing campaign

#1: Customers come first

Make the customer your focal point, from strategy and execution. Do so by identifying your target customer’s needs and build out a strategy which communicates selling points built around those needs. Additionally, your selling points need to stand out over and above competing brands – making it a no brainer for the customer to shop from you. 

#2: Monitor and optimise

A core advantage presented through digital marketing is the ability to measure the precise effectiveness of your campaigns. Your marketing campaigns are actively generating data, day after day. It is critical to monitor this data on an ongoing basis, enabling you to harvest critical insights on campaign performance, which ultimately guide decision making for your sales and marketing initiatives. All in all, data analysis and optimisation will serve to maximise the return on investment generated through your campaigns. 

#3: Integrate and scale

Brining multiple digital marketing channels together in a synergistic manner is pivotal in maximising your brand’s visibility. Essentially, this enables you to ‘follow’ prospective customers from one channel to another, ensuring you are always at the top of their mind, solidifying your reputation as the category leader in their mind. 

Let us help you navigate through the digital wilderness

Effectively leveraging the potential of digital marketing is hard. Online platforms have become a chaotic mosh pit of competing brands fighting to be heard. At Bullshark, we pride ourselves in driving cutting-edge digital strategies that drive a competitive advantage, enabling our clients to thrive. 

Fill out the form below to find out how we can help you generate incredible results this year:

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