‘Big data’ and ‘digital marketing’ are terms we’ve heard a lot, lately. But, how deeply do we actually understand what they mean, and why are they considered such a game-changer?
For anyone interested in running a business or working in marketing, it’s absolutely essential in the 21st century to understand this field. But, don’t just take our word for it!
Meet marketing lecturer Fabricio Masson
Fabricio is a marketing lecturer and a super-motivated, innovative project developer at Torrens University Australia Business School
After a long and diverse career in the marketing industry, he’s now teaching a course in Digital Marketing Communications, that he also designed. In other words, he knows what he’s talking about when it comes to this topic.
What is Digital Marketing?
This how Fabricio defines digital marketing to new students who begin his classes:
“Digital Marketing is when companies and marketers utilise an array of online strategies to engage with current and potential customers. These tools help them to create, communicate, exchange and deliver value to consumers.”
– Fabricio Masson
What Fabricio refers to as ‘online strategies’ can encompass a broad range of communications in the digital world, from Facebook advertising campaigns to viral videos, blogs, surveys and data collection. Essentially, it’s about how companies engage with customers online.
In Fabricio’s opinion, why exactly is it so important for businesses today to engage with digital spaces and expand into new technologies?
“In an era of the ‘Internet of Things’ (also referred to as IoT), avoiding technologies and innovation is a big mistake. Connected companies can create innovative goods and services if two-way communication with consumers is established.
Every day, new devices are released which are fully connected on the internet.
For instance; fridges can place orders with a supermarket of your choice; artificial intelligence devices have slowly been introduced into everyday life, whether through personal assistants such as Google Home, Alexa by Amazon, Cortana by Microsoft or Siri; online chatbots are helping consumers online; and machine learning is assisting companies to make strategic decisions, by identifying consumers’ behaviours and patterns.
Companies and marketers should not miss out on all the opportunities that digital marketing has to offer.”
We’ve established that digital marketing is important, but what makes one digital marketing strategy more successful than another?
According to Fabricio, a lot of it comes down to how you use data.
“Digital marketing can only be effective and efficient if we are able to understand consumers.
Nowadays, companies have several opportunities to collect and mine consumer data to fully understand who they are, where they are, how often they buy, what channels they access to get informed, when they want particular goods and services.
If companies use these tools to understand their target audience, their chances of success will increase drastically.”
Data collected about consumer preferences and behaviour allows companies to develop effective digital marketing strategies. This is why data collection and digital marketing are inseparable as strategic tools for business in the 21st century. Targeted advertising, which we’re all familiar with, is just one facet of this diverse field.
The accumulated collection of data a company receives from consumers, through a range of different inputs is what we refer to when we say ‘big data.’
Capturing this data and analysing it is the first step in any effective digital marketing strategy, as Fabricio explains.
“We live in a well-connected world where most boundaries do not exist anymore. We spend hours every day online whether searching, checking our social media feeds, messaging, checking emails and much more.
Every click on online media, email, or any other behaviour online becomes data. This data tells us who we are and what we want, most of the time.
If companies don’t capture these patterns and pool this information then they will fall behind, because their competitors will do it first.”
The Digital Marketing Communications course that Fabricio created at Torrens is taught in the second year of the Bachelor of Business (Marketing). Students learn the fundamentals of digital marketing, from data collection to strategy development, and even get to develop a ‘real-world’ proposal for a client.
Here’s a sneak-peek of what the course involves, from the designer himself.
“Students get to understand different online marketing strategies that could be used by different companies from a simple website redevelopment. They use UX (user-experience information) to improve customers’ experiences: in SEO, paid searching, online display ads, and social media advertising, to name a few applications of this technology.
During the modules, students learn different techniques to understand the ins and outs of digital marketing. They are also provided with practical workshops in which they are encouraged to create landing pages, Google Ads, Facebook and Instagram Ads, email marketing campaigns and others.
In their last assessment, students are also encouraged to work with a small business that needs to improve their marketing, from an online point-of-view. They create a digital marketing proposal and potentially, present it to the actual client, if they decide to go ahead with the project.
Real clients and real projects like these help students to get ready for a real-world opportunity, and become job-ready.”
Learn more about the Bachelor of Business (Marketing) at Torrens University.