DIGITAL MARKETING EXCELLENCE
Even if they don't plan to sell their goods online anytime soon, or ever, retailers can't afford to ignore the realm of digital marketing. The digital universe is evolving quickly, and it holds tremendous opportunity. Self-empowered users go online to locate stores and research products prior to their offline purchases. They share their in-store and product experiences with millions of other users via social network sites and blogs. They reach out to companies to provide feedback and input, and they freely reveal their needs and preferences to everyone who cares to listen. Who would want to miss out on this wealth of information, interaction, and influence? But online marketing requires other approaches, tools, and capabilities than the offline world. Everything happens in real time, and word of mouth spreads at a tap on the pad. Reputation may be gained more quickly than in a traditional media environment, but it can be lost just as easily. And even if the vehicles are virtual, successful digital marketing is still about the ROI of real dollars and cents.
In this chapter, we will show what it takes to succeed in this changing environment. We will discuss the development of a digital strategy, and cover what we consider today's three most important digital touch points: search engine marketing, display advertising, and social media (see Exhibit 17.1 for digital marketing investment levels). Finally, we will examine ...