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Marketing Strategy for the Digital Age

Marketing Strategy for the Digital Age

Digital technology has disrupted traditional marketing models, forcing marketers to rethink how they develop and implement their marketing strategy. To help you with your transition into the new digital marketing era, we have created a Digital Marketing Strategy course series consisting of four online express courses that can each be completed individually. Each express course consists of one fast-paced module that can be completed in just one week and is followed by a quick quiz to embed your knowledge. On completion of each express course you receive an IMM certificate and skills badge.

 The first course in this series is an Introduction to Digital Marketing and Technology, which kicks off with a review of the relationship between the internet and marketing, and the most common tools marketers can utilise to advertise online.

Thereafter, we look at digital marketing communication and why it is important as new age marketers to create an integrated marketing strategy where online initiatives integrate and synergise with traditional offline initiatives.

We also review the micro-and market-environments in the digital marketing context and how exactly the internet has transformed the landscape in which companies operate.

In the digital marketplace intermediaries play a critical role, therefore a detailed review of competitors and suppliers in the digital marketing industry is also included.

The second course in this series is The Digital Macro-Environment.

This course is predominantly based on an analysis of the macro-environment. The digital world is transforming rapidly, and digital marketers need to be alert to the forces that are important in the context of their own trading environment.

By analysing the macro-environment or external environment, marketers are able to highlight opportunities and identify possible threats. We relook the use of the PESTLE model when analysing the macro-environment, again with a digital marketing lens, and review the political, economic, social, legal, technological and environmental factors that need to be considered when developing the new-age marketing strategy. We explain how each of these factors can directly influence the digital marketing operations of a business.

The third course in this series is Digital Marketing Strategy Development.

This course is all about digital marketing strategy development. We take you from the structure and formulation of a strategy to the implementation thereof.

The way people shop is changing due to the interventions of digital technologies and social media. This means businesses can no longer ignore digital channels. Regarding online strategies, merely a website is no longer enough for businesses. Marketers need to think about partnering with other online intermediaries and using other digital media channels.

Digital marketing strategy can be complex; therefore, many digital marketers have adopted the PR Smith SOSTAC strategy process model to guide them in the development of their digital strategy.

In this course we introduce you to the PR Smith’s SOSTAC planning framework and how to use it when developing your digital marketing strategy, including the following steps:

Situation Analysis – which means where are we now?

Objectives – which means where do we want to go?

Strategy – which means how are we going to get there?

Tactics – which are the details of strategy.

Action – Putting the plan to work.

Control – which means measurement, monitoring, reviewing, updating and modifying.

The fourth course in this series is Digital Media and the Marketing Mix.

When you think marketing, you think the marketing mix fondly known as the 4 P’s. Traditionally, the marketing mix gained popularity in an era where most businesses sold products. Service provision and the role of good customer service was largely ignored and the potential impact on brand development and the user experience was not clearly understood. Fortunately, in recent years we have added services marketing mix elements of People, Processes and Physical Evidence to improve our focus on customer service.

As digital marketers, we apply all 7P’s of the marketing mix when strategising and also add an 8th P to the mix, Partnerships. This course reviews in detail how each of these eight marketing mix elements can be applied to in the context of digital marketing and how they need to be adapted because of the internet and other digital technologies.

Sign up for this series of courses and bridge the gap between traditional and digital marketing strategy. If you don’t upskill, you may be left behind.

If you are interested in completing our Digital Marketing Strategy series or individual express courses click here.

Technology and convenience define the new face of retailing

Retailing in South Africa is changing dramatically, with the evolution being led by technology and a greater need for convenience. The ‘IMM Journal of Strategic Marketing’ reports in its latest issue (Issue 2 2018) that, in an environment where consumer demands are becoming ever more sophisticated, retailers have turned increasingly to digital technology for solutions.

“Digital technology will be the biggest driver of change in retail for the next five to 10 years,” predicts Doug Murray, CEO of The Foschini Group (TFG). Among the group’s brands are clothing chains Foschini and Markham, sports retailer Totalsports, and homeware retailer @Home.

Indeed, TFG has prioritised the adoption of technology and Murray notes that two group directors are charged with keeping track of the latest technological developments and their application in areas relevant to the group.

Among these is the efficient use of big data gleaned from sources such as loyalty programmes and shoppers’ in-store and online product-buying preferences. “Our marketing is highly targeted to the preferences of individual customers,” explains Murray. “Using data analytics to understand our customers and communicate with them in a meaningful way is a key element of our strategy.”

There are other challenges too. Clicks, for example, is working to resolve the often lengthy queues at its in-store pharmacies. “They are the biggest source of complaints we have from customers,” observes CEO David Kneale.

Turning to technology for a solution, Clicks has recently introduced a mobile app which enables pharmacy staff to inform in-store customers when their medication is ready for collection.

Other articles in the latest edition of the magazine include an analysis how artificial intelligence (AI) may impact the future of advertising, and a look at breakthroughs in neuroscience that will benefit marketing and sales professionals.

The ‘IMM Journal of Strategic Marketing’ is published by the IMM Graduate School and is available in print and digital formats.