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The Digital Marketing Toolkit: A Literature Review for the Identification of Digital Marketing Channels and Platforms

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Abstract

Digital transformation, driven by technological advances and changing customer requirements, is stimulating the use of digital marketing. 11% of Swiss organizations regard digital marketing as a key investment area as part of their overall digital transformation strategy, with over one third of Swiss organizations currently investing in new sales and marketing tools. Unfortunately, there are implementation gaps between Swiss small and medium-sized enterprises (SME) and large enterprises (LE). In short, SME are lagging behind LE and generally do not use digital marketing tools, channels, and platforms. Barriers that prevent SME from adopting higher digital marketing tools are cultural change, limited resources/high costs, technology, and expertise. The objective of this study is to close the knowledge gap and provide SME with an overview of the most important digital marketing tools based on a literature review in order to leverage the opportunity of digital technology in the marketing discipline and reduce the distance to LE. The literature review identified nineteen relevant articles. These articles include 162 citations of tools, channels, platforms, and methods, which can be used by SME to close the knowledge gap and thus take advantage of a new, digital marketing portfolio. The twenty-four unique digital marketing tools are presented based on a comparative analysis, with the eleven most often cited tools being defined and described. Potential for further research was identified.

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Purpose – Organisations now regard having a web site as mandatory but as more businesses create websites the real challenge lies in driving traffic to a specific web site. Little research attention has been paid to the issues for small and medium enterprises (SMEs) of how to increase traffic to their web site. This paper addresses the issue of web site traffic generation for SMEs which have limited resources to determine how SMEs might make more effective use of search engine marketing (SEM) tools to increase web site traffic. Design/methodology/approach – An investigation of specific SEM tools, including press release distribution and directory submission, that are available to SMEs was conducted. This research paper follows a mixed methods approach incorporating Pearson's product moment correlation conducted on web site traffic and backlinks data as well as qualitative analysis of interview transcripts of three SME organisations and their use of search engine optimisation across different industries. Findings – The findings indicate that a combined use of both press release distribution and directory submission does increase traffic generation to a web site. A tentative model is proposed which requires further testing. Practical implications – This paper demonstrates the synergy that can be created from two easily accessible and low cost SEM tools for SMEs in order to improve web site traffic generation. Originality/value – The value of this research lies in the fact that the tools used in the creation of the model are within the means of small organisations and therefore highly relevant to SMEs.
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The marketing discipline has been exposed to various changes and strong challenges with the introduction and diffusion of the Internet phenomenon into the business arena. Ever since this new multimedia environment of exchange emerged, many studies have been conducted about how it will affect the nature and future of mar-keting activities. This study is an attempt to organize and summarize the literature about Internet marketing and enlighten the research routes that will contribute to the advancement of the discipline. The study has a macro perspective and provides a bird's eye view of the Internet marketing literature. First, the general impact of technological advancements on the marketing discipline is analyzed. This discussion is extended with an examination of the studies that compare conventional marketing practices with the principles and rules of the e-marketing world. A deeper understanding is developed by reviewing the inventory of stud-ies handling the four major components of the traditional marketing mix in an online context. In order to capture a full understanding of the online marketing environment, studies approaching various top-ics about Internet marketing from the perspective of two major players in the field are examined. One group displays the consumer perspective and includes many valuable studies about individuals' buying behavior. On the complementary side, the business perspective has also been investigated so that the discussions about the current state of online marketing are not limited to a consumer-oriented approach.
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Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to report on a study that re‐examines the impact of the internet on small to medium‐sized enterprise marketing activities, following a similar study four years earlier (2000) in order to see what, if any, changes have occurred. Design/methodology/approach – A qualitative research approach was adopted using one‐to‐one, in‐depth semi‐structured interviews with the marketing managers or IT professionals of ten small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs) who were directly involved in introducing the internet and e‐marketing activities within their respective company. Findings – The all‐encompassing role of the internet in today's business world and the findings of this study raise some serious issues for the future of SMEs operating in a peripheral location and their e‐marketing provisions. It is still very much in its infancy for some SMEs although its use has generally continued since 2000. SMEs still do not use it to its full scope and potential. Originality/value – The outcomes of the study illustrate the specific barriers and implementation issues encountered by SMEs, identify the consequences of implementing e‐marketing on the SME businesses, and identify how SMEs within regional economies could better use e‐marketing and facilitate better implementation in the future.
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Blogs appear to be gaining momentum as a marketing tool which can be used by organisations for such strategies and processes as branding, managing reputation, developing customer trust and loyalty, niche marketing, gathering marketing intelligence and promoting their online presence. There has been limited academic research in this area, and most significantly concerning the types of small and medium enterprises (SMEs) for which blogs might have potential as a marketing tool. In an attempt to address the knowledge gap, this paper presents a future research agenda (in the form of research questions) which can guide the eBusiness research community in conducting much needed studies in this area. This paper is particularly novel in that it aims to demonstrate how the heterogeneity of SMEs and their specific business uses of eBusiness technology such as blogs can form the central plank of a future research agenda. This is important because the existing eBusiness literature tends to treat eBusiness collectively rather than focusing on the specific business uses of different eBusiness technologies, and to treat SMEs as a homogeneous group. The paper concludes with a discussion of how this research agenda can form the basis of studies which use a range of different research methods, and how this "big picture" agenda approach might help the eBusiness research community build theory which better explains SME adoption and use of eBusiness.
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Online marketing, this is also named internet marketing, makes use of digital, virtual spaces for the purpose of promoting and selling products and services. In addition, new synchronous, internet-based interaction technologies have led to the transformation of major economic industries like marketing. Be cost-effective, fast and enjoying an on unparalleled global scope, internet marketing has brought about various businesses tremendous gains. However, this impactful, new approach also includes its special difficulties, e.g. lack of face to face contact, privacy, and security, etc which should be considered as part for. The present study, concentrates upon the impacts of internet-fostered digital spaces on marketing practice and also showing the review of different marketing strategies which, a business can apply toward the achievement of its goal. The paper starts with describing online-marketing and evaluating historical background to use online-marketing; various methods of online marketing, online marketing-strategy different argument by various authors, which some light shall be shed on. The marketing possibilities prevent from the introduction of this new, virtual space are the next focal point. The research continues with issues, such as security and privacy issues, lack of trust etc., that arose from virtual space deployment in the marketing area. Contemplating the answers to the problems that lie ahead, we propose the conclusions.
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Changes in consumer behavior require firms to rethink their marketing strategies in the digital domain. Currently, a significant portion of the associated research is focused more on the customer than on the firm. To redress this shortcoming, this study adopts the perspective of the firm to facilitate an understanding of digital marketing and social media usage as well as its benefits and inhibitors. The second generation of Internet-based applications enhances marketing efforts by allowing firms to implement innovative forms of communication and co-create content with their customers. Based on a survey of marketing managers, this article shows that firms face internal and external pressures to adopt a digital presence in social media platforms. Firms’ digital marketing engagement can be categorized according to perceived benefits and digital marketing usage. To improve digital marketing engagement, marketers must focus on relationship-based interactions with their customers. This article demonstrates how some firms are already accomplishing just that.
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This paper addresses the issue of whether there is a need for better online marketing communication planning and prioritisation methods, particularly for B2B companies. It describes the result of an empirical study among larger Danish companies. The work looks at differences between B2C and B2B companies, regarding the importance of offline and online marcom disciplines, online spending and usage of methods for online communication prioritisation. The paper concludes that due to high online spending, a less specialised priority of online disciplines and very limited usage of existing methods, B2B companies need to be on the lookout for new systematic methods for online communication planning.Journal of Targeting, Measurement and Analysis for Marketing (2006) 14, 357–368; doi:10.1057/palgrave.jt.5740194
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Internet usage continues to explode across the world with digital becoming an increasingly important source of competitive advantage in both B2C and B2B marketing. A great deal of attention has been focused on the tremendous opportunities digital marketing presents, with little attention on the real challenges companies are facing going digital. In this study, we present these challenges based on results of a survey among a convenience sample of 777 marketing executives around the globe. The results reveal that filling “talent gaps”, adjusting the “organizational design”, and implementing “actionable metrics” are the biggest improvement opportunities for companies across sectors.
Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to investigate how small- and medium-sized hotels use search engine marketing (SEM) to make their hotels (services and products) more visible and easier to find for existing and potential customers. Design/methodology/approach – A qualitative, exploratory approach is taken and eight case studies of small, independent hotels are conducted via in-depth, semi-structured interviews. Findings – These interviews reveal that though all hotels have a web site they do not exploit SEM, which may be attributable to poor marketing planning and lack of control of their web site through outsourcing key web development and optimisation activities. Practical implications – The practical implications are that small hotels risk being marginalized, losing contact with their customers and fail to maximise their return on investment on their web site. Originality/value – This research highlights the critical issues and explores the potential to re-orient the small operator towards the opportunities of successful SEM and fully utilise their web site as a tactical and strategic marketing tool.
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This paper presents the preliminary results of a large‐scale survey which examined Internet marketing applications in the inter‐nationalisation of UK SMEs. Although there are some examples of innovative practice, few UK SMEs are utilising the full potential of the World Wide Web (WWW) in international marketing. In this respect, practice in the UK lags several years behind that in the US. Given that the Internet will have a revolutionary impact on the conduct of international trade, a major education and training initiative is required to improve knowledge and understanding in this area and to encourage more effective use of the Internet to support SME internationalisation. In the absence of such an initiative, a further decline in the UK's international competitive position can be expected as other nations embrace the global marketing opportunities made possible by the Web.
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It is likely that the World Wide Web (WWW) will come to play a significant role in the marketing strategies of many organisations, even when it fails to become the dominant marketing communications channel. A framework is required whereby an organisation can assess the potential of, develop a role for, create and manage a WWW site within its marketing strategy. The WWW is an interactive channel offering a potential for many‐to‐many communications to all players in a market. Existing frameworks either fail to recognise the implications of this or else they ignore it. This paper attempts to develop a framework which invites organisations to fundamentally rethink their marketing strategies through consideration of the opportunities presented by the WWW.
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Companies have got to learn to eat change for breakfast. Tom Peters…it behooves us to adapt oneself to the times if one wants to enjoy continued good fortune. Niccolo MachiavelliBusiness Marketing Management (BMM) over the Internet has been receiving a “lot of ink” in current periodicals and to a lesser degree in academic literature. Practice changes so rapidly that principles emerging from last month's successes may need revision before they are derived and printed. There is yet a general theory of business-to-business Internet integration. Nonetheless, there is a need to build such knowledge on “the fly,” and to attempt to see patterns even if they have a short life span. The present work takes a look at the state of business-to-business Internet marketing practices as the year 2000 came to a close for larger companies. Not surprisingly, and just like the hardware that make Internet distribution density so high, we find that the Internet is having an impact on: market size and structure, business buying and selling behavior, negotiation strategies and associated pricing practices. Moreover, distribution systems are experiencing a major realignment while logistics optimizing is even greater. The Web and e-mail are becoming more fully integrated into the business communication mix. The attempt here is to learn about the most rapidly emerging and changing communication technology of the past 100 years. Business-driven technology now appears to be driving business marketing tactics and results are augmented through multifaceted complex use of the Internet.
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