Advertising in a tech-driven world

October 6, 2017


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In an age ruled by technology, advertising has quickly followed suit. Though billboards and posters still litter the streets, more businesses are looking to online advertising to reach an online generation. Of the hundreds of marketing techniques out there, these are some of the top contenders in a digital era.

Social Media

The average person will spend five years of their life on social media, according to a study by MediaKix. The popularity of social media makes this a highly effective form of marketing. This covers a wide range of marketing strategies, from YouTube pre-roll ads to competitions and promos on Facebook and Twitter.

Viral Marketing

Viral marketing has some overlap with social media, in that viral marketing campaigns are often shared and spread through social media. Nandos South Africa runs quite possibly some of the most successful viral marketing campaigns out there. Often mocking political figures, many of the ads are banned from television soon after their release, by which point they have already gone viral. In many cases, the ban makes them more popular.


Search Engine Optimization is an increasingly popular form of digital marketing. Very different from traditional paid advertising, SEO focuses on generating traffic for your web page, increasing the “natural” results in a search engine. Typically, this is done by inserting a link to your web page into already popular blog sites and articles to generate click-through traffic. Essentially, the more traffic your website has, the higher it will appear in search engine results.

Content Marketing

Getting people to your site isn’t always enough. Having a high-quality, well-designed website will keep people there. A good site with good content will catch, and hopefully hold people’s interest. Many companies rely on interesting, informative blogs posted on a regular basis to keep customers coming back to their website.

Other types of content marketing are email newsletters, mobile apps, social media content and online newspapers and magazines. The benefit of content marketing is that it engages an audience who might otherwise ignore side-bar advertising or pop-up ads.

Database Marketing

Many retailers offer loyalty programs, in themselves a form of marketing, store credit and other offers which usually entail giving your contact details to said retailer. These details are added to a customer database which is then used for database marketing, emailing advertisements and promotions to customers.

Product Placement

This usually involves paying a celebrity to promote your product. Originally, and still, a TV phenomenon, product placement now encompasses YouTube celebrities. This may be more effective as, rather than appearing as a traditional TV advert, YouTube celebrities can market directly to their audience as part of their usual content.

In some instances, they are paid to incorporate a product into their content, without blatantly advertising – simply portraying the product as something they themselves buy and use. Enticing dedicated fans wishing to emulate their idols to buy the product.

Of hundreds of marketing techniques, the effectiveness of each will vary relative to the target audience, but there are some universal principles.


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