The evolution of the digital space has significantly impacted operations, communication, and competitiveness of marketing in the global market. Most businesses have increased their online presence ten fold over the last 10 years which has made it even harder on digital marketers to increase their visibility and continue their growth. As a crucial business function, marketing needs to adapt to these new realities and challenges in order for businesses to stand out from the rest of the competition and see strong returns from their marketing efforts. 

Major Challenges Facing Digital Marketing

As the landscape for digital advertising continues to evolve new sets of challenges begin to arise. Where you used to be able to plug and play with any digital strategy, you now have to work smarter to stand out from competitors, stay ahead of changing algorithms, and find ways to be compliant with policy while still gathering enough user data to support your marketing strategies. 

Increased Competition

Now that roughly 62% of people are on social media and 66% have internet access world-wide, every business is scrambling to grow their online presence and reach all of these users. With so many large companies spending their resources on online presence, it leaves many smaller businesses lost in the shuffle. This can be especially hard for small businesses to compete with these large corporations. 

Changing Algorithms

When doing search engine or social media advertising you are ultimately at the mercy of the algorithm. The algorithms of search engines and social media platforms are constantly changing, which affects digital marketing campaigns significantly. Marketers need to adjust their strategies to reflect these changes or otherwise they’ll get little to no visibility on their ads.

Privacy Concerns

Digital advertising relies on a large amount of user data to inform how to run a campaign and who to target with your strategy. Now that users are becoming more aware of how their data is being collected, used, and stored there have been new policies passed that are aimed at protecting user data. Additionally, roughly 30% of users have enabled ad blockers. This causes your ads to be seen less and makes it harder to capture more user data to better inform your marketing decisions

Opportunities for Growth In Digital Marketing

While there are roadblocks that come with the extreme amount of change in the digital sphere, there also comes a lot of opportunity. Because the digital world is evolving so rapidly, tools and softwares that help assist digital marketers are also evolving rapidly to make it easier. Digital marketing has also become more widely available to anyone who wishes to try their hand at it. It’s become more cost effective and allows for even the smallest businesses to promote themselves and still see results from their marketing strategies. 

Efficiency and Innovation

While the landscape of marketing has changed and become more difficult, it has opened the door for many innovative programs and tools. A large number of digital marketing tools are available that make it easier to get started and refine your marketing strategy. With the rise of artificial intelligence you are now able to write copy easier and generate effective imagery for your advertising and content. There’s also tools like Google Ads Editor that makes campaign management easier and less time consuming. 

Perpetual Displays

Similar to a billboard, digital advertising is always available to be viewed. With programs like Google Ads, Bing Ads, Facebook advertising, etc. you can keep your ad showing nonstop. Couple that with the enhanced targeting offered by these platforms, you can be sure that you’re reaching the right audience. This is especially true for Google and Bing ads. As long as people are searching for your product, you’ll likely show your ad to them if your strategy and targeting is strong enough. 

Cost Effectiveness

Digital Marketing has come to be one of the most affordable ways to market yourself. Whereas TV, print, and radio are all very expensive, digital marketing can be as cheap as $0. If you have a strong social media presence you likely won’t have to pay a dime to reach millions of users. Similarly with Google Ads, you can tailor your ads to your budget. Google offers multiple different campaign strategies, some costing mere pennies on the dollar for a click on your ad. The same goes for SEO, aside from paying for websites and programs, content creation is low cost and can go a long way in improving your organic (free) visibility on search engines. 

The Takeaway

The digital age presents many challenges and opportunities for marketers around the world. In order to succeed in the digital age, digital agencies and marketers must adapt to new opportunities, technologies, and policy changes in order to be successful in their strategies. The best way to do this is to stay up to date with what’s new from each digital platform you operate in. They’re always changing and new opportunities and roadblocks can arise at any moment.