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The role of digital marketing and social media marketing – theory and examples

Module Number: BMP3006

Module Name: Practical Digital Marketing

Year/Trimester: 2020-21/Semester 1

Module Tutor/s: Bruno Cignacco/Malani Gunaratnam/Dr Sumesh Dadwal/Dr Mushfiqur Rahman

Assessment Number       1
Assessment Type (and weighting)Written portfolio – 60%  
Assessment NameThe role of digital marketing and social media marketing – theory and examples
Assessment Submission DateSaturday 05 December 2020 at 23:59

Learning Outcomes Assessed:

LO1:  Describe the importance of the marketing function and the marketing mix

LO2:  Explain elements of the communications mix

LO3:  Examine how digital marketing can be used in communication strategies

Assessment Brief:

You are required to submit a portfolio of no more than 2000 words that explains the effectiveness of digital marketing. 

Part 1 (no more than 1000 words) requires you to:

  • Explain what marketing is.
  • Explain what the marketing mix is and where the communications mix fits
  • Explain what digital marketing is.
  • Explain what social media marketing is.
  • Explain why digital marketing and social media marketing are all important to contemporary businesses.

(You need to use text books and journals as sources of reference to justify your answers and reference those sources using Harvard referencing style).

Part 2 (no more than 1000 words) requires you to:

  • Present two examples of social media contents that really works and justify why. 
  • You will provide screen shots of effective campaigns which you will insert into your word document.  Established models and standards for digital marketing should be referred to.
  • You should use text books to explain why you think the social media content is effective, referencing sources using Harvard referencing.
  • Refer to the template guide provided on Moodle.

Submission Arrangements

You must submit an electronic copy.

The electronic copy maybe marked (Grade marked) on line via Turn it in so the final version you upload must be the complete and final version.

Your portfolio should be submitted in Ariel Font 12 pt. double line spacing.

Your assignment will be checked for plagiarism. You can upload your assignment through Moodle. Remember that this is an individual assignment, do not copy anyone else’s work and ensure that your work is clearly referenced to avoid suspicion of plagiarism.

Late Work & Exceeding the Word Count

Late work and an excessive word count will be penalised as outlined in the student handbook.

Mitigating Circumstances.

If submission of your work is delayed because of mitigating circumstances, enter these in the appropriate envelope available from the Student Centre.

See module guide for more information.

Answered

The role of digital marketing and social media marketing – theory and examples

Introduction

This report aims to illuminate the influence of digital marketing and social media in today’s business environment. It is almost widely accepted that with the internet and digital technology advancement being experienced today, businesses that want to maintain their market share must also shift most of their market to digital and social media platforms. Though mainstream marketing channels are still important, the fact that the digital media as the most accessible and the fastest-growing, it is only sensible for businesses to utilise digital marketing. 

Part 1

Explanation of marketing

According to the UK’s Chartered Institute of Marketing (CIM), marketing is the part of business management that identifies, anticipates, and satisfies the needs and wants of customers profitably (Brassington and Pettitt, 2005). Unlike what laypersons may think, marketing is not synonymous to advertising and it is not the mere art of selling products and services. However, it is a management function including organised strategies and processes for developing, communicating, exchanging and delivering offerings that add value to customers, the business organisation and other stakeholders. In the same line, according to the American Management Association (AMA) marketing is not only about the goods and services but also exchange of ideas towards satisfaction of organisational and individual objectives (AMA, 2017). This shows that marketing is wide and one of the most critical functions in an organisation as it connects the organisation with the customers as well as with other equally important stakeholders. Furthermore, it implies that marketing is about establishing and strengthening profitable relationships between a business organisation and customers and other players. 

As pointed out by Brassington and Pettitt, (2005) nowadays, the relationship between the organisation and the partners is not only about meeting the products and services needs of the customers but also includes social and ethical concerns. In addition, as aforementioned, the relationship is mutual where each side plays its part to meet its objectives. However, it is the sellers who play a critical role of promising and keeping the promise to the customers, and when the customers find out that the promise has been met, they make purchases and relationship is developed (Brassington and Pettitt, 2005). Importantly, marketing is a continuous process and not a one-time event and, therefore, requires effective management. 

An explanation of what the marketing mix is and where the communications mix fits 

The marketing mix is a set of strategies and tactics that organisations apply to create a relationship with the customers or to establish and maintain a relationship between their offerings and customers (Armstrong, Kotler and Opresnik, 2016). Although today the marketing mix has been expanded to include more components, the conventional marketing mix has for elements simplified as 4Ps. The 4Ps are product, place, price, and promotion. All the four components of the marketing mix are equally important and they influence each other. Besides, the success of a business organisation is determined on how these four elements are handled (Brassington and Pettitt, 2005). However, though not important than other Ps, Promotion is the most visible since it involves communicating the aspects of the other Ps; this is where the communication mix comes in. 

Organisations need to develop strong and effective messages about their offerings in order to connect with customers. As described by Todorova, (2015), communication in marketing is where organisations attempt informing, persuading, and reminding customers- directly and indirectly- about their offerings. Besides, communication mix is the pathway of representing the voice an organisation and its offerings as it tries to develop a dialogue and establish a relationship with the customers and clients. 

An explanation of digital marketing 

Digital marketing entails all marketing processes that are executed through electronic devices or via the internet (Heinze, Fletcher, Rashid and Cruz, 2016). Digital devices include mobile phones, desktop computers, and tablets among other digital technologies. Digital marketing is a good thing for today’s market, however, the conventional “good marketing” fundamentals do not change. As quoted by Brassington and Pettitt, (2005), Porter stated that organisations that are likely to be successful and benefit from the internet are those focus their strategic goals and deal with integration, application and moulding the internet to help in achieving those goals. On the other hand, those that use the digital platforms simply because others are using or it is the trend, they are likely to fail. 

Although digital marketing is involves the use of the internet it is not synonymous to internet marketing. In fact, internet marketing is part of digital marketing where promotion is done merely on the internet. On the other hand, digital marketing can be through a smartphone app, in a video game, subway platform or on any mobile device (Heinze et al 2016). Some examples of digital marketing include content marketing, website advertising, SMS advertising, pay per click advertising, social media, and email marketing.

An explanation of social media marketing 

Social media marketing is a marketing activity that utilises social media platforms. Social media marketing is also described as the utilising of social media platforms to build a connection with the audience to build a brand, driving website traffic, and building a brand. Using social media involving creating strong content on the profile and sharing it with the audience, getting feedback from the audience, and analysing those feedbacks. Currently, the most common social media platforms that are used for marketing include Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, LinkedIn, Snapchat, Pinterest, and WeChat. 

An explanation of why Digital marketing and social media marketing are important to contemporary businesses

Digital technology and social media is the fastest-growing sector. It is estimated that more than half of the world population has access to a digital device and about 3billion use smartphones (Global Digital Insights, 2019). Besides more than half of the world population has access to the internet (Global Digital Insights, 2019). This is an implication that any contemporary business that wants to survive or even expand its market it has to incorporate digital marketing and social media marketing. 

Having looked at how widespread the use of digital devices and internet has become it is evident that digital marketing and social media marketing allows businesses to reach a large audience and thus great visibility. Apart from increased awareness, digital marketing and social media marketing is cost-effective (Heinze et al, 2016). Compared to mainstream marketing, digital and social media marketing does not require a huge budget. However, it is advisable to invest in the strategy and hire competent individuals to manage this type of marketing in order to get a great return on investment. 

Another aspect of why digital and social media marketing is essential for businesses today is that they allow engagement with the customers and consequently enhance customer satisfaction. Businesses get a two-way interaction with the customers and thus in a better position understand their wishes and needs (Heinze, Fletcher, Rashid and Cruz, 2016). 

Part2                                                                                                                             

Two examples of social media content that really work and justification of why they work

Live videos and user-generated content are two of the most effective social media content. User-generated content (UGC) increases customer engagement and a large reach (Bowen and Ozuem, 2016). In addition, UGC makes both existing and new audience to feel a warm welcome to a brand (Faisal, 2016). Moreover, the users see that a business is actively involving them by sharing their content they feel that the company care about them and are more likely to be loyal. 

Primark is one of the companies that have successfully used UGC in their social media marketing. Primark has developed a hashtag Primania in their Instagram platform. Customers showcase the products (mostly clothing and fashion), that they have purchased from Primark by posting their photos while wearing them online (Hendriksz, 2016). The posts are shared by Primark and other users who are known as “primaniacs”. The company adds emojis and hashtags to make the posts more attractive. In addition, Primark uses the “Primaniacs” posts on its LED displays on its stores. This strategy has enabled Primark to have millions of followers across the world. Interestingly, Primark did not have an online store but its online presence was strong through the “Primania” idea. In addition, despite its lack of online, it was ranked number 25 by Fashion United, thanks to its social media UGC (Hendriksz, 2016). 

The other great content that works is live videos. It is noted that live video is more catching than reading a blog post about a brand or a company (Bowen and Ozuem, 2016). It involves holding events or conferences live on social media platforms such as Twitter Live or Facebook Live. Live demonstration of how products or services or a live sneak peek of an upcoming event has also been shown to be a great concept (Bowen and Ozuem, 2016). 

Apple has been one of the most successful companies to use live videos, especially when launching its products. Millions of people across the world watch Apple’s live events such as when launching its latest iPhone and MacBook. Before the actual date of the live event, the audience is kept in suspense, sneak peeks and teaser posts of what might happen are given on Twitter, Instagram and other platforms, which are shared by the audience. During the live event, there is no “extremely” formal presentation but a simple a highly related presentation. The idea of live videos is to connect with the customers and make them feel like part of the brand’s community. In short, Apple live videos is evidence of how live video content can be a great digital and social media marketing pathway. 

Screen shot of effective campaign with reference to established model and standard for digital marketing

RACE framework is used in digital marketing for Burberry. The first step in this model is “Plan”, which involves the creation of the general strategy and setting the objectives. The other steps are – Reach, Act, Convert and ENGAGE (Smart Insights, 2020). In the “Reach” step, Burberry builds awareness of its products and brand on different websites including offline media. The aim is to develop traffic and to the company’s main site and social media sites. “Act” involves interacting with site visitors and persuading them to take the next action. The audience is engaged in relevant and compelling content to avoid high bouncing rate. The next step that Burberry takes is to Convert audience into buyers. The audience is made to take the action of purchasing the products either online or offline and eventually becoming active customers. 

The last step is to engage with the buyers and develop a long-term relationship with them. Customer loyalty is created when they make repeat purchases driven content communicated in the company’s site and social media presence. The effectiveness of this strategy is measured by the rate of sharing of social media content and repeat sales. Active customers are also assessed using the subscription statistics and the rate of recommendation

.

 Why social media content is effective? 

There are several reasons why social media content is effective in marketing. First, social media allows businesses to reach a wide audience across the world without spending a lot of money. In that line, the brand gets recognized beyond the confines of its physical location. In addition, social media content allows businesses to have an active interaction with the customers and thus can understand their needs in real-time. Furthermore, social media enables businesses to measure the effectiveness of their marketing by analysing the number of “followers’ who actually make purchases and the rate of sharing among the audiences (Bowen and Ozuem, 2016). 

Conclusion

It is agreeable that digital marketing and social media marketing are an essential part of marketing in today’s business environment. Business organisations that want to retain or expand the market must have a well-thought-out digital and social media marketing strategy. Among the many benefits of social media marketing, developing an active relationship with the customers is the most important because businesses can stay abreast with changing customer needs. 

References

AMA, 2017. What Is Marketing? — The Definition Of Marketing — AMA. [online]

American Marketing Association. Available at: <https://www.ama.org/the-definition-of-marketing-what-is-marketing/>

Armstrong, G., Kotler, P. and Opresnik, M., 2016. Marketing. Pearson Education UK.

Bowen, G. and Ozuem, W., 2016. Competitive Social Media Marketing Strategies.

Hershey, PA: Business Science Reference.

Brassington, F. and Pettitt, S., 2005. Essentials Of Marketing. Essex: Pearson

Education Limited.

Faisal, A., 2016. Marketing Strategies in Online/Digital Marketing. Account and

Financial Management Journal,.

Global Digital Insights, 2019. Digital 2019: Global Digital Overview — Datareportal –

Global Digital Insights. [online] DataReportal – Global Digital Insights. Available at: <https://datareportal.com/reports/digital-2019-global-digital-overview> [Accessed 16 November 2020].

Heinze, A., Fletcher, G., Rashid, T. and Cruz, A., 2016. Digital And Social Media

Marketing. 1st ed. Routledge.

Hendriksz, V., 2016. Can ‘Primania’ Satisfy Primark’S Lack Of E-Commerce?.

[online] Fashionunited.uk. Available at: <https://fashionunited.uk/news/fashion/can-primania-satisfy-primark-s-lack-of-e-commerce/2016020419285>

Smart Insights, 2020. Introducing RACE: A Practical Framework To Improve Your

Digital Marketing | Smart Insights. [online] Smart Insights. Available at: <https://www.smartinsights.com/digital-marketing-strategy/race-a-practical-framework-to-improve-your-digital-marketing/> [Accessed 16 November 2020].

Todorova, G., 2015. Marketing communication mix. Trakia Journal of Science,

13(Suppl.1), pp.368-374.


General Assessment Criteria for Written Assessments – Level HE3

  %RelevanceKnowledgeArgument/AnalysisStructurePresentationWritten EnglishResearch/Referencing
Class I
(Exceptional Quality)
 85-100%        Directly relevant to title.    Expertly addresses the main assumptions of the title and/or the requirements of the brief.Demonstrates an exceptional knowledge/understanding of theory and practice for FE3 level through the identification and summary of key themes.Makes exceptional use of appropriate arguments and/or theoretical models. Presents a comprehensive discussion of material resulting in clear, logical and original conclusions.Coherently articulated and logically structured. An appropriate format is used. The presentational style & layout is correct for the type of assignment. Effective inclusion of figures, tables, plates (FTP), where appropriate.A very well written answer with standard spelling and grammar. Style is clear, resourceful and academic.  A wide range of sources drawn upon. Sources are cited accurately in the text and in the reference list. 
Class I
(Excellent Quality)
 70-84%      Directly relevant to title.    Addresses the main assumptions of the title and/or the requirements of the brief.Demonstrates an excellent knowledge/understanding of theory and practice for FE3 level through the identification and summary of key themes.Makes excellent use of appropriate arguments and/or theoretical models. Presents a comprehensive summary of material resulting in clear, logical conclusions.Coherently articulated and logically structured. An appropriate format is used. The presentational style & layout is correct for the type of assignment. Effective inclusion of figures, tables, plates (FTP), where appropriate. A well written
answer with standard spelling and grammar. Style is clear, and academic.  
A wide range of sources drawn upon. Sources well cited in the text and in the reference list – with only minor errors.
Class II/i
(Very Good Quality)
 60-69%Generally addresses the title/brief and covers some key issues in sufficiently meaningful detail.Demonstrates a very good knowledge/understanding of theory and practice for FE3 level through the identification and summary of key themes.Uses appropriate arguments or theoretical models. Clear and valid summary of the material.  Presents clear, logical conclusions.Logically constructed in the main.  An appropriate format is used. The presentational style & layout is correct for the type of assignment. Inclusion of FTP, where appropriate.A clearly written answer with standard spelling and grammar. Style is clear, and academic.A range of sources drawn upon. Most sources cited accurately in the text and in the reference list. 
Class II/ii
(Good Quality)
 50-59%Generally, addresses the title/brief but sometimes considers irrelevant issues.Demonstrates a good knowledge/understanding of theory and practice for FE3 level through the identification and summary of some key issues.Presents largely coherent arguments. Valid summary of the material although focus lacking in places. Presents conclusions which are fairly clear and logical.For the most part coherently articulated and logically structured.   An acceptable format is used.The presentational style & layout is largely correct for the type of assignment. Inclusion of FTP lacks selectivity.Competently written with minor lapses in spelling and grammar. Style is readable, and generally academic.Relevant sources drawn upon. Some weaknesses in referencing technique.
Class III
(Satisfactory Quality)
 40-49%Some degree of irrelevance to the title/brief.    Superficial consideration of the issues.Demonstrates an adequate knowledge/understanding of theory and practice for FE3 level. An attempt is made to identify and summaries key themes.Presents basic arguments, but focus and consistency lacking in places. Some issues may lack clarity. Presents conclusions which are not always clear or logical.Some attempt at articulation and logical structure but gaps in coherence and progression. An acceptable format is used.The presentational style & layout is largely correct for the type of assignment. Inappropriate use of FTP or not used where clearly needed to aid understanding.Generally, competently written although intermittent lapses in grammar and spelling pose obstacles for the reader. Style limits communication and is non-academic in places.Some academic sources but overreliance on non-academic sources.    A number of errors in referencing technique.
Borderline Fail

 35-39%  Significant degree of irrelevance to the title/brief. Only the most obvious issues are addressed at a superficial level and in unclear terms. Demonstrates weaknesses in knowledge of theory and practice for FE3 level, with poor understanding of key themes.Limited arguments, which lack clarity in places.   Presents conclusions which are neither clear nor logical.Poorly structured. Lack of articulation. Format deficient.For the type of assignment, the presentational style &/or layout is lacking. FTP ignored in text or not used where clearly needed.Deficiencies in spelling and grammar makes reading difficult. Simplistic or repetitious style impairs clarity. Style is not academic.Limited sources and poor referencing. 
Fail <34%  Relevance to the title/brief is intermittent or missing. The topic is reduced to its vaguest terms. Demonstrates a lack of basic knowledge of either theory or practice for FE3 level, with little evidence of understanding.Severely limited arguments. Lacks clarity. Conclusions presented are sparse.Unstructured. Lack of articulation. Format deficientFor the type of assignment, the presentational style &/or layout is lacking. FTP as above.Poorly written with numerous deficiencies in grammar, spelling and expression. Style is not academic.An absence of sources and poor referencing technique.

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