Is your digital strategy a separate conversation?
As a digital account manager, coming across marketing directors or brand representatives that are not clued up on the digital industry is a sad norm. Now reasonably speaking, I’m not expecting these individuals to know the depth of digital – like programmatic, DSP’s and the various technologies that are implemented in the execution of campaigns but it is important to understand the channels and capabilities of digital campaigns.
Let us take a step back and look into the background of marketing education in South Africa. Majority of institutions that offer a marketing qualification consists of modules that are traditional marketing oriented which is where in my opinion the system fails marketing students and graduates. Digital Marketing (known as Rich Media or New Media in textbooks) is a channel of traditional marketing but is still not a major module which should not be the case especially now that marketers need to be educated on how this medium can be utilized effectively to engage with their target audience.
Now we can consider excuses such as:
- There not being enough digital professionals in the education system
- Would be too expensive to change the syllabus as the industry changes on a regular basis
That’s a debate for another day.
My point: Digital Marketing needs to be considered a medium of Above The Line activities.
As we know, digital campaigns are more measurable as opposed to print and TV campaigns. Allow me to highlight that Print and TV is an industry I still very much respect and understand the magnitude of its effect in the market. However, digital on the other hand enables you access to data that gives marketers an understanding of their prospects behavior towards their brand. What old school marketers fail to understand is that consumers are always engaging with their devices – why not push more budget to the industry to build your audience?
Written by Lwando Nondzaba, Mark1 Sales Executive