Both, actually. Digital marcom is the natural transition from physical to digital and then again to physical.
Marketing communications (or marcom) professionals are experts in communicating a company’s strategy, vision and values, converting them into messages that bring exposure and lead to sales. Traditional marcom uses predominantly offline tools to increase awareness, promote a product or service, and generate leads. It engages in the physical world with public relations, tradeshows, exhibitions, advertising, sponsorship, personal sales, direct marketing and promotions.
Digital B2B marketing uses all the online tools technology puts at our disposal to achieve the same goals. SEO, PPC, viral content, marketing automation, social media, have become extremely common and excellent platforms for marketing and advertising campaigns.
The advantage of digital marketing is that it touches thousands in a few seconds, reaching the exact audiences each campaign wants to target. Traditional marcom may reach thousands through a street sign, but this does not mean it reaches the right audiences. On the other hand, marcom activities may engage only several hundreds in a conference that takes months to prepare, but brings actual people together so that they can talk, exchange ideas, and shake hands when a deal is sealed.
Digital Marcom Saves the Day
Today, companies must manage their marketing efforts intelligently and in a coordinated and collaboratively manner. The physical and digital presence should communicate with each other to achieve optimum results.
In B2B, being digital is a precondition for remaining afloat. Digital media channels, social campaigns, pay per click and so on are essential to convey a company’s strategy in the online world. But at the end of the day, a deal is sealed between people, between a buyer and a seller. This is where digital marcom comes into focus. It begins in the digital world, and slowly moves to the physical through semivirtual events like webinars or tutorials, to become fully physical in round tables or meetups.
Where Does this Leave Traditional Marcom Professionals?
Very well placed to lead this transition, actually.
- Marcom professionals are already very familiar with the key component – communication. They know how to tell a company’s story, how to convey its benefits. They think creatively. With the vast amount of content being created nowadays, the true marcom professional knows best how to think outside the box and craft messages that have meaning.
- They are people persons. They are used to organizing and attending conferences, preparing campaigns, speaking to vendors and prospects. They have what it takes to drive to action in the physical world.
- They are technical. They move with technology, are familiar with the tools. Even if they personally don’t create landing pages, they can communicate the idea to the programmer and obtain what they want to get the best effect.
- Marcom professionals are comfortable working in teams. Since they are used to working with people, they collaborate, contribute ideas, and are not shy to ask for what they want. They are the perfect mediators between the physical and the digital worlds.
- They are analytical. In the past, they counted physical leads to make statistics and calculate whether an event was successful or not. Today they use analytical tools to understand the results of a campaign or exhibition and make changes if needed.
Digital Marcom Professionals
Digital marcom experts provide the best the offline and online worlds have to offer. They are the perfect bridge between the physical world of conferences, seminars, exhibitions, and the digital world of social media, LinkedIn, SEO and outlets. They know the marketing turf inside out, as well as the technologies and tools that are a must in the digital space. Only digital marcom professionals can superbly combine these traits to offer companies top-notch results.