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What’s the Difference Between Digital Marketing and Social Media? Four Things You Should Know

What’s the Difference Between Digital Marketing and Social Media? Four Things You Should Know

When it comes to promoting your business, both digital marketing and social media are great avenues to explore. In a world that’s become engulfed in technology, you need to go digital.

Long gone are the days when newspaper ads and radio spots could effectively reel your customers in. Nowadays, it takes going online. Digital marketing and social media can be your solution.

When it comes to today’s marketing strategies, digital marketing and social media are often used interchangeably, but they are not the same thing. While these two practices are similar in many regards, there are also some key distinctions.

These distinctions are helpful to know in creating an effective strategy to connect with your network. Here, we share four things you should know about managing your digital marketing and social media strategies.

1. Social Media Is a Type of Digital Marketing

The key distinction to note is that social media is a type of digital marketing. Like a carpenter has many tools in his tool belt, digital marketing has many tools to reach customers.

As Master Consulting Services, a marketing consultant in Portland OR, notes, social media is a part of your overall digital marketing strategy. All digital marketing isn’t social media and not all social media is digital marketing.

Digital marketing can deliver immediate content. It can also be very targeted based on demographics of the intended audience. Depending on the type of digital marketing used, including social media, there can be a high cost of maintaining digital marketing.

2. Digital Marketing Has Several Channels

Social media is just one of the many outlets that is involved with digital marketing. Alex Chris from reliablesoft.net describes digital marketing as “building awareness and promoting a brand or product online using all available digital channels.”

These components includes both Internet marketing and non-Internet marketing. An article by Jason Mayoral notes that Internet marketing includes tools such as search engine marketing and email marketing. This category would also include social media.

Non-Internet digital marketing includes methods such as television, radio and SMS text messaging. With such variance in platforms, digital marketing is much more than just social media usage.

Digital marketing also includes content marketing, which can be used in combination with social media.

Content marketing, such as creating and sharing e-books, blog articles or white papers, can be shared via social media outlets. This is just one of many of the ways that social media is an important element in your overall digital marketing strategy.

3. Social Media Is a Beneficial Tool

Whether with Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Pinterest, Instagram or another social network, the focus is on connecting with people. Chances are, your target market has some level of presence on a social network. Using social media is an important part in your digital marketing strategy.

Social media allows you to create an authentic and memorable connection with those you want to connect with, each in its own specific way:

  • With Facebook, you can generate interest with captivating posts and client testimonials.
  • With Twitter, you can engage your audience by asking questions,  polling and running contests for those who interact with your post.
  • With LinkedIn, you can become an industry thought leader by sharing valuable content for your audience.
  • With Pinterest, you can share ideas, designs, recipes, crafts and so much more to add value to the user’s experience.
  • With Instagram, you can generate powerful emotions and meaning with photos and captions. These posts can encourage people to stop their scrolling and pay attention to your organization.

With so many available platforms in social media, you can find a method that serves your strategy well.

4. Not All Digital Marketing Is Social

Although social media is a category of digital marketing, not all digital marketing needs to be considered “social.”

An article from Third Degree Advertising notes that there are different kinds of non-social digital marketing. They describe these three categories as pull, permission and push marketing. These levels vary depending on where your target market is in the marketing funnel. In fact, with these three categories, your target audience may even not desire to be your audience.

Compare that foundation with social media. The point of social media is to generate a mutual connection between your organization and your target audience. Social media is just one small part of an overall effective digital marketing strategy.

Use Social Media in Your Digital Marketing Strategy

To survive and thrive in today’s interconnected and Internet-based culture, social media is an essential part of your strategy.

By understanding the difference between digital marketing and social media, you can embrace the benefits of each. By embracing the variety in each, you can create a strategy to promote your organization. Discover which social media outlets best fit with your brand and start connecting with your audience.