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Here’s why you are confused about Digital Marketing

Here’s why you are confused about Digital Marketing

If you read my first blog post about what is Digital Marketing, you discovered my definition, that is:

Digital Marketing is getting customers using only the computer and Internet.

Ok, you may say, this is too simple. But there are many different platforms, and in my company they often change direction because they follow the new trends in order to march in step with progress. Today I’m gonna share my opinion with you and tell you my story.


In the beginning…

Before I learned about the word and concept of Digital Marketing, I was thinking as an IT engineer. I was used to solve problems so I was thinking: “With this computer that can do millions and billions of operations per second, why are we limited to humans to make a sale? I need to take the phone, call the customer… A lot of those parts can be done using computers and Internet. Putting something online, you find me, I save a lot of time instead of calling a million human beings, and I find one person to buy my product.”  Nowadays this is called Digital Marketing.


Which is the role of marketing?

This is why for me it’s good to understand the actual challenge: Google, Facebook, or other platforms whatever you name it. But keep in mind, one day they’re going to be others. One day some of them are going to disappear. If you are clever enough you’re going to use new tools to help generate sales. Most of the time, not to close the sales for you, but to help generating sales.

You know what? In my opinion, the role of marketing in general (digital or not) is not to sell. There are sales people and they get their commission.

The role of marketing is to make the phone ring

Yes, in order to get “walking clients”. When a client walks in my shop, as a marketing person I did my job. When the phone rings and somebody inquired about the product or service I did my job. Now, to close a sale, there is a sales man.


Companies and the big cool topic of the moment

Ok, you may say, you can make my phone ring, but how can I do it? There are many platforms. How can we know which is the better for us? I am so confused.

Now I’m going to share my opinion. Maybe you are not going to like it. I know that, because I’ve been working five years for a big digital company, and they need long-term goals to convey some cool message, to convince companies to do massive investments in massive projects.

Every few years there is a big cool topic of the moment. Usually they last three to five years. A few years ago they used to be the grid computing, then the Business Intelligence, then the Cloud, then Big Data and Internet of Things. These are cool concepts, theoretical concepts that have a practical use. But not even 1% of the company can make sense with these things, and everyone gets into a dream that you don’t understand.

So when you think “We need it”, I come with my big corporate, I setup a project, it’s going to be two years of project and it’s going to cost you $300 million and you like it. You’re going to sign the contract and… boom! Next one! Every few years there is the big topic. Is this what you want? And is this really what you need? 😮


Digital Marketing, not just a fancy trend

Now, Digital Marketing is also a nice trend. Some of the things I’m doing now are exactly the same as what I used to do 13 years ago. And now I repackage with the fancy “Digital Marketing” name… and people love it! 13 years ago it didn’t have a fancy name, and people said “No, I don’t need it!” Even Facebook, now is called… Social Media and the reaction is “Yes, I need it, I like it, and I love it!”

Another good example is the Cloud. So many companies go for the Cloud service, etcetera. And nobody really understands what it is. Most of the normal human beings, those who sign the contract for several million dollars, they have no clue. So, there are always fancy trends like the Big Data now. Big Data is the reediting of Business Intelligence, and it’s existed for the last 10, 15 years. Now we put Big Data… Aaahhh! And people love it. I don’t believe too much in those things.


Forget the names, and focus your company’s goal!

Now you understand why you are so confused and why, in your company, Digital Marketing is so far from reality, and some people say it doesn’t work or (on the opposite) they believe in miracles!

Nobody cares about how we call things. In marketing we care when we get more clients, with or without Internet, App, or Mobile. If you get more clients through the Internet, as a Digital Marketing person you did your job. Independently if you have a Big Data, Cloud or not, or whatever.  Tomorrow they are going to call it something else. I don’t care how they call it. The bottom line is to get people coming to your business through any possible media and for any possible reason.

Remember. The purpose of marketing is to get customers to your business. And Digital Marketing allows you to get them just using your computer and Internet!

Prof.Christian Farioli About the author

CEO, Digital Marketing Lecturer & Best Selling Book Author. Digital marketing pioneer since 2003, Lecturer for the Digital Marketing Institute, Informa, PwC and EY. He has spoken at more than 130 international conferences, including GOOGLE, NASA & Davos, trained and advised more than 16000 executives in 4 continents, from Armani, Bayer, Jumeirah Burj Al Arab, Etisalat, Huawei, ADNOC, Ferrari, just to name a few. He has formerly worked with Oracle in Italy, Spain and Ireland. He owns several businesses and advise clients on Digital Marketing Strategy, Performance, Inbound Marketing, Web Analytics and AI Digital Transformation. After 12 Awards, including Oracle Innovation Award, a Microsoft AI competition, and launching Digital Campaigns for major Banks, Events, Media, Telco, Hospitality, Real Estate, Healthcare and Pharma, his Digital Agency in Dubai has been awarded Agency of the Future. His book become a best seller in just one month.