DIGITAL MARKETING IN NIGERIA: STEP-BY-STEP GUIDE
Let me make a psychic guess; the fact that you are reading this mean that one of the following perfectly describe who you are;
- You want to grow your business, and you believe your answer would be found in digital marketing.
- You are an employee of a firm and you have been charged with the responsibility to generate more lead and customers. Being a smart dude, you Google your way to this wonderful article on digital marketing.
- You just wanted to expand your skill set and become a digital marketer.
- Or you got lost on the internet and suddenly you are here. Hmmm, that’s funny.
Digital marketing is one of the most popular phrases used by Digital marketing agencies and SEO expert (if that word even exists) to confuse business owners into thinking they are some sort of tech wizard. For you to understand the subject better, let me point out some of the things you know that are WRONG about digital marketing;
- You probably believe digital marketing is all about social media marketing
- You also believe digital marketing is all about Google AdWords (advertising on Google)
- Finally, you sum it up by wrongly believing that digital marketing is all about online marketing.
Take this from me, you have been misinformed by the so-called digital marketing experts that keep churning out terrible and half-baked information on the internet.
If you have found your way to my article by Google searching the keyword free digital marketing training in Nigeria, then you are lucky as the information contained here is absolutely free and if I impress you, do me a favor by sharing on social media.
But what really is digital marketing?
Contrary to what your experts want you to believe, digital marketing has been around for a very long time. It all started in 1971 when Ray Tomlinson sent the first email. Gradually, people started using technology for marketing and words like marketing automation and database marketing started flying around the tech world.
To fully grasp what digital marketing is, let us first take a look at the word marketing and advertising. According to smallbusiness.chron.com “Marketing refers to the process of preparing your product for the marketplace” while “Advertising is the process of making your product and service known to the marketplace”.
In clearer terms, marketing involves branding your products and services to adhere to your company goal and objectives. On the other hand, advertising is the steps you take to create awareness for your brand.
Using the combination of these terms, we can define digital marketing as the advertising of products or services using any digital medium. It is simply reaching out to potential customers or creating awareness for your product and services using any suitable digital technology.
But what are digital technologies?
Digital technologies are electronic devices that generate, store and process data. By virtue of the capability of the digital technology in use, we could classify digital marketing into online digital marketing and offline digital marketing.
What is online and offline digital marketing?
As the name implies, online marketing is the marketing that takes advantage of the internet to reach the audience. The audience is reached via web pages, emails, and social media.
Offline marketing doesn’t use the internet to reach an audience. Offline marketing mostly uses Television, Radio and Digital LED Board as a medium.
List of digital technologies that are commonly used for digital marketing are;
Offline Digital Marketing
- Radio – Used for radio advertising and jingles
- Television – Used for TV Commercials
- Mobile Phone – Used for bulk SMS marketing
- Digital LED Board – Used to display adverts by the roadside
Online Digital Marketing
- Computers – Used for Online Marketing
- Mobile Phones: Used for online marketing
Some of this digital marketing technologies are dead, the emergent of new ways to utilize mobile and computer for digital marketing has made them obsolete.
Let us look at digital LED board for example.
How many of you have seen this around, yeah pretty much everyone but do you care? While you answer that question, try to remember the things you actually do while on a bus. Transit period is one of the most boring time. The lucky ones are usually the new visitor. Being new to a place, you would be amazed by the environment and would almost stare at anything around. Think about it, the majority of people pass the same route daily, I can beat my chest that 95% of passengers will pass through the same route daily for an average of 365 days. While in a traffic jam or a moving car in a familiar environment, the boredom would be killing most people would resolve to use their mobile phone to pass time. If you use public transport often, the next time you are moving from office to home and vice versa, try to see what other passengers are doing.
That is a little statistics to show the trend in mobile phone usage.
Similarly, Television advertising is getting out of fashion. The reasons are not farfetched. If you are anything like me, I don’t really have time to watch TV programs when I could watch a review of my favorite programs on YouTube. Majority of people who could afford your products are working class, they leave the house in the morning and return in the evening. I expect that advertising companies would bid more for evening adverts as it is the only time Television adverts that are bound to have any decent views.
Radio commercials perform a little better as people listen to the radio while driving or moving.
In all ways, these age-old digital marketing medium cannot compete with the power of online marketing.
Now take a look at the billboard below;
It is a reality that some religion found this particular advert offensive. Aside from the angle of faith, any individual who is non-alcoholic would find this advert unnecessary as it will not change his mind. Imagining the thousands of people who will eyeball this advert only to ignore it. That is a wasted reach.
So far, we have looked into the weaknesses of offline digital marketing, but you should know that The reasons this advert would under-perform compared to online digital marketing are because it doesn’t have the key element of online digital marketing campaigns which are demographic targeting, interest-based targeting, performance data analysis, and re-marketing. Read further as I explain the key elements of online marketing.
What is online marketing and why is it the new cool kid in town?
Online digital marketing or put simply, online marketing is a type of digital marketing that leverage internet technologies to reach an audience. It involves sending out an advertising campaign to internet-enabled devices such as mobile phone and computers.
Types of online marketing
The following are the available online marketing methods;
- Search engine optimization (SEO)
- Search engine marketing (SEM)
- Pay-per-click advertising (PPC)
- Content marketing
- Social Media Marketing (SMM)
- Email marketing
Search engine Optimization (SEO)
According to Wikipedia “Search engine optimization (SEO) is the process of affecting the online visibility of a website or a web page in a web search engine’s unpaid results—often referred to as “natural”, “organic”, or “earned” results”. From a business and practical point of view, I would define Search engine optimization (SEO) as the use of search engine’s free and organic traffic to generate leads and sales for your product and services.
Search engine is a website that archived web pages and makes them available to people based on a search term and the relevance of the page to the search term. The major search engine are Google, Bing, and Yahoo. These search engines display a list of the relevant pages whenever a search query is entered in the search box. For example, visit Google.com.ng and search for HOW TO GET RID OF RATS, we have the following result;
The image shown above is a SEARCH ENGINE RESULT PAGES (SERPs). It is very certain the number one ranking website, www.homeremedyhacks.com, will continue to receive free traffic from Google. Search engines determine the relevance of a webpage to the search query through different algorithms such as the page article title, total number of words on the page (word count), number of times the search query was repeated in the article (keyword density), number of website linking to the page (backlinks) and many other factors known only to the search engine engineers. If you are serious about SEO digital marketing, your aim is to rank on the first page and, more important, to be among the first 3 websites on the first page. Study shows that first-page content receive about 95% of the traffic. The advantage of SEO as a form digital marketing cannot be overemphasized. Once you perfected the art of SEO and started ranking on page one, you will continue to receive free lead and sales as a result of free traffic from Google.
Search engine marketing (SEM)
Search engine marketing (SEM) is a paid form of SEO. SEM can be defined as the process of promoting your website to the first page of search engine result pages (SERPs) in order to increase visibility and click through rate (CTR). Generally, SEM is an aggressive form of SEO. Instead of working on your site architecture and the content that the search engine would consider worthy of first page, you would rather pay the search engine company to rank you above other websites. This method is also a very good form of internet marketing. If mastered very well, you would generate more sales from the traffic that would be more than enough to continue paying the search engine company. Let us look at Google first page for the search query HOW TO BOOK CHEAP FLIGHT ONLINE;
Notice that the first 4 website on the SERP has an “Ad” prefix, Google is simply telling you that these pages are promoted to the top because they are “Advertising”. The only website that was listed first as a result of good SEO technique was www.thriftynomads.com. Search engine marketing is a quick way to success if done right.
Pay-per-click advertising (PPC)
Pay per click advertising is very similar to Search engine marketing. Pay per click is the cost model used in search engine marketing. PPC is a model whereby the advertiser or Search engine marketer is billed for every click on the promoted webpage. In a bid to make this easily comprehensible, How SEM and PPC work is that the advertiser would submit a list of keywords to the search engine company and bid a certain amount, let us say $0.1 for instance. Whenever someone searches for a matching keyword, the webpage would be promoted by the search engine to the top as shown above in SEM paragraph, if eventually the person clicks on the link and visited the website, the advertiser would be charged $0.1 immediately. Therefore, in a practical term, Search engine marketing is a form of internet marketing while Pay per click is a billing model for internet marketing.
Oooh, my beloved content marketing. This is my favorite online marketing strategy as it is the only reason I have earned and still earning so much that I could afford to sit for over 10 hours and write articles like this at my spare time.
Let us try to find a befitting definition for content marketing. At first, paraphrasing Wikipedia, Content marketing can be defined as a form of marketing that is focused on creating, publishing, and distributing online materials for a set of defined online audience. This is just half of what content marketing means, I am not surprised because Wikipedia cannot afford to sound academic. There are some major words missing in that definition and they are interest, products, and services.
Putting the pieces together, we can now define content marketing as a form of internet marketing that is involved with the process of creating and distributing valuable and unique online materials such as blog posts, videos, podcasts, social media posts, infographics etc for a targeted audience in order to stimulate interest in our products and services.
It is similar to Search engine optimization marketing as the end results are free sources of patronage for our products and services. Let us look into how content marketing works. For instance, I have heard so much about SMART TV. Now I want to have an idea of the most affordable smart tv, of course, the cost is a factor that is always considered. I went to Google and search for AFFORDABLE SMART TV;
The first webpage wrote an article on THE 7 BEST TVs TO BUY in 2018. That does not look like what I am looking. I know there is a difference between regular TV and SMART TV. Looking at the second webpage, I can see it is about BEST SMART TVs 2018. That’s it. So I click on it;
The introductory sentence is really interesting. The website claim to have spent over 500 hours evaluating over 40 SMART TVs. That’s cool. I am already having the feeling these people have done a lot of work for me, and I will definitely not go wrong if I follow their recommendation. So I read further, and I discovered some SMART TVs that are affordable, they even did better as I got to know more information about each TV pro and cons. After deciding on the TV to buy, I click on the view on Amazon link and I was directed to a page where I can buy the product. The link is an affiliate link so the owner of the website will earn a profit for every purchase. That is a cool way to sell SMART TV. The publisher provided useful information, and I ended up buying the product. Let me give you a bonus example that you would love. As a Nigerian, buying a land in a place like Lagos can come with a lot of land dispute. To avoid the issues of scam which are very common in property deals in Nigeria, I decided to do a little Google search on HOW TO AVOID LAND SCAM IN LAGOS.
The number one ranking website has a good title that is in line with what I want. So I clicked on it;
It is very wonderful that the website has a very useful guide on how I can avoid scams. Also, I can see that the webpage belongs to a law firm whose purpose is helping people avoid property scams. That is wonderful. Now, instead of me following the guide, why not call the lawyer and involve him in the buying process so I can be able to sleep at night? Finally, the law firm has secured a new client through publishing of a helpful guide. I know you would love this second example as it depicts how you can go about content marketing in Nigeria. Once more, do know that the omonilelawyer.com will continue to get clients with that post as long as they continue to rank high on Google.
Social Media Marketing (SMM)
Let us now talk about Social Media Marketing (SMM). In this age, social media has become the new online club for both adult and youths. According to statistics, number of social media users by 2019 should be about 3.02 billion. WOW!! That is approximately 16 times the population of Nigeria.
People of different personality are known to hang around on social media. From the sports lovers to shopping enthusiasts, there is hardly any type of profile you would not find on social media. But how do you use this to promote your business? The best way is through Social media marketing. Social media marketing is simply the use of social media platforms and websites to promote your products and services. There are basically two ways to promote your business on social media namely;
Social media paid campaign and social media customer service. Advertising on social media is very rewarding, it creates brand awareness and gives your business a personality. Another huge advantage of social media marketing is the built-in data-analytics tools by the popular social media company such as Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. Different companies are now gearing towards social media customer service as a marketing strategy. Engaging your customers and potential customers is a good way to make people continue talking about your company. Personally, I peek at the social media page of some companies to do reputation assessment. To do perform social media marketing the right way, you must be able to read and interpret each social media campaign analytics tool. It is how you keep on optimizing your adverts for more reach and engagement.
Email marketing is the use of email to promote your services and products. As a digital marketing strategy, it comes with a lot of advantages. Regularly sending your customers and potential customers new email about interesting updates about your business is a way of reactivating your memory in their subconscious mind. It is a reminder and if you get lucky, they might be at the edge of making a decision to buy a product, so at that point, they will consider your product as an option. Advantages of email marketing are cost-effectiveness. If done properly, it can generate more traffic and sales for your product at minimal cost.
Journey So Far: We have looked into what digital marketing is and also the types of digital marketing strategy available in Nigeria and the world. We have also been able to argue that online/internet marketing is the best form of digital marketing, now let us talk about why online marketing is better than other digital marketing.
We have mentioned that in social media marketing, the majority of social media company provide data analytics tools that can be used to optimize your advert settings. This is applicable to search engine marketing too. While setting up the online marketing campaign, the various settings to ensure a perfectly targeted audience are;
Demographic settings, Interest-based settings, and remarketing.
This is a parameter used in segmenting audience into a smaller group in order to ensure that the marketing is targeted. The parameter value can be age, country, city, annual income, marital status, height, etc. This setting is very helpful and will result in getting your adverts in front of the eyeballs that are likely to engage with it. If you are adverting real estate properties, for instance, you may want to target ages in the bracket 18+. That will ensure you are not spending money reaching out to people that cannot afford your products.
Most internet marketing tools also have a setting for audience interests. This is another basic way of targeting the right people. If, for instance, I am running a marketing campaign for a travel agency on a flight promo, I will ensure that I targeted people that already have an interest in anything aviation or travel such as people that have liked emirates airline posts, Qatar post, and other travel-related companies. This is a smart way of reaching out to the right people.
This is a huge topic on its own and can be highly favorable to any digital marketer who knows how to go about it. Ever wondered that immediately after looking at a product on jumia or Konga you begin to notice that the product’s advert start following you around the internet like a monitoring spirit. Yeah, that is the power of remarketing. Remarketing is a clever strategy in which advertising campaigns are configured to target audience that has already visited the advertiser’s website. Remarketing as a digital marketing strategy is very popular with Facebook marketing and Google AdWords.
I will like to sum up my retargeting information by sharing this infographic;
Retargeting is the secret the big boys in digital marketing don’t want a newbie to know, it is the secret sauce for an effective digital marketing campaign. To have any chance of mastering the art of online digital marketing, you surely need to understand how to set up a remarketing campaign.
Digital Marketing in Nigeria
Nigerian-based small and large-scale businesses are now harnessing the power of digital marketing to grow their business. It is interesting to note that many companies now advertise on Google, Facebook, and other online platforms. Though it is only big brands that could actually afford some type of digital marketing but now that we have so many options to promote business digitally in Nigeria, there are no excuses for small business. The following digital marketing options in Nigeria would be an eye opener to whoever is interested in growing a business or planning to become a consultant digital marketer.
Private TV commercials:
TV commercials is a type of digital marketing used in Nigeria which involves the advertisement of goods and services, promotion of ideology and organizations through a Television station. Advantages of TV Commercials is the ability to show the product or explain the services with videos in a very comprehensible manner. Due to the large volume of details that could be passed with even a 1-minute explainer video, Television commercial is very suitable for some type of products and services that are quite difficult to comprehend.
Mobile TV commercial:
If you live in a big city like Lagos, you will probably comprehend this chapter with little effort. These are public TVs used for promotional purposes only. You can see them on cars and taxis, inside BRT buses, and also inside interstate buses like ABC TRANSPORT. You can also find them at various shopping malls across Nigeria, the most popular being ShopRite. These are cheap alternatives to private/home TV Commercials. I urge anyone looking to promote their business to consult these agencies for their quote.
Radio advertising is a form of digital marketing that involves promotion of products and services through a Radio Broadcasting station. It is a very old school digital marketing and provides a good return on investment. It is becoming less effective though, simply because of the lack of visual display of products, it is limited to certain products and services. Also, radio enthusiasts are reducing as people either browse the internet for news or download music online. The emergence of online radio streaming is another challenge to terrestrial radio. Terrestrial radio, simply as radio in Nigeria, is being blown away bit by bit, study back data claims that radio will die in 10 years. You may not give up on trying to make radio advertising work for you because 90% of car commuters listen to radio (another fact).
Digital LED board advertising:
Digital board advertising is now on the rise and you may need to check the options out for your business. They are usually placed at strategic points to ensure that maximum viewership. The higher the potential number of view, the higher the advertising rates.
Bulk SMS advertising:
Why is Bulk SMS marketing so under-utilized and under-praised as one of the best, if not the best offline digital marketing strategy? I think it is simply because the technology has been around for so long that people thought it is no more effective. Bulk SMS marketing is the only offline digital marketing with a targeted audience capability. It even competes with online digital marketing strategy by having the highest click-through-rates (CTR) at about 94% compared to online marketing at 1-4%. Think about, the last time you on Facebook, when was the last time you click on an advert? Now check your phone to see if there is any unread message in your SMS inbox? Same goes for email, except it is business email, people hardly open it. But SMS is always opened. More interesting verified facts about SMS can be learned here.
Now that you fully understood what digital marketing is, you can now start planning on the most suitable marketing strategy for your business. Feel free to comment below.
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