Internet user experience expert Joe Arcuri helps cut through the confusion when it comes to...
The Integrated Advantage
Growing just as impressively is marketer support of online advertising. See Exhibit 2 on the next page.
The Value of Personal Connections
“My last post about our dentist resulted in another dentist following my Twitter updates,” said blogger Craig Barnes on boostyourmarketingroi.com in January 2009. He was impressed to find a healthcare provider on Twitter and impressed by the dentist’s use of digital marketing tools. “[His] site uses video which is a great tool for SEO; has two ‘opt-in’ offers that result in list-building of qualified prospects; features video testimonials from patients; targets mid-life dentistry issues,” Barnes explained.7
As this example richly illustrates, the community-building aspects of digital technology have democratized the tools of the communicator’s trade. Consumers spend more time on social networks now than they do with e-mail (and they’ve been spending more time watching online video rather than e-mailing since November 2007.)8 And in April 2009, Facebook broke the 200 million-user mark.9
Some categories of business, such as automotive, entertainment and packaged goods, have moved more quickly than others to embrace these techniques. Pharmaceutical and other healthcare marketers, for example, are only now employing digital communications to any significant degree because they have been fearful of running afoul of lawmakers.
As Advertising Age noted in May 2009, this migration “is nothing short of a revolution … Johnson & Johnson keeps a respected and popular blog; Novartis, Boehringer Ingelheim and AstraZeneca all use Twitter to deliver news about their respective companies; and most recently, Sanofi-Aventis and AstraZeneca each launched branded YouTube channels to reach certain patient groups.”10
For customer relations, public relations and sales-building, Web 2.0 tools like social media and blogs deliver the key advantages of digital communications: interactivity and direct engagement. The trick is how the tools are used.