10 Types of Digital Marketing: When and How to Use Them?

Here are ten types of digital marketing, an understanding of when to use digital marketing and how to use digital marketing based on the business's goal.

types of digital marketing

In an ever-evolving digital space, businesses and brands must adapt and embrace various online marketing strategies to stay relevant and ahead of competitors. These strategies must be applied appropriately to achieve desired results. Here are ten types of digital marketing, an understanding of when to use digital marketing and how to use digital marketing based on the business’s goal. 


Digital marketing is a powerful medium for marketing and promoting products online. It is a multifaceted and dynamic marketing field, offering a plethora of tools and techniques to reach and engage audiences effectively.

Digital marketing also provides brands with the freedom to experiment and dissect the best ways that work for them. That’s probably why nearly 60% of small businesses today use digital marketing, and the global digital marketing and advertising market is predicted to hit $1.5 trillion by 2030.   

The key, however, remains in knowing when to use digital marketing and how to use it appropriately and effectively. It is a comprehensive guide helping you figure out various types of digital marketing, offering insights into how and when to implement each type for maximum effectiveness. 

What is Digital Marketing?

Digital marketing widely refers to the practice of promoting brands, products or services through digital channels, tools and technologies. This field encompasses a variety of marketing techniques and strategies deployed across digital platforms and mediums.

It includes digital marketing strategies like SEO, content marketing, affiliate marketing, social media marketing, influencer marketing, and email marketing. 

Here is a digital marketing expert’s take on what is digital marketing: 

Key Advantages of Digital Marketing

There are several benefits of digital marketing. Here are some of them:

Global Reach: Using digital marketing strategies and technologies effectively, you can take your business to a global audience. It breaks the geographical barriers and lets you market your products or services worldwide. Moreover, in comparison of digital marketing vs traditional marketing, digital marketing certainly has the edge in reaching global audiences

Targeted Audience Segment: One of the most significant benefits of digital marketing is its ability to target specific audience segments based on their geography, gender, browsing behaviour, interest and more. It makes targeting more precise compared to other traditional marketing methods. 

Cost-Effective Marketing: When you look at traditional marketing methods like TV, print and broadcasting, digital marketing methods are much more cost-effective. Some strategies like social media and content marketing can also be done free of cost. It empowers even small business owners to promote their products online. 

Personalization: Digital marketing allows you to create personalized marketing campaigns. You can tailor the marketing message for a particular group or individuals based on their previous interactions, preferences or interests. It increases the engagement and conversion ratio. 

Measurable Results: Digital marketing offers tools to track, measure, and analyze your marketing campaign. Tools like Google Analytics, social media analytics, and others can be helpful when measuring real-time results. You can make modifications to better the campaign accordingly.    

Reviews and Feedback: When you market your product or service online, you can collect real-time customer and audience feedback. Review how people like or dislike your brand and improvise suggestions accordingly. You can interact with audiences to gain feedback, helping you build brand loyalty. 

Viability and Organic Reach: To increase your brand’s visibility and organic reach, you can use techniques like search engine optimization or PPC to ensure your brand appears prominently in your audience’s search engine results. 

Flexible and Adaptable: This is a significant benefit of digital marketing. You can modify your marketing strategies and campaigns based on their performance, trends, and business goals. It has that kind of flexibility, which is not available with traditional marketing methods.

Career In Digital Marketing 

If you are looking to kickstart your career in digital marketing or want to upskill your marketing talent, here are some of the best digital marketing courses from Digital Scholar you can consider enrolling for:

10 Types of Digital Marketing: When and How to Use Them? 

Types of Digital Marketing When To Use Digital MarketingHow To Use Digital Marketing
Search Engine Optimization Long-term growth, Establishing authority, Organic traffic Keyword research,On-page/off-page optimization,Quality content 
Pay-Per-Click Advertising Instant Results,Targeted Campaigns,Specific promotion/marketing Engaging content,Selecting the appropriate platform,Creating compelling ad copy,Adjusting campaign 
Content MarketingBuilding brand authority, Customer trust,Enhancing SEOBlogs and videos,Website content, Infographics 
Social Media MarketingBrand awareness,Community engagement, Targeting specific demographicsEngaging content, Community interaction,Social media ads,Feedback and reviews 
Email MarketingDirect sales promotions,Sending updates,Customer retention,Improving salesEmail list segmentation, Email automation,Personalized content, Performance analysis
Affiliate MarketingExtend market reach,Leverage affiliate networks, Create brand awareness Partner with relevant affiliates,Provide tools and incentives,Create visually appealing content
Influencer Marketing Reach new audiences, Build customer trust,Leverage social networks Collaborate with relevant influencers,Create authentic content,Follow up and measure results 
Mobile MarketingReach mobile audience, Time-sensitive offers,Boost conversionOptimize website for mobile,Create mobile-friendly campaigns,SMS marketing
Video MarketingIncrease engagement,Explaining services better,Catching audience attention  Storytelling,Product demonstration,Engaging content,Educational/unboxing videos
Digital PROnline reputation management,Brand awareness,Crisis management and communicationOnline press releases,Influencer collaboration,Social listeningImplement feedback

Types of Digital Marketing: How and When To Use Them 

There are many types of digital marketing techniques, and each one has its own purpose. Here are the top 10 digital marketing techniques that you can use, and also know how and when to use each one of them.  

1. Search Engine Optimization (SEO)

seo types of digital marketing
SEO – Types of Digital Marketing

Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is often regarded as the backbone of digital marketing. The process of SEO helps to optimize online content to rank higher in search engine results for specific keywords.

The optimization is crucial because over 68% of online experience starts with a search engine query. Getting a high ranking in SERP drives more visibility, leading to organic traffic to your website.

Its importance is underscored by its appearance in top search results, tremendously enhancing user engagement chances and website retention rates. SEO stands at top among the types of digital marketing.

Best Ways to Use SEO

Keyword Research: Identify the most relevant and searched keywords your target audience uses when looking for products, services or information related to your industry. Google Keyword Planner and SEMrush are excellent for discovering these keywords. 

Quality Content: Create valuable, information-rich, engaging content that resonates with your target audiences. Naturally, incorporate the identified keywords into your content. Remember, search engines favour high-quality content, which can improve your site’s ranking. 

On-Page and Off-Page Optimization: Optimizing each web page to rank higher in search engines includes on-page and off-page techniques. It includes meta tags, URL structure, heading tags, backlinks, social signals, image/video optimization and more. 

Best Time to Use SEO

Long-Term Growth: You must view SEO like a marathon and not a sprint. It is about gradually building your online presence with consistent effort. Hence, SEO is a long-term strategy, ideal for establishing a lasting online presence and driving organic traffic. 

Establishing Authority: SEO is invaluable when you aim to become a thought leader or authoritative source in your industry. Be consistent in your SEO efforts, and you can establish credibility and trust with your audiences.  

Organic Traffic Boost: Use SEO to increase organic website traffic, considering that only 0.63% of Google searches click on second-page results. SEO techniques can significantly improve your chances of landing on the first page, which is essential in today’s digital landscape. 

2. Pay-Per-Click Advertising (PPC)

ppc types of digital marketing
PPC – Types of Digital Marketing

Pay-per-click (PPC) Advertising is a dynamic and highly effective part of search engine marketing. PPC is a must have type of digital marketing for every business.

In this model, the advertisers pay a fee each time someone clicks their ads, making it a cost-effective strategy.

With a projected global spend of $190.5 billion by 2024, PPC is a crucial strategy for immediate results, such as increased website traffic, leads and sales.

Another interesting data is that global digital advertising and marketing will reach $786.2 billion by 2026, with clicks and display ads amongst the most dominant forms.

Brands can fine-tune their PPC campaigns to target specific audiences, helping them reach the right audience at the right time.

You can place these ads on search engines, social media platforms, videos, marketplaces and more. 

Best Ways to Use PPC

Selecting the Appropriate Platform: Choose platforms that best align with your target audience. For instance, Google Ads are an excellent way to capture intent-based searches, while social media platforms are ideal for targeted demographic and interest-based advertising. 

Creating Engaging Ad Copy: Craft compelling advertisements that resonate with your audience. It includes clear, concise messages, engaging visuals, and a strong call to action. The copy should be tailored to address the needs and interests of your audience. 

Campaign Adjustments: Regularly review and adjust campaigns for optimal performance. It measures clicks, impressions, CTR, conversion rates, and other relevant metrics. Google Ad Editor, Google Ad Performance Grader and Aref can come in handy for ensuring your campaign remains efficient. 

Best Time to Use PPC

Instant Results: When you have objectives like product launches, announcements, offers and more, where quick visibility is needed, PPC is extremely useful. Proper application of PPC can drive instant traffic and engagement, unlike organic methods that take longer to yield results. 

Targeted Campaigns: Pay-per-click allows for highly targeted advertising that is ideal for reaching and engaging with particular demographics, interests, and behaviours. When the ad campaigns are precise, it is more likely that targeted audiences will be interested in your product and service. 

Specific Promotions/Marketing: PPC can be a go-to strategy for short-term goals such as sales promotion or launch events. That’s because this strategy effectively drives targeted traffic during a specific period, maximizing the impact of your product promotions. 

3. Content Marketing

content marketing types of digital marketing
Content Marketing – Types of Digital Marketing

Another important type of digital marketing is content marketing. Creating valuable and engaging content is an excellent way to grab the audience’s attention.

Content marketing is a strategy where brands and businesses create and share valuable or entertaining content to engage the audience. This strategy focuses on enhancing brand presence and fostering customer loyalty.

By sharing insightful content, brands establish themselves as industry leaders and build trust amongst their followers.

Hence, 73% of B2B and 70% of B2C marketers use content marketing, making it a cornerstone of modern marketing strategy.

Effective content marketing understands audience needs and preferences and delivers content that educates, informs, or entertains, nurturing a long-term relationship with them.

Best Ways to Use Content Marketing

Diverse Content Forms: Leverage various types of content like blogs, videos, and podcasts to educate and engage your audience. Each form caters to different preferences of your target audience, enhancing engagement and retention.

Visually Appealing Infographics: Brands can use Infographics when they want to share complex information in an easily understandable and visually appealing format. This can be particularly effective for data-driven content.

Value-Driven Website Content: Your website should be a valuable and relevant content repository. This not only attracts visitors but also supports your SEO efforts. Add keywords when developing content that aligns with what your audience is searching for.

Best Time to Use Content Marketing

Building Brand Authority: Content marketing is vital to establishing your brand as a thought leader. Regular, insightful content can set you apart as an authority in your field.

Customer Trust and Loyalty: Providing informative, valuable, and engaging content helps build trust with your audience, turning one-time visitors into loyal customers.

Enhancing SEO: Pair content marketing with SEO strategies to amplify your online visibility. Search engines favour consistent, quality content and can significantly improve your site’s ranking.

4. Social Media Marketing

social media marketing types of digital marketing
Social Media Marketing – Types of Digital marketing

With over 4.95 billion social media users worldwide as of Oct 2023, social media marketing has become a crucial way to reach a broad audience.

Hence social media marketing is one of most important type of digital marketing. It is a proven strategy for brands and individuals to engage with a vast audience.

It involves creating content that engages and attracts an audience, creates brand awareness and fosters a community around the brand.

This form of marketing has immense global reach because it allows direct interaction with customers, gets feedback and reviews and allows target advertising, making it powerful for brand building and deepening customer relationships in the digital space.

Best Ways to Use Social Media Marketing  

Engaging Content Development: Create content that is relatable and encourages audience interaction. Diverse content forms, including images, videos, and stories, can cater to different audience preferences.

Community Interaction and Building: Actively engage with your audience to foster a sense of community. It includes responding to comments, hosting live sessions, and participating in relevant conversations.

Leveraging Social Media Ads: Utilize paid ads for targeted reach and use social platforms to gather customer feedback. Tools like social media management software (SMMS) can help schedule posts, track metrics, and analyze audience engagement across platforms.

Best Time to Use Social Media Marketing

Expanding Brand Awareness: Ideal for increasing your brand’s visibility and reach to a broader audience. Through engaging content, brands can attract a wider audience, making the brand more recognizable.  

Community Engagement: Using social media marketing strategies is excellent for building or engaging a community around your brand. It helps foster brand loyalty, customer retention, and word-of-mouth marketing. 

Targeted Demographic Reach: Perfect strategy when wanting to reach specific audience segments based on interests, behaviours, and demographics. Social media marketing is helpful for targeted campaigns or promotions.

5. Email Marketing

email marketing types of digital marketing
Email Marketing – Types of Digital Marketing

Email marketing is one of the best types of digital marketing. On average, email marketing engages over 4 billion users daily, making it a direct and effective form of digital marketing.

It involves sending emails to a targeted group of people to promote a product or service or convey a message.

Email marketing focuses on building relationships with existing and potential customers and retaining them. It’s renowned for converting prospects into customers and transforming one-time buyers into loyal, repeat customers.

Best Ways to Use Email Marketing  

Email List Segmentation: Utilize segmentation to tailor messages to different audience groups, enhancing the relevance and effectiveness of your campaigns. Segmentation can be done based on demography, interest, abandoned cart, purchase history, etc. 

Email Automation: Employ automation tools such as Sender and HubSpot for sending timely and consistent email sequences. It streamlines communication and maintains engagement with your audience.

Personalized Content: Customize your emails to cater to individual preferences and interests. This personal touch can significantly enhance engagement and conversion rates. Tools like MailChimp offer advanced analytics, A/B testing, and attractive templates, making your email campaigns more effective.

Best Time to Use Email Marketing

Direct Sales Promotions: Email marketing is handy when you want to promote special offers or make an announcement directly to your audience. The impact is much higher when your customer receives tailored messages about deals and discounts directly in their inbox.  

Regular Updates: It can keep your audience informed about the latest news, products, or services. It helps in maintaining engagement and brand recall.

Customer Retention and Sales Improvement: Essential for nurturing relationships with existing customers and encouraging repeat purchases. Personalized emails promote repeat business, fostering customer loyalty and also drive sales. 

6. Affiliate Marketing

affiliate marketing types of digital marketing
Affiliate Marketing – Types of Digital Marketing

Affiliate or performance-based marketing is a strategy where individuals can earn commission by promoting a brand’s products or services.

Individuals promoting are called affiliates. They advertise through websites, blogs, social media, and more, earning a commission for every lead generated.

Some reports suggest the value of the affiliate marketing industry could touch $40 billion by 2030. Also, over 80% of brands currently use this strategy to promote their products and services.    

Best Ways to Use Affiliate Marketing

Partnering with Relevant Affiliates: Collaborate with affiliates who align with your brand values and audience, ensuring a more authentic and effective promotion.

Providing Resources and Incentives: Equip affiliates with necessary tools and incentives for effective product promotion. Platforms like CJ and Voluum can be utilized for managing and optimizing affiliate campaigns.

Ensuring Visually Appealing Content: Affiliates should use engaging content that goes well with your brand’s image and message, enhancing the effectiveness of the marketing efforts.

Best Time to Use Affiliate Marketing

Extending Market Reach: As a brand, if you are looking to expand your presence in new markets, affiliate marketing can be excellent. By partnering with affiliates with a presence in your interest market, you can effectively reach new audiences and establish credibility. 

Leveraging Affiliate Networks: Utilize established affiliate networks to tap into new customer bases. It helps broaden their audience circle significantly, which may not be possible through traditional marketing methods. 

Creating Brand Awareness: Effective for increasing brand recognition across various markets and demographics. Affiliates typically have dedicated followers, and their endorsement can improve a brand’s visibility, credibility and sales across multiple markets and demographics. 

7. Influencer Marketing

influencer marketing types of digital marketing
Influencer Marketing – Types of Digital Marketing

Influencer marketing is one of the widely used types of digital marketing strategy. Businesses and brands collaborate with influencers with a significant social media following to carry out influencer marketing.

These influencers promote the brand’s products and services to their followers, leveraging their credibility and reach.

It’s a great form of marketing to get targeted demographics, build brand awareness, and drive sales through influencers engaging with their followers.

Influencer marketing is a $21.1 billion industry, with 72% of marketers using this strategy. Also, 72% of Gen Z and Millennials are influenced by influencers they follow, making it an effective strategy for expanding market presence and enhancing brand credibility.

Best Ways to Use Influencer Marketing

Collaborating with Relevant Influencers: Choose influencers whose audience and style align with your brand to ensure authenticity and effective reach.

Creating Authentic Content: Work closely with influencers to produce genuine content that resonates with their audience and aligns with your brand message.

Monitoring and Adapting Campaigns: Use tools like AspireIQ, Upfluence, Grin, and CreatorIQ to track campaign performance, manage influencer relationships, and optimize strategies based on AI-powered insights and analytics.

Best Time to Use Influencer Marketing

Reaching New Audiences: Influencer marketing is excellent for connecting with audiences in new demography and market segments, as influencers often have diverse followers. 

Building Customer Trust: You can use this strategy to build trust and establish credibility through influencers, who are trusted figures amongst their followers.  

Exploiting Social Media Networks: When you want to utilize the extensive reach of social media platforms to engage a wider audience and enhance brand presence, try influencer marketing.

8. Mobile Marketing

mobile marketing types of digital marketing
Mobile Marketing – Types of Digital Marketing

Mobile marketing is one of the most widely used types of digital marketing strategy. It targets audiences on their mobile devices.

Brands can use a range of mobile marketing techniques such as SMS, MMS, app advertisements, mobile-optimized content and emails to engage their audeinces.

Sending personalized and time/location-sensitive information to consumers is one of the best tactics brands can use to leverage mobile marketing. 

Best Ways to Use Mobile Marketing

Optimize Website for Mobile: Make sure your website is responsive so your consumer has a seamless experience on their mobile. This includes fast loading times, easy navigation and mobile-friendly design. 

Create mobile-friendly campaigns: When creating ad campaigns, ensure they are optimized for mobile and are easily consumable on smaller screens.  

SMS marketing: Leverage SMS, MMS, and In-App advertisement for direct communication with your audience. This can be done through sending promotional messages, alerts, offers and more. 

Best Time to Use Mobile Marketing

Reaching a Mobile Audience: With 6.92 billion people using smartphones worldwide, it is an excellent idea to connect with users on their mobile to promote your brand. 

Time-sensitive Offers: Mobile marketing is ideal for sending out time-sensitive offers and alerts, as they reach users instantly. 

Boosting Conversion: Mobile marketing is also perfect for driving immediate actions from audiences, leading to higher conversion rates. 

9. Video Marketing

video marketing types of digital marketing
Video Marketing – Types of Digital Marketing

Video marketing is an excellent digital marketing strategy where brands can use video content to promote their offerings.

It includes creating different types of video content like product demos, explainers, testimonials, live streams and more. This strategy engages audiences and conveys messages in a visually appealing manner.

It also enhances online presence, boosts engagement and drives sales, displaying consumers’ growing preferences for video content.

Video marketing has become one of the most effective forms of digital marketing, with notable data showing that 86% of businesses use it to achieve their marketing goals. 

Best Ways to Use Video Marketing

Storytelling Through Video: Use videos to narrate your brand’s story engagingly and entertainingly, connecting emotionally with your audience.

Product Demonstrations: Showcase your products in action, helping customers understand their value and application.

Educational and Unboxing Videos: Create content that educates your audience about your products or services, adding value and enhancing understanding. Tools like Filmora and Wondershare can aid in creating high-quality, engaging video content.

Best Time to Use Video Marketing

Boosting Audience Engagement: Ideal for campaigns to increase interaction and engagement with your target audience.

Clarifying Complex Products or Services: When your offerings require detailed explanation, video content can be highly effective.

Capturing attention in a Crowded Market: Stand out with visually engaging video content in a market saturated with textual and static imagery.

10. Digital PR

digital pr types of digital marketing
Digital PR – Types of Digital Marketing

Though digital PR is not a direct form of digital marketing, it helps manage and improve the reputation of brands.

It is a strategic approach businesses use to improve their online presence and engage with the media and consumers.

It involves networking with online media and utilizing press releases to gain high-quality backlinks and social media mentions.

The $97 billion worth of the global PR market underscores its importance in today’s digital landscape.

Best Ways to Use Digital PR

Online Press Releases: Share your brand’s news and updates to a broader audience, enhancing visibility and reach.

Influencer Collaborations: Partner with influencers and bloggers to amplify your brand’s message and reach a broader audience.

Social Listening: Monitor and engage in online conversations about your brand, using insights to adapt and improve your strategies.

Best Time to Use Digital PR

Managing Online Reputation: This is crucial when brands want to build or repair their online reputation.

Enhancing Brand Awareness: Effective for increasing visibility and awareness of your brand.

Crisis Management and Communication: Vital for managing communications effectively during brand crises and maintaining public trust and confidence.

To Wrap Up

Navigating the digital marketing landscape requires a deep understanding of various strategies and the right timing for their implementation.

Whether it’s SEO for long-term growth, PPC for immediate results, content marketing for building trust, or the dynamic world of social media marketing, each strategy holds unique benefits.

Email marketing remains a cornerstone for direct communication, while affiliate and influencer marketing tap into established networks and credibility. Mobile and video marketing caters to the growing demand for accessible and engaging content.

Each brand looking to go online or want to take their business to the next level must devise a constructive digital marketing plan. It should be a mix of digital marketing techniques that works best for the brand. Hiring a digital marketing agency is an excellent way to get started online. 

What type of digital marketing strategies do you use to promote and advertise your brand? We would love to know which methods worked best for you and why. Leave a comment and let us know. 

Types of Digital Marketing FAQs

How do SEO and PPC work together in a digital marketing strategy?

SEO and PPC complement each other by targeting long-term organic growth and immediate visibility. While SEO builds a solid foundation for organic traffic, PPC can be used to target specific keywords and demographics for quick results.

What makes content marketing effective for brand authority?

Content marketing establishes brand authority by providing valuable, informative content, demonstrating expertise, and building trust with the audience. This approach positions a brand as a thought leader in its industry.

How has the rise of social media impacted marketing strategies?

Social media has revolutionized marketing by offering direct and immediate audience engagement, enabling brands to build communities, gather feedback, and target specific demographics with tailored content and ads.

What are the key differences between affiliate marketing and influencer marketing?

Affiliate marketing focuses on partnerships where affiliates earn commissions for sales or leads. In contrast, influencer marketing leverages the social influence of individuals to reach a wider audience through content and endorsements.

Why is mobile marketing increasingly important?

With the growing dependence on mobile devices, mobile marketing is essential to reach audiences where they spend most of their time. It allows for more personalized, immediate, and location-specific marketing efforts.


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