Our Internet Marketing Channels Mix
You might wonder, “what is a “marketing channel”?
A channel is defined as: a course or pathway through which information is transmitted. If you think of a specialized channel on a television set, it has certain related programming on it, like the SyFi Channel contains mostly science fiction type movies and series.
The same principle applies with various channels for Internet connectivity (“online”) and non-computer related connectivity (“offline”) where you do or perform certain marketing activities.
From my article “Integrating Online Marketing Channels“, it outlines what the various channels are we use …
- PR (Offline and online)
- Paid advertising (Offline and online)
- Internet link or keyword advertising (pay per click, pay per view, pay per performance, etc.)
- Website and Email promotions
- Offline media (radio, TV, direct mail, etc.)
- Mobile applications (“apps” used on “SmartPhones”, like merchant “Places”)
- Social media (blogs, forums, social networks, etc.)
- Media or content hubs (A “hub” is a center of activity or interest for articles, photos, video, audio uploads)
- Affiliate programs (rewarding affiliates for each visitor or customer brought about by the affiliate’s own marketing efforts)
Notice that I didn’t list “SEO” (Search Engine Optimization) or “SEM” (Search Engine Marketing). That is because these are not classified as a maketing “channel”, but rather a tool (and methodology) for Website promotion, which is listed above as a channel.
SEO is really just a means to get your website to rank higher than other websites in search results by optimizing your website (the process of improving ranking in search engine results).
When you’re “website ready” to utilize the Internet channels (meaning your site is optimized for search engines), you’re ready to play the Internet Marketing game to move your way further up the rankings to make more sales and/or get more leads!
SEM, on the other hand, encompasses many of the online channels, and is basically any kind of marketing that helps gain “link popularity” among the search engines. Among SEM strategies includes directory listings, which is a channel although not one to use for a particular marketing campaigns.