Remember Y2K?. The year was 1999 and Yahoo, AOL and Netscape were popular, thriving websites visited by thousands on what was called de .com boom era.
That was an exciting decade when teenagers went from buying compact discs at music stores to downloading the latest releases with Napster and listening to them with Winamp.
People started to differentiate the new, shiny digital world with the already lame analog one. Digital was cool while analog was becoming vintage.
“Digital” was coming to stay
This digital revolution affected every aspect of our daily lives, and it also impacted the way businesses started to market their products and services.
Suddenly people started to talk about things like search engine optimization, email marketing and new ways to reach potential customers and to retain existing ones.
All this new wave of knowledge that was demanded by the most innovative companies at first but would become a must by almost any organization 10 years later were unified under Digital Marketing. This was the perfect way to differentiate the traditional MAD MEN from the ’60s that were focused on Marketing 1.0 from this new generation of marketers.
We have evolved, digitally speaking
A lot has happened since we were worried about dam doors opening and bank systems going crazy as we entered a new century, a new millennium, the year 2000. We have seen large companies come and go like MySpace, but we also saw the birth of some epic ones like Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, YouTube and more.
Long gone are the days our lives were trapped in an analogical world. We have never had so much information at the grasp of our hands. In under one second, we have access to the entire knowledge of roughly 5000 years of recorded history of the humankind.
Should we still calling it “Digital”?
For almost half of the world’s population, being connected to the internet is a trivial fact that we hardly question. From smartphones to tablets, from connected washing machines to self-driving cars we are used to living in what could be the closest we’ve been to The Jetsons.
So can we think of an analogical world nowadays? I think we cannot. Yet we are still separating “traditional” Marketing from Digital Marketing. I have another question for you: Can a Chief Marketing Officer survive in the wild today without knowing anything about “Digital Marketing”? and equally important question: Can a “Digital Marketer” be effective without knowing marketing fundamentals?
I think the answer to both questions is a loud “HELL NO!”.
So if that’s the case I think we should go back to basics and stop calling it Digital Marketing as almost no business nowadays can afford to have a marketing strategy without using digital channels and, in my professional experience, no so-called digital marketer can survive everyday business challenges without knowing the basics of what was known as “traditional marketing”.
What are your thoughts about this? Do you still call it “Digital Marketing”?
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