Take a moment to think about two things that you love. Maybe it’s chocolate and marshmallows – they’re both delicious in their own unique way. But when you combine them (think chocolate covered mallows) it’s instantly a million times better.

The same principle applies to search marketing and display marketing. They each have their own unique draw but when combined the results are second to none.

Before we talk about merging these concepts let’s take a moment to understand them individually.

Search Marketing

Search marketing is the process of increasing your online presence, traffic and visibility on internet search engines by using paid and unpaid marketing strategies.

The main purpose of this is to achieve a higher listing on the search engine results pages (SERP) of Google or Bing. Because the higher you rank on a SERP the more likely you are to attract traffic to your website.

Benefits of Search Marketing

  • It’s one of the most efficient and non-invasive ways to reach your target audience. This is because most online searches are carried out by people who are (for the most part) ready to purchase.
  • Setting up a search marketing campaign is quick and easy to do.
  • It’s measurable because it allows you to carry out in-depth campaign analysis based on completed purchases.
  • It raises brand awareness by generating traffic to your website which in turn leads to a higher search engine ranking.

Display Marketing

Display marketing is a method of online advertising that encompasses a variety of forms such as web banners, buttons and rich media. It is a visual based concept which relies on elements such as images, audio and video to relay a message.

In order to use display marketing you have to work with a display ad network to reach customers. Once this network is aware of your target demographic they present your ads to users who fit your specifications and visit websites that have opted into their display network.

Benefits of Display Marketing

  • Because digital marketing campaigns consist of images and video content they can be designed and styled to be visually appealing to your target audience.
  • Digital marketing increases your visibility because it gives you the ability to appear on websites that are high in traffic even if those sites aren’t related to your brand (think of targeted ads that appear on your social media platforms like Facebook and Instagram).
  • With digital marketing you can create specific parameters for your display ads such as which websites they appear on and what particular demographic or niche market they target.
  • The visual aspect of display marketing also assists your business by helping to create brand awareness. If your display ad shows up on social media, it will grab the attention of even the most casual customer.

Combining Search and Display Marketing

Any digital marketer will tell you that the most successful marketing strategies are the ones that use multiple forms of media. Brands that incorporate this marketing strategy when implementing their digital advertising campaigns will get the best results for their efforts.

Here’s an example…

When Jane is searching for a particular book, she might see and even click on your text advert but may not make a decision to purchase right away. So how do you reach her when she isn’t actively searching for that book? The answer is simple – with display marketing.

The research speaks for itself…

A Harvard Business School study recently stated that because clicks lead to purchases, search marketing usually gets all the credit for sales because it’s easier to track the precise behavior of a customer from the initial impression to the click, to the purchase.

What is often lost is the awareness that’s been created by running a display marketing campaign which helped the consumer to remember your brand in the first place. Research into display marketing indicates that a large number of consumers conduct a search for a particular brand or product after seeing their display advert.

Back to the junk food analogy…

In the same way marshmallows compliment chocolate, search marketing compliments display marketing. You can be successful using just one but when search and display marketing are used together, they are able to help you achieve even better results by targeting potential customers from many angles instead of just one. This makes it easier for a customer to remember your brand when they’re ready to make a purchase decision.

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