I have an interesting topic for you guys, i.e., the History and Evolution of Digital Marketing. I guess most of you don’t know the emerging point of Digital Marketing. Even the students who are currently pursuing DM courses. Guys my personal suggestion for every Digital Marketing aspirant and professionals to know these facts would be an added advantage.
Let’s go back to the past 3 decades and understand what comes when. But before going into that, let’s know some important facts about the INTERNET.
Who Invented the Internet?
There are many scientists who have worked hard to bring this to an effective form namely Robert E. Kahn and Vint Cerf who have developed the Transmission Control Protocol and Internet Protocol, a communications model that set standards for how data could be transmitted between multiple networks.
The online world came to a more recognizable form when Tim Berners-Lee and his team launched the www i.e, your famous World Wide Web in the year 1991. Netscape, the first commonly available web browser with a graphical user interface was introduced in the year 1992.
In 1993, browser software was further innovated by Marc Andreessen with the release of Mosaic, the web browser that popularized the World Wide Web and the Internet.
The Emergence of the Internet:
The Internet was first invented for military purposes, and then it got expanded to the purpose of communication among scientists. The large usage of the internet in the everyday life of users has significantly affected marketing over the last three decades.
While the sales era observed the invention of the telephone, quickly followed by the emergence of television and the Marketing Department Era.
A Brief History of Digital Marketing:
The history of Digital Marketing goes back to the early 1980s. Currently, it is driving the world crazy, everyone prefers to be in the digital space these days. Market and technology are directly linked to each other.
In this decade Digital Marketing has gotten a lot of demand and every business you see will have its presence in social media channels so that they can understand the customers’ needs, preferences and also respond to their queries in real-time and they can also do a lot more things. If your business has zero percent digital presence then you are losing out on many leads and allowing your competitors to grab your customers very easily.
It’s very useful for every business to have its Digital presence to gain access to a huge number of potential customers worldwide. Unlike traditional marketing you don’t have to invest crores for the advertisements and promotions, an effective and optimized digital marketing campaign lets you reach and convert your audience and improve your business in a cost-effective way.
The 1980s was a time when digital marketing reached its mark. During this time innovations were taking place, computers started storing consumers’ or users’ information. IBM released the first-ever personal computer in the year 1981 and the storage capacity of computers increased to 100 MB within 1989. During this phase businesses were realizing the importance of nurturing relationships with customers rather than just promoting their products. Hence, businesses began to maintain customers’ and prospects’ records to retarget with their customized offers.
Evolution of Digital Marketing:
There are many companies and brands involved in this evolution of digital marketing. Right from the invention of first banner ads to the popular search engine and the social platforms.
We will see how this evolution of digital marketing really happened with the help of the below timeline.
The word Digital Marketing was first developed and utilized in the year 1990. But it was not popular though, as scientists were making tons of innovations and experiments to bring some revolution to take the marketing world to subsequent levels.
Then, in the year 1993, the primary clickable web ad banner was published, after which HotWired purchased a couple of banner ads for their advertising. This marked the beginning of the transition period to the digital marketing era.
In 1994, (The first e-commerce transaction was done over the internet) some new technologies were invented and entered the market with a new mission. Yahoo was also launched this year. Within one year of its launch, it received 1 million hits. Yahoo has changed the definition of digital marketing, and therefore the companies have tried to optimize their websites so that they will get a better ranking on the search engine result page.
In 1996, some more search engines and tools like HotBot, LookSmart, and Alexa were launched.
The first social media site Six Degrees was created within the year 1997. It enabled users to create a profile and make friends with other users online.
The year 1998 was a successful year for digital marketing as Google was introduced this year. Moreover, this year Microsoft launched MSN, and Yahoo launched Yahoo web search.
Two years later in 2000, all the smaller search engines were closed down. This enabled more space and opportunities for the giants in the business.
Then, the professional social media network LinkedIn was launched in 2002. LinkedIn is the top and biggest professional network on the internet. You can use LinkedIn to find the right job or internship, connect and strengthen professional relationships, and learn the skills you need to succeed in your career.
The year 2003 WordPress was released as a great platform for a content management system and also the launch of MySpace. It was the most visited social networking site in the world, in fact, the most popular social networking site at that time.
In 2004, Gmail was launched. Gmail was an assignment started by Google developer Paul Buchheit. He started his work in the year 2001. Today Gmail is the most popular and comfortable emailing service provided by GOOGLE.
The same year Facebook went live, yet another social networking site which was formed by Harvard College students and roommates alongside the founder Mark Zuckerberg, initially Facebook membership was limited only to Harvard students.
Later it got stretched to other universities within the Boston area of the United States. And it became a popular social networking site across the world. Facebook claims that it has 2.50 billion monthly active users as of December 2019.
Google went public. Basically, Google’s preliminary public offering happened five years after, on August 19, 2004. At that point, Eric Schmidt, Sergey Brin, and Larry Page agreed to work jointly at Google for 20 years, until the year 2024.
YouTube was launched in the year 2005. Here users can search for and watch videos. Create a personal YouTube channel. Upload videos to your channel. Like, Comment, share other YouTube videos. Users can subscribe to other YouTube channels.
The year 2006 was another remarkable year because search engine traffic was reported to have grown to about 6.4 billion during a single month. This year Microsoft launched MS live search and simultaneously, Twitter also launched a microblogging and social networking service on which users can post and interact with messages referred to as “tweets.
In 2007, Tumblr was launched. It is essentially one of the micro-blogging services and social media sites that allow users to compose a short blog post. Moreover, web streaming service Hulu was also founded this year.
In the year 2009, Google launched a new feature Instant for real-time search engine results. Google introduced products like AdWords, which are 3 line ads that show up at the top or to the right of search engine results, and AdSense which is a cost-per-click advertising scheme. In time, Google started to target ads based on the interests of the customers and thus became a key player in the world of digital business.
In 2010, Whatsapp was launched by former employees of Yahoo!. An encrypted, instant messaging app for smartphones.
2012 is the year of social media. Myspace and Facebook are popular social media sites among people. The companies have realized that these sites will help them in spreading up their businesses over the internet and thus, they were desperately trying to promote their products and brands on various social media channels. They have also tried to leverage social media in their businesses.
2014 was the year of the Smartphone, the number of mobile and smartphone users had surpassed the number of PC users. Facebook messenger app along with tailored ads on LinkedIn. During this year, Facebook acquired Whatsapp.
In 2015, Snapchat, a multimedia messaging app used globally launched its Discover feature. Basically discover is a page on Snapchat it is nothing but a news feed. On it, you’ll find content in the story format from news publishers, also known as publishing partners, such as The Wall Street Journal, ESPN, and other content from influencers or brands. By March 2020, the daily active users on Snapchat were 229 million.
In the same year, several new technologies like analytics, wearable tech, and content marketing have also been invented. Facebook has also launched its “Instant articles” this year.
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