The Future of Digital Marketing

I have been in the digital marketing industry for the past 10 years. In the past 5 years, the trend of digital marketing has seen a hockey stick growth. If you check Google Trends for the popularity of the term “digital marketing”, you can see how it has grown since 2004.

Anything that grows this fast, is not sustainable. Or that’s what we have come to believe with many things. 10 years back, we had courses on Java, Visual Basic, C++ and many such computer programming languages.

Anyone who wanted to have a career in computers learned the latest programming language that was around and sometimes it led to career opportunities. Where are those courses now? The hot things to learn now are subjects like AI, Machine Learning and Data Science.

One of the questions that most of my students ask me is that – will digital marketing also will go away just like the other courses that we have seen before?

Is digital marketing a fad that is only popular right now? Will learning digital marketing have a long shelf life? Is it worth to invest so much time, energy and money in learning digital marketing and building a career in this field?

These are important questions to answer because you are betting your future and building your expertise on one subject. Unless you have a clear answer now, you will not be motivated to build a career in this field.

Marketing is Here to Stay

Whenever I get a chance to speak on stage, or answer people’s questions on the learn digital marketing group on Facebook, I always recommend people to be more of marketers, than digital marketers.

Digital marketing is a great subject to learn, yes. But digital marketing works only because it is built on the foundation of marketing. If you are a marketer first and a digital marketer second, you will always succeed.

Digital marketing end of the day is not about the tools that you use to reach customers via digital marketing. Digital marketing works only when you understand the marketing fundamentals.

A lot of people learn how to use many digital marketing tools including paid ads, SEO, social media, email and marketing automation tools, but they fail to learn about the marketing fundamentals.

Even if you know pretty much everything there is to learn about digital marketing, and if you don’t have strong foundation in marketing, your digital marketing campaigns will not work and will not produce the desired results.

Marketing and sales have existed for 100s of years and without marketing, businesses cannot grow. I believe it is fair to assume that marketing and sales as a topic will never go out of fashion.

Learning marketing fundamentals always gives a great return on investment because marketing is based on human psychology and the human psyche has not changed for 1000s of years. What you learn about marketing today will still be valid 10 years or even 50 years later.

In the above Google Trends comparison between Marketing, Digital Marketing and Sales, you can see that marketing and sales have a consistent interest across years and digital marketing is hardly anywhere near marketing in terms of popularity.

The stability of the terms marketing and sales makes me believe that digital marketing is also here to stay for a long time because it is linked to marketing.

The Consumer Behaviour Has Changed

One of the reasons for the popularity of digital marketing over traditional marketing is the massive shift in consumer behaviour.

Traditional marketing included advertising on TV, Newspapers, Magazines and Radios. The amount of personalization and content that can be delivered via these channels is extremely limited. Because of the wide reach and lack of personalization, only big corporations had access to these channels to reach customers.

With smart phones, tablets, and personal laptops, each person now has a personal screen. Because of technology like social media, cookies and other ways to personalize experience for each user, digital marketing was born.

Digital marketing is nothing but marketing, through digital devices. The massive shift in consumer behaviour on how they consume content is what has seeded the growth of digital marketing. Digital marketing is simply a more powerful and advanced way to do marketing.

It is very clear that traditional advertising and marketing is dying and different components in digital marketing are seeing massive growth in popularity.

From the Google Trends data, we can see that components of digital marketing such as email marketing and content marketing is now more popular than traditional marketing mediums such as TV and Newspapers.

We can also see that digital marketing methods like content marketing have seen a massive growth surpassing other marketing channels since the last 15 years.

All the data as seen above makes me strongly believe that digital marketing is here to stay. It is a term used to define marketing that is more powerful than traditional marketing.

Eventually in the long term, digital marketing will just be marketing.

Before the digital age, marketing was just called marketing. No one called it “traditional marketing”. The term digital marketing came into usage to define the new way of marketing through digital devices.

Within another 10-20 years, as traditional marketing methods die a slow death, digital marketing will just be marketing.

Companies will have marketing and sales departments. They don’t need to call the marketing department a “digital marketing” department. Everyone in the marketing team will be mostly doing digital marketing.

As marketing and sales can never die, digital marketing will probably never die.

Build Your Career in Marketing

If you are concerned that digital marketing as a career choice might fade away in the future, focus on building a marketing career.

Use digital marketing to enhance the way you do marketing. Digital is just the new way of doing marketing.

Some of the books that helped me build a foundation in marketing concepts are:

There are a lot more marketing books you should read, but that’s a topic for another day. If you haven’t read the above books, start building your marketing career by reading these books. You will then naturally gravitate towards more marketing books.

Once you become a great marketing and salesman, you will understand how digital helps you put your marketing campaigns on steroids.

I hope this article helped you understand the future of digital marketing and marketing. And how you should align your career in such a way that you become future proof.

Have any comments? Leave the below.

52 thoughts on “The Future of Digital Marketing”

  1. Dear Deepak,
    As you rightly said, marketing means, ‘Traditional marketing’ and ‘Digital marketing’ is one of the types of marketing. This digital marketing will have a definite life until the digital world exist. As you rightly said, we a Digital marketer has to develop our marketing first as ‘Marketer’ and then as a digital marketer.

    Reply
  2. Thanks lot to sharing this information. These questions were wondering back of my mind. I had search lots of content to find the answer of these questions. It really help me to build my career. Thanks once again to posting this article.

    Reply
    • Dear Deepak Ji, thanks a lot about your favorite explanation between marketing and Digital marketing, I understand. And I am very eagerly to learn the digital marketing. At the same time I completed only Ten’th std. and I am a pure Tamil with a few poor knowledge. How I am going to learn the digital marketing course?. So I am quite myself. But My mind always said to me, you can.,. You can.. You win,
      from When I saw your content about the digital marketing. Thank you once again DPK ji.

      Reply
  3. Sir thanks for the valuable information About the marketing field and know I understand the digital marketing future…Sir thanks once again for this post.

    Reply
  4. Thanks for this Article Sir,
    Future is there for Digital Marketing, I think in the next generation all we do their Jobs from Home.

    Sir, Could you tell me the future of SEO. What about Packages on SEO?

    Reply
  5. I am going to start a digital marketing training academy franchise in Chennai please let me know how it will have future, will it be successful , will it have growth

    Reply
  6. Thank u for explaining the good future of digital marketing. Well motivated to make career on this but with having knowledge of marketing. Could know the importance of marketing equally.

    Reply
  7. “It is very clear that traditional advertising and marketing is dying and different components in digital marketing are seeing massive growth in popularity.”
    One can not but agree with Deepak.
    In the earlier era, marketing was learnt from traditional sources and family.
    But as more scientific studies were carried out, Marketing became a veritable field of science. Many business models, theories and books are there now.
    Deepak is giving the essence of all that studies in his blogs and courses. Good luck!

    Reply
  8. I know that traditional marketing won’t be there for too long. But I’m more concerned about the phase which you said: “People start calling digital marketing department as just marketing department”.

    Maybe then these colleges will also start selling marketing courses by including all the theoretical digital marketing concepts. We all know the fate of low tier colleges which produces a massive chunk of students with low-quality skillsets.

    I’m afraid then the industry will become very crowded just like how now see the case of IT jobs.

    There is definitely a great future for digital marketing. But it is not all crispy creamy like what all experts proclaim.

    I think digital has its own mountain of challenges. With more money minded people coming into education sector I really won’t be surprised to see governments approving low tier colleges for digital marketing courses just because it’s the big dog in the hut.

    And then companies which hire these less qualified individuals for digital marketing will ultimately end up burning clients budget. Thus clients become more and more fearful of digital marketing for the wrong reasons.

    I just had a call with one of my potential clients a few days back and he said: “No, No SEO won’t work some other guy did it for us, he failed, So we now looking to paid advertising”.

    Reply
    • As the marketing opportunity increases, more players is unavoidable. What you say might happen. MBA might be replaced by marketing and digital marketing courses. But at the same time, people like me will always sell low cost high quality courses and consumers have to make an informed decision about it.

      Reply
  9. Rightly said Deepak, one need to understand Marketing concepts first to taste success in Digital Marketing.
    Due to shift in lifestyle digital marketing is gaining preferences over traditional marketing methods and is going to stay long.

    Reply
  10. An effective piece of writing as marketing is the back bone of every business and innovation is necessary for any kind of growth. Digital marketing or visual marketing what ever the case is JO DIKHTA HAI WOH BIKTA HAI. SO digital marketing leads to wards the path of freedom according to 21st century skills.

    Reply
  11. Hi;
    I really appreciate your efforts and guide methods which you provide frequently in mail. I want to buy your digital marketing pack of 5999/- before that;
    I’ve few queries.
    1. What is your method of online teaching?
    2. After proving me the bundle of books; How will I learn and do the practical?
    3. Is any course duration and time?
    4. Is it support me to grow Toy business or any freelancing business?

    Reply
  12. Hi sir,
    Thank you so much for this information.
    Mine is a basically printing background and also in marketing.
    Please guide me from where can I do this course to get a good opportunity.
    Once again thank you.

    Reply
  13. Great information sir…

    The ultimate aim of doing digital marketing is to give results to the businessmen and learning marketing first is essential for doing digital marketing.

    Sir I want to know from you that is it necessary to do MBA for that??
    Or What I have to do to become my own virtual MBA??

    Pls recommend some other books on marketing?

    Reply
  14. A very confusing question that I’ve been looking for since long. Your blog has removed my confusion. One of the most informative article on “The Future of Digital Marketing”.
    Thank you sir.

    Reply
  15. Very good article with data points. future of digital marketing is going to be good, the only things I am able to see is, increase in freelancers. After few years, company wont hire digital marketers on salary, instead of it they prefer to hire on freelancing. It will cost less and no tension of management, administration. In other side top performing digital marketers are also getting affected. It’s going to be hard time for all beginners to get good salary package because of competition.

    Reply
  16. Simple and neat explanation on Digital marketing, which is useful to me as being a marketing person.
    Hope to receive your updations always.
    Congratulations.

    Reply
  17. Really it is a very helpful article for those who r in traditional marketing like me & I’m agree with you that Digital Marketing is growing day by day. You have shared important & scientific explanation.

    Thanks

    Reply
  18. This will always be true Marketing /Sales are heart of the business. Digital marketing is just a technological wrapper over Marketing. The basics of marketing has always stayed and developed but tech wrappers have always emerged… From emails to SMS to social posts and so on. At the end of the day Digital Marketing is Marketing…

    Reply
  19. Customers are always on the Internet. Digital Marketing offers a whole lot of convenience in terms of getting the message across to the target market. It has become a necessity for any business. Thanks for putting top notch content in article. It will encourage entrepreneurs to work more effectively on digital marketing and gain potential results from it. I would like to be here again to find another masterpiece article.

    Reply
  20. HI, Deepak!

    Yes, you are right everything has been changed so far, like in Tecknowledy, generations and the way of marketing from door marketing to tech marketing.

    Every single need has been done by one click the main advantage of digital marketing is a targeted audience.

    Targeting audience was made difference from offline marketing it can be reached in a cost-effective and measurable way.

    Other digital marketing advantages include increasing brand loyalty and driving online sales so as you said we can see the future in digital marketing.

    Most of the small scale business people is started recognizing the importance of online marketing.

    Thanks for sharing the useful information on Digital Marketing and keep posting.

    Reply
  21. thanks for sharing such useful article , As at Mavcomm, we have unscrambled the maze of acronyms like SEO, SMM, ORM, SEM, PPC to build your brand reputation in the fast-changing online space

    Reply
  22. Great Article
    Now everyone wants to be a digital marketer, so will there be a competition in digital marketing in the near future or and if 90 people are a digital marketer out of 100 so how are the effects of this in future,
    OR it’s gold for Brands in the future? will they totally rely on this

    Reply
  23. HI, your article is saying today’s world, I am a teacher of DM on IICE-http://www.iiceducation.in/ and I always refer my students to read blogs on the Internet about DM and I have been reading your articles since long, If you could provide us some extraordinary tips about DM that would be really appreciated.

    Reply

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