History of Digital Marketing

Throughout the centuries there are key events that have shaped our definition of marketing and this unique form of communication between company and consumer.

Although not a new concept, marketing has evolved significantly since the start of the digital age. With the internet boom and the creation of different online mediums, digital marketing has either accompanies or has entirely replaced traditional, offline marketing.

Take a read through our interactive MintTwist Digital Timeline and discover more about these pivotal moments.

Google rolls out “Medic” update    

In early August of this year, Google released an algorithm upgrade which affected the majority of websites in terms of their keyword rankings. The main reason for these changes occurred as there was an underlying question asked by the search engine – will t he viewer benefit from seeing this piece of content?

As it turns out, intent and relevancy for user’s search queries are crucial for Google to determine the quality of the web-page. A huge focus on webmasters to ensure their content is helpful, rather than simply keyword stuffing to try and boost rankings.

NY Times and the Guardian reveal that the firm Cambridge Analytica harvested 50 million Facebook profiles and used that data to help Donald Trump’s election team    

The data analytics firm that worked with Donald Trump’s election team and the winning Brexit campaign harvested millions of Facebook profiles of US voters, in one of the tech giant’s biggest ever data breaches, and used them to build a powerful software program to predict and influence choices at the ballot box. The New York Times is reporting that copies of the data harvested for Cambridge Analytica could still be found online.

Augmented Reality: A New Way to Shop    

Major AR apps started hitting the scene back in 2017, and ever since they’ve become popular with e-commerce giants looking to get behind the technology. Companies like Amazon and Ikea have developed AR apps that are changing the way customers buy their furniture. The technology allows shoppers to view a graphically generated piece of furniture in their room via their phone screens. This ideally gives a customer insight into what their possible buy will look like, a feature that could ultimately reduce the overall number of returns for a company.

Amazon reaches a $1 trillion market cap    

Thanks to hefty investor enthusiasm, Amazon’s stock price has risen enough to make the company briefly worth $1 trillion. The company’s stock briefly hit a $1 trillion market cap Tuesday the 4th of September before falling off and leaving Apple as the only publicly traded U.S. company above the benchmark. Amazon crossed the mark five weeks after Apple reached $1 trillion in early August after posting a strong quarterly report.

Email marketing turned 40 this year    

Earlier this year marked the 40th anniversary of the first mass marketing email. Conceptualised on 3 May 1978, marketing emails initially were essentially spam. Email marketing is now the most effective digital marketing channel for businesses across all industries. In fact, the channel was responsible for 20 percent of the average business’s revenue in 2017, according to a Relevancy Group study conducted with OneSpot. Meanwhile, more than a third of consumers have opened separate email accounts solely for brand communications.

Instagram launches IGTV    

Sharing longer videos is something a lot of people have been wanting. Taking a page out of YouTube’s playbook, Instagram has created the new feature Instagram TV, an app that connects with your Instagram profile and lets you post vertical longer videos.

The idea seems interesting in theory, but it has yet to be as positively received as the app’s other Stories or Highlights features. Hopefully Instagram can find a redesign that works more seamlessly for users.

Apple introduces the iPhone 8, iPhone 8 plus, and the new iPhone X with Face ID    

Apple introduced Face ID with the iPhone X, a new way to secure the phone. The iPhone X uses Face ID, technology that unlocks the phone by using infrared and visible light scans to uniquely identify your face. It works in a variety of conditions and is extremely secure. For now, the hardware requirements for Face ID are only found in the upcoming iPhone X. All other new iPhone models and all existing ones will retain Touch ID. Users can still use Touch ID if they don’t prefer the Face ID option.

Quantum computing shows signs of becoming a practical technology    

Google’s New Chip Is a Stepping Stone to Quantum Computing Supremacy. The search giant plans to reach a milestone in computing history before the year is out. Leader of the Google research group John Martinis is working on building astonishingly powerful computer chips that manipulate data using the quirks of quantum physics. Martinis anticipated that his team will build a device that achieves “quantum supremacy,” meaning it can perform a calculation that’s beyond the reach of any conventional computer.

Cyber Monday sales exceed $6.5B    

Adobe cited that more than $5B in sales were recorded on Black Friday and $6.5B on Cyber Monday. Retailers were cautiously optimistic too, reporting record-breaking online traffic, and the market rewarded them with increases in stock price on the heels of that good news. Shifts in shopper behavior were clear, as nearly half of all Cyber Monday transactions took place on mobile.

Instagram shoppable posts are introduced    

Instagram launches shoppable posts as it looks to play a bigger role in e-commerce. The social platform’s new feature will allow brands to tag products in content claiming to create a “seamless experience” from post to purchase. Amy Cole, Instagram’s head of business development tells Marketing Week: “Shopping will give a seamless experience for users who want more information on products. They can go through Instagram without having to switch between apps and with a couple of taps buy the product.”

Twitter increases the tweet character count to 280    

In attempt to increase its user base, Twitter made the commendable decision to double its 140-character limit to 280. Users have been clamoring for longer text lengths for a long time, and the move by Twitter has effectively encouraged users to tweet more frequently. Despite the progressive move, users are still hoping the they’ll one day be graced with the option of an edit button.