digital marketing vs. social media marketingWith so many different marketing channels available to businesses, it’s no wonder that confusion exists around what exactly constitutes “digital marketing.” Is it just online advertising? Or is there more to it than that? After all, if digital marketing is just online advertising, then what’s social media marketing? And how does it differ from digital marketing?

In this blog post, we’ll attempt to clear up some of that confusion by exploring the difference between digital marketing and social media marketing. By the end, you should have a better understanding of which marketing techniques fall under each category. Let’s get started!

Digital Marketing vs. Social Media Marketing: The Definitions

First things first: let’s start with some definitions. What exactly is digital marketing, and what is social media marketing?

Digital marketing can be defined as “the process of promoting a product or service using digital channels.” This could include anything from Search Engine Optimization (SEO) and content marketing to email marketing and pay-per-click (PPC) advertising. In short, if a marketing campaign makes use of any digital channel, it falls under the umbrella of digital marketing.

Social media marketing, on the other hand, can be defined as “the process of promoting a product or service using social media platforms.” As you might expect given its name, social media platforms are at the heart of social media marketing. Popular examples include Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and Snapchat.

Now that we know the difference between digital marketing and social media marketing in terms of their definitions, let’s take a look at some key differences in terms of their execution.

Digital Marketing vs. Social Media Marketing: The Execution

While both digital marketing and social media marketing make use of digital channels, there are key executional differences between the two disciplines. One big difference has to do with interrupting consumers versus engaging with them.

social media marketers try to create content that consumers will find interesting and valuable enough to share

With digital marketing campaigns, businesses often interrupt consumers with ads when they’re in the middle of doing something else—for example, browsing the web or checking their email. Social media marketers, on the other hand, typically try to engage with consumers where they already are—on popular social media platforms like Facebook and Twitter. Rather than interrupting them with ads, social media marketers try to create content that consumers will find interesting and valuable enough to share with their friends and followers.

Another difference has to do with budget. Because digital marketing encompasses such a wide range of activities (e.g., SEO, content marketing, display advertising), businesses often need to invest a significant amount of money in order to see results. Social media marketing campaigns can also require a significant investment; however, there are also many free or low-cost DIY strategies that businesses can leverage to get started on popular platforms like Facebook and Twitter without breaking the bank.

Conclusion:

Hopefully this blog post has helped clear up some confusion around the difference between digital marketing and social media marketing. In short:

Digital Marketing is defined as “the process of promoting a product or service using digital channels.” This encompasses activities like SEO/content marketing/email marketing/PPC advertising.

Social Media Marketing is defined as “the process of promoting a product or service using social media platforms.” This generally refers to creating engaging content for popular social media platforms like Facebook/Instagram/Twitter/Snapchat.

About the Author: Bill Dolan

Bill is an award winning designer with more than 25 years in graphic and professional Wordpress website design. He has experience in almost every area of creating art from his early days as a keyline paste-up artist to POS design to GRAMMY nominated album art.