Digital Marketing Landscape: Past, present and future

The digital marketing landscape has come a long way over the years and continues to evolve with an exciting future ahead. From its birth in the early 90s (that’s right, where has the time gone?), through to 2021, the digital marketing landscape has grown exponentially. The internet became accessible to the public, the first websites were created, and the rest was history…

Digital Marketing 90s

It’s largely agreed that the first blog went live in 1994. And so, marketers were now wordsmiths as well as creatives.

In 1994 one of the biggest chain reactions in the industry began with the very first banner ad, and it’s safe to say this was a trail-blazing moment in internet history. The first PPC model actually made its way onto the market in 1996 and was launched by a company called Planet Oasis.

1997 saw the launch of the very first social networking site ‘Six Degrees’, and whilst it lived a short 4-year life span, its legacy carried through sites such as Friendster, Myspace and of course the landscape changer, Facebook itself.

Even before the birth of Google, marketers were trying to find ways to optimise their websites on the search engines of the time, such as Yahoo.

1998: Originally launched as a part of a research project in 1996, Google finally became a limited company two years later, boasting over 60 million web pages indexed.

Animated videos boost customer engagement
Digital Marketing 00s

Fast forward to 2005 and the one and only Facebook changed the law of the land for marketers for years to come.

And if social media and SEO wasn’t enough to contend with, smartphones were invented and Digital Marketers had to rethink everything they thought they knew.

Let’s not forget all the incremental changes over the last decade.

From the introduction of Google Adwords to the launch of more successful social media platforms, such as Instagram, digital marketers have had to race against emerging trends and software faster than you can say SEO.

Digital Marketing 2010
Digital Marketing Future 2021

When you look back through the ages, you’ll soon notice that the seemingly insignificant moments in the history of marketing had an enormous, cascading effect – such as the birth of Google, Facebook, the introduction of SEO and the very first #.

Who knows which new trends will last a day, or which will stick and change the digital marketing arena forever? Let’s take a look at the potential contenders.

Slated as one of the most likely trends to top the digital marketing landscape in 2021, video marketing is one of the most versatile tools in the marketing repertoire. Whilst YouTube made its debut on the internet stage back in 2005, it still remains one of the most used sites around the globe. And thanks to the recent invention of TikTok, videos are an even more desired way of consuming content. Introduce Instagram and Facebook stories into the mix and you soon start to see just how much audience reach you garner with video marketing.

“Alexa, what’s going to be the next marketing trend?”

Whilst Alexa doesn’t have a crystal ball, she, along with Siri and Cortana do have the solution to completely hands and eyes-free internet searching and shopping. Voice Search and AI are largely unknown entities in the current marketing universe but they are certainly worth keeping an eye on.

We’ve come a long way in just 3 decades but many of the digital marketing tools we use today are deeply rooted in the principles that first came to the fore back in the 90s. This is why knowing the history of your trade is just as crucial as understanding the present, and predicting the future.

If you want to make history with your digital marketing campaign, contact us today and we’ll help you navigate both the traditional and the new. Call 01743 296700 or email [email protected]