What Can Digital Marketers Learn From the Animal Kingdom?

Published on June 29, 2016


Too often, we tend to think of digital marketing as isolated and separate from the rest of the world – just a bunch of bloggers, designers, and statisticians in an ivory tower, tinkering with Google Analytics and brainstorming multimedia posts.

But content marketing doesn’t exist in a vacuum. Look around the world, and you’ll start to notice how much the best practices of digital marketing exist in the most surprising places (like maybe even a galaxy far, far away…). Even lions, tigers, and bears have some amazing habits that could translate to the realm of digital marketing.

Don’t believe us? Here are five lessons online marketers can learn from the animal kingdom…

1.) Think Small (and Go Mobile)

Ants can support up to 5000 times their own body weight. The Arizona Bark Scorpion typically only grows to about 2.5 inches in length, but its venom is enough to paralyze a full grown adult (sorry to give you that image).

What does this tell us? In an ecosystem, extremely small things can be quite powerful and influential. In the digital ecosystem, that means mobile devices, which are increasingly one of the most important and essential elements to digital marketing for brands of all sizes.

In today’s landscape, mobile is king: 80% of internet users own and use a smartphone, and they’re using those devices for research, social media, email, and even shopping (in fact, according to Shopify, mobile devices make up more than 50% of all ecommerce traffic). On top of that, mobile optimization has become a key element of SEO strategy, and having a responsive, functional mobile site or app is an important way to develop brand loyalty.

And speaking of building loyalty…

2.) Hunt Like a Pack Animal (and Use Social Media)

Pack animals, like wolves, are highly social animals that travel and hunt in groups and cooperate in a highly sophisticated way to bring down their prey. That is, when they work together as a community, they get better results.

In 2016, it’s important for your brand to work like a wolf and be social and engaged with your community. Social media is an incredible way for your brand to spread your unique narrative, attract fresh leads, build and share content, and, most importantly, develop a tight-knit community loyal and ready to interact with your business.

More than that? Social media allows you to selectively hunt for leads like a wolf, with focused, targeted ad campaigns on Facebook or Instagram, or buzz-worthy contests on Twitter. Ready to start building your brand’s virtual community? It’s never too late to get started with social media or spread your focus to promising new platforms, like Pinterest or Snapchat.

And if you want to have great posts to share on social media, then you’ll want to focus on effective ways to…

3.) Attract New Mates (With High Quality Content)

Famously, male peacocks spread their tail feathers to attract mates, using vibrant fluorescent colors and patterns to appeal to curious peahens. These feathers can be enormous (up to six feet long!), and they are shed and replaced after each mating season.

Sounds a little like peacocks are the original content marketers, no?

Think of maintaining a consistently-updating, high quality blog like a peacock’s feathers: As a great way to both draw in attention and close the deal. Generating content is a great way to boost organic traffic through SEO, add depth and value to your site, and convert interested visitors into paying customers.

And for new channels to spread your content and create brand loyalty…

4.) Buzz Like a Bee (and “Pollinate” With Email Marketing)

Pollinators – like bees, moths, and hummingbirds – help spread pollen from plant to plant, allowing flowers and crops (including some of our favorites, like blueberries, broccoli, and apples) to spread thrive. And beyond keeping plants alive and vibrant, pollinators are amazingly valuable: In fact, by some measurements, honey bees contribute more than $14 billion to the value of U.S. crop production every year.

Email marketing works in much the same way. Sending out coupons, special offers, and content-focused newsletters is a great way to “remarket” to your core audience, cultivate brand loyalty, and drive hot leads your site. In fact, email marketing is one of the most effective digital marketing methods of all time, and many of our clients have seen great success with a regular digital newsletter.

Curious about getting started with email? Here’s a look at what a great digital newsletter can do for you! Already have an email marketing campaign in place? Here are five metrics to start tracking now.

And with all of these methods, remember…

5.) Move Like a Camel (and Be Ready for Anything)

Hey, we’re posting this on hump day, we couldn’t forget about dromedaries! In many cultures, camels symbolize patience, tolerance, and endurance, due to their ability to travel long distances without water and store fatty tissue in their humps.

When it comes to digital marketing, be like the camel. Launching a successful, comprehensive campaign requires patience and endurance: Results won’t spike dramatically overnight, and you need to be ready to take some lumps and work through them with A/B testing, analytics tracking, and regular updates.

Want to hand off these responsibilities to another member of your pack? Champing at the bit to get started? That’s where we come in!

Geek is your one stop shop for comprehensive content marketing, including web design and development, SEO, and social marketing. Our experienced team would love to help you navigate the digital jungle. Drop us a line today to get started!

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