We are an established appliance company and sell the likes of electric fans, refrigerators and rice cookers. We are thinking of going digital but we are not thinking of doing the social media route like Facebook or Twitter. We also think that having a brand website is the way to go. What are our other options if we want to explore digital marketing? - anonymous

I am not familiar on how your brand is faring in the market place, nor how you are positioning yourself with regard to social economic class. If you are not a well-known brand, I suggest you still utilize above the line efforts like using television or radio to provide you massive awareness. However, if you say you are established and therefore I assume you have a good level of awareness and market base already, digital marketing can be a good complement for all your marketing efforts.
A website is still needed, even a simple one, so you establish credibility for your brand. However, if you for some reason have issues with marketing in social media like Facebook or Twitter (or Instagram), I think the next best thing would be to utilize Youtube and create your own branded Youtube channel.
Youtube can be a good platform for you to showcase your different product lines. Just type different appliance lines like electric fan or refrigerator, and you will see some international brands have already started utilizing Youtube to present their products there. You can even see how the most advanced brands are already using the “Internet of things” on appliances, where appliances can already “communicate” with one other using the internet.
When you want to play on Youtube, I suggest that you take seriously on generating compelling videos. There are three kinds of content you can put out there. Apply the 3Hs of creating Youtube content. The first is Hygiene content. These are content that people look for, like how to assemble a particular appliance, or maybe a particular special feature. Create one to two minute videos of your different product offerings showcasing various features, or how to repair a particular appliance. The second is what is called Hub content. Here, you create videos that you push to your audience base. For example, every month, upload a video that talks about a new feature of your appliances, or a creative way to use your appliances. For example, you can show how to properly tilt your electric fan, or utilize walls to maximize the cooling effect of fans. This can be in a form of a tutorial or use an expert or celebrity to talk about your special feature.
Finally, there is what you call Hero content. You can do this every quarter where you create highly viral and shareable videos. Note that videos are considered “hero” if they are viral, which means content that are exciting enough to be massively shared on social media. Coca Cola is one of the top brands in the Philippines who are really good in creating viral content. Another example globally is Volvo Trucks, and utilizing Jean Claude Van Damme, created their Hero video where they had the actor do an “epic split”.
Youtube is a good platform for digital marketing, but remember that videos on Youtube have to be properly tagged so that if people searched for it, it easily comes out on search results. At the same time, if you need certain traction with regard to views, you can always buy advertising on youtube to give you your first boost of views. Note however, that you must utilize Youtube only as a part of your entire digital marketing effort, and aligned with a specific marketing objective. Youtube videos can be nice to haves, but can be frustrating and expensive in the long run if videos are created without a real marketing purpose.

Donald Lim is the Chief e-Marketing strategist of Mansmith and Fielders, the leading marketing and sales training firm in the country. For more information, please email info@mansmith.net, or call 412-0034/584-5858.