Strategic planning typically begins with a scan of the business environment, both internal and external, this includes understanding strategic constraints.[54] An understanding of the external operating environment, including political, economic, social and technological which includes demographic and cultural aspects, is necessary for the identification of business opportunities and threats.[55] This analysis is called PEST; an acronym for Political, Economic, Social and Technological. A number of variants of the PEST analysis can be identified in literature, including: PESTLE analysis (Political, Economic, Social, Technological, Legal and Environmental); STEEPLE (adds ethics); STEEPLED (adds demographics) and STEER (adds regulatory).[56]


Some studies indicate that consumer responses to traditional marketing approaches are becoming less predictable for businesses.[32] According to a 2018 study, nearly 90% of online consumers in the United States researched products and brands online before visiting the store or making a purchase.[33] The Global Web Index estimated that in 2018, a little more than 50% of consumers researched products on social media.[34] Businesses often rely on individuals portraying their products in a positive light on social media, and may adapt their marketing strategy to target people with large social media followings in order to generate such comments.[35] In this manner, businesses can use consumers to advertise their products or services, decreasing the cost for the company.[36]

Marketing is the process of teaching consumers why they should choose your product or service over those of your competitors, and is a form of persuasive communication. It is made up of every process involved in moving a product or service from your business to the consumer. Marketing includes creating the product or service concept, identifying who is likely to purchase it, promoting it, and moving it through the appropriate selling channels. There are three primary purposes of marketing: What Is Digital Marketing?
Research and testing: Before you can take your idea public, you should perform marketing research and testing. Marketing departments usually test new product concepts with focus groups and surveys to gauge consumer interest, refine product ideas, and determine what price to set. Researching your competitors can help you set an optimal price and generate ideas for positioning your brand in an existing market. What Is Digital Marketing? And How Does It Work?

Advertising, or promotion, is only one component of your marketing plan. The marketing process begins with the idea for your product and continues until that product is in the hands of a consumer who bought it. Even after a customer has made a purchase, your marketing shouldn't end—a portion of your advertising should be targeted at current customers to ensure they remain customers and increase loyalty.
In-game advertising - In-Game advertising is defined as "inclusion of products or brands within a digital game."[60] The game allows brands or products to place ads within their game, either in a subtle manner or in the form of an advertisement banner. There are many factors that exist in whether brands are successful in their advertising of their brand/product, these being: Type of game, technical platform, 3-D and 4-D technology, game genre, congruity of brand and game, prominence of advertising within the game. Individual factors consist of attitudes towards placement advertisements, game involvement, product involvement, flow or entertainment. The attitude towards the advertising also takes into account not only the message shown but also the attitude towards the game. Dependent of how enjoyable the game is will determine how the brand is perceived, meaning if the game isn't very enjoyable the consumer may subconsciously have a negative attitude towards the brand/product being advertised. In terms of Integrated Marketing Communication "integration of advertising in digital games into the general advertising, communication, and marketing strategy of the firm"[60] is an important as it results in a more clarity about the brand/product and creates a larger overall effect. Digital Marketing for Beginners: 7 Strategies That Work
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