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eMarketing: The essential guide to marketing in a digital world

Fifth Edition

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By Rob Stokes and the Minds of Quirk

Fifth Edition

eMarketing: The essential guide to marketing in a digital world By Rob Stokes and the Minds of Quirk

First published 2008 by Quirk eMarketing (Pty) Ltd.

© Copyright 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2013 Quirk Education Pty (Ltd).

This book is published under the Creative Commons Attribution-Non Commercial

ShareAlike 3.0 Unported licence. This means that you can share and distribute this

work and you can even modify it, as long as you do not use it for commercial gain,

you share all modifications and you credit Quirk (Pty) Ltd. For more information,

you can visit:

www.creativecommons.org or www.quirk.biz/emarketingtextbook.

ISBN: 978-0-620-56515-8

Book design and typesetting by Solveig Bosch from SolDesign (www.soldesign.co.za).

Cover illustration inspired by Craig Raw and designed by Anka Joubert.

This book is typeset in DIN and it is printed by Creda Printers (www.creda.co.za).

Trademarks All terms or names used in this book that are known to be trademarks or service

marks have been appropriately capitalised. Quirk (Pty) Ltd cannot attest to the

accuracy of this information. Use of a term in this book should not be regarded as

affecting the validity of any trademark or service mark.

We have also made every effort to obtain permission for and to acknowledge

copyright material. Should any copyright infringement have occurred, please

contact us and we will make every effort to rectify the omission or error in the

event of a reprint or new edition. You can contact us on textbook@quirk.biz.

Warning and disclaimer Every effort has been made to make this book as complete and accurate as possible,

but no warranties regarding its contents, whether fact, speculation or opinion,

are made, nor is fitness for any use implied. This information provided is on an

“as is” basis. The author, compiler and Quirk (Pty) Ltd shall have neither liability

nor responsibility to any person or entity with respect to any loss or damages

arising from the information contained in this book. Full details of Quirk (Pty) Ltd

may be obtained via its website (www.quirk.biz) or may be requested directly at




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I am immensely proud to present the 5th Edition of the Quirk marketing textbook.

It is now 6 years since we began work on the first edition, and it’s quite amazing

to see how much it has grown. Not only in line with the changes in our industry,

but also through very important input from our passionate and kind community of

learners and educators.


The evolution of the discipline of marketing is best represented by the change in

the subtitle of our book. When we started, this book was called eMarketing: the

essential guide to digital marketing. Today as you will see, we have adjusted this

to eMarketing: the essential guide to marketing in a digital world. This change

has been an easy and natural one. It underlines an important shift in the way we

think about and engage with digital. Digital is not a channel in the same way that

a marketer might view television or radio as a channel. Instead digital is a way of

life. It is the experiential glue which binds previously separated media together.

Because of this, digital enables a cohesive brand experience that wasn’t previously

on offer. In fact, it’s highly likely that within the next edition or two, we will need

to acknowledge this shift in the role of digital by ditching the “e” in eMarketing. At

best it is quickly becoming passé, at worst it will become completely redundant.


At Quirk, we no longer see ourselves as a digital marketing agency, but rather as

a marketing agency born digital. We still consider ourselves to be experts in the

digital realm and as digital natives we still have bits and bytes coursing through

our veins. However it is because of our understanding of brands and how to build

them in a digital world that our clients are turning to us for far more than just a

website or some SEO. Today we find ourselves as lead agency on a number of

prestigious brands. These brands see that their customers are living in a digital

world and therefore trust a partner like Quirk to lead them in that world.


Our textbook is now used in almost 1000 academic institutions globally. This is

largely due to brave and forward thinking educators to whom we owe a huge debt

of gratitude. They have walked a journey with us, embraced a book published

by an agency (a fact which hasn’t gained easy acceptance by the very traditional

academic community), and have provided us with tremendous encouragement and

invaluable feedback to ensure that this book keeps pace not only with a fast moving

industry, but with their evolving needs as well.

We believe in education. Educated people make better decisions and have more

potential for an improved life. We also believe that particularly for tertiary education

to have an effective future a partnership between the private and academic sectors

is vital. It ensures the very best education is as accessible as it can be to as many

people as possible. By making our textbook available for free online we hope to

propel this dream forward. In fact, less than 10% of the many institutions who use

our book actually pay for it and we are thrilled by this. At Quirk we want to make a

dent in the world and this is an important part of us achieving that.



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Another important change for this edition has been the appointment of our

academic partner, Red & Yellow, who have helped us improve the pedagogy and

academic rigour of the textbook. Founded twenty years ago in 1994, Red & Yellow

is one of South Africa’s leading marketing colleges. Last year Quirk Education

merged with Red & Yellow to form an academic institution which we believe

will serve its students very well into the future. This new entity combines Red

& Yellow’s tremendous experience in marketing’s academic space with Quirk’s

digital skills and online training expertise. Relevant and practical content can

thus be delivered through the methodology best suited for the student – online,

contact or a hybrid of both. In order to effectively join forces, we must see the end

of the Quirk Education brand. This is slightly sad for me, but is part of an important

evolution and I am immensely excited about the high quality of students Red &

Yellow is already producing at this early stage of their combined adventure. The

future holds great promise indeed.


From a content perspective, this book is a real step up from the previous edition. As

with the 4th Edition, we’ve maintained Quirk’s Think, Create, Engage and Optimise structure. We have, however, worked much harder to acknowledge the useful

links between disciplines throughout the book. The lines between disciplines

in the media landscape can be blurry, but we find the TCEO structure gives us

an effective way of tackling the big picture explanation for comprehension. This

foundation then enables us to focus on the nuance where the rubber hits the road.


Apart from a general update of facts, stats and case studies, we’ve made a few

other important changes. Firstly the Think section has been expanded, with a

much improved market research chapter and the addition of content strategy

chapter as well. The section is better equipped as a platform for approaching

the rest of the book and the marketing process in general. In the Create section

we’ve added a chapter on User experience design and in the Engage section the

Video Marketing and Mobile chapters have been greatly expanded to reflect their

growing importance in the marketing landscape.


The last update is a valuable one for readers of the printed edition. Because the

book is available for free download we wanted to give you extra reason to part

with your hard earned cash when buying a printed copy. To achieve this, we’ve

partnered with many great vendors to provide a wide array of useful vouchers that

will help you get started with what you learn from this book.


I started Quirk almost 15 years ago. Whilst we’ve grown successfully as a business

over that time this textbook remains my proudest achievement even though I didn’t

write it. I may have had the original idea, but it’s a team effort and I wouldn’t want

to take that away from the people who have worked so hard to make it a reality.

Putting each edition together takes a huge amount of work by many people. My

name is on the front purely because someone’s name has to be on the front.

Thankfully the font gets smaller and smaller every year.

In particular I want to recognise Kat Scholtz who has overseen the production of

this 5th Edition. I have worked with Kat for over 5 years now and you just couldn’t

find a better qualified person to lead such an effort. I mean this both from a skills

and experience perspective as well as the deep passion and excitement Kat has for

producing a great resource which we know will help many hundreds of thousands

of people. Kat has also surrounded herself with a phenomenal knowledge team

whose job it has been to synthesize the knowledge of our agency into an easy to

use guide which is accessible to all. To Kat and her team, from the bottom of my

heart I thank you so very much for your incredibly hard work in making this dream

a reality. You deserve all the credit for this fantastic book.


I’m proud of the book because it genuinely is good and it is genuinely free. To

have brought Quirk to a place where it can afford to make this contribution to our

industry and community is an incredible feeling.


We hope you enjoy our book and remember, the most important thing any human

can do is teach, even if you’re not a teacher. Share your knowledge and make the

world a better place.


Onwards and upwards!




Some thoughts on Marketing from Seth Godin.

I don’t think you’ll learn much from this textbook. It’s nothing specific–I actually

don’t think you can learn how to market from any textbook. As marketing textbooks

go, this is a very good one, but still, it’s not going to work.

It’s not going to work because marketing is about nuance, experience,

experimentation and passion. And I don’t have a clue how you could start from

scratch and learn that from a textbook, no matter how good.

So, what to do?

The first thing you should do is obsess about the terms in this book. Vocabulary

is the first step to understanding, and if you don’t know what something means,

figure it out. Don’t turn the page until you do.

Second, get out of the book. Go online. Go market.

There are very few endeavors that are as open to newcomers, as cheap and as easy

to play with. You can’t learn marketing without doing marketing. Go find a charity

or a cause or a business you believe in and start marketing. Build pages. Run ads.

Write a blog. Engage. Experiment.

If you don’t learn marketing from this process (the book for vocabulary, the web

for practicing) then you have no one to blame but yourself. You’ve already made the

first step, don’t blow it now.

We need you. Market what matters.

Seth Godin

Author Purple Cow, Permission Marketing and Linchpin ii

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w sReviews for eMarketing:

The essential guide to marketing in a digital world Fifth Edition

Most people are looking for definitive answers in the digital space and you will find

there are not many. It is all about an approach and finding the solution that best

suits your company, strategy and organisational needs. The insights and approach

provide a well structured guide to the channels and approaches that you will need

to consider as you navigate the digital highway. A great companion to help you in

your journey.

Richard Mullins, Managing Director MEA, Acceleration

For a comprehensive source of digital marketing information, the eMarketing

textbook provides an insightful guide to the digital world with this ever changing

and dynamic environment. Having had invaluable input from the top minds in the

SA digital industry, the publication renders credible content which can be put to

task in the real time digital industry.

Nic van den Bergh, Founder & Director of Macula

Reviews for previous editions

I found eMarketing: The essential guide to digital marketing to be an excellent

guide on digital marketing. The book covers all the essentials that someone

would need on digital marketing.Rob Stokes and the Minds of Quirk provide an

excellent approach with their think, create, engage, and optimize framework.

This framework allows the reader to think carefully about their overall strategy,

the web assets that they need to create, and how to effectively engage with their

audience through multiple digital vehicles. Additionally, Rob Stokes and team

provide a great overview on how to measure and optimize one’s activities in digital

via web analytics and conversion optimization. This book provided me with a

solid background on all aspects of digital marketing. It allowed me to build and

accelerate on my foundation in digital marketing. I still use the book as a handy

guide, especially for its glossary of terms. This book is a great one stop place for

everything important to know about digital marketing.

Phillip Leacock,Digital Marketing Director, Sears Home Services

eMarketing is comprehensive and a ‘must have’ for anyone wanting to gain a more thorough understand of digital marketing. It’s ‘required reading’ for people

working in the digital space, and ‘recommended’ for those involved in advertising,

PR, social media and other areas that are ‘touched’ by digital. Having this book on

your desk as a reference tool will keep you ahead of the game.

I have found myself dipping in and out of it over the past few months, reaching for

it when I needed more information on a particular area of digital marketing, or

clarification of a technical term or phrase.

Trevor Young, Director of strategy and innovation, Edelman Australia

If you aren’t a marketer, this is a must have book; if you know a marketer, do him

or her a favour and get it for them; if you are just interested in eMarketing and want

to expand your general business knowledge, buy two copies – someone will want

to borrow them from you.

Jaco Meiring, Digital – Investec

Quirk’s eMarketing handbook covers all the most important concepts which

are necessary for eMarketing excellence today. I would highly recommend it as

both a study guide and a practitioner’s reference manual. Congratulations to the

QuirkStars on all the thought, research and work that has obviously gone into this.

Dave Duarte, founder and director of Nomadic Marketing, UCT Graduate School of Business

I found Quirk’s eMarketing textbook for my New Media Marketing class while

searching for a low cost alternative to keep textbook costs down for my students

… I found Quirk’s eMarketing textbook to be very well written, concise and to the

point regarding what people should know about internet marketing, as well as

being fairly comprehensive in the topics covered.

Karl Kasca Instructor at UCLA Extension



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