By now, there is no doubt that digital marketing, in its various forms, should be a key part of any startup/business for digital innovation.Startups nowadays are looking forward to building their presence felt online with the help of digital marketing not only to market themselves in a better way to their target audience but also to make customer engagement to improve customer lifetime value.Below listed are a few of them.Digital branding - Earlier it used to take years to build a brand and for positioning it successfully in the market and there used to be limited resources to spread information regarding the brand in the market. But now due to the advent of digital marketing and growth in the information technology, anyone can now get to know any information about a brand in a fraction of seconds, and this has immensely helped start-ups seamlessly build brand identity and brand awareness among its target audience.Following are 4 simple ways for startups to build their brand with digital marketing.ContentPotential clients first go online to check your organisation’s credibility before they do anything else. So what kind of a brand story does your content communicate? Everything you write and produce tells a story about who you are as a startup.Social MediaSocial media is an ever-evolving platform that uses content to build your brand and reputation. If you build an informative, reputable, and credible brand on social media you are much more likely to get the first call/Whatsapp when an opportunity get presented.WebsiteWebsite is the foundation of your brand. Having a website that is outdated and underwhelming is like walking into a potential client meeting in sweat pants and a t-shirt. Your website is the face of your startup these days, so what kind of shape is it in? The quality of your website will often be the deciding factor in whether or not a potential client will commit to the next step with you.SEO/PPC -SEO and PPC are the essential parts of building your brand. They’re the aspects of building your brand that aren’t always tangible and are usually handled by experts. If you don’t show up in the search results until the second page, you probably aren’t getting the call.Data-driven decisionStartups with the help of digital marketing can now easily determine ROI they generate on their investment on various marketing campaigns and it also helps them to decide on the marketing campaign budgets in order to optimise the conversion rate and thereby increasing the sales and profit accordingly. Data is what drives digital transformation, and digital marketing is one of the areas that can make an immediate impact on your startup’s success by actually gathering data, discovering the customer journey and then acting on it.Your startup can adopt following process -A - Collect Your Data using CRM, Lead forms,B - Analysing data using Google analytics, Facebook analytics..C - Utilise your data in SEO, Email Marketing, Google Adwords, Social Media and remarketing campaignsCustomer relationship managementStart-ups can maintain a good rapport with their target audience with the help Of digital marketing tools (such as email marketing, social media marketing or content marketing) by constantly keep updating them regarding various events, happenings and interesting news about their company and keeping their customers and target audience engaged and also motivating them to keep sharing them via various social media platforms. In today’s multi-brand, product-rich culture it’s easy for consumers to feel like they are going unnoticed, with advertising often firmly focused on the masses. But digital marketing is now giving organisations the chance to rediscover one-to-one relationships with their customers, enabling them to provide personalised, real-time offers that can reinforce their brand and better assess their return on marketing investments.Effective personalised, real-time engagement centres on the ability to link different data sources to deliver profiling and segmentation, targeting consumers contextually. Inbound marketing, for example, must be connected by Search Engine Optimisation and new tools and data sources that enable highly targeted content to be created and presented.AI & ML AI & ML techniques are very powerful and are already creating a ripple effect in the existing businesses; especially in startup-ecosystems across the globe. To help an uninitiated person relate with common examples when someone’s Youtube, Netflix and Amazon accounts give him/her suggestion on what to watch next it's based on ML, Intelligent Chatbot creation by Digital Gurukul. When someone types search-keywords on Google he/she gets suggestions to what to type and search that is also based on ML.Startups are coming up with innovative products and services aided by ML & AI. Food ordering apps like Zomato, Swiggy, Ubereats are trying to predict most popular dishes pertaining to different geographies and seasons, improve delivery services, food quality, restaurant and dishes-listing; hospitality industry is trying to optimize discounts, increase room bookings and hence maximise revenues. The medical industry is trying to predict and diagnose risky health conditions with more precision. The application of data analytics is increasing incrementally by the day; so are the jobs that this area offers.Brand protectionWith the internet giving people so many avenues to form an opinion about your startup, it’s important for every startup to be proactive about its online reputation. The waters of social media and online review sites can be cutthroat -- particularly for startups. The conversation has moved online, but the basics are still the same. In a time where the consumer’s trust in companies is at its lowest, brand reputation is proving to be more valuable than ever.There are several other ways in which a startup can make use of digital marketing for their growth. However, they must carefully choose the right set of digital marketing tools based on the business segment they are serving to, which can help them scale new heights.Dr. Raj Padhiyar is Director at Digital Gurukul.