Marketing Glossary: Marketing types you should know

Published: February 16, 2023

Author: Carolina Hollnagel

Categories: Marketing, Strategy

We all know that marketing is the work of advertising and offering goods or services for sale. But there are many different types of marketing that could benefit your business. We gathered a guide explaining many of them, but if you still have trouble choosing and implementing your marketing strategy, reach out! We’d love to help and brainstorm with you. (You can email us here.)

For starters, we highly recommend reading all types of marketing strategies in order to choose the best one for your business, but if you’re in a hurry to get started and need a quick overview of marketing strategies, metrics and definitions, click on the hyperlink below. (But don’t forget to come back later and read in more detail!)

Traditional vs. Digital Marketing

Overall, when it comes to marketing, there are two types:

  • Digital: any form that uses the internet or electronic methods. For example: social media, websites, Google ads, and blogs
  • Traditional: any method or channel that is not on the internet. For example: hard copy mailers, posters, billboards and trade shows.

Outbound vs. Inbound

The goals of outbound and inbound marketing are the same:  attract, engage, and convert your target audience. However, the tactics used to accomplish those goals are different. 

  • Outbound Marketing: proactively reaching out to consumers in an attempt to introduce your brand and/or sell your product/service, even if they have not shown interest (yet), such as cold calling or cold emails. 
  • Inbound Marketing: is placing creative, unique, and engaging content where your customers are and waiting/encouraging them to come to you first. For example, social media (organic or paid), email campaigns, and blogs. 

Account-Based Marketing (ABM) 

This B2B strategy focuses on treating one customer as if they were the only audience you are targeting. Campaigns will be hyper-focused and personalized with the goal of closing the deal with that specific company.  

Affiliate Marketing 

When a company promotes another business and gets a commission for each purchase, it’s called affiliate marketing. Usually there will be a code or a special link to track the purchases.   

Buzz Marketing 

You probably know that before launching a new product/service, you should create excitement and anticipation, that’s buzz marketing. Here you can combine different types of marketing such as social media, viral, influencers, and grassroots campaigns to create “buzz”. 

Cause Marketing 

In this type of marketing, a for-profit business creates a campaign in partnership with a nonprofit organization that is aligned with their values. For example when a company donates a percentage of every purchase to charity.

Content Marketing 

Content marketing means to create unique, engaging and, ideally, valuable posts, videos, pictures, and graphics that you can use to get in front of your audience. Of course, social media is part of that strategy, but there are also blogs, podcasts, videos, etc.  

With content marketing, you want to remember the RIPEE strategy – relate, inspire, promote, educate and entertain. 

Contextual Marketing (or Display Marketing) 

If you want to expand your reach, contextual marketing could be a good idea! Here you can pay to display website banner ads or social media ads to your target audience. But our advice before implementing this type of marketing is to know your buyer persona or else your ads will be displayed to people who are not interested in your product/service and you won’t see an ROI.

Controversial Marketing 

Paris Haute Couture Week Spring 2023, Schiaparelli used fake (but very realistic) animal heads on his dresses. The designs were very controversial, but the most commented on. That’s what controversial marketing is all about, using a controversial topic to drive attention – good or bad. 

Customer Marketing 

Did you know that acquiring a new customer can cost five times more than retaining an existing customer? That’s why the goal of customer marketing is to retain existing customers. Besides the obvious, which is to have a great customer journey, other strategies such as creating a customer loyalty program and using lead nurturing campaigns via mass email marketing are great ways to stay in touch with existing customers.

Email Marketing

Engage with your prospects and customers via email (usually using the help of Mailchimp or Flodesk). This can be used to promote new products and services, share company news and generate brand awareness. But remember you can only email people who subscribed to receive your emails and an opt out option should always be available and easy to find. (Most put it in the footer of their mass marketing emails.) 

Event Marketing 

A great way to promote your business and get to know your customers better is to organize or join an event. It could be a  workshop, pop-up shop, 5K run, community event, etc. A few ways to implement event marketing includes…

  • Brand activations – According to HubSpot, it takes 5 to 7 impressions for people to remember a brand. With branding, the goal is to continue making those positive impressions on an ongoing basis. One way to do that is through brand activations. 

Brand activations are events, experiences, and interactions that create lasting emotional connections between a brand and its target audience. SXSW is a great example of a whole city that gets taken over by brand activations. 

  • Field Marketing 
  • Product launch events
  • Sponsoring, advertising or exhibiting at an existing, relevant event 
  • Have the leaders, thought leaders or influencers in your company become featured speakers at relevant industry events 

Field Marketing 

Who doesn’t love to get an unexpected free sample or discount, right? Offer some to your target audience using field marketing. Think outside the box, does your buyer persona go to the gym? Give a free sample or discount code to members of a certain gym (even if your product/service is not fitness related). 

    Guerrilla Marketing 

    Unconventional, bold and impossible not to be noticed are some of the characteristics of guerrilla marketing. This strategy is used in high-traffic physical locations to generate brand awareness. This could be big signage outdoors, stickers on the floor of a public place, college kids handing out hard copy fliers around town or on college campus, or placing fliers in stores/locations where your target audience frequents.  

      Influencer Marketing 

      In the past few years we have seen the rise of influencers, which are creators that share their life and opinion about products/services on social media. We say “creators” instead of “people” because even a pet can be an influencer! 

      Oftentimes brands send free products/services to influencers in exchange for endorsements. Since the use of influencers has become popular, we’ve continued to ask ourselves if this trend is going to last and the answer is that (at least in 2023), it is still trending. 


      Neuroscience is the scientific study of the nervous system and the brain. When used in marketing, you can gain insights about  customers’ motivations, preferences, decisions and response to marketing stimulus.

      Social Media Marketing 

      Did you know 70% of small businesses invest in social media advertising? If you are not using any social media platforms such as Instagram, Facebook or LinkedIn to promote your product/service, you are missing out. If you don’t have advertising dollars, don’t worry. You can still promote your business, your brand, your personal brand for free. If you want to increase the speed and frequency of how often people see your posts, you can, of course, leverage paid and promoted posts/reels/stories/TikToks.  In our blogs, you will find several articles on how to help you increase your social presence, such as Social Media Holidays 2023, How to Create an Attractive Social Media Presence and 8 Ways to Organically Grow Your Instagram Following 

        User-Generated Marketing

        People trust people. User-generated marketing is efficient because companies use the content generated by their existing customers (aka. “user generated content” or “UGC”). You can accomplish this by sharing the content about your product that is originally posted by someone else. You can track the posts through the use of hashtags or mentions. This will not only bring you new clients because it shows others trust you enough to advocate for you, but it could also make your existing ones feel even more comfortable and confident in choosing your brand. 

        Viral Marketing

        What happens when your product/service is so amazing that people can’t stop talking about it? Word-of-mouth marketing takes it to a whole ‘nother level, surpassing your target audience, becoming “viral.” Many times this happens digitally on social media like Instagram and TikTok. 

        Word-of-Mouth Marketing 

        64% of marketers agree that word-of-mouth is the most effective form of marketing and, ideally, the best, least expensive method. All you have to do is have an amazing product/service and encourage happy, loyal, clients to advocate to their colleagues, friends and even family(!) about your business. 

        615innovations is a business development consulting firm focused on giving small businesses innovative sales, marketing and branding strategies and implementation services to help them become industry leaders. For more information on 615i and our services, please visit or contact us here.

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        Executive Director
        National Foundation for Women Legislators


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