With rapid explosion of the Internet and social media, the stage is set for a digital feat. Chef Vikas Khanna doling out some healthy recipes on YouTube channel with Marico\u2019s Saffola Masala Oats, promises the customers to be \u2018The Fit Foodie\u2019. These interactive campaigns strike an immediate connect with the audience.\u00a0 This is what you call the direct customer engagement or digital marketing in real time. This is the new challenge and opportunity as customers are spending more time on the Internet and the number is growing at 20 percent.As long as technology continues to advance, digital marketing will evolve. Having said that, the more the people see the content, better the familiarity with the brand helping the businesses to develop trust and rapport with the audience. At the same time, it helps businesses to generate ROI, experience business growth and sustain cut throat competition in this digital age.It is now more important than ever to tap into demographic-specific, digital content. \u201cTo reach out to the next generation and tune into large size of the population, digital marketing is important,\u201d says Girish Rao, head-IT and Business Analytics at Marico.Rao says that traditional\u00a0marketing channels\u00a0suffer from a lag as there\u2019s no instantaneous communication.A major share of the credit for the digitization goes to the rapid growth of smartphones and tablets. These smart devices have taken the digital wave to the next level. \u201cAs consumers are becoming IT savvy and mobility is getting more penetration, the only way to reach out to the consumers is in the social and digital way,\u201d says Rao.Social media is a great ambassador to the cause of digital marketing, says Rao. \u201cDigital media is everywhere and consumers can access the information from anywhere.\u00a0 It helps you to find out what is working and what isn\u2019t in real time.\u201dHaving a coordinated customer experience will give insights into the user\u2019s buying patterns and online behavior. The data can be mined further for improved customer-specific strategies. A consolidated view of customer preferences and expectations across all channels\u2013web, social media, point of sale, and so on is important to drive better results.In digital marketing, he says his role is to ensure IT takes these initiatives: Getting web strategy, mobility, technicalities from the partners and ensure its execution, and ensure collaboration with marketing agencies, and see that there are no loose ends left.But the ultimate goal and the motive behind these strategies is to drive traffic. To improve the online business and to gain better visibility than their competitors, Marico has laser focus on Search Engine Optimization. Rao says, \u201cFunctionality of the website, social media marketing, video marketing, website design are the key elements playing an important role in digital marketing.\u201dDigital era has arrived and is here to stay. Better traffic and engagement with the consumer are some of the many advantages that could be looked at. Marico definitely has its strategies in place and digital lessons to pass on.To reach out to the next generation and tune into large population, digital marketing is important.