Talking about “digital marketing strategy” today is one of those funny redundancies that anyone building a product-based companytoday would do well to recognize and reflect on.

So central has the digital landscape become to consumer experience that any marketing approach that lacks an explicit digital strategy – including a social media strategy – can scarcely compete in today’s digitally dominated age.

“Digital” itself is no longer a stand-alone “target” or one prong among many, but rather the primary meansby which marketing strategy is executed.

And this is true whether you’re selling your product in brick-and-mortar stores or on e-commerce websites.

While there are countless “do’s” of creating a digital marketing strategy for your product, it’s just as important to know what not to do. With that in mind, let’s explore some of the biggest “Don’ts” of marketing in a digital age.

Don’t forget that social media is a conversation, not a monologue.As in real life, a social media conversation is a two-way street with neither party (in this case, neither your brand nor the consumer) having exclusive control over where it goes or how it goes.

Be aware that you may have complaints and questions about your product as well as accolades.

With few exceptions, almost all major brand “fails” have nothing to do with lack of know-how on the technical side and everything to do with brands failing to recognize that in a digital age, they are neither the single creators of their own content nor the sole arbiters of its meaning.

Don’t make promises you can’t keep.Don’t think your brand can get away (at least for long) with failing to walk its talk, with saying one thing and doing another. If your product-based business professes a commitment to sustainable manufacturing, it’s important to make sure that you’re actually using a sustainable manufacturing facility.

It’s easier and easier for consumers to become aware of “brand hypocrisy” and they’re calling brands out on it – not just on social media, but with the withdrawal of their spending dollars.

Make sure that you’re living up to the values you’ve set for your product and your company. Not only will your customers appreciate you for it – your employees will, too.

Don’t forget to appeal to your customers on an emotional level every now and then.

No one wants to read endless blog posts about your product’s features, or watch more than one or two videos about what your product can do.

You need to incorporate posts that appeal to your customers’ emotions, as well. If your product is a medical device, for instance, you almost certainly have stories of people whose lives have been materially improved thanks to your invention.

Not everything has to be heartwarming, however. Humor is a great thing to incorporate into your marketing, as well, if you can do it well and it fits your product.

Make it a point to integrate these more creative types of posts into your overall strategy.

Successful marketing strategy for product-based businesses in the digital age – perhaps paradoxically – rests at least as much on cultural and content variables as it does on the technological expertise the word “digital” typically evokes.

Marketers who understand the conversational, co-created, culturally embedded nature of digital marketing and who recognize that brand authority is derived from integrity and authenticity have already won half the battle for consumer trust.

For more, read “How to Conduct Solid Market Research for Your Product on a Shoestring Budget.”