Hilbert College Global Online Blog

5 Types of Digital Media

Written by: Hilbert College   •  Jan 25, 2024
A Graphic Designer Edits Images on a Computer.

5 Types of Digital Media

Many types of digital media exist in today’s web-driven, interconnected world, including web banners, TikTok videos, ebooks and far beyond. These forms of digital media all have something in common: they reach an audience through a digital device. Unlike print media, users interact with digital media on a smartphone, television, computer or other digital device.

Digital media has revolutionized the information age. It can enhance learning, build engaged communities and instantly broadcast information. Plus, digital media is a crucial tool in marketing, advertising, health care and many other areas. 

But what is digital media? And what are the different types of digital media? Understanding the reach of digital media can help prepare you for careers in the growing field of digital media and communication.

What Is Digital Media?

Digital media refers to any content created for digital devices, such as streaming videos, online articles, podcasts and digital photos.

Digital media has multiple uses. Millions of people consume digital media daily as a form of entertainment. Advertisers increasingly rely on digital marketing to reach customers and promote brands. Journalists communicate with the public using podcasts and online newspapers. Digital media serves a critical educational purpose. And this is just scratching the surface of digital media’s scope and impact. 

The rise of digital media has changed how people create, consume and deliver information. It’s also opened up new career paths, including in advertising, marketing and public relations. 

Digital Media in Marketing

Marketing relies on digital media to attract prospective customers, build a loyal brand following and craft a public image. Social media marketing, for example, lets companies create social posts that reinforce their brand identity. 

Digital marketing classifies media into three main categories.

  • Owned media: Content generated by the organization, which the organization has full control over 

  • Paid media: Content the organization pays to distribute to promote the organization

  • Earned media: Forms of promotion that are free, such as word-of-mouth, that the organization does not control

More broadly, digital marketing leverages several types of media to achieve an organization’s objectives.

5 Types of Digital Media and How They’re Used

Digital media comes in many formats, from ebooks to social media videos. At the most basic level, the five types of digital media include video, audio, text, images and mixed media.

In addition to these types of media, digital marketing classifies media as owned media (generated by the organization itself), paid media (paid content to promote the organization) and earned media (free forms of promotion and messaging).

Industries and organizations of all types and sizes rely on digital media to communicate ideas, persuade viewers and distribute content using digital devices.


From streaming movies to short videos on Instagram and TikTok, video is a key part of the digital media landscape. Viewers watch videos as a form of entertainment and advertising, in educational contexts and as a public relations tool. Digital video production represents a significant percentage of digital media jobs.


Once restricted to radio and vinyl, audio media is more accessible than ever thanks to the streaming revolution. Audio media can include audiobooks, music, podcasts and more. This form of digital media has widespread applications, including in journalism and education, since many people learn best through listening.


Text might seem old school in the world of digital media, but it’s still a critical way to communicate. Blogs, ebooks and websites all rely on text to connect with readers. And text often appears in other forms of digital media, including images and videos. 

Images and Graphics

Long before the digital age, images communicated ideas in paintings and photographs. Now, digital images and graphics create brand identities, appear in social media advertisements and connect with viewers. From websites to memes, images represent one of the key forms of digital media.

Mixed Media

Many forms of digital media blend text and graphics or audio and video content. These are known as mixed media, and it includes video games, interactive web platforms and much more. Many digital media careers require an understanding of mixed media. Graphic designers, for example, use their knowledge of typography to incorporate text into graphics. Video game designers also draw on mixed media skills.

Digital Media Careers and Salaries 

Careers in digital media span everything from advertising and marketing to journalism and educational technology. A growing number of industries rely on digital media to convey messages to diverse audiences such as prospective customers, health care patients, students and the general public.

Some of the most popular digital media careers include graphic designer, digital marketer, video editor, digital public relations specialist and social media specialist. And many careers in this in-demand field report above-average salaries.

Graphic Designer

Graphic designers create informative and engaging visual media, including designs used in advertisements, infographics, magazines and digital sources. They also design logos, illustrations and product packaging.

The median salary of a graphic designer reached $58,000 in May 2022, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). As companies increasingly expand their digital media presence, graphic design jobs will grow. The BLS projects 3% job growth from 2022 to 2032.

Digital Marketer

Digital marketers create advertisements and similar messaging for websites, social media platforms, mobile devices and other digital channels. They integrate digital media in the form of images, videos and mixed media to achieve their organization’s marketing objectives.

Marketing professionals benefit from strong employment demand. Jobs for market research analysts are expected to grow 13% from 2022 to 2032, according to BLS projections. These careers also report median salaries of $68,200 annually, based on May 2022 BLS data. 

Film and Video Editors

Film and video editors use editing software to create finished videos for digital advertisements, entertainment and news. They organize digital footage, add graphics and sound effects and turn raw footage into compelling stories.

These digital media specialists earn a median annual salary of $63,500, according to BLS data from May 2022. Demand for film and video editors continues to rise, with 9% projected job growth from 2022 to 2032.

Prepare for a Digital Media Career by Choosing Hilbert College Global

Want to work in digital marketing, graphic design or multimedia journalism? The online BA in Digital Media & Communication program at Hilbert College Global can prepare you for careers in these exciting fields.

Digital media and communication majors develop visual storytelling and strategic communications skills while learning from industry-experienced faculty. Choose from career-focused concentrations such as graphic design, integrated marketing and multimedia journalism to specialize your skills.

Reach out to Hilbert College today to learn more about this online program.

Recommended Readings

8 Digital Marketing Career Paths

Digital Marketing Specialist: Salary and Job Description

Marketing vs. Communications: Degree Comparison


Incrementors, “The Impact Of Digital Media – The Society, Future, And Our Lifestyle”

Indeed, FAQ: What Is Digital Marketing?

Media Heroes, “What Is Digital Media?”

U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Outlook Handbook, Film and Video Editors and Camera Operators

U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Outlook Handbook, Graphic Designers

U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Outlook Handbook, Market Research Analyst

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