It's one of the hottest industries in the UK at the moment. Find out everything you need to know to build a successful career in the web design & digital marketing space. Whether you're looking to work for a web design agency, or in-house in a large corporate, hopefully this guide helps you.
There's one industry that is absolutely booming in the UK and, in particular, Nottingham at the moment...
We pride ourselves on being a digital marketing agency that leads the way. We've seen some big changes in the digital space over the years, but one thing always remains the same -- the route to building your career.
Whether you're looking to go into something specific such as web design, search engine optimisation or social media, or you'd like to build a career that utilises a wide range of skillsets, this guide should be helpful to you.
We're going to hold your hand and show you exactly how to build a successful career in the digital marketing industry, including:
- How to prepare yourself for a career
- How to level up and gain experience
- How to pick a digital agency to work for
- How to approach your shortlisted agencies and ace your interview
- How to continue your learning and become a prized asset within your agency
Agencies are looking for people that are proactive and willing to learn.
This is the number one mistake we see from candidates applying for a job with us: they think that once they've decided they want a career in digital marketing, the rest will follow automatically. Wrong.
When we interview candidates, we're looking for those that have a proactive attitude and want to learn about digital marketing.
Read, read and then read some more.
There's no better way to learn about something new than to read up on it. With the internet at your fingertips, there has never been an easier way to develop new skills.
Having some things that you've read about to talk to potential employers about shows them the traits we were talking about earlier: that you're proactive and that you want to learn about the subject.
Be specific at first and develop a broad skillset later
It's great to have a wide skillset, but in the early stages of your career you'll be risking spreading yourself too thin.
Sure, have a surface-level knowledge of the different digital marketing channels, but pick one that really appeals to you and focus your efforts on that.
You don't want to fall into the trap of being a jack of all trades, but master of none.
Don't worry, you're at the start of your career, we get that.
The most daunting thing about starting a new career is that you won't have experience in it and candidates get caught up worrying about this. The truth of the matter, we know you won't be experienced, it's not the be all and end all.
As an agency owner, what I'm actually looking at most is your attitude and whether you'll be a good fit for my company.
That being said, you can do some things to gain a bit of experience and set you aside from the rest of the pack...
Help a local business out for free
A good way to gain some easy experience is to look at some businesses located near you and see if they're missing anything in terms of digital marketing and, in particular, the area that you've been learning about.
Maybe they're not on Facebook but their competitors are.
Get in touch with them and explain what you're doing and that you'd like to help them for free -- you'll be surprised at how receptive they can be.
This shows me that you've got something about you and that you've gone above and beyond expectations -- a very attractive trait to possess.
Don't worry if helping a local business is a bit daunting for you, another great way to gain experience is to do some work experience or a short internship at an agency.
Most will be happy to help you and this can give you a nice insight into how an agency works. It can also get your foot in the door for future paid work.
Don't be tricked into thinking you should take any job. You should have high standards and work for an agency whose work excites you.
Decide whether you'd like to work close to where you live, or if you're willing to relocate. Then search for agencies that specialise in the area that you've learnt about and have a look through their portfolio.
It's good to shortlist a few agencies where you find yourself getting excited about doing the kind of work that they specialise in.
Then approach them
Think of a way to approach them that helps you stand out. Some of the candidates that have got jobs at Imaginaire Digital have done something extraordinary.
We've seen all sorts, from printed infographics instead of a CV, to micro-sites developed to show off the skills of the candidate and how their skills can help our business.
Things like this really stand out from the boring, traditional CV.
Well done, you've got yourself an interview! Now what!?
First of all, stay relaxed. An interview is just a chance for the agency to meet you in person and find out what you're about.
For a digital marketing job, we recommend thinking of yourself as a client. Think of some of these things and make notes:
- What makes me different to the other candidates?
- Why should this agency care about that?
- Why do you want to get into digital marketing?
- Which digital marketing channels have you been reading up on?
- How have you applied what you've learnt? (e.g. tell them about how you helped a local business or did some work experience)
Just take it easy and be yourself (we know that's a cliche but it's true!) and you'll be fine. Interviewers expect you to be nervous and, if they're good at their job, they'll make you feel at ease so they can find out about the real you.
Congratulations, you've got the job! Now what?
Hopefully you've landed your dream job and can now get excited about your first day. Here's a few tips on what to do next.
An important thing to note is that in your career with a digital marketing agency, you never stop learning. So make continued learning a part of your life and set time aside for it.
Other things that will help you further your career
- Ask questions -- even if you're asking somebody that isn't in your department, it's great to have a knowledge of a few different areas and you'll build your network this way
- Communicate with clients -- don't hide behind email, if something needs doing, get on the phone to them and get it sorted, they'll appreciate it.
- Socialise outside of work -- this is the best way to get to know your colleagues and will make coming to work something you enjoy rather than resent
- Ask for extra work -- ask your boss if there's anything else you can do, don't just sit around once you've completed your work.
- Recommend things that will help your clients -- it shows you care.
We hope that's helped you and wish you the best of luck in your future career, whether at a design agency or in a corporate capacity. If you've got any questions at all, send us an email at [email protected] and we'll be happy to answer them for you. Who knows, it may even lead to a job :-)
Also, feel free to take a look at our blog
If you're looking for your next move in digital marketing, the Zoek Job Board is a good starting place.