The role of a digital marketer is to promote a company through electronic media. This includes using tools such as social media, email, PPC (pay per click) and digital ads displayed on websites or apps. As it’s a constantly changing industry, there are many different strands to the job role that digital marketers have to keep up with. A digital marketer is also responsible for collating and presenting analytical data.
If you are considering a career in digital marketing, you are going to need a varied skill-set that’s adaptable to your ever-changing job requirements. Here are some of the top traits to look out for if you are hiring a digital marketer or considering becoming one.
1. Excellent communication skills
The first rule of any marketing campaign is that it needs to communicate the right things to the right people. As a digital marketer, the methods in which you do so may be ever-changing but the principle still remains. It’s really important you understand your audience and how to speak to them to achieve results. Your communication not only needs to promote the client, but also convey a sense of trust to the audience. Depending on the campaign, it might also be to inform or inject some humour, so versatility is key. After all, your communication needs to hit a particular niche that will be different with every individual client and brief.
Another quality you must have is being able to effectively communicate with those around you. For example, telling your designers how you want an email template to look. Or building client relationships as a whole. This communication then needs to feedback into the work you create to ensure everyone is on the same page. If your communication skills are poor, this can be a real challenge.
2. A pro-active approach
There’s an effort involved in marketing someone’s business after all products or services don’t sell themselves! As a digital marketer, you need a pro-active approach in generating ideas and taking action when needed. Understanding your job role and the tools at your disposal can be a huge help here. Either way, the effort needs to be continuous whether your stats are great or dismal.
Keeping your eye on the ball is a big part of being pro-active too. Let’s say you run a clients social media page and their company sells tea. You happen to notice ‘National Cake Day’ is trending on Twitter. A pro-active marketer would suggest whipping up some social messages along the lines of ‘As it’s #NationalCakeDay, don’t forget your tea!’ with a link to the store in the message. Being tuned in to your work is far better than sitting back and hoping for the best.
3. A passion for the industry
Demonstrate your passion for digital marketing through your work and ultimately results. To do this, it’s imperative you keep up with the latest tools and trends. After all, the nature of digital marketing is that it’s under constant evolution and development. A good starting place is to make sure you attend plenty of digital marketing conferences and events. This is a great way to learn from the creme de la creme of your industry, as well as to find out what is up and coming.
There’s also no harm in going back to basics such as revisiting PPC. It’s easy to take for granted the skills you use on a daily basis. Similar to how a designer will find updated versions of Photoshop brings new tools or commands to get to grips with, the same can be said for digital marketing too. So many platforms you will be using (such as Facebook and YouTube) have ever-changing algorithms. It always pays to show a general interest, so when it comes to setting up campaigns for clients you are in the know.
Having relevant qualifications is also important, there are many companies both in the UK and around the world that offer certified digital marketing courses and these are worth the investment as they show potential employers that you’re serious about building a career in the marketing industry.
4. Easily adaptable to change
Ask any digital marketer what software, strategy or tools they use. Come back in 5 years and you will probably get a totally different answer. Sure, email marketing will likely still be successful as will social media marketing. But, how are digital marketers creating that content in the first place? How are they collating data about the results? What’s the newest form of digital marketing that is slowly taking over?
With marketing, there’s no tried and tested method that will work forever. Trends change, as do demographics. To best respond to the flexible nature of digital marketing, you need to possess the same attributes. For example, who could have predicted 20 years ago that ‘influencer marketing’ would now be a thing? What’s next?
5. Be down with data
If there’s one thing that matters in marketing it’s stats. Being able to interpret and respond to statistical data is a key trait all digital marketers must-have. This can include everything from monitoring sales to website visits, and even how your audience is responding to your content in the first place. For the most part, you can use analytical tools but you’ll need to implement a response off the back of your findings.
Nobody is expecting you to be an expert in maths. However, brushing up on your number skills if they are lacking is definitely recommended. As a digital marketer, you may have to interpret data and present it in another form such as a percentage, or an increase/decrease in followers or turnover. Taking the time to find the best strategies of interpreting and presenting your data can make all the difference.
6. Great with words
In digital marketing, the pen (or in your case keyboard) most definitely is mightier than the sword. After all, we aren’t just working with pretty pictures here. As a digital marketer, you may write sales copy, landing pages, email newsletters, social media messages or even create content for PPL campaigns.
It’s not just reams of text you have to master either. Think of all the great advertising slogans you’ve ever heard such as “I’m lovin’ it” by McDonald’s or even “Every little helps” by Tesco. Sometimes short and sweet slogans or even product descriptions are required. You may only have 3-5 words to sum up a huge company or campaign, so being able to pick the right ones is key.
7. Au fait with the tools
Every industry has a set of tools that allows them to best carry out their job requirements. In digital marketing, you are going to require a strong understanding of analytics tools across all platforms you use to create client work and gather statistical data. In addition, tools such as Google Ads, SEM Rush, Mailchimp, Hootsuite and Hotjar are all considered as must-haves.
Try not to get overwhelmed either, as there are potentially hundreds of different platforms that may be required depending on your job and the client. However, it’s part and parcel of being a digital marketer to be on top of everything that will be asked of you, so it makes sense to get familiar with the tools of the trade.
8. Creative ability
While digital marketing focuses more on the stats side of things, it’s still important to be able to think creatively too. In digital marketing, the creative ability allows you to come up with the best campaign ideas. It also allows you to be able to recover from poor performances through innovative ideas you can generate in response.
The best way to improve your creative thinking is to constantly expose yourself to new ideas and practices. Reading publications such as The Drum is a great place to start, but ideally, look for as many different advertising/design websites and apps as possible. Another idea is to build boards on Pinterest as this can really help you gain new insight and ideas. If you work alongside designers, writers or developers then take the time to learn from each other’s creative perspectives.
9. A strategic mindset
You’re going to be coming up with content ideas on behalf of your clients. Whether it’s social media plans, email marketing or PPC campaigns – strategy is key. On a basic level, you need a plan of what you are posting, who for and how often. You’ll also need to know what the purpose of the content is and how you are going to deliver it.
It always pays to learn from others. Whether you read articles, books or podcasts – learning new techniques is all part of developing your strategy. Have a think about the most memorable campaigns you have seen on social. Or, brush up on your email subject lines to boost open rates. A successful digital marketer will always be looking to push the envelope so that their strategy delivers on engagement and overall ROI.
10. Able to Learn from past failures
We’ll hand this one over to The Museum of Failure who display everything from ‘Colgate Lasagne’, to a car developed by Ford in the 1950s that saw the vehicle go into reverse when drivers went to toot the horn. Failures aren’t fun to experience but they do serve as a valuable lesson going forward.
Whether you look at marketing campaigns from others or even stop to look at how your own campaigns could have done better – it’s a hugely constructive approach that will boost your performance in the long run. For example, say an image you put out bombed on social media. Take a second look at it – was the timing wrong? Maybe the message could have been improved, or was it just a bad fit for the audience? Deconstructing what went wrong can seriously strengthen your future output.
To be successful in digital marketing you need to be on the pulse about the latest trends and ideas. A strategic, as well as a creative mindset, is needed to be able to turn your ideas into actual results.
If you require digital marketing for your business, then Imaginaire is here to help. Click here to book your free strategy call or phone us on 0115 971 8908 to learn more.
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