Working in digital marketing is a challenge for many reasons, but the main one is that the goalposts never stop moving. Technology and software are advancing and updating at a rate we cannot keep up with, which means that digital marketing professionals can quickly become obsolete if they do not make the effort to stay relevant. Your knowledge and skills need to evolve at least as quickly as the digital marketing landscape does, or even just a little bit faster to ensure you are ahead of the curve. If you are feeling stuck in a professional rut, here are seven ways to help you boost your digital marketing career to the next level.
1.Work on your hard and soft skills
Most careers have two sides to them, and digital marketing is no exception. They can broadly be segmented into two skillsets: hard skills and soft skills.
Hard skills are those based in your technical knowledge, marketing expertise, and commercial awareness. You need to understand and be comfortable using the latest IT devices and the latest software, as well as being able to evidence the impact that your marketing activity has on a business using data. Your soft skills are those which separate you from other marketing professionals and add to your value as an employee, i.e., communication, creativity, teamwork, collaboration, innovation, negotiation, and influence. Take a look online to find out how to improve your soft skills in the workplace.
With a balance of hard and soft skills alongside a commitment to continued learning, you will improve your chances of progression
2. Stay on top of the trends
The digital marketing industry has trends like any other, and while it is usually wise not to jump into every one of them with both feet, you need to stay up to date with what is happening. Social media, for example, is a field that moves at a lightning pace in terms of what people are sharing and liking and even the platforms they are using. Not all trends will be of relevance or use to your company, but you should still have an awareness of what your competitors and businesses in other sectors are doing.
It is also important to keep your eye on trends in the wider industries of advertising and technology, e.g., artificial intelligence, as well as how to apply this knowledge in line with your company’s goals commercial objectives and strategy.
3. Build your personal online brand
When an employer is considering hiring you as their new digital marketer, they may type your name into a search engine. If they find that you have little or no digital presence, they may doubt your skills and suitability for the role. However, if they find that you are active on multiple platforms, have established a following, and are posting high-quality content, they will see the potential impact you could have on their brand.
You may decide the keep your personal social media accounts private so that prospective employers cannot see your latest night out or the funny GIFs you share with friends, but there is nothing to stop you from setting up new public profiles as well. You can use those profiles to post and share digital marketing content and to engage with others in the industry.
In addition to keeping your public social media profiles up to date and professional, consider building your own website. There you can share your background, education, case studies of previous campaigns, and blogs on the latest digital marketing news and trends.
4. Get to grips with data and analytics
To be able to evidence your value as a digital marketer, you need to learn how to gather, interpret, and act on data. Your employer and/or clients want to see a return on their investment in you and your campaigns, and data is the best way to show them this. There are several different metrics that you might track, such as visitors to a website, products purchased, inquiries submitted, advert clicks, or content shares on social media.
Understanding how to collect and analyze data to assess the success of a marketing campaign will enable you to adjust your marketing strategy, ensuring that you invest in the channels and techniques which have the greatest ROI.
Data analytics in digital marketing is so important that there are a growing number of careers entirely dedicated to data analysis. Visit this website to find out more about the top in-demand marketing analytics careers.
5. Be a risk-taker
When you work in an industry that never stands still, avoiding what is unfamiliar and risky is not going to work for long. You need to get comfortable with taking calculated risks, learning new skills, trying new software, and pushing the boundaries. Digital marketing is a difficult field to make a splash in, but when you get the balance right, the rewards are huge. Employers want to see that you are someone who will get them noticed for the right reasons, who is confident in their instincts and wants to continue to learn. You may need to have a contingency plan in your back pocket for the times when a risk does not pay off but being able to adapt to a changing landscape should be second nature.
6. Ask for help and feedback
No marketer, however experienced, knows everything about digital marketing. There is no shame in asking for help or advice when you come across a challenge or are lacking in confidence. Trying to bluff your way through something is only going to result in poor results, and then it will be clear to others that you did not know what you were doing anyway. Ask for advice from more experienced colleagues to fill in the gaps in your knowledge, and you will gradually grow in confidence.
If you are not getting regular feedback on your performance, take the lead and ask for a one-to-one with your manager or client. They should be giving you constructive criticism so you can identify your weaknesses and take steps to improve.
7. Start/keep networking
Networking is crucial when trying to progress in any career, as it is the best way to make connections, which leads to broader experience, new opportunities, and continued learning. You can network via social media platforms such as LinkedIn, but there is still no substitute for getting out there and meeting people in person. There are numerous digital marketing events and conferences happening all over the country, and probably several in your local area. Take your business cards along, introduce yourself, and follow up any introductions with a telephone call or email.