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Five key skills for Digital Marketers

By Mike McGrail ​

The ‘glamorous’ world of digital marketing is one that many people fancy a career in, but what key skills should a person looking to forge a pixelated career have in their arsenal?

1 – Writing
Whether it be a brilliant blog post or a terrific tweet, anyone looking to offer their employer or clients a valuable service should have the ability to translate in an impactful manner via the written word. With so many digital platforms available, especially within social media, you need to be able to adapt your writing to suit the platform. From multiple paragraphs to 140 characters, it pays to be flexible. The art of copywriting has never been more important.
Top tip – Start your own personal blog, this gives you a platform to explore your writing style and test things out.

2 – Design skills
The web, and in particular social media, is a visual beast, and people are more and more expecting a high standard of imagery and design when interacting with brands, businesses, etc. online. I’m not saying you need to be a top-notch designer here, but at least be able to resize images for social media platforms and add some nice text, etc. to make them standout or get a message across. Top tip – Give picmonkey.com a go, it’ll allow you to resize images and add text and filters.

3 – Adaptability
This is especially important if you’re job hunting! When working in the fast paced world of digital marketing, one day can be very different to the next, and you need to be able to switch your thinking and processes to match that. You may spend a day researching an online audience, which takes a meticulous and planned approach, and the next day you may have to be on your toes and actually communicating in real-time with that audience online – this takes quick thinking and confidence. Adapt or die. Ok, maybe not die, but struggle to progress in your career.

4 – Analytical skills
Digital marketing is the most measurable form of marketing. We have a raft of data at our fingertips, and you have to be able to break that down into the stuff that really matters to your boss or your clients. In most cases, that will be related to leads and sales! Google Analytics should be your best friend. If you can understand the data within it, and how your marketing is affecting that data, you’re on to a winner. There are of course other data points that exist, for example within social media platforms, so try to marry the two together.
Top tip – Check out the free Google Analytics Academy and learn!

5 – Take a wider view
The term ‘digital marketing’ is actually misleading, as I’m not sure it even really exists anymore. I believe that all forms of marketing now have a digital angle to them. The fact is we need to label things and that’s why the term still exists. This means it’s very important that you don’t go out there thinking ‘ I want to be a digital marketer’ – yes, you may want your key focus to be online, as opposed to say, creating outdoor advertising campaigns, but be careful not to get digital tunnel-vision. Have a broad view of the latest trends across marketing and you’ll find you can offer your boss or clients a much rounder service. Also try to keep up with technology – the marketing of the latest technology is one of the most inspiring to keep an eye on. Top tip – Read adweek.com for a wide view of the world of marketing.

Take these tips on-board and wreak digital awesomeness!

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