Digital marketing is a constantly evolving field, with new technology constantly being developed and employed across the ever-changing landscape of the internet. Whether it is learning how to write blog posts that offer informative tidbits about a product or crafting the perfect email to keep customers coming back, there are a myriad of skills that are currently in demand across the globe. Some are much more complex than others, though it would be wise to become familiar with at least a few of the ones on this list. Having a competitive resume is essential in the ever-quickening pace of digital marketing and having a solid foundation in these skills will help you stand head and shoulders above potential competitors.
Brand identity is one of the most important factors in strong advertising, so it is only logical that being able to develop slogans and pitches that help establish that brand identity is one of the more in demand skills these days. Copywriting is predicated on persuasive writing, being able to convince potential customers that they need your product, while also taking care not to shove it down their throat.
A strong command of the English language is a cornerstone of being a good copywriter, and this is not something that happens overnight. There are a multitude of courses that teach better copywriting techniques on sites such as Udemy or Master Class. There are also likely to be more professional courses offered at local community colleges if you want a more tangible certificate of completion.
If you want to test yourself and see how effective your copywriting skills already are, you can engage in a practice called A/B testing. In simplest terms, this involves making two different expressions of copywriting, such as email headers or website headlines, and seeing which one gets clicked on more. This can also help narrow down your selections if you have too many ideas, test out which ones perform better and stick to those. Honing the skills associated with copywriting will be a real boon to your resume if you are trying to break into the digital marketing business.
2. Search Engine Optimization
One of the biggest challenges that digital marketers face is getting people to their website. Your copywriting could be impeccable, and that would not matter if the link to your product page ends up on the fifteenth page of Google Search results. Luckily, there are ways to move your website up on these rankings, Search Engine Optimization or SEO for short.
Knowing what kind of questions your potential buyers are going to be asking is paramount in making sure your product ends up high on the results page, but keywords and content are not the only aspects of SEO. There is a hidden underside, one that is much more technical than simply including relevant search terms in written articles.
Optimizing URLs, assigning important website metadata, and making sure all the links within your website function correctly are all important factors when it comes to SEO. Google Analytics is a useful tool when testing out the effectiveness of SEO tweaks, as it allows you to view traffic to your page as well as conversion rates. Once again Udemy has classes you can take on learning the ins and outs of SEO, allowing you to sharpen your skills and bolster your resume in the field of digital marketing.
3. Social Media Marketing
Whether it involves working with influencers who advertise your product, trying to create viral tweets, or merely adopting an online presence for your brand that customers feel like they can reach out to and have their questions answered in a timely fashion, social media continues to grow as an influence across the realm of digital marketing.
Being able to tweet about your brand is not the only thing necessary when it comes to social media marketing however, as you also need to create value for your customers in some way. This will help convince them that your product is right for them, as well as potentially sweetening the deal by offering discounts or special perks.
One of the best ways to learn about social media marketing is just to get out there. Interact with the brands you like, see how their online presence is operated, and take note of what seems to work and what does not. It also helps to study when companies have truly disastrous social media gaffes so that you can avoid falling into the same pitfalls yourself.
4. Data Analytics
This skill is rather self-explanatory, as being able to analyze and interpret data has long been a skill required in the field of marketing, digital or otherwise. The complexity of the analysis required is only increasing however, as there are new metrics to measure and new tools to assist in this process constantly being developed and refined.
Being able to effectively analyze data is a factor in many of the other skills on this list, especially SEO as without knowing what the data means, how will you be able to determine if you need to make changes to your formula or messaging? Social media marketing is also helped by having a data analysis skill set for many of the same reasons.
There exists a myriad of tools that can be used when analyzing data such as Google Analytics, HubSpot, or Adobe Analytics, so make sure to familiarize yourself with these tools if you intend to dip your toes into data analysis.
5. Web Design/Development
If you have a website for your product, one of the most important aspects of that website is functionality. If customers become frustrated when trying to navigate your webpage, then they are much less likely to buy your product and might even spread negative reviews of the website around which would further reduce traffic to the page.
While the standards and tools of web design have shifted over time, a foundation in being able to read and write code, particularly HTML and CSS, would never hurt to have. Having these skills can also be a money saving opportunity, as if you are able to make changes to your website yourself, then you will not have to shell out money to have someone else do it.
While making sure the website works is important, it also must be appealing to the customer. The copywriting work that was done for the website might be great, but if the font is too hard to read then the message is lost. Take time to study the websites of major brands, look at the design choices they make, and examine how easy it is to navigate their page. While you should not outright copy what other brands have going on, understanding the principles of why their website works can go a long way in helping you develop the skills and ideas necessary for web development. As for learning the code, there are dozens of books, videos, and verbal instruction guides that have been released over the years in both free and paid form.
6. Content Writing/Marketing
Creating original content that serves the dual purpose of informing customers, while also subtly moving them closer to buying your product is a valuable skill that continues to see a rise in prominence as more websites begin to set up blogs affiliated with their product.
A delicate balance between offering the customer valuable information, while also avoiding shoving the product down their throat must be kept to employ written content marketing effectively.
While the first step in becoming a good content writer would be to master the English language, it is hoped that you gained plenty of experience in writing during your time in primary/secondary school. If you think your writing skills are lacking there are several options to bolster them though. Online classes, both free and paid, exist in spades on the topic. Another way to enhance your command of the language is to read. Read everything you can and observe how things you read accomplish their intended goals.
7. Video Content Creation
One of the most visited websites on the internet is the video giant YouTube, so it would only make sense that advertisers and marketers would begin to use the site for its potential in reaching a wide audience. While anyone with a camera and an internet connection can upload something to YouTube, it takes more than that to make an effective marketing video.
Creativity is likely the most important skill when it comes to video content creation, especially in an ecosystem where there are thousands, if not hundreds of thousands of brands trying to compete for advertising space within YouTube’s algorithm system. A subsidiary of video production is also editing, with which there are many tools and guides that have been developed to help enhance the appeal of your videos.
Even if you decide not to post your video on YouTube, you can still host the video on your own webpage, and this influences the position of your page within search results. Video is a powerful tool when it comes to marketing and learning to master it will make you stand when compared to other potential digital marketers.
8. Email Marketing
Email marketing speaks for itself, relying on email to drive customer retention as well as engagement. Offering relevant information, along with snappy headers is an excellent way to use email to reach out to your customers and continue to reap the benefits of their patronage. Presenting customers with special deals or coupons will also help in convincing customers to make a purchase that they might not have otherwise, offering a decent return on investment with how simple email marketing can be.
Should a customer not need your product now it is still beneficial for them to receive emails about your product as it will keep your brand at the front of their thoughts for when they might need your product again.
While it might seem like this skill is just part of copywriting, that is not the case in truth. You do need to have some copywriting skill when it comes to email marketing, but you also need to have the know-how involved in setting up the emails, as well as personalizing them.
9. Marketing Automation
Automation is the future, and many jobs will be replaced with robotic or artificial intelligence proxies as time goes on. While we are not quite at the level of fully robotic advertisers doing all the work yet, that day is quickly approaching. If you want to continue to stay relevant in the field of digital marketing then being able to aid in this automating process is your best bet.
There are many tools today that have taken over jobs and tasks that used to be filled by people, so learning how to use these tools, as well as potentially improving on them is essential. Tools like MailChimp, HubSpot, and Marketo are all integral to the automation process, though if you have some coding know-how then you can easily develop your own automation tricks as well.
Having a customer’s mindset is also important when it comes to the implementation of automation. Think about what would make the purchase process easier, what sort of follow up communication would prove beneficial, and what would keep them engaged with your brand? These are the questions that will help turn automation into a powerful tool for your brand.
10. Conversion Rate Optimization
In the end, the goal of marketing is to make a sale. This has always been the goal and will likely always continue to be the goal of those who set out to market products to people. Being able to make sure the sale is made is thus one of the most important aspects of being a digital marketer.
This skill is really a blend of several other skills, as you need to be able to test what works, know why it works, and if it does not work then you need to be able to improve upon it. Google Analytics is once again your friend as it can help you see the ways in which customers are interacting with your website.
Someone with all the skills on this list would likely be considered a conversion rate optimizer, as possessing all these skills will truly make you a titan in the field of digital marketing. It would be wise to further solidify your skill set by learning to manage other people, since even if you have all the skills listed, you will likely only be a cog in a much larger machine. Do your best to stand out, and always continue to learn.