We’re living in an increasingly digital world, so marketers who want to reach people where they’re at need to go online to do it. So it makes sense to direct marketing efforts where they will be seen. Look around you; everyone’s focused on their mobile phones!
Digital marketing makes it easy for today’s marketing professionals to create and disseminate effective campaigns to bring the eyeballs, the clicks, and the loyal customer bases. That’s why this article is going to show you why a digital marketing career is a wise choice.
We’ll cover what digital marketing is, the ups and downsides of digital marketing, digital marketing roles, how to create an effective digital marketing career path, what digital marketing salaries are like, how to learn digital marketing skills, and much more.
So, what’s digital marketing, anyway?
What is Digital Marketing?
Digital marketing, sometimes called online marketing, promotes goods and services to potential customers using the Internet and other digital communication forms. Digital marketing encompasses email, social media (e.g., Facebook, Instagram), web-based content, text messages, and multimedia content.
Digital marketing also includes optimizing search engines like Google to ensure that the business’s website appears near the top of the search page. This process is called Search Engine Optimization, frequently shortened to SEO. But SEO is just one of many tools you can use in a digital marketing job.
So, if a marketing campaign uses digital communication, it’s considered digital marketing.
What Are the Benefits and Pitfalls of Digital Marketing?
But before you start on your digital marketing career path toward a rewarding online marketing job, it’s wise to look at the positives and negatives associated with digital marketing.
The Pros of Digital Marketing
1) Digital marketers are in demand. As more businesses and consumers shift to the Internet, there’s a greater need for professionals to reach those new marketers.
2) You can work from anywhere. All you need is a tablet or laptop and Internet access.
3) You get flexible hours. You can decide how much work to take on and typically when you do it.
4) It pays well. We’ll explore exact salaries later, but spoiler alert: they’re fantastic!
5) It’s still a new profession. It’s exciting to get in on what’s still the ground floor of this new profession. New occupations typically pay better and offer more changes for growth.
The Cons of Digital Marketing
1) You must keep up. The good news is our rapidly evolving technology makes digital marketing possible; the bad news is it never stops growing. So you better be adaptable to change.
2) You need to discipline and structure. The ever-changing, fluid, flexible nature of digital marketing means you need to have organization and structure to meet deadlines, goals, and milestones.
3) About those flexible hours… We cited flexible hours as a pro, but it has a downside. You could have a client contact you “off hours” with a desperate request for a change. It probably won’t happen often, but it does happen.
4) You need to keep learning. We mentioned rapidly changing technology, which manifests itself in many ways, including the need to keep your skills fresh and current. Experience is needed; you must continually educate yourself, typically by taking a class or bootcamp. Granted, you don’t have to, but if an organization is filling a job role and it comes down to two candidates, one whose skill set is up to date, and the other whose skills are lagging somewhat, guess who’s getting that job! No pressure, right?
Is Digital Marketing the Right Career Choice for Me?
So now you’re probably wondering if a digital marketing career is a good fit. Well, it depends on your personality. Do you love communicating with and helping people? Are you easily adaptable to change and feel passionate about learning? Furthermore, do you enjoy dealing with the Internet and digital technologies? If you’ve answered “yes” to most, if not all, these questions, then yes, digital marketing is a good fit for you.
Additionally, if you’re looking for a recession-proof career with plenty of future staying power, digital marketing’s for you. And while we’re talking about the future, let’s see why it’s so rosy for digital marketing.
Why Digital Marketing Job Roles Are the Future
As of early 2022, there are more than 5 billion Internet users worldwide and growing. In addition, almost three-quarters of the world will access the Internet via their smartphones. In 2021, worldwide ecommerce sales hit 4.9 trillion US dollars, and mobile ecommerce activities continue to surge.
Remember, marketing campaigns are only effective if directed at the greatest concentration of people, and today, that’s the Internet.
Although some sources say that Internet usage growth is slowing, the keyword is “growth,” meaning that regardless of the rate, it’s still happening. This is because Internet usage doesn’t shrink; it only expands.
So if you want a career in an industry that won’t go away, you should look at digital marketing.
What’s the Demand for Digital Marketers?
Of course, just because Internet usage is steadily climbing, that doesn’t necessarily mean that the demand for digital marketing jobs is correspondingly rising. Ziprecruiter.com cited figures from the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, showing overall job demand in the marketing field is predicted to increase by 10 percent by 2026. Impressively, that increase outdistances the average for other careers.
Additionally, according to the Online Marketing Institute, employers need qualified content marketing experts, mobile marketing professionals, marketing analytics specialists, and social media marketers. Most marketing professional demand comes from Internet and website marketing, social media marketing and engagement, and search engine marketing.
Thus, we can infer from this information that the digital marketing demand is strong and will remain so for the foreseeable future.
The Digital Marketing Job Role Keeps Evolving
Like every other career available today, digital marketing roles experience constant change as new technologies appear and existing technologies improve. Remember, once upon a time, there was no such thing as mobile phones or even the Internet. In fact, when the Internet was first introduced, it seemed more of a curiosity, something that academics, nerds, and geeks enjoyed but had little to no use for the average person.
And remember that once upon a time, mobile phones were a plaything for the rich or the high-powered business types.
That’s not even mentioning the exponential increase in computing power. The average simple smartphone in your pocket has greater computing power than the systems that sent the astronauts to the moon in 1969!
So, as digital technology grows and changes, so do digital marketing roles. Every year we see faster and more versatile mobile phones, cheaper and more accessible tablets, and overall improvements in storage, processing, wireless technology, and cloud computing. As a result, the digital marketing industry has to grow and change to keep pace with these changes and stay relevant.
How to Land a Good Job in Digital Marketing
The digital marketing career path is relatively easy if you’re prepared. Here are five can’t-miss tips for creating the most effective digital marketing path and securing the best digital marketing career possible.
1) Nothing beats hands-on experience. You can take all the classes you want, but nothing’s better than applying that knowledge to real-life work situations. Consider an apprenticeship or internship. Entry-level jobs typically require fewer prerequisites, so that’s an option too.
2) Show what you’ve done. It’s essential to show prospective employers what you’ve accomplished. Create an online marketing portfolio filled with samples of your work, including text explaining the projects, the challenges you met, and the results.
3) Create your own brand. Digital marketing is all about creating a brand; the first brand you should create is your own! First, organize your online assets (e.g., portfolio, social media page, personal website) to show a consistent, professional image. That’s your brand.
4) Learn how to handle interviews. If you want that digital marketing job, you need to convince the interviewer that you’re the right person and enthusiastic about the position—for example, practice interviewing by brushing up on the most common interview questions and answers.
5) Get published. Whether you’re creating your own blog or writing content for someone else’s blog, people need to see your name out there on the Internet. This step is especially vital if you’re pursuing a content marketing or copywriting position.
6) Decide which area of digital marketing most appeals to you. There are many specialties to digital marketing. Conveniently, our next section covers that!
Finding Out Which Specialty Appeals to You
Digital marketing isn’t just a single, monolithic entity. Instead, it’s sub-divided into a group of specialties, each emphasizing a different aspect of the digital world. So familiarize yourself with the specialties and pursue the most interesting ones.
1) Affiliate Marketing. This discipline generates sales by promoting other companies’ services and products, then receives an affiliate commission. Many influencers practice this.
2) Content Marketing. This discipline deal with creating and using different kinds of content in digital marketing campaigns. You’re engaged in content marketing if you write online ad copy or blog posts.
3) Email Marketing. Email marketing touts products or services via email blasts. Check your inbox, and you’ll see more than enough samples.
4) Mobile Marketing. This specialty includes marketing on various app stores such as Google Play or the Apple Store. Remember, mobile usage is enormous today.
5) Search Engine Marketing. We’ve already touched on this one. This discipline covers search engine optimization (SEO) and paid search advertising.
6) Social Media Marketing. This discipline involves marketing on Facebook, Instagram, and similar social media networks.
7) Video Marketing. Video is an effective advertising tool, so this form of digital content is especially popular.
8) Website Marketing. Any business or freelancer worth their salt has an online presence. Website marketing promotes websites on the Internet.
How to Learn the Necessary Digital Marketing Skills
By now, you’re likely wondering how to gain the valuable skills needed to secure that fantastic digital marketing job. But before you figure out where to learn these skills, let’s explore which skills you need to get an online marketing job.
Digital Marketing Technical Skills
1) Video creation and video marketing. You need to know how to create, edit, and promote videos to increase website retention and boost online ranking.
2) Content management systems. It’s easier to work with websites if you understand HTML and CSS or code and content management systems. Common CMS website platforms include Magento, WordPress, and Shopify.
3) Data analytics. Learn how to use and understand Google Analytics, the most popular tool available today. Monitoring and reporting help you better understand customer behavior.
4) Design knowledge. You should know how to work with user interface (UI) and user experience (UX). If you understand design thinking, you build a better, more successful digital marketing career. Additionally, it helps if you have a basic understanding of graphic design.
5) Marketing automation. Most businesses depend on marketing automation tools to handle the time-consuming, repetitive drudge work, freeing their professionals to handle more challenging and creative tasks. Understanding the most popular marketing automation tools will save time, streamline existing processes, and increase productivity.
Digital Marketing Soft Skills
1) Adaptive. Technology changes fast, so you should be adept at keeping pace.
2) Analytical. You need to understand how data and statistics work and how they can help the organization. Additionally, sometimes you must “show your work.”
3) Communicator. You need to communicate well, including being persuasive and a good listener.
4) Goal-Oriented. Digital marketing takes organization and discipline, and goals can help you. You must set short-term and long-term goals, making sure they are SMART: specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, and time-based.
5) Multi-Tasker. You need to know how to effectively work on various topics, sometimes simultaneously.
So how do you gain these skills?
1) College. A college or university education can give you a head start in mastering marketing theory and practice, especially if you study computer science, business, statistics, or writing.
2) Bootcamps or online certification courses. Bootcamps and online certification courses give you a clear curriculum, access to experienced educators, practice with significant projects, and an intense, accelerated schedule. These resources not only typically offer certifications but are also a great choice if you want to upskill and reduce the time needed to change careers.
3) Self-directed learning. You can access videos, books, and online tutorials if you’re a disciplined, highly motivated learner who wants to set their schedule. But be careful: this option lacks instructor support and outside accountability, so it’s all on you to stay focused and on target.
4) On the job training. You may have lucked into an internship or entry-level position. If so, you can gain tremendous industry experience by working in the field until you’re ready to take that next step up the ladder.
What’s a Digital Marketer’s Salary Look Like?
According to Indeed.com, digital marketers in the United States earn an annual average salary of $60,434, with a low end of $36,313 but a high end of $100,579. These figures are subject to factors such as candidate experience, the local job market, and the hiring company.
Are You Ready to Become a Digital Marketing Professional?
If you’re ready for a digital marketing career, check out this digital marketing bootcamp. UMass Amherst’s Isenberg School of Management offers this excellent six-month bootcamp that teaches you how to create innovative digital marketing campaigns that boost engagement and attract customers to your company.
Once you complete the bootcamp, you earn a certificate from UMass Amherst and Simplilearn and gain membership to the prestigious UMass Amherst Alumni Association. So, don’t delay. Sign up for this career-changing bootcamp and take control of your future.