We talk a lot about how marketing has evolved in the face of social media, automation and other macro-trends. What gets lost, though, is how marketers have to adapt so these changes don’t overwhelm them.
The typical marketing position looks dramatically different than it did even five years ago. Notice how quickly things change from year to year, and you get a sense of what marketers face every time they launch a new campaign. Whether you’re new to the field or an old pro, here’s what the job description might not tell you about the new marketing requirements.
They Have to Do It All…
A large corporation might need a database analyst, a creative specialist and a marketing strategist. In a smaller company, all those roles—and then some—are occupied by one person. If you want to be a successful marketer, get ready to do it all.
Today’s marketers have to write content, develop strategies, design infographics, run analytics, and then some. Of course, every job is different—ecommerce sites don’t use the same strategies as news sites, for example. What is common, however, is the need to hire someone who can take care of any task that needs to be done.
…and Do It Digitally
WordPress, Adobe Creative Suite and Google Analytics are all cool programs, but they’re also essential tools in the marketing professional’s arsenal. Your marketing team has to be proficient in several technologies if your program is going to succeed.
Some people learn to use the latest software on the job, while others catch up by taking courses (more on that later). All of them use it every day on the job. It doesn’t matter if you’re an intern or a director—if you’re marketing products and services, your most valuable partner is your technology suite.
They Have to Understand Data…
Marketing campaigns used to be measured by how many people responded to the message. Now, they’re measured by who responds. Lead quality is as important as lead quantity, so today’s marketers have to learn to dig deep into big data to better understand the leads they generate.
The ability to collect such detailed data made it easier for marketers to move away from demographic targeting and focus on behavioral targeting. However, it also forced them to throw out the old ways of thinking about target markets. The most successful marketers are the ones who can make that transition.
…and Act Quickly
While technology took a lot of little tasks off marketers’ to-do list, it also seemed to speed up the sales cycle. What used to take weeks or even months can now be done in a matter of days or hours … leaving marketers little time to sit back and relax.
In a typical day, your marketing team might run a report on banner ad CTR, revise ad spend on a social media site, tweak the text in a tweet, or resize a call to action. Thanks to the new tools, it’s easier and cheaper to manage campaigns, which has also made it essential to do it right away.
They Have to Be Compelling
Marketing today is all about creating compelling content. If your content isn’t going to grab the attention of the masses, you might as well quit before you even begin. Marketers are learning how to create interesting, compelling and controversial branded content that makes consumers fall in love with their brand. Pushing the limits of content marketing is an essential skill in every marketer’s skillset.
They Have to Learn What They Don’t Know
Marketing professionals have a lot of things on their plates, so it shouldn’t be surprising that some things come easier than others. This has left a talent gap, though, and marketers and organizations are working together to close it with relevant education programs.
Even if you earned a degree in marketing, the skills you learned might be outdated or even obsolete. That’s why so many people are signing up for certificates, webinars, online classes and other programs that help them learn how marketing works today.
Marketing has gone from a numbers game to a mix of art, science, technology and psychology. If your team is going to do its job right, it has to make the same transformation.