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9 Tips To Start A Career In Digital Marketing

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In FY2015, the digital ad market in India is expected to grow at a rate of 30% per annum. And according to a report in the Times of India, digital marketing is expected to create 1.5 lakh jobs by 2016.This rapid growth has made digital marketing as a very attractive career option. Most people wanting to make a career in digital marketing don’t know how to get started. In this article, we’ll look at some ideas on how to start a career in digital marketing.

Familiarize yourself with the basics

Before switching to digital marketing, it is always a good idea to familiarize yourself with the basics of the industry including the key terminology used. Try and understand the meanings of terms like search engine optimization, search engine marketing, social media marketing, and so on. You can check out websites such as Moz, HubSpot, Social Media Examiner, and Search Engine Land to get yourself familiarized with the basics of digital marketing.Digital_Marketing

Different roles in Digital Marketing

Digital marketing is a very broad field with different roles.As a first step, it is helpful to understand the major roles in this field and the basic qualifications/skills required for these roles.

For example, the role of a Social Media Executive/Manager is to manage the different social platforms (e.g. LinkedIn, Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter) of an organization. This roles requires good communication skills, good people skills, and excellent customer service skills. The role of a search marketing specialist involves managing the different paid search campaigns of a business. This roles requires a strong marketing acumen, an ability to deal with numbers and data, and a solid understanding of paid search. You can also check out the various digital marketing openings on job portals like Naukri.com or LinkedIn jobs to understand the various roles in detail.

Network with industry professionals

Along with online research, it is important to connect with some real people who are working in the digital marketing industry. Get their feedback on the current trends in the industry and know more about their roles. Tap into your existing LinkedIn/Facebook connections and see if you know of any digital marketing professionals. You can also do networking through online forums on LinkedIn or other niche forums dedicated to digital marketing.Networking in industry

Along with helping you get started, networking will also help you at the later stages of your digital marketing career. The field is evolving rapidly, and it is always good to be connected to people who are more experienced. A strong network can help in finding solutions to specific digital marketing challenges as well as exploring new career opportunities.

Get formal training and certification

While there are lots of online resources for learning digital marketing, a formal training can go a long way in launching your career. As opposed to self-learning, learning from industry experts in the industry can make you aware of real-world digital marketing challenges. Formal training also provides you with a forum to resolve your doubts or specific technical questions. Also, a formal training program forces you to spend dedicated time towards learning. Check out any of the digital marketing courses offered by Digital Vidya to know more.

Digital Marketing Course by Digital Vidya

Free Digital Marketing Webinar

Date: 25th Oct, 2017 (Wed)
Time: 3 PM to 4:30 PM (IST/GMT +5:30)

Along with formal training, a formal certification will serve as a good demonstration of your knowledge in the field. Depending on your interest, you can choose to get a certification on a specific domain such as SEO or SEM, or go for a certification that covers the basics of each of these fields. While a specific certification is good to get started, in order to be really successful you need to know the basics of all major aspects of digital marketing. This concept is known as a T-Shaped marketer, or a digital marketer who is a subject matter expert in any one area, say SEO, but is aware of all other aspects like mobile marketing, web analytics, etc.

Take on independent projects

In the beginning, you should take on whatever independent projects come your way, even if the compensation is low. Practical projects will help in understanding the tips and tricks of the trade and knowing clients’ expectations. You should try out projects of all kinds, be it an SEO project or a social media marketing project.

Some ways of finding independent projects is by writing to digital agencies and offering to volunteer for a month or two (at a low stipend or even for free). Another option is to offer digital marketing to non-profit organizations or any small organizations such as local sports clubs. If any of your family members or friends are entrepreneurs, you can also volunteer to help them with their digital marketing.

The success and failure in these independent projects will help in building your portfolio and get more projects.

Grow your personal brand online

Digital marketing involves managing the online presence of businesses. As a first step, a prospective employer or client is likely to check your own online presence before assigning any digital marketing work to you. For this reason, you need to have a strong online presence. This involves things like having up-to-date LinkedIn and Facebook profiles with a sizeable number of connections. You should also create your own website or blog (it can be on any topic that you’re passionate about and not necessarily digital marketing). At the minimum, you should write a blog post every couple of weeks. You can also add a Facebook like button to your website, and try and get more likes on this page by creating engaging content.

Embrace technology

Although digital marketing is not as technical as say writing a software code, you need to be somewhat technology-savvy to have a successful career. For example, it is a good idea to have a basic understanding of HTML and JavaScript. Check out the sites of W3Schools and Codeacademy for free courses on these two programming languages. Also, you should keenly follow the announcements of technology companies like Google, Facebook and Apple.Embrace Technology

Leverage your existing role

If you’re already employed and are looking for a switch to digital marketing, this can be a huge advantage. In addition to your current work, you can volunteer to do some digital marketing for your organization. Specifically, this applies to people in sales and marketing or HR roles.

Try and play to your strengths. For example, if you are good with numbers and data, you can offer to help your digital marketing team with some number crunching tasks. Or if you are a good copywriter, you can offer to write copy for blogs/social media pages/company newsletter. If you are in a HR role, you can contribute to the employer branding side through various social media channels.

Stay updated on the latest trends:

Whether you are starting out your career or are a seasoned professional in this field, it is crucial to be aware of the latest developments in this field. You can do so by following digital marketing thought leaders such as Neil Patel, Dharmesh Shah, Jay Baer, among others on Twitter and LinkedIn.

Digital Marketing Course by Digital Vidya

Free Digital Marketing Webinar

Date: 25th Oct, 2017 (Wed)
Time: 3 PM to 4:30 PM (IST/GMT +5:30)

Also, websites such as Search Engine Land, Marketing Land, Econsultancy, eMarketer are good resources to stay updated. You can sign up for a daily/weekly newsletter of any of these websites. Digital Vidya regularly organizes webinars where industry professionals share the latest trends in digital marketing. Digital Vidya’s blog is also a good resource for staying updated on the latest developments.

Another useful way of learning is to check the digital marketing initiatives of leading brands. For example, check out the social media pages of top global brands like Coca Cola, IBM, and McDonald’s. You can also check out how these top brands do paid advertising on Google or Facebook.

Conclusion

As you can see, there are lot of ways to start a career in digital marketing. As with any field, determination and passion are very important to help you land the first opportunity.

Image Credits: Oureducation.in, LinkedIn.com, SMB Technologies

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  • There are 2 comments


    • 2 years ago

      Hrucha Mehta   /   Reply

      Good tips.
      Being a digital marketing aspirant, I have already followed a few of these tips before. Only problem is when you work as a social media marketer, you do not feel like looking at your personal social accounts at all! :p

    • 1 year ago

      Mustafa Adamji   /   Reply

      This blog is informational, especially for an aspiring digital marketer like me.

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