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Why Should I Do A Digital Marketing course?
As a digital marketing education firm, we’ve been asked this question ‘why should I do a digital marketing course?’ 100s of times. Depending upon the profile of the person who’s asking this question, there are number of variations of this question:
- I am a marketing professional, how can digital marketing help me grow in my career?
- I am an entrepreneur, will I be able to grow my business through digital marketing?
- I am a sales professional, will digital marketing skills be relevant for me?
- I am a student, can I build a rewarding career in digital marketing industry?
- I am already into digital marketing, can I accelerate my career growth if I expand my skill set?
- I am a business head, should I learn digital marketing myself?
- I am an IT professional, is digital marketing profile relevant to me?
- I am an HR professional, is digital marketing relevant for me as well?
Since 2009, we’ve trained over 12,000 people from 6000+ organizations across 24 countries through 700+ digital marketing training programs. As a part of registration process, we profile all of our course participants. To help you visualize the kind of people who learn digital marketing, we are sharing with you distribution of our digital marketing course participants based on their years of experience and their profiles:
While there are number of fundamental reasons why there’s an ever-increasing growth in number or people opting for a digital marketing course, the benefits of digital marketing course vary based on the profile of a participant. Let’s review both these sides in detail.
Fundamental Reasons for growing demand of Digital Marketing Courses:
- Digital media user adoption growth: There’s an explosion in terms of number of people joining various digital media such as Facebook, LinkedIn. According to Internet World Stats, over 40% of world’s population (i.e. 3.3 billion people) today has Internet connection. It was less than 1% in 1995. Moreover, the amount of time spent on digital media is also growing. Interestingly, around 50% of this Internet user base is from Asia.
- Digital marketing spend growth: According to a report by GroupM, digital advertising will account for 12.7% of all ad spending in 2016. In 2015, digital advertising accounted for 9.9% of total advertising budget.
- Talent gap for skilled digital marketing professionals: Given the evolving nature of this medium and industry, academic institutions can’t take care of digital marketing skill building needs. This has created an ever-increasing gap between demand and supply of skilled digital marketing people at entry-level positions.
- Rate of change in digital marketing industry: Since digital media channels change so often, there’s a constant need of skill up gradation for people who are already into this industry.
- Growth of Internet-based businesses: Due to lower entry barrier, Internet based startups are exploding globally. This has placed additional pressure to produce digital marketing talent.
Benefits of a Digital Marketing Course based on the Profile:
- Marketing Professional: Digital marketing is the most sought after skill for any professional, who has a role to play in marketing including media, PR, communication. It’s evident that a marketing professional without digital marketing competency will be left behind in career. On the other hand, a competent digital marketing professional can expect significantly higher growth in terms of salary and the roles s/he can get in the industry. A lot of people with significant experience in conventional marketing (e.g. brand manager) are concerned about their previous experience while considering acquiring digital marketing skills. Interestingly, they are very well positioned to take up senior marketing roles. Why’s that so? It’s not that digital marketing is replacing traditional marketing; rather the role including budget contribution of digital is increasing and marketing is becoming integrated. For high growth startups or large corporations, they need people who’ve experience in conventional marketing and have acquired digital marketing skills.
Marketing professional, Manu Sankar Das, one of our esteemed course participants thinks that: ‘Marketing has its core in Consumer Insights and in today’s world there is no better way to reach out and understand your customer than with the help of digital media. I strongly believe that Digital Marketing is the way of the future and I wanted to be part of that change and be ahead of the curve.’
You will find ‘Career in Digital Marketing | Top 5 Reasons for a Rewarding Career‘ , an article I wrote earlier useful.
- Sales Professional: Sales professional is another large category of people who participate in digital marketing course. There are multiple reasons for their interest:
- Switch career to Digital Marketing: For entry level sales professionals, it makes sense to consider switching their career to digital marketing.
- Career growth for experienced professionals: For senior sales professionals, the primary reason to join a digital marketing course is to accelerate their career growth as there is an important role of digital marketing for a sales profile. For e.g., a sales professional can leverage his/her presence on mediums such as LinkedIn, Twitter or Facebook for prospect mining or customer engagement.
- Entrepreneur or Business Owner: For any business owner, acquiring new customers is always a priority. Given the growing Internet user base, there’s no better medium than digital media for customer acquisition. Accordingly, digital marketing is one of the most critical skills every entrepreneur needs to acquire today.
“You need to learn Digital Marketing so that you can make the right marketing decisions. Or you will be forced to agree to what your digital agency or digital marketing manager says.” said Mohit Doda, Sr. Manager Digital Marketing at Reliance Trends.
- Student: Surely, 1st job and career prospects are the key drivers for a student in his/her consideration for a professional course. Among various choices, digital marketing is probably the best direction for both short-term and long-term prospects. It’s not only because of the kind of salary or role offered in digital marketing industry but also because of the level of job satisfaction in digital marketing.We’ve been doing digital marketing training programs at various academic institutions including IITs and IIMs since 2009. Interestingly, participants of our training at one of the IIMs (i.e. IIM Raipur) had thanked us saying that all those who participated in that program got more interview opportunities than those who didn’t participate.
When asked ‘What interested you in learning Digital Marketing?’ Bhaskar Ballabh Saikia one of our certified Digital Marketing Interns, currently pursuing MBA from IIT Roorkee stated ‘Digital Marketing is a cool area. This is like a bridge for me. A bridge that connects both my learnings in engineering as well as MBA. It is quite an interesting field to explore. Best part is, it is not just about analytical skill that one need, nor the experience. Even a newbie might defeat an experienced one, only if he can think out-of-box. Only thing that limits a Digital Marketer is his creativity, knowledge is easy to achieve with an access to internet.’
- Digital Marketing professional: As shared earlier, around 10-15% of our digital marketing course participants come from digital marketing industry. There are 2 primary reasons why a digital marketing professional participate in our program:
- Expand their skill set: There are people who’ve specific skill set (e.g. SEO or SEM) or experience in digital marketing and want to expand their horizon across various areas of digital marketing for career growth.
- Build mastery in digital marketing: There are digital marketers who’ve basic understanding or experience in digital marketing but lack mastery to confidently manage advanced or complex digital marketing campaigns.
- IT Professional: While a digital marketing professional doesn’t need to know technology, a good % of IT/Tech background students and professionals are opting to build a career in digital marketing industry. Interestingly, I also fall in this category. After graduating from IIT Delhi in 1999, I worked in TCS (Tata Consultancy Services) as a software engineer before I got into digital marketing in 2000 after starting our 1st venture. Other than communication skills and creativity, analytical skills play an important role in strategizing & executing successful digital marketing campaigns. Engineers or tech people inherently possess strong analytical skills and thus are successful in digital marketing industry. Also, if a senior IT professional, especially the client facing people understand digital media, they are more valuable for their organization as most of the large IT solutions today require integration with digital media. Such client facing IT managers will be more efficient in conceptualizing and developing such solutions if they understand this medium well. For these reasons, we see regular participation from IT industry in our digital marketing certification course. For the same reason, we’ve also conducted customized in-house digital marketing training programs for a large number of IT service & product firms such as Oracle, SAP, Adobe, Cisco, HCL, Wipro.
On being questioned ‘What interested you in learning Digital Marketing?’ Debraj Dutta, an IT Sales Professional who opted for Digital Marketing course with us said ‘My current role expects a complete sales cycle from lead generation to closure and account management. Responsible for India domestic business I need to do mass mailing and other relevant options for marketing purpose. This seeded the idea of experiencing Digital Marketing to leverage on online tools and get optimal results. Thus, ventured into learning Digital Marketing.’
- Business Head: These are the people who are accountable for growth of a business as a whole or for a particular unit. As a part of customer acquisition strategy, they work with external digital marketing agencies or with their internal digital marketing team. While they themselves don’t play an execution role in digital marketing, their involvement in creating digital marketing strategy, defining & reviewing success metrics, identifying & deploying relevant resources for content creation is critical for the success of digital marketing in their organization. Accordingly, they need to be conversant with various aspects of digital marketing.
- HR or other Professionals: Since digital media plays a role beyond marketing function, its knowledge is useful for professionals beyond sales & marketing. For e.g., an HR professional can leverage mediums such as Facebook, LinkedIn for employee engagement and talent acquisition. Accordingly, we’ve seen increasing participation from these categories in our digital marketing course.
Btw, there are 3 other benefits of doing a digital marketing course, which justify the reasons why a non-marketing professional could be interested in doing a digital marketing course:
- Offer digital marketing service as a freelancer: One of the advantages of digital marketing service is that it can be offered remotely. Accordingly, there’s an opportunity to be a freelancer. For the same reason, we have a special module on ‘Selling digital marketing services’ as part of our digital marketing course for the people who desire to offer digital marketing service as a freelancer.
- To become an entrepreneur: Fortunately, entrepreneurship is gaining the respect it deserves in developing economies such as India. Digital Marketing is an important skill to realize this dream for anyone who aspires to be an entrepreneur.
- Make money through blogging or affiliate marketing: There are examples of people, who’ve been able to make significant money or build a full-time career in digital marketing. While it requires deep passion and perseverance, it’s not impossible.
When asked ‘Do you think that it’s possible for a newbie to make profession out of blogging?’, MissMalini (India’s Top Bollywood, Fashion and Lifestyle Blogger) said “Absolutely, but I feel blogging is a very personal passion. So I would not advise you begin a blog in the hopes of becoming rich and famous! First find a subject you are most interested in and feel you want to write about every day (and not just for the same of it).”
If you are someone who’s looking at building a career in digital marketing industry, you will find the below information related to job profiles, years of experience and average salary range offered in digital marketing industry useful.
Btw, this doesn’t take into consideration people with exceptional education qualification (e.g. IIT/IIM), strong professional experience or exceptional understanding of digital marketing. People with these exceptional assets working in higher growth startups or digital media platform companies such as Facebook, LinkedIn, Google can expect Rs 1 Crore+ salary as well in India.
Did the benefits of digital marketing shared in this article inspire you to look at digital marketing more seriously? Are you excited to build a career in this industry or leverage this medium for your business growth? Do share your views or any query you may have about digital marketing in the comments section below.
Also, I invite you to join me in our upcoming online Digital Marketing for Career & Business Growth orientation session. It’s FREE and you can sign up for it.