There is no doubt that the skills marketers need to succeed is evolving. Fast. More than ever, we are required to be jack-of-all-trades. One minute, we might be designing a communications plan and writing content, and the next, we are delving into the HTML of our website and working out which <DIV> tag is out of place.
The following infographic by Infographics Creator provides an interesting perspective of the seven key skills new marketers need to succeed.
My takeaways about these seven key skills
- While not all marketing roles will require you to use all of these skills at the same time, the more you can demonstrate understanding and competency in them, the more you will stand out in a noisy job market, and the faster you will accelerate your career.
- Analytics is an interesting one. I’ve met many marketers who don’t like spreadsheets (and will avoid them at all costs). Being able to slice and dice data in spreadsheets is one of the most critical and basic skills any marketer should have. Of course, there are far more sophisticated data analysis tools in play now – and if the predictions in this infographic are correct, there’s going to be a huge shortage of data-savvy marketers by 2018.
- How do you gain experience in skills such as social media and data visualisation for example, if you don’t currently use them at work? My recommendations would be to read widely about these topics, and create an excuse to practice them – such as creating a blog or building a community around something you’re passionate about. Having 500 followers on your personal Instagram account is one thing, but showing that you have built a community of 500 people around a particular cause or issue, is more likely to stand you apart from a practical marketing experience perspective.
- There’s plenty of amazing, free resources that can help develop your skills. Just last week, for example, Canva launched its Design School, which is a free 30-part series about the principles of design. As well as teaching you how to use the Canva platform, it covers topics such as fonts, colour, images, backgrounds, shapes and icons, layout and branding. Doing this course isn’t going to qualify you as a fully-fledged graphic designer, but it does give you a platform to practice on, an overview of the key principles of design, and some free education.
- For marketers at any level, it’s critical to keep up to speed with industry developments both locally and overseas to ensure you’re aware of what’s changing and which skills you need to keep developing. Marketing jobs advertised in the U.S. for example, require quite different skillsets and experience than they do here in Australia. It’s worth keeping an eye on U.S. job ads to see what marketing jobs will look like here in 3-5 years.
- Technical skills are definitely becoming ever more critical. If for example, you can competently plan a communications campaign, create the written content, create a script and storyboard for a video and be able to post all of that on your website, and then blast it out through the appropriate tools that manage your social media channels, you’re instantly more of an asset to your organisation than if you can just do one part of that workflow. (Bonus points if you can produce the video as well!). Again, not all roles are necessarily going to require you to do all of these things in one role, but, the more skills you have in your kit bag, the better placed you will be.
What do you think about these seven key skills? What are you seeing in your current role, or where would you like to develop your skills? Please feel free to share your comments below.