7 Skills

7 Essential Digital Marketing Skills For 2021

Over my career, I’ve met and trained literally hundreds of marketing managers, and watched the discipline grow in complexity and scope. Rarely do we get a chance to stop and take note and ask ourselves the questions…

  • What skills do I need to continue to grow my career in marketing?
  • What skills do I need to get promoted?
  • What skills do I need to shine in an interview for a new role?
Generate content marketing ideas/angles, fast.
With so much competition for consumers time and attention, we need to be great at generating content that sticks out and performs. Practising the skill of generating unique and relevant content, where it is placed, is essential. To assist you along the way here, we advocate for a couple of tools. Our favourite is “Portent’s Headline Generator”. If you are ever struggling for an angle, this will help you out, no doubt.
Ability to navigate data, especially Google Analytics
Of course, there is no shortage of data in modern day marketing. Unfortunately, what we are short on are the skills to quickly interpret the data and share it with the rest of the marketing team and beyond. We are also learning how to ask for data from other departments to enrich ours. One free and amazing source of data is Google Analytics. Yes, I know it can be intimidating, however it’s come a long way since you (likely) have logged in. Google also has a bunch of free training on the platform, so if you are feeling your skills are a little faded in this area, give the online courses a try.
Choosing the right metric
Like my previous point, there is no shortage of metrics running around in digital marketing. Over my time, I’ve seen plenty of them abused, overused, underused and used in the wrong context. You must find your key objective, choose an appropriate metrics to use. This is easier said than done, but it’s a skill that can be learned through experience and training. Here are some metrics – but by no means is it a comprehensive list.
An open mindset to learning about technology
As technology companies create new devices, and people use these devices, there will only be more marketing opportunities available to marketers. As we go through this journey with no destination, there WILL be new technology you or your business will need to use. If you approach the new technology (or tools) with an open mindset, you are more than halfway there. There will always be new tools and technology to learn.
Learn digital marketing productivity tools
There are a bunch of marketing productivity tools designed to make marketing life easier. From content marketing calendars, Pomodoro timers, Full page screen captures and bug reporting software. In our Skills workshop, we cover lots of these tools to speed up the process. Excel is so, like, 2009! Some of our favourites are Bugherd, CheckMyLinks & EmailThisPage.
Appreciate the power of connecting technology
It still never ceases to amaze me – the power of connecting technology. With clever backend technology (API’s etc), we are able to hook different technology to other technology. This adds an automation layer, and suddenly we have a humming system that cuts out lots of manual processes. This trend will only continue. Marketers must keep pushing the boundaries, and asking the question of the third parties and technology partners – “Could we do this?” One of the best tools to do this is Zapier. If you want to strip that back further, check out IFTTT.
Foster digital marketing curiosity
A trademark of great marketers of this century is to be naturally curious. There are so many new opportunities that come our way. It’s our job to seek out, review and potentially try new ways of working, creating ideas, utilising technology to connect with our consumers to grow our brands. Marketers who naturally like to learn, or a curious of new possibilities, will have long and prosperous careers.

What other skills do you think marketers need to have in 2019 and beyond? Please let me know in the comments below.

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