Do you dream of working in digital marketing? Surfing social media, building beautiful websites, designing email campaigns, analysing search engine rankings… there’s a wide range of rad roles and tasks to be discovered in this young industry. Yet, before you can jump into one of these jobs, you’ll face some pretty tricky obstacles, waiting to trip you up and make your life difficult. At times, it may even feel like positions in digital marketing are more elusive than legendary Pokémon, but never fear – the suggestions below could make the difference between catching a great position sooner rather than later… or never.
If you ain’t got the skills, you can’t pay the bills. #Fact. A graduation certificate may feel like a glorified piece of paper, but a lot of companies simply won’t pass you through to the interview phase of recruitment if you have no evidence of your abilities. This doesn’t necessarily mean you have to go through university though; enrolling in a short online course can equip you with all the digital marketing skills you need.
Don’t settle for learning the basic requirements though. Whether you explore social media in more depth, specialise in adapting websites for mobile devices, or simply learn SEO, it’s a good idea to pick a niche that interests you. A potential employer will likely be impressed by signals that you’re a fan of going above and beyond the call of duty.
It’s never too early to start networking and introducing yourself to people in the digital marketing field. The sooner your name starts floating around the industry, the more likely it is that it’ll ring a bell when your resume lands on a recruiting officer’s desk. Marketing agencies want to know that anyone they hire has an active interest in the industry and its trends; showing that you’ve been seeking out and travelling to multiple digital marketing seminars and conferences is a great way to prove your passion to potential employers.
Thinking you’ll land a gig as a project manager or senior designer as your first job? Alas, nobody’s first job is a bed of roses. Your first position will be a blow-up mattress of daisies, at best. But, hey, that’s OK. Everyone has to start somewhere. For a talented person with the right attitude, any foot-in-the-door role can quickly lead to more satisfying positions. So, with this in mind, don’t turn up your nose to a job in digital marketing that may seem beneath you – at least, not if you’re really keen to get into this industry.
Even if some companies still ask for physical resumes, you simply must have a digital version of your CV easily accessible to potential employers. And I’m not talking a downloadable PDF here. Create yourself a blog or mini website on which you can showcase everything about you that makes you a worthy candidate for any hiring agencies. This could include pages featuring your achievements, your education, your interests and unique personality, and – of course – a portfolio of your finest work to date (even if it’s just projects from college or work experience roles).
Have all the know-how and skills to make a real mark on the digital marketing industry? Maybe you should go it alone. Try freelancing as a digital marketing consultant or offer social media/SEO services to businesses in your area. Of course, this approach doesn’t suit everyone. You’ll need to be passionate, highly self-motivated, and skilled at things beyond digital marketing (like communicating with clients and organising your finances). But if you think you could handle these extra responsibilities, the freedom and enriching challenges that come with self-employment could make it the dream job you previously thought someone else had to present to you.
Hopefully these five suggestions will help you on your quest for job success. Of course, if you would like to speak with some friendly experts about this exciting industry, feel free to get in touch for a chat. And if you have some tips of your own that other newbies in the job hunt could benefit from, don’t hesitate to share them in the comments below!