The last few weeks have been tough on everyone. There’s a lot of uncertainty at the moment, especially when it comes to jobs. It’s a sad fact that people are being retrenched or unable to find any new work. However, times are changing and people are moving towards working online at a much more rapid pace than before. Popular options, such as teaching online, are becoming saturated. But, digital marketing, as daunting as it may seem, could just be your next career path. This post is to show you why.
What is Digital Marketing?
Digital marketing has been around for years, basically ever since the first blog post emerged or first bulk email was sent. Digital marketing is also VERY broad, as in, it’s a bit like telling people you work in finance as a job. This summary puts it quite nicely:
“Digital marketing encompasses all marketing efforts that use an electronic device or the internet. Businesses leverage digital channels such as search engines, social media, email, and other websites to connect with current and prospective customers.”Lucy Alexander, Hubspot
Here are some examples of what a digital marketer can do:
- Content marketing – such as creating valuable and relevant pieces of information that can be posted on a company’s social media platform (i.e. Facebook)
- Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) – such as creating Facebook or Google Ads that will help a company reach the top spot on Google
- Social Media Marketing (SMM) – such as running a company’s Facebook page and posting useful content
- Email Marketing – such as designing emails to reach a company’s audience that will inform them of their latest news
Why is Digital Marketing Important?
Thanks to COVID-19, Italy’s internet usage has jumped more than 40%. This likely due more people being at home, and therefore, more time to browse the internet and make purchases.
These days, your online presence is just as important as your offline presence. In fact, 89 percent of marketers say methods, like search engine optimization (SEO), are successful. Additionally, methods like pay-per-click (PPC) advertising increase brand awareness as much as 80 percent. There’s are many reasons for this:
- You are targeting people where they spend most of their time – on a PC or on their phone – during 2019, people spent around 2 hours per day on their PC and around 3 hours on their mobile phones
- Most of the competition is already doing it – due to ease of getting into digital marketing, even small businesses are able to handle managing their own digital marketing if they have the time
- You get to target your ideal target audience – when you opt for offline marketing, you can’t really target the people you want to buy your product (for example, trying target elderly women by handing out flyers at traffic lights)
- You’re able to accurately track marketing campaigns – being online means you have lots of technology that can track (in real-time) how your target audience is engaging with your content
- Your return on investment is way better than standard methods – with options like Facebook and Google ads, you can quickly change your marketing strategy instantly without having to wait on any external factors (e.g. printers)
Can anyone do Digital Marketing?
Now I know what you might be thinking – that this isn’t for me. Many people write off digital marketing for 3 main reasons:
- I’m too old to learn something like this – this is false. As long as you have the willingness and drive, you can learn digital marketing. Christine Meehan, a 48-year-old mother with two grown-up boys has gives a great story about how she started her journey here. Play to your strengths, leave your fears at the door, and try out the resources I’ve listed below.
- You need to go to University to learn digital marketing – this is also false. Yes, some people prefer going to a class because they’ll be able to focus more and not be distracted. However, if you are able to work from home, then there are loads of resources you can use, paid and free.
- The digital marketing space is too crowded – this is somewhat false. Yes, more people are looking for online jobs due to COVID-19, but digital marketing is such a broad space that you can always find your niche.
So yes, anyone can do digital marketing if they set their mind to it.
Where can I go to learn Digital Marketing?
There are tons of resources out there to learn digital marketing. Some are free and some are paid.
My advice – don’t pay for anything just yet.
Why? Well, digital marketing websites (such as Hubspot) offer full courses that cover everything you need to know – for free. It might not come with an official certificate saying that you completed the course, but most clients will never ask about your credentials. They’re more focused on your previous work and positive client testimonials. Here’s my list of free and paid resources that I’ve used and highly recommend:
- HubSpot Academy (free and paid) – includes a whole range of resources from SEO to content marketing
- Future Learn (free) – a 2 week course which includes an interactive series of courses which help and prepare people to build the digital skills necessary to gain a job or start a business.
- Facebook Blueprint (free and paid) – focuses on Facebook and Instagram marketing
- Hootsuite Academy (paid) – I’ve been using the Hootsuite platform for years now, and their resource section has always been of top quality. Their courses focus heavily on social media as this is their strong point.
- Google Analytics Academy (free) – focuses on Google Analytics, which is great if you already have a website to play around with. It can get pretty technical, so I’d recommend you first have a good understanding of other digital marketing aspects first before jumping into Google Analytics.
- Udemy Free Courses (free) – Udemy has over 200 free courses to learn digital marketing, so you can just find the one that you think is right for you. I’d recommend watching the trailers of each course before starting, as most are helpful in getting a clear picture for what you might be spending many hours on learning.
- MOZ SEO Learning Center (free) – this focuses heavily on SEO, but there are also
- MOZ Content Marketing (free) – MOZ also includes content marketing on their site, which is great if you’d like to learn how to blog effectively or know what posts your audiences will find most relevant on social media.
- MOZ Social Media Influencer Marketing (free) – Learn how social media, influencer marketing, and PR play a role in search engine optimization. This is great if you want to hone your skills to build a good social media following.
In the end, digital marketing is only set to become more important as more people shift to marketing their business online. If you’ve never thought about digital marketing, or curious to find out more, then try out the advice given above. You might be surprised that it’s a lot easier than you think. If you have any more questions about learning digital marketing, send me an email and I’ll be happy to give you more details.