With how quickly marketing has evolved over the last few years, it makes me wonder if the skill set of a marketer has undergone a transformation as well. With increasingly `techy`marketing environments, I`ll admit, I`m intimidated. I have no idea how to write code or build a program or do anything technologically advanced. I`ve only ever peaked into the world of social media I haven`t been able to saunter through and enjoy all there is to see. It seems as though marketing is turning into somewhat of a science, so that means new skills to keep up with the times!
So, what are they?
Well, for starters, knowing what`s hot is crucial. Marketers are typically brought in early on product development, so if you`re not current and on top of the latest trends/techniques, then give your head a shake! Schedule time to participate in webinars, workshops, courses and conferences that will help you stay current.
Quantitative analysis is something you should become comfortable with, as most consumer needs are formulated through data research. Web analytics, transaction histories, behavioural profiles, industry aggregates and social community feedback are information floods you need to be able to make sense of. Become friends with Excel and Google Analytics, you`ll need them. It`s not just about crunching the numbers either picking up on patterns and trends is the real skill. Insights driven by data and lucid revelations are worth their weight in gold.
Be fluent in software. You don`t have to nerd up and become a techy, but familiarizing yourself with the programs used for your marketing efforts will only be beneficial. Even if you can`t use the software yourself, being able to outline a concept to give to the person who can use the software helps when communicating and expands your creativity. If you want to push your limits and challenge yourself, start by getting to know the basics of web marketing. Web marketing requires a new fundamental knowledge the new Web is a world of mash-ups (I don`t mean the music, I`m talking about the Web development term, a Web page or app that uses and combines data, presentation or functionality from two or more sources to create new services), widgets and APIs (application programming interface, a code-based spec that allows software components to talk to each other). If you can wrap your head around THAT, then you`ve already got a competitive advantage!
The speed of marketing is agile and energetic, sometimes even hyperdrive. The days of planning a few major campaigns for the year have been replaced with an era of micro-opportunities that can be quickly scooped up and efficiently executed. It`s no secret that priorities can change overnight and instant social media feedback demands an instantaneous response. Agile project management skills is what`s needed to handle that kind of pace. Scrum(no, it`s not the dirt on the bottom of your tub) is a form of agile project management. It`s a simple approach for managing complex projects and its key principle is that it`s flexible enough to accommodate changes easily to requirements without incurring additional cost. It recognizes that customers can change their minds about needs and wants during a project. Scrum accepts the fact that there isn`t a solution to every problem and instead focuses on maximizing the group`s ability to deliver quickly and respond to emerging requirements. Its project management 2.0!
Writing has always mattered, but now it matters that much more. Written word is ruling the marketing world companies in the marketing and media industry that actually matter blog. You need to be able to contribute to your employer`s blog at a high level. Consider starting your own blog (if you haven`t already) and write lot. Write about anything and don`t be afraid to work on the craft. Understand what makes people want to read and how you can help someone interact with their audience in a meaningful way.
It`s a good start but I`m sure this is just the shortlist of new marketing skills. What other skills do aspiring marketers need to have? Please share your thoughts!