The digital age has changed the way we do everything, and that includes the way we basically work, shop, and live.
Shopping has changed as the biggest retailers fall to e-commerce giants. Work environments and positions have changed as remote positions are becoming more plentiful.
It was inevitable that marketing would change as more companies saw the value of a digital, content-based approach to advertising.
But what exactly does this mean for job seekers? If you’re a digital marketing consultant (or you aspire to be one), what specifically should you know? And how can you keep building up your skill set in the key areas your future employers will look for?
Today, we’re going to look at the skillsets needed by the modern-day digital marketing consultant.
That’s right, skillsets – because there’s more than one area you need to master.
Even with an overlap, it is important to have a distinct grasp of each.
From content marketing to SEO to social media marketing, there are several areas you should study and know to improve your standing as a real, worthwhile, money-makin’ digital marketing expert.
Let’s explore.Learn 5 critical skills you need to succeed as a #marketing consultant today Click To Tweet
Why Pursue a Job as a Digital Marketing Consultant?
Before we delve into the specific areas you need to study before you can become a viable digital marketer, let’s take a brief look at why it is important.
If you’re reading this, you’re likely already considering a career as a digital marketing consultant. You may even have some past experience in similar roles. But why should you continue on that way? Well for starters, there’s the job security. Check out this graphic from the Content Marketing Institute.
A whopping 91 percent of B2B marketers surveyed in that study use content marketing. That’s job security if we ever saw it – but the proof just keeps piling up. According to The Drum, content marketing is expected to be worth $412.88 billion in 2021. For reference, it was sitting just below $200 billion back in 2016.
When you’re looking to hone your skills and find digital marketing consultant jobs, you can expect an easier time finding work opportunities than many other professions under the business/marketing umbrella. But those opportunities are just that – opportunities.
They’re chances, and chances you must make the most out of. How can you do that? By taking a refined approach to improving your digital marketing consultant skillsets.
What’s a good digital marketing consultant job description? The mission is simple – use digital channels to help companies reach their customers. You’ll study the market, gain data-driven insights, and combine it with a creative mind for marketing to help your employer reach prospective leads.
The complexity comes in as you try to master all the associated skillsets you need for the job. We’ll discuss the bigger ones and go over how they overlap.
What Skills Should You Master? 5 Marketing Focuses to Study
1. Content Marketing: Your All-Purpose Lead-Generation Tool
The definition of content marketing can vary depending on where you look, but the premise is always the same. It involves planning and creating digital content to help a company connect with prospective buyers.
Content marketing could involve creating blogs, writing copy for websites, drafting long-term content plans, and much more. Check out this graphic from Timecamp to get a loose idea for your content marketing hierarchy.
The three-step process they reference involves creating big content, splitting it up into smaller parts, and then marketing those parts across digital channels. As we can see, there are a lot of steps to the content marketing process with plenty of overlap.
Digital marketing consultant jobs often call for you to combine your skills. Don’t get caught up on each individual aspect of the pyramid, as we’ll cover some of those topics individually later on our list.
But the point is that marketing in the digital age is about content. Quality, honest, informative, entertaining content can do a lot more for your clients than any type of marketing trick or “overnight” fix ever will. The only thing that happens overnight with get-promoted-quick schemes is usually the other party making off with your money!
It’s also important to remember that quality content works best in perpetuity. Clients need a consistent flow of good content to keep prospective leads coming in. Whether you’re planning it out or creating it yourself, that’s where you’ll come in as their marketing consultant.
2. SEO: Master It, and Master What Comes After
Search-engine optimization is one of the focal points of content marketing and digital marketing in general. Your mastery of search algorithms is important. But what’s even more important is how you integrate that mastery into your client’s content.
If you hope to land a nice juicy digital marketing consultant salary, you’ll need to work for a successful client. Companies that are the most successful are the ones that keep up-to-date on what they’re customers are asking for. Luckily, search engines make it easier than ever to see what exactly people want.
This graphic from ImForza shows some startling statistics. The second one is startling for the fear of tech monopolies – but that’s another topic for another day. The stat actually shows us how much we can learn by analyzing Chrome search results. And the first stat speaks for itself – if you want to bring in traffic from search engines, you need to master SEO.
Tools like SEMrush and KWFinder can be useful for helping you determine which keywords and phrases offer the biggest potential returns. But the real key for using these words and phrases to their maximum impact lies in doing so organically.
Create content that reads well, and that sounds natural when read aloud. With enough keywords in content like this, you’ll be able to generate traffic, leads, and ultimately revenue for your employer.
3. Social Media Marketing: Promote Your Content Where It Counts
There’s no denying that social media, for better or worse, is a massive part of our world in the digital age. Luckily, we don’t have to worry about the gossip side of these platforms, which can get a little cringe-y. Instead, we get to delve into the marketing opportunities they offer – which are diverse and profitable.
Social media marketing isn’t about making an account on every platform out there and hoping for the best. Instead, it’s about choosing carefully and going where you can best reach your audience.
What does your audience look like, in terms of their place in life and how the company you work for can help them? Check out this sample persona from Hubspot:
Making up these types of personas may be your job as a digital marketing consultant, or it could fall on someone in your department. Once you have this data, you can use it to discover where your audience is most likely to be, whether it’s Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, or any other platform.
Remember how we said content marketing and SEO would overlap with some other skillsets on this list? Once you have your social media platforms and audience pinpointed, you can start sharing your content (blogs, web pages, graphics, etc.) with them.
The important thing is putting it all together, and part of that involves making sure you master the promotional aspect of digital marketing with a good grasp on social media.
4. Staying Active: Blogging, Personal Social Media, and More
This is a skill set that some marketers tend to overlook. But let’s say you’re looking to be a digital marketing consultant freelance or temporarily, and your interviewer asks to see samples of your work. What do you show them?
Portfolio? Yes, that’s a great start. Links to published pieces? Great, that shows you’re an accomplished marketer. But there are also benefits to having your own personal investments in content marketing such as a dedicated blog and social media page.
It’s also important to be ready for an interview during your job. Kipp Bodnar, the CMO at Hubspot, has a terrific list of 14 Interview Questions to Ask Marketing Job Candidates — if you want to be ready for a serious opportunity like Hubspot would offer, this is a great list of questions to read through and get ready to answer.
When you blog regularly and stay active on social media about your industry, you show employers you’re not only looking for a job – you’re looking for a career. You take the step from being a person who works in marketing to becoming a full-fledged digital marketer.
5. Staying Active: Researching, Education, and Training
Being active as a digital marketer is so important, it made the list twice – but how? While blogging and posting on social media is important, so is being a student of the game.
How does strategy factor into research, education, and training within your field? Digital marketing changes as digital channels change – which is, practically, all the time? If you’re looking to develop a good career as a contracted or independent digital marketing consultant, you’ll need to be on the cusp of your industry.
Continue your training constantly by reviewing new material, reading case studies, and analyzing fresh statistics. You can learn new things all the time and, thus, create more profitable strategies for your employer. Whether you’re discovering a new way to promote content on social media or a better way to make your grammar flow, improvement is easy when you’re always learning.
How about a specific digital marketing course you can use to hone your skills? There are plenty out there, some free and some paid, each offering its own level of return. The question you have to ask yourself beforehand is how much is a profitable digital marketing consultant career worth to you?
Improve Your Skillsets with a Content Strategy Marketing Course
If you’re in the market to learn more about a variety of marketing skills in a single, concise course, check out our flagship Content Strategy & Marketing 6-week Course.
I compiled a great assortment of resources that I used to launch my own agency into a seven-figure success story.
Here’s what you can expect with this course:
The question to ask yourself is simple – how much are marketing skills worth to you and your potential future employers? $1,000? $10,000? Remember, when you’re a career marketer who is spending money on training materials, you’re making an investment in your future.
A high-quality training course from a reputable organization can look great on your resume. It’s the perfect way to complement a college degree without requiring you to accrue six-figure student loan debt.
With a course like this one, you get a full series of lessons, individual mentorship, and a great learning environment – it’s all the things you’d expect in a marketing class but without the headache of fighting the morning commute to get to a university.
Honing Your Skills for Success as a Digital Marketing Consultant
Digital marketing isn’t the future – it’s the present, and it is only going to become more important as time goes on.
Popular channels like search engines and social media platforms are the go-to sources companies need to delve into for traffic. Your skillsets should include a firm grasp on content marketing, which can be used to reach users through multiple internet avenues. You should also understand SEO from both a technical and functional perspective.
Throw in a mastery of social media and your digital marketing repertoire is almost complete. Don’t forget to stay active in your industry through blogging, social media posting, and of course, continued education.
Digital marketing consultant jobs can be fun, engaging, and a great living. If you have the right skills, you can pay the bills as an all-purpose digital marketing sensation.