Archive

Posts Tagged ‘marketing career’

Marketing Careers: 5 sites to develop and enhance your skills with free online courses

March 31st, 2015
Share

Marketing is continually changing and evolving, and nothing has propelled that more than the Internet.

This means marketers must grow with the industry. According to Formstack, those in digital marketing now need seven skills beyond the norm to succeed:career key

  • Analytics
  • Social media
  • Data visualization
  • Technical skills
  • Teamwork
  • Newsjacking
  • Soft skills

 

While the digital age has created a need for new skills, it has also enabled marketers to learn those skills with the click of a button, without going back to college.

It’s possible to learn these skills through books, blog posts, podcasts and more, all with little to no cost commitment. There are also moderate to expensive online courses available. However, for those who might want a more structured or interactive learning experience without the cost, we have a few options for you to check out.

Read on to learn about five different sites that can help expand your skills in a variety of areas.

 

Google Analytics Academy

Skill: Analytics

Google offers free online courses to improve analytics skills in its Analytics Academy. It’s an at-your-own-pace format. You can watch lessons from Google’s experts, then test your knowledge through quizzes and practices exercises. They have also created a learning community with course forums so you can engage with other students and experts.

After you’ve mastered the courses, you can earn Google Analytics Individual Qualification by taking the IQ test, which is now free of charge.

 

Codeacademy

Skill: Coding

Codeacademy’s mission is “teaching the world how to code.” For no cost, users can learn to code in multiple programming languages:

  • HTML and CSS
  • Javascript
  • jQuery
  • Python
  • Ruby
  • PHP

It also offers courses on to make a website, an interactive website and a Rails Application, where students build their own versions of popular websites — Airbnb, Flipboard and Etsy.

Read more…

Marketing Careers: 3 tips to help your networking efforts

December 10th, 2013
Share

Marketers invest a lot of time and energy to build strong customer relationships. Understandably, that leaves little time for personal brand building or networking.

But, let’s face it. With consumer trust remaining deeply connected to people you know personally, the need to build your personal brand and grow new opportunities through networking is more important than ever.

Here are three tips to help you approach networking and personal brand building. You can use these tips to get started, or to rethink your networking strategy.

 

Build a conscious digital footprint

Sure, there are plenty of people out there with a Twitter account, a Facebook page and a LinkedIn profile, but how are you using them to network?

Consider that a message resonating in 140 characters with your Twitter followers may not even come close to being relevant for an audience on Instagram, which focuses on images.

If you first understand how to communicate effectively in these individual platforms, then you’ve crossed a big barrier to growing and cultivating audiences among them.

Networking and personal brand building on social media starts with a conscious effort on your part to create a smart digital footprint around your personal brand that uses social media effectively.

 

Keep your friends close and your audience even closer

Reconnecting with old friends can be a great way to catch up on the times. You can also use the opportunity to evaluate how their skills can help your audience.

The big idea here is what I call recommendation reciprocity.

Part of building an audience around your personal brand means you have something of value to offer. What better way to do that than by recommending someone you know and trust who can help with their needs.

 

If you join a group, be helpful

Joining groups of people who have similar aspirations can open up new networks, but the trick here is to be helpful.

Groups can offer a wide range of expertise, but they also suffer from shortfalls in knowledge areas and hopefully, that’s where you come in.

Offering your expertise or recommending someone who can help will make a big difference in meeting your networking goals versus sitting on the sidelines and treating groups as pseudo news feeds.

With LinkedIn and Facebook offering huge online communities, and sites like Meetup offering both online and offline groups, there are plenty of choices to fit your lifestyle.  

 

Don’t be afraid to start a new group if you’re not finding groups out there that fit your needs. Starting a group and actively managing it is a great way to fast track into new circles, not just as a member, but as leading voice.

An additional tactic I recommend for being helpful in the social realm is using Q-and-A sites like Quora or Amazon’s Askville to answer questions posted by others who could benefit from your insights.

 

 

You get out what you put in

There is no magic bullet for building a personal brand or networking effectively.

It’s a lot of hard work and long hours. It takes consistency and dedication to reach your goals, but when has anything really worth doing ever been easy?

Feel free to share some of your personal branding or networking tips for success in the comments below.

Read more…

Marketing Careers: 3 steps for using testing principles to improve office productivity

August 2nd, 2013
Share

Here at MECLABS, we talk a lot about the testing process.

How to optimize and improve emails, landing pages, lead generation forms, shopping carts … all things Web. But, the testing process isn’t just a way to improve website performance. The general principles are transferrable to so much more.

One thing I’ve been particularly interested in recently is how to use testing to improve office and employee productivity.

Consider you’re a manager and have an employee who has been having problems meeting deadlines.

What do you do?

 

Step #1. Identify the problems with productivity

You’ve already identified the overall problem – missing deadlines.

Most people immediately jump to solutions and try to answer this question: “How do I get this employee to stop missing deadlines?”

Obviously, it’s because they need more resources, right? Maybe it’s because they weren’t clear on the requirements and what was expected of them. Or maybe, they just didn’t see the point and weren’t properly motivated.

That’s the same thing as saying, “My Landing Page isn’t converting,” and immediately jumping to solutions like, “I need to change the offer, add a video, or add more testimonials.”

But, what step did we miss in that jump … Analysis!

 

Step #2. Dive deeper to identify the elements that impact productivity

You can’t solve a problem unless you have a deeper understanding of the root cause.

For a website, we’ve been trained to ask, “What problems or obstacles are impeding a conversion on this page?”

Thankfully, we have a handy Conversion Sequence heuristic to help us identify the elements that impact conversion by asking the right questions during analysis:

  • Is it because there’s a lack of value?
  • Is the value clearly communicated?
  • Is the process is too confusing?
  • Are people concerned about what’s going to happen with their information?

All of these answers could be the possible culprits to your low conversion rate, but you’ll never know without identifying these possible issues and testing possible solutions.

The same thing goes for your people.

For someone missing deadlines, the question isn’t “How do I fix this?” Instead, the first question needs to be “Why are they missing deadlines?” or:

  • Are they confused with the exact date/time of the deadline?
  • Do they have a clear understanding of all the steps involved in the project?
  • Do they know all of the resources they’re going to need?
  • Are they able to build a timeline backwards from the deadline with reviews and milestones?
  • Do they not understand the impact the missed deadline will have on them personally or the company?

As you can see, the list of questions goes on and on, just like for your website.

Read more…

Marketing Career: National guide to digital marketing salaries

March 22nd, 2013
Share

If you’ve been a reader of the MarketingSherpa Blog for a while, you know I think passion is an important part of a marketing job. After all, how can you really sell a product to potential customers unless you are passionate about it, too.

That said, a marketing job is still, well, a job. If we were all independently wealthy, we might not be as motivated to take the morning train to a marketing department every day and leave our families.

So, today’s blog post is about filthy lucre. Or, to be more specific, marketing salaries.

Wendy Weber, President, Crandall Associates, Inc., has allowed us to post the 2013 Digital Marketing National Salary Guide  for free download for readers of the MarketingSherpa blog. Just click that link and the PDF will instantly download. There is no squeeze page or form fill of any kind required.

I asked Wendy about what she learned while conducting research to put together the company’s 2013 salary guides. Here is what she had to say …

 

MarketingSherpa: Why the new addition of social media positions?

Wendy Weber: Many companies initially held back on hiring social media marketers. They questioned whether social media was a passing fad, and since it can be difficult to quantify and monetize, they chose not to devote resources towards it.

However, social media has only grown as a marketing tool, and at this point we can conclude that it is most certainly here to stay. Big corporations, as well as your local pizza parlor, want “likes” on Facebook, and most companies of any size now have the capability to respond to customer service issues through Twitter.

The actual resources being devoted to social media vary tremendously from one organization to another. Some companies are allowing interns to maintain the corporate social media presence, and others are paying six-figure salaries to social media teams.

Just as companies who didn’t establish a website back in the 1990s eventually accepted the online channel as a new order of conducting business, companies who didn’t accept social media as a marketing channel that is “here to stay” are now realizing that they need one or more dedicated social media professionals on staff.

A truly experienced social media professional is hard to find; many fancy themselves social media pros, but few can deliver.

Job descriptions vary widely; in some organizations social media is more focused on blogging. In others, it may be more focused on Facebook contests or Pinterest … and pay varies significantly, also. Read more…

Marketing Career: 52% of all team members share all marketing responsibilities

November 29th, 2012
Share

In the MarketingSherpa 2012 Lead Generation Benchmark Report, we asked 1,915 marketers about division of labor (or lack thereof) in their marketing departments …

Q: How are the responsibilities of your department divided among your marketing team?

 

 

Marketing integration

“The best way to achieve a fully integrated marketing approach is through consistency and working to achieve a common goal – this extends beyond the marketing team into business services, operations, and internal communication,” said Erin Miller, marketing, Gantt Huberman Architects.

“I think there should be a healthy balance within marketing teams to share responsibilities, as well as assigning ‘trusted advisers’ to responsibilities that require more than general knowledge.”

  Read more…

Marketing Management: Incorporating giving into your marketing department or agency

November 20th, 2012
Share

In the MarketingSherpa 2012 Executive Guide to Marketing Personnel, 52% of marketers from large companies agreed that their marketing departments’ potential are undermined because “management is autocratic, uses poor skills, is not encouraging, or has poor ethics.”

If this is a challenge you face as a leader, your problems run deeper than any one blog post can fix. After all, as John C. Maxwell has said, “There is no such thing as ‘business ethics;’ there’s just ethics.”

However, one way you can improve your department or agency and avoid being an autocratic, unethical leader (ouch) is by incorporating community giving into your team’s workflow.

Sometimes it can be difficult to carve out the time and resources to give back to the community, but the rewards for you and your staff are too numerous to ignore.

As an employee, to me the benefits are obvious. It feels good to not only support my coworkers with their philanthropic projects, but to know that they would similarly support me.

Click to enlarge

An Instagram photo of MECLABS employees at the Susan G. Komen walk in Jacksonville, Fla.

Participating in events also provides a great bonding experience, and gives employees a chance to work together outside of the office.

However, as great as it is for employees, it can be harsh as a manager who has to answer to the bottom line. Reid Stone, CEO, HEROfarm, and Kurtis Loftus, President and Creative Director, The Kurtis Group, talk about how to balance the benefits of giving back with the realities of business.

“It benefits the bottom line when all of a sudden employees and managers are all communicating in a better way … which ultimately leads to more profit for the company. So internally, it’s phenomenal,” Reid said.

  Read more…

Marketing Career: Crafting an internal performance whitepaper

November 2nd, 2012
Share

An email recently came across my inbox with an interesting attachment, and I’m really looking forward to sharing it with the MarketingSherpa blog audience, because it’s a positive example for something I’ve seen many marketers struggle with – internal marketing.

In fact, when we asked 1,646 marketers their most pressing challenges in MarketingSherpa’s 2012 Executive Guide to Marketing Personnel, here’s what they had to say …

 

Chart: What challenges undermine your marketing department’s potential?

Click to enlarge

 

As you can see, roughly three-quarters or marketers said, “either a lack of funding or resources inhibit our growth and development.” So how can you get the resources and budget you need?

Back to that email I was telling you about. It was from Karen Doolittle, Director, Marketing Research, Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University.

Karen said, “While not a member of your organization, I quite often visit your website and attempt to glean information on the current state of affairs of email marketing.”

From the first line alone, I could tell that Karen is, what I like to call, a high-information marketer. The type of marketer that constantly looks for ways to improve her department’s performance. So I’m including her email attachment here, because I think all the other high-information marketers who read the MarketingSherpa blog can learn from it. She called it an …

 

Email Performance Whitepaper 

As you can see from the above link, what Karen did was quite simple, yet also pretty profound. I’m going to use an old quote that I love from Todd Lebo, Senior Director of Content and Business Development, MECLABS, to explain why, “Business leaders will never storm into the IT department and say, ‘I was taking a shower this morning, and had a great idea for some new PHP code.’ But they will come into the marketing department and say, ‘I was taking a shower this morning and thought of a great idea for an email send or a headline or a print ad.’”

What Karen’s piece says to business leaders is, “Hey, trust us over here; we know what we’re doing. And if you give us the funding and resources we need, we can keep doing it and keep improving.” But it uses data to prove that point, without having to make any claims at all.

Karen was kind enough to hop on the phone with me recently, go over the background of her internal whitepaper, and provide some tips to help you replicate this idea in your own organization. Below are selected edits from our conversation.

Read more…

Marketing Career: 5 tips for building a personal brand

October 16th, 2012
Share

The ladder of success no longer has certain rungs that must be met. Now, companies are placing a greater emphasis on company culture, and are looking for people who will fit into that.

In the days when large corporations were the trendsetters of the business world, you could get ahead by following a certain set of rules. As the recession knocked down some of these traditional companies from their former glory, a new way of doing business was highlighted.

Facebook, Google, Twitter, Apple and a thousand others like them ditched the suits and turned casual Friday into a week-long institution. Ping pong tables (like the one here at MECLABS) replaced conference tables and office spaces began providing an environment that would encourage employees to “think different.”

Companies are looking beyond info from your resume, and wanting to get to know you. Zappos, for instance, has said that in their personality-focused hiring process, they ask themselves if the person being interviewed is someone they would want to get a beer with.

As personality and corporate culture become a bigger proponent of the hiring process, it may be time to make yourself known and stop hiding behind a generic black and white, 12-point Times New Roman font resume.

An increasing amount of companies want to see that you have unique, unconventional skills to bring to their team, instead of checking off a list of qualifications on your resume.

Establishing your personal brand online can be the most effective way to get – and keep – a company’s attention.

Read more…

Marketing Career: How to get budget approval to build your skills

October 5th, 2012
Share

What challenges undermine your marketing department’s potential? When we asked that question to 1,646 marketers while researching for the MarketingSherpa 2012 Executive Guide to Marketing Personnel, here’s how they responded …

 

Click to enlarge

 

So today’s MarketingSherpa blog post is aimed at helping you overcome challenges #1 and #3: to help you get budget approval to build your skills. With Email Summit 2013 coming up in February, we’ll use a MarketingSherpa Summit as the example for this blog post to show you the factors you should consider when conducting a little internal marketing of your own.

  Read more…

Personal Branding: 3 tips for personal SEO

June 22nd, 2012
Share

If someone were to enter your name into Google, what results would they find?

Establishing your personal brand online has become increasingly important, as more HR professionals and hiring managers turn to search engines for information on applicants. Some reports indicate upward of 90% of recruiters regularly research candidates on Google.

Moreover, realize that your competition has already taken action to improve their search engine results. According to ExecuNet’s 2012 Executive Job Market Intelligence Report, 67% of executives have actively worked to become more visible online.

These executives are working on their results, but what about you? In a best case scenario, you will earn a few results on one of the top search engine result pages (SERPs). Worst case scenario? You find that you share a name with a slew of more established, accomplished and published people — at least according to Google results.

So, what can you do to improve your search engine results? Here are three tips for boosting the search ranking of your name.

  Read more…