Looking through my inbox the other day, a message caught my eye. I typically don’t pay attention to this kind of thing, but perhaps I took an interest because I was recently interviewed for a student’s research paper on careers in marketing. As an aside, I found it interesting that many of her questions were anchored in the traditional and many of my answers had a heavy emphasis on digital marketing, but maybe that’s because I work in digital marketing. However, I digress.
The message was from an Adjunct Professor somewhere in the Midwest who was seeking advice and perhaps affirmation on his course content for his Internet Marketing and Social Media class. He posed a question to a MarketingProfs discussion group: What three key skills do your new hires in digital marketing need, and also what skill are they most lacking in?
The answers were about what I would expect. But as I was reading the responses from people participating in the discussion, I found myself realizing that many marketing and digital marketing executives I speak to in my daily business seem to be lacking in these basic (and recommended) graduation skills. In many cases, I find that marketing managers’ mindsets are still rooted in the old school, the traditional. Sure, perhaps they’re aware that internet marketing and social media is something they should be considering. But are they doing it effectively enough?
Here’s what marketing professionals are suggesting that graduates need to be skilled in. Do you know the basics?
- Ability to write good email newsletters for segmented customer lists. Mind you, writing an email is way different than writing a traditional letter.
- Ability to use WordPress to create websites and blogs. Even if you don’t use it regularly or often, you should still be versed in the basics of WordPress and its capabilities. While there are other creation tools out there, WordPress is the “go to.”
- An understanding of Google analytics and knowing how to use it to improve performance.
Jennifer Waltner, a self-proclaimed B2B marketer obsessed with great content says, “Understanding how to measure the effectiveness of a digital marketing program and how to adjust to get better results is crucial. If you can teach students how to articulate program goals and identify ways they’ll measure success, their future employers will be grateful.”
So, how’d you do? Do you have a handle on the basics? If not, don’t fret. You’re not alone. There are plenty of agencies that can help. But don’t fall into the trap of choosing an agency also struggling with the basics. At least you might know enough to know what you don’t know…you know…??
Driving Point: Current marketing graduates are well versed in the basics of digital marketing. Are you?