It has been one year since I started working in digital marketing full time and since then I have been getting a lot of questions from people how I managed to transition, how different marketing is from sales, if it is worth it.
Now after passing one year in this profession I learned a lot of things and I believe it is time to share.
- Focus on learning. It does not matter what your current role is. If you are a marketer, focus on learning, if you are not, but you want to transition – you really must focus on learning.
Before getting the job, I committed financially and mentally to investing in my education. I started a course to prepare myself for a marketing role, even though I did not see any opportunities open. The fact that I was taking extra time after work to study made very strong impression in everyone and helped me transition in a marketing role in the same company. Once I got the role, I realised the learning has just started. I immersed myself completely in new information to catch up with my new responsibilities. The good news is that information is all around – there are platforms like udemy.com, Coursera, Lynda, Udacity which offer fantastic courses at very affordable prices and self-paced study mode. Then there is YouTube, where you can find thousands of free tutorials. I am also subscribed to Google partners, Think with Google, Facebook IQ, LinkedIn’s newsletters and YouTube channels, so I get notified when new information is available.
- Don’t shy away from numbers. You must get extremely comfortable with numbers. There is nothing scary and any engineer would laugh at the level of math required for a marketer’s job. Excel will gradually become your best friend and you would feel the urge create a pivot table for everything. Reporting with Tableau, Google Analytics or CRM systems like Salesforce become part of your daily routine. My background in sales helped me a lot to understand the story behind the numbers, as for every figure I could see a person.3. Become analytical. If you think you have no analytical skills, this is not true. Everyone can develop such skills with practice. With the time, you get to see how seemingly unrelated events influence each other. You get to develop analytical instinct as you see more and more data. Marketing like everything else is very dependent on people and very dynamic. Understanding the influences by other channels like email, broadcasting, social media is crucial. Technology changes, big events influence people to behave in a certain way – this all will reflect on your results and you must be able to see these fluctuations before everyone else.
4. Give back. Since the beginning of my full-time role in marketing I committed myself to giving back my knowledge to everyone who is willing to learn. I started blogging, writing on LinkedIn, Medium. I created a course on Udemy.com which has more than 1588 students from 100 countries. There I share information I have learned on topics like capturing leads, generating online traffic and email strategy. Teaching has helped me solidify my knowledge and help others, which has brought me a lot of satisfaction.
So the next time someone asks me whether marketing is a good career, I would say it is a challenging and you have to work hard, but also it can bring a lot of great energy in your life.