The word you hear thrown about in every conversation, whether it’s business related or not is, Digital Marketing! Everyone and anyone seem to be interested in this phenomenon, but what is this Digital Marketing really?
Technically speaking, the process of delivering advertising through digital channels like search engines, websites, social media, email, and mobile apps is referred to as Digital Marketing. While that is the most basic definition, it does encompass a wide range of marketing activities, though not all of them are agreed upon universally; let’s look at the most common types below.
When you enter a term into a search engine, you get a few called “sponsored result” at the very top of the results page; these are called Paid search, or pay-per-click (PPC) advertising. For each time someone clicks on your ad, you’ll have to pay a fee to the search engine. PPC ads are flexible, visible and can be tailored to appear when specific search terms are entered (contextual advertisements—ads that appear when a person is searching for a particular keyword or term), thus you will have ads that cater to a particular audience which is why it works effectively for many different types of organizations.
“Content is king” is no more a cliché because without great content your digital marketing activities will lack the very fuel that drives them:
- Modern SEO is very dependent on great content
- If you want to get noticed on social media, eye-catching content is what you’ll have to strive for.
- Emails and paid search ads survive on this because it offers something of value to the customers.
Your content should be clever so as to educate and inspire the reader, but not promotional in nature. Keep your content relevant to your audience and resourceful, thus ensuring that you will be seen as a valuable source of information and won’t be tuned out.
You might think Email is so old it’s almost redundant, but that’s where you’re wrong because old or not, it isn’t going anywhere anytime soon. When you need to reach your customers quickly the most direct way to reach out to your customers with critical information is through email only. All of are still very much attached to our emails and rely on it quite heavily and the same applies to the consumer.
But then not just any email will do, for your email campaigns to be successful they need to be engaging, relevant, informative, entertaining and also satisfy these five core attributes:
- Be coordinated across channels
Mobile devices have become such an integral part of our lives that it seems almost impossible to imagine life without them. We use them for everything and this makes it an extremely personal channel which marketers should understand how to effectively communicate on to reach their targeted customers. Mobile marketing is incredibly important and very nuanced, so find the right method that fits your business; it may be SMS or MMS or any other form of mobile marketing, but it should be one that not only delivers your message but also coordinates your marketing efforts across digital channels.
After you’re done with all your campaigns and efforts you’ll still need something to hold it all together and that glue is Marketing automation. This is an integral platform without which all your campaigns will be an unfinished puzzle that is missing a very crucial piece. With this software, all your marketing tasks and workflows will be streamlined and automated and also helps you evaluate and grow by measuring the results and ROI of your digital campaigns.
So basically, marketing automation will give you some much-needed insight into the programs that work well and which aren’t and also provides metrics which shows you the impact of digital marketing on the bottom line.
Even if a career in digital marketing doesn’t interest you, you should learn digital marketing.
And why is that, do you think? Simple, it’s the backbone of today’s economy and irrespective of your job profile or role in the organisation; digital marketing skills are a must.
While it may seem like every other career option out there, the reality is quite different. And of all the things you can do, ignoring digital marketing isn’t one of them because it’s almost like a mode of communication, a language among marketers, if you will. Without those skills, it’ll feel as if you have a handicap!
Everyone is into digital marketing and maybe you haven’t realised it yet but that teenage girl uploading photos of homemade soaps and cupcakes on instagram is actually doing digital marketing, even those petitions you get from those social activists on Change.org are doing digital marketing.
To have a successful marketing campaign that will result in sales and brings in revenue, it imperative to understand what the customer wants and digital marketing can help you with that like nothing else. You see, during the process of product creation, marketing and communication will be built in. Failing which will lead to you having a product that no one understands how to use, meaning your business will fail. So, whether you’re part of the support team or marketing team doesn’t matter and where you fit in the organisation is immaterial but having good digital marketing skills, whichever team you’re in will help the business grow. And this is why digital marketing skills are given so much importance now, whether you’re a self-employed professional or an employee in some organisation.
The 3 Big Benefits of a Career in Digital Marketing
Having given you a brief on why Digital Marketing is important for your business, you would’ve got a gist of the hype surrounding Digital Marketing. This is a field where the job market is booming, if you have any digital marketing skills then you’ll find you’re in serious demand as brands are focusing more on digital marketing than ever before and the digital skills gap is set to widen. So that means, enhanced budgets, better pay and more career choice to name just some of the benefits that digital marketing professionals have over others.
Become an In-Demand Professional
We mentioned about the digital skills gap, right? What that means is there’s going to be about 150,000 digital jobs by 2020 according to predictions and there aren’t enough skilled digital professionals to fill them. And for all those who are studying digital marketing or have chosen a career in the field have a unique competitive advantage, because here’s a career you can gear up for where demand exceeds supply. And when you’re in demand, you’ve got a career that is future-proof, better job security and even better career progression! Now that’s a tailor made situation begging to be taken advantage of!
Better pay compared to your peers
Whenever there is a demand for something that exceeds the supply, traditional economics we suggests (and has proved) that the value of the product increases along with the price. So think of yourself like a commodity which is a skilled Digital Marketer in demand, now you can command a better pay for yourself because you know there’s a large skills shortage – and negotiate your salary accordingly.
Kick-start your own career
Other traditional careers will see you climbing up the ladder at a snail’s pace, and even creating a portfolio for yourself will require the help of a coveted internship or graduate placement to gain experience. And both of those opportunities are in short supply and have more demand. But in the digital marketing world, you will have a host of opportunities through which you can launch your own career before setting foot in a workplace.
And we all know the importance of social media profiles, building a powerful social media presence will help you stand out to potential employers. So invest a bit of time in gaining your own Twitter followers, start your own blog and contribute to relevant online conversations to build your social presence. Improve your skills and take online certification exams like the Google Analytics exam and HubSpot’s Inbound Certification exam which will not only showcase your digital marketing knowledge to potential employers but also adds a boost to your CV.
The 5 best digital marketing courses to make you a pro marketer
Analytics, copywriting, creative direction, sales, digital media, etc are just a few of the skills among a whole host of them that the modern Digital marketers are expected to be proficient in. But this market is an ever changing landscape that requires you to close the skills gap and keep yourself relevant in a more effective way. And it isn’t practical to invest tens of thousands of dollars and commit years of your life to get a degree in each discipline, which is why along with being effective it also needs to be quick.
While experience does count for a lot, it can only take you so far and without specialized training you can’t make it any further. A competitive edge is necessary to stay ahead, and you can only get that competitive edge with some cutting edge digital marketing skills and updating them often.
So, we’ve picked these 5 digital marketing training courses that we think are the best from around the world which will help you build a successful career in the field. These training courses aren’t just popular; they are the best option to digitally boost up your marketing career. Here’s our take on them:
Simplilearn’s Full Stack Digital Marketer Masters Program
To become industry-ready you’ll need the skill set of an expert marketer and this you can get with the Full Stack Digital Marketer Masters Program which provides you with access to nine full-length, comprehensive courses that encompasses all areas of digital marketing with a learning path that comes highly recommended by experts you’ll gain the necessary expertise required on all digital platforms.
- An introduction to the subject through the Digital Marketing Certified Associate course and related project work;
- nine advanced courses that comprises of PPC, web analytics, SEO, content and email;
- mentoring sessions by experts on a monthly basis;
- learn with Android and iOS apps on-the-go; and
- Certificate on completion of the Masters Program from Simplilearn.
The Masters Program includes a learning path curated by experts in the industry; it’s a step-by-step plan through which you can acquire the right digital marketing skill set enabling you to manage the entire digital marketing initiatives of an organization.
If you look at the course page, it explains that the Learning Path is started off with a foundational DMCA course, which gives the learners a broad, 360o understanding of digital marketing’s principles. Then as the learners progress in their path, they’ll pick up advanced skills in web analytics, paid marketing, SEO, social media, components that every digital marketing professional must be skilled in. Additionally, they provide elective subjects: Content Marketing, Email Marketing, Conversion Optimization & Mobile Marketing which will help you gather additional knowledge on areas as you need them and gives you flexibility to master them.
Simplilearn’s courses are the best as the all include high-quality videos, projects, quizzes, simulation exams, active expert forums, downloadable workbooks and apps amounting to 200+ hours of e-learning content and additionally they are accredited by OMCP.
Market Motive’s Digital Marketing Expert Pass
Market Motive, since its inception in 2007, has become a trailblazer in online digital marketing training. Enterprises all across the world trust in Market Motive’s structured curriculum and it is also licensed by universities worldwide. Topics like analytics, SEO, PPC, social, conversion, mobile, email and content marketing that are absolutely necessary for any digital marketer are included in Market Motive’s Expert Pass, all of which you’ll learn during the training period of 250+ hours.
- e-learning content of 250+ hours;
- training by Silicon Valley faculty;
- training from a modern, interdisciplinary approach;
- courses in Content, Social, Analytics, PPC, Conversion, Mobile, Email, AdWords and SEO; and
- access to a forum of experts like Avinash Kaushik and Brad Geddes.
You can avail the Expert Pass course in two subscription plans:
- the monthly plan priced at $299; and
- the yearly plan at $999.
With each of them you get downloadable workbooks, webinars and access to an active forum frequented by industry experts.
The courses at Market Motive are formulated for aspirants of all skill levels, regardless of their experience and background.
Coursera’s Digital Marketing Specialization
Coursera’s Digital Marketing Specialization will give you access to five courses and a hands-on capstone project, the completion of which will earn you a certificate. Each course which takes approximately 32-40 hours over a period of four weeks, covers analytics, SEO, social and 3-D printing. The entire specialization track will take around 26 weeks from start to finish. The entire package is priced at $426; but if you don’t need the whole gamut then choose the individual courses which are priced at $79.
The five-course offering will give you:
- Marketing in a digital world;
- both theory, practice in marketing analytics for digital marketers ;
- An overview of digital marketing channels;
- digital strategy planning; and
- A capstone project in association with Grainger industries.
If you’re a novice to the world of digital marketing, then you’ve come to the right place, because for beginners there’s no other program does a good job of introducing them to the world of online marketing. Even though the course has an open availability there are a few drawbacks that need to be looked into, you will not have any access to industry experts to instruct or provide training, no mentored guidance and no on-demand support for even their premium customers. All these will make it challenging to complete the specialization as you will be self-learning unlike some of the other courses mentioned here.
AMA’s Digital Marketing eLearning Certificate Modules
If you haven’t got a lot of time to invest and can only put in an hour at best, then consider the course from the American Marketing Association which offers a series of Digital Marketing eLearning Certificate modules on topics like Social Media Marketing, Email Marketing, Web & Digital Analytics, Content Marketing and Mobile Marketing.
- Through AMA’s Digital Marketing course modules you’ll get:
- interactive e-learning material with checks for knowledge (tests);
- interactive case studies;
- a assessment quiz made up of 10 questions at the end of each module; and
- Continuing Education Unit(s) that count toward AMA’s own PCM credential.
If you’re a member of the AMA, you can get each of these courses for $99, while non-members will have to shell out $129. Each of the courses last an hour, and upon completion of each course you’ll have to pass a 10-question quiz to earn the certificate of completion.
This is another course that is targeted at beginners; their introductory courses are not as comprehensive as some of the other courses mentioned but if you’re interested in the AMA’s Professional Certified Marketer (PCM) credential, then you’ll benefit the most from these modules.
Lynda.com’s Marketing Tutorials
Lynda.com’s smorgasbord of Marketing Training + Tutorials will work for you perfectly if you’re a self-learner who likes to browse, sort and find your own path during your spare time. The course isn’t structured, but if you’re on a budget and still need to learn Digital marketing urgently, then $24.99 per month is a good choice especially for beginners who are testing the waters. Again the drawback, if you need to download anything then you’ll have to shell out more.
- separate training videos covering every topic in digital marketing;
- practice files that you can use offline; and
- with each course you’ll also get video playlists, transcripts and certificates.
Lynda.com while not being a rigorous training course is full of video tutorials on all the topics that you would want to learn about and all these videos are by experts in the industry making it easier for beginners to learn more about digital marketing visually.
Here are a few other great Digital Marketing Courses that you can choose from as well:
Digital Vidya: They are the pioneers in digital marketing training in India and they’re also Google India’s official training partners. They have 8 digital marketing courses, out which their flagship course – CDMM (Certified Digital Marketing Master Course) is the most popular. It costs Rs.49,900 + tax. All their courses are certified and include research-based internships for a period of one-month, forum for online discussion and support, assistance with placements, the certification exam and a certificate upon completion. They do have other short-term courses too.
EduPristine: EduPristine’s Digital Marketing course which costs Rs.33,000+ tax provides training on topics like Introduction To Digital Marketing, Google Analytics, Search Engine Optimization, Search Engine Marketing(SEM) Framework, Strategy of Social Media Marketing, Framework of Email Marketing & Going mobile, Lead Management and ending with a Live Project over a period of 12 days in a live classroom.
Other equally good options are Digital Marketing Program by UpGrad, NIIT Digital Marketing and digital marketing training by Manipal Global Education Services. The final choice is always yours, but make sure it suits your needs. You may just be a beginner looking for a quick primer or ready to delve into the fascinating but vast depths of advanced digital marketing topics, so ensure that the course matches your learning style and your needs before you get started.