It's no simple task for a business to be successful at marketing today.
Marketers no longer have the luxury of specialization - in order to compete and thrive, they need a wide variety of skills, skills that incorporate both creativity from the right hemisphere of the brain and analytical thinking from the left hemisphere.
In short, today's successful marketer must be both artist and scientist, because what works in marketing is both an art and a science.
Salesforce created a fantastic infographic that breaks down todays modern marketer. Here are the eight key skills they identified (four artistic and four analytical) which every modern marketer must develop to ensure they adapt and flourish in today's rapidly evolving world of marketing.
The Modern Marketer
Writing, as a skill, has become vital for modern marketers.
Content marketing, often in the form of written articles, is now a big component in many brand's sales funnels. It plays a very important role in how brands are able to be found (through search engines or social media platforms) and then build relationships with their target market. This written content helps their market to know, like and trust them, which is a necessary step before most people will consider a purchase.
Whether or not you're naturally skilled at writing, you can develop this skill with practice. Good research and topic knowledge is vital. It also pays to have one or more good editors review your work to ensure your content is professional.
Content marketing is not just written content, it also includes a much broader scope that includes visual assets like video, images, graphics, memes and infographics (like the one in this article).
People love visual content. It's quickly consumed and easily shared.
It also has the ability to connect emotionally, and convey an entire story in seconds.
Modern marketers need to be comfortable creating (or at the very least curating) visual marketing that will appeal to their target market.
The power of social media is that it's often the best place to locate and or build relationships with your target market.
Let's be honest, most people own a mobile device that travels with them everywhere they go, and the chances are very good that that your target market also uses one or more social media platform on their device.
You need to know which platforms they are, and how to use them efficiently and effectively, in order to reach and engage with your prospects and clients.
Social media can be an amazing marketing tool - if you know how to use it properly. Anyone who's spent any time on social media knows just how easy it is to lose precious time in the in the various options on offer. You need to have clearly defined goals for social media, and understand which platforms you need to be using, and how to use them to optimal effect.
Despite what you may have heard, email marketing is not dead. Far from it.
It's still a very important asset and tool of successful marketers, and I'll give you one extremely good reason for this:
You own your email list.
I'll say it again - you own and control your email list, unlike social media platforms where you are at the mercy of their constant changes. You could literally build up an entire audience on a social media platform and lose access to them with one sudden change to the platform. This happened in the not so distant past on Facebook, when they adapted their business model to a 'pay to play' model (on related note, some social managers found out just how it might feel to lose your social accounts this week when an Instagram bug made it appear as though many accounts had been deleted).
Those that created and maintained their email list were not as hard hit as those who didn't, as they still had access to their audience through their email list.
Don't let all your hard work building an audience go to waste. Besides, email is far superior in terms of actual conversion.
While creating content, using social media and incorporating email marketing is absolutely essential to successful marketing, not everything you do will be equally successful. Some of the things you do, when you take time and cost into account, will produce a poor ROI (return on investment).
By tracking the performance of all of your activities and campaigns, you can identify the low ROI activities and either modify them to produce better results or eliminate them and replace them with activities that produce a higher ROI.
Your time and money are far too precious to waste on costly or ineffective marketing methods.
Usually, the larger the company, the more complicated the running or overseeing of the marketing operations will be. Whether you're a part of a large marketing department or a small business owner, it's likely that you'll need to understand and work within the strategy created and budget allotted for marketing.
Depending on the size of the company and your position, you may be required to create and or run the marketing operations, which can include tasks such as creating a marketing plan and budget, managing and tracking spending at a detailed level and managing project collaboration and execution.
While tracking the performance of your activities is crucial, you need to be able to make sense of the data you collect.
Thankfully there are a number of analytics tools that can help you do this. These range from event based tools like KissMetrics (behavioral analytics) to traffic oriented tools like Google Analytics (a free and widely used website analytics tool), to search engine analytics tools like Google Search Console (also free and lets you analyze your organic search traffic), to marketing dashboard tools like Cyfe (an all-in-one dashboard) and many others.
While some of these tools are, free or have free versions, the paid tools can be worth the investment to ensure that what you are doing is working or producing the results you want.
Campaign performance looks deeply into the ROI of each marketing campaign you run.
Simply explained, ROI is how much revenue you get back for each $1 you spend. A positive ROI means that you're making more than you spend, while a negative ROI means you're losing money on your marketing campaign.
To properly track and analyze your campaign performance you'll need to determine the channels you're going to track (email, paid, social, organic search, referral, direct, etc.) and the metrics you want to measure (lead conversion, individual visitors, click through rate, bounce rate, social media effectiveness, email opening, etc.). Again, you can do this with a number of tools, which range in features and cost.
The modern marketer needs to possess a wide range of skills in order to adeptly navigate today's quickly and ever changing world of marketing. Thankfully there are many tools, apps and various software, which can assist you to competently create content and engage your market, all the while tracking, measuring and analyzing the results of those efforts. This will enable you to make informed decisions to improve your results in the future.
What challenges have you encountered as a modern marketer? Is there a particular tool that you couldn't live without? Let me know in the comments below.