It’s a great time to be a marketer. That’s because the tech industry is undergoing a major paradigm shift, in which data has become a top priority. Marketers have assumed responsibility for connecting their companies’ core business arms — sales, product, engineering, IT, and analytics. Marketers are no longer limited to support and brand-building functions. Instead, they’re implementing programs to drive revenue.
As a marketer, you’re in an unparalleled position to drive significant value to your organization. Not to mention, the solutions that you introduce are likely to be completely out of the box. As the business ecosystem becomes increasingly data-driven, there is significant opportunity to introduce new, creative solutions. In other words, it’s up to you to define your own career trajectory — and roadmap for getting promoted.
It goes without saying that top marketers will ultimately become managers, directors, and even CMOs. Even better is that there is nothing holding you back from getting the job you want. If you want to advance in your company, you need to be able to make an impact. The following marketing skills can help guide you:
1. Data Skills
Data is the connective tissue between analytics, product, sales, finance, and IT teams. No matter your background or college major, it’s valuable to have formal training in the concepts that help teams communicate more effectively with one another. You’ll need to be able to answer basic questions about confounders, statistical significance, weighted averages, and sampling biases. While you don’t necessarily need to be a data scientist or programmer, you should be able to understand how data influences your overall business direction. These skills will empower you with a competitive edge within your organization.
2. Design Skills
At the heart of marketing is communication. You need to be able to convince your target audiences that your brand is the absolute best solution out there. In order to write persuasive web copy and build out your organization’s conversion funnels, you need to be able to create marketing materials that make an immediate impact. That’s why design is powerful. Even if you’re not a designer, you need to build the design skills to be able to think and communicate like one.
3. Management Skills
You may get promoted because you are awesome. As a manager, however, you need to empower your direct reports to be awesome too.
To advance as a marketer, you need to be a great teacher and mentor — to lead your teammates through the experience of creating something much bigger than you. Great managers make this process look natural. But it isn’t. It takes practice, dedication, and a process of continuous learning.
Marketing, as we know it today, is a relatively new field. What was once perceived as a brand-building operation has become a revenue engine.
As a marketer, you’ll be responsible for pitching new ideas across many channels within your company. You’ll likely be met with some resistance, and you’ll still need to push ahead by convincing your team that you’re pitching the best solution possible. You need to be an influencer within your organization — a process that takes practice.
Tying it all together
What you may have noticed about these four skills is that they’re timeless and industry-agnostic. No matter where you work, your ability to be data-driven, design-oriented, management-focused, and influential will help you advance. The beauty of these personality traits is that they can be learned. The more you invest in yourself, the faster you’ll get to where you want to be. No matter how many years of work experience you have — or what type of marketer you are — you can get started in self-directing your training as soon as now.