Don’t Be every other Marketer on the Street.
Yes, with ease, we can learn almost everything online, for free, and whilst YouTube has fast become the new classroom, for effectiveness in learning marketing I would like to propose what I call “structured learning”, this fast answers the grandeur question of “how to be an excellent marketer” and separates marketers from marketers (Especially in Nigeria where almost everybody is now a Digital marketer, in-fact, Digital marketers now exceeds all civil servants in Nigeria agitating for minimum wage, lol).
Like Seth Godin pointed out, nobody learns marketing from books and stories, teachings and illustrations. Rather marketing is a journey of experience, but this journey unlike others is not a straight road, so getting the right information is key.
How then do you start this journey right, well very few marketers started right, some of us had to re-learn and start afresh (me inclusive), and while we have loads of materials on the subject, and amazing free courses like the Google Digital skills for Africa, and the Digital Garage, or other free academies like Hubspot Academy, the Double click Academy for Ads (formerly Google Partners) and the Facebook Blueprint amongst thousand others.
These are good places to start but here are a few things you need to learn too.
1) Building a full Marketing strategy: Most times to run the most effective campaigns you need to think cross platform, understanding how each digital channel support each other, when and how to transit, and lots more. Most campaign fail for lack of strategy, and sadly almost all Marketers thinks Digital ends in Social especially in Nigeria, but hey that’s barely 10% of the digital space.
2) Learn Frameworks: So in building strategy, some expert have designed tactical flow, that makes strategy building easy, taking account of a lot of specific details, like what customer do online (the customer journey), which channel performs better for certain business objectives, and others. I dare say understanding Frameworks would make your life easier. Some popular frameworks are Hubspot’s Inbound, Google’s S.T.D.C, the ZMOT frame, and other seeming few.
3) Learn Marketing Psychology: This is perhaps the most important part of your marketing journey, Marketing psychology just simply means understand various types of customers, and how easy it is to get in their heads (I hope I don’t get sued for this,lol). But a good training curriculum should cover basic traditional marketing approach and translate them to the digital world, because regardless, at its core Marketing still has Iron Clad principles. Here you learn application of Maslow Hierachy of Need, the Art of building Consumer personas, and localization of Global strategies etc.
4) Learn digital Analytics: So many people have classified analytics as a different field, but for me, its what makes Marketing, Digital. Don’t fret, I am not talking about Data Analytics ( if that’s your focus, talk to an Udacity expert by clicking here), Digital analytics is just the science of measuring how you get your customers, prospects or lead (Acquisition), what they do (Behavior), and how their actions affect your business or brand (Outcomes). Whether anybody tells you or not, the Average Nigerian Customer is different from others in the world, (Nigerian customer’s no dey hear word.. simple), but our uniqueness makes us who we are, and analytics shows you what you are doing right, whether it’s from Facebook Insights, KissMetrics or Google analytics.
5) The Channels, it’s laws, and uses: I mean obviously they should teach you how to use Social Media, blogging, Display, Email, programmatic, etc., but again there is more to this, but that’s a discuss for another day.
So this post is getting too long, and maybe there would be a part 2, but taking structured course like the Squared UK Marketer’s course, Chartered Institute of Marketing (C.I.M), or D.M.I certifications or a Udacity Nanodegree on Marketing, these courses provide structure, and cover these subjects and more, also more than this, they are international recognized certificates that less than 5% of marketers possess. So, start on the right track and let’s create exceptional marketing campaigns.