Your Digital Marketing Career: Is it Making You Insane (or Is it Just Me)?

How often do stop and wonder if you’re heading in the “right” direction with your career? If you even like what you do (let alone the people you work with). In these always-shifting days of digital marketing I think it’s important to make sure you’re clear and focused—and dare I say happy?—in the midst of constant change.

I’m a believer that marketing, as an industry, is making us partly insane:

  • We’re working 60+ hours a week because our to-do lists are never ending (the nature of marketing is that the job is never “done”)
  • We’re having to learn every tactic to make sure different campaigns are successful
  • We struggle to follow all the right “experts,” thought leaders, blogs and newsletters lest we fall behind
  • We’re chasing all the shiny objects out there due to FOMO

It’s challenging to maintain a level of comfort and confidence because the fast degree of technology, competition, customer, and culture change often leaves us with whiplash.

Like it or not, it’s impossible to know and follow it all if we want to have any kind of a life. I have many interests outside of my professional life, and the older I get, the more I’m unwilling to sacrifice those other things.

As many service providers do, I recently spent some time in introspection and reconfirmed my position to remain a specialist in Search, but to open up my skills somewhat to becoming a more holistic Search Marketer.

Marketing Career Resources

In recent months I’ve had invaluable talks catching up with colleagues and read many articles about in-demand marketing skills and digital marketing career advice. Here are a few I enjoyed:

  • The marketing career advice that no one gave me: I love the crux of this article about shaping and thinking through a successful marketing career: “If you’re not moving up, you’re moving back.” And this one summary conclusion paragraph: “Being responsible for driving growth and revenue, and helping shape a company, has a different set of demands. But with every decision you make at that level, you can ask yourself, ‘Does the decision I’m making help the company move forward? If the decision doesn’t move you forward, then it is a regression.’”
  • How to Stay Relevant as a Marketer in a Crazy Martech World:  Aint’ this the truth: “have you looked at job postings lately? Employers want the whole digital package: Marketing automation, CMS, and CRM; Google AdWords and Analytics; A/B-testing, user funnels, PPC, SEO, SEM, HTML, CSS; social media and email (of course); UX design, mobile marketing, SMS; and, while we’re at it let’s throw in Adobe Illustrator, Photoshop, and InDesign.” This article does a good job at building the case that things out there are scary. But I do like their 10-step actionable plan for combatting the crazy out there. And, I’m happy to report that SEO is still an in-demand skill marketing directors and hiring managers require.
  • The Five Most Important Digital Marketing Skills for 2017: this is a good piece to see how your skills stack up, but I detest the log-in. While it’s worth it have as there are many good pieces on MarketingProfs, in case you don’t want to bother creating an account, the 5 digital marketing skills are: 1. Data Analysis, 2. Basic HTML/CSS Knowledge, 3. Marketing Automation Tool Mastery, 4. Content Marketing and 5. SEO.

I think we’re all learning to be more comfortable outside of our comfort zones and embracing the fact that in Digital Marketing, no matter our age, experience, past, current, or future positions, we’re all students for life.

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Jenny Munn

Jenny is an independent Digital Marketer and SEO Consultant with more than 10 years of experience helping companies and content creators generate brand awareness, traffic, and conversions with SEO. She is a frequent speaker and is on the faculty for the AMA (American Marketing Association) and has taught SEO to thousands of marketers over the past 10 years.

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