Top Digital Marketing Skills Every Marketer Should Have
Becoming a digital marketer these days is almost effortless.
But becoming a top digital marketer, a marketer that makes the registers ring, a marketer that generates business almost out of thin air online these days is anything but effortless.
There’s no easy road to success when you’re competing against literally millions and millions of entrepreneurs all over the world, with more entering the fray on a daily basis. The old walls and barriers of building a business have fallen by the wayside thanks to the power and reach of the internet and if you’re going to succeed these days you have to know how to win – and you need the skills to make those wins possible.
That’s why we created this quick guide.
All top digital marketers understand the value in mastering a handful of core and fundamental skills, skills that help you not only lay down the foundation for your digital marketing efforts from here on out but also give you the inside edge you need to take things to the next level.
If you focus on mastering the skills we highlight below you will skyrocket past every newbie digital marketer and most veterans that haven’t taken the time to nail these skills down pat.
Ready to dive right in? Let’s get to it!
The most valuable skill you have is a digital marketer today has absolutely NOTHING whatsoever to do with technical proficiency, mastery of any particular tactic or strategy, or anything that could be defined as a “hard skill”.
No, the most valuable skill you have as a digital marketer – and the most important skill to master ASAP – is the ability to find valuable markets, to understand the customers in those markets at their very core, and to then develop products and services that they would be interested in paying money for.
Now, on the surface that sounds pretty simple and straightforward. After all, isn’t that what building a business is all about?
You’d be surprised – amazed, really – at the amount of marketers out there that do not pay any attention to their actual market but instead build the business of their dreams, the products and services they’d want to pay for.
Then they act surprised when they discover that their businesses aren’t getting any traction whatsoever. Customers aren’t interested and usually are actively repelled from these kinds of operations.
Learn how to read your market and you really understand it better than your competitors and you will be off to the races!
The next big piece of the puzzle, after mastering market analysis, is actually coming up with products and services to offer that market in those individual customers.
As we highlighted just a moment ago, the very last thing you want to do is fall into the trap of selling people products and services you think they might be interested in. Instead, you really want to figure out exactly what your ideal customer wants more than anything – their needs, their desires, their fears, their anxieties, etc. – and then you need to find a way to fulfill those needs as quickly and as effectively as possible.
The ideal product and service will look a lot like a magic wand, and that’s a great place to start when you’re just hitting the ground running with your product and service creation. Ask yourself what your customers would want if they had a magic wand that could solve their most pressing issue right now and what that solution might look like.
Build the product or service as close to that magic want solution as possible and it will practically sell itself.
After you have figured out what makes your market tick and have come up with a couple of products and services you’d like to offer it’s time to do a deep dive into the world of sales and persuasion.
Before we go any further it’s important to highlight just how these skills really are.
A lot of business people, a lot of entrepreneurs, and a lot of digital marketers are going to get at least a little bit queasy when it comes to sales in persuasion. For a number of reasons (some valid, some not) plenty of folks react negatively when they think about sales and especially when they think about persuasion.
These people see in their minds a sneaky used-car salesman trying to peddle them something that they aren’t actually interested in and naturally it repels them from mastering these critical business skills.
If you cannot sell, however, you have absolutely ZERO shot at building a business and will never make your financial dreams come true.
Absolutely nothing in business happens until you actually sell something. This is the most critical function in any operation and you really had to dive into sales psychology, the sales process, marketing and advertising, and the secrets of influence and persuasion if you’re going to craft offers that make the register ring.
A Field of Dreams approach to selling your products and services – building them and hoping someone will come and buy them – just isn’t going to cut the mustard.
You have to have processes in place, sales systems, that are going to move complete and total strangers down the line to paying customers – and ideally repeat paying customers – if you’re going to have any chance of success as a digital marketer these days.
Of course, even the most finely tuned sales skills and perfect persuasion capabilities aren’t going to mean much of anything if you aren’t able to generate traffic and get those offers and pitches in front of people that have money to buy whatever it is you have to offer.
There’s a lot to unpack in that statement – and a lot to master when it comes to traffic generation skills – so let’s do a bit of a deeper dive right now.
First of all, you have to figure out the best way to reach your market and the most receptive medium that they are going to be on when you make your sales pitches for your offers.
There are an almost unlimited amount of ways to reach customers today thanks to the power of the internet, and that might mean you go with a search engine optimization campaign, paid online advertising, link building, content writing, guest posting, media buys, product placement on social media, or something else entirely – like old-school direct mail, for example.
What you need to do is find a medium that allows you to reach as many of your perfect prospects as possible, but you also need to find a medium that allows you to regularly advertise in profitably. There might be all kinds of solutions out there that promise to help you reach your prospects on a regular basis – like social media, for example – but if you can’t turn that traffic into sales it’s not an avenue worth continuing down.
Secondly, you need to make sure that you are getting your offers out in front of people that actually have both the means and the capabilities of purchasing whatever it is you have to offer.
If you’re selling luxury cars, for example, you’ll probably find a captive marketing audience all over the place. Everyone from a teenager that fell in love with exotic supercars to multibillionaires that wanted another toy and everyone in between looks like a prospect for your product at first.
But once you realize that only some of your prospects are going to have both the means and the capabilities of purchasing what you have to offer you recognize that your prospect pool shrinks (sometimes significantly). That’s where you’re going to want to focus your traffic generation efforts.
For a lot of digital marketers this is something that they inevitably outsource as soon they are able to scale, and that’s something you’re going to want to consider as well.
Local search engine optimization, paid search advertising, media buys, social media plugs, direct mail, and more are tactical approaches to traffic generation that are usually best left in the hands of those that understand them inside and out. Those are the kind of experts you can bring on board for next to nothing while dramatically improving your odds of success and cutting down on your overhead.
Even still, you’ll want to learn the fundamentals of this skill if you want to have any shot at success and to know how to outsource moving forward.
Speaking of outsourcing…
The most successful digital marketers on the planet today recognize that they (like everyone else) have certain skills and talents that they are strong in as well as areas that they are pretty weak in.
The difference between the successful digital marketers out there and those that continue to chase their tail online is that the successful ones of the bunch stop trying to strengthen their weaknesses and instead choose to delegate those weak areas to individuals or organizations that are strong in that department.
This is a major game changer for those serious about building a real business and not those just looking to pick up a couple of extra bucks every now and again through a side hustle.
Like everyone else on this planet, you will only ever have 24 hours available to work with every single day. A decent chunk of that time is going to be spent asleep, eating, or tending to other every day needs and that doesn’t leave a whole lot of time left over to build a business from scratch.
If you’re going to reach the upper levels of business anytime soon you’re going to need to learn to delegate, if not fall head over heels in love with the leverage that delegating and outsourcing (especially today) bring to the table.
The second that you start to farmout tasks that aren’t specifically suited to your strengths is the second that you are able to refocus on the areas of your business you can contribute to most effectively, while at the same time strengthen the weak areas that you were holding back through absolutely no fault of your own previously.
Entrepreneurs and digital marketers are naturally inclined to want to maintain as much control as humanly possible over their business operations, and it’s easy to see why. The whole reason most of us got into this gig was so that we could plot our own course, control our own destiny, and be our own boss.
Well, unless you’re willing to take on so much work that you would avidly burnout and watch as your entrepreneurial dream dies a slow and painful death is important to learn to delegate and outsource as early in the process as your budget allows to gain some space, gain some freedom, and start working on your business rather than in your business.
At the end of the day, these critical digital marketing skills only barely begin to scratch the surface of what you’ll want to master if you’re going to build a business that can make your financial dreams a reality.
Even still, these are very much the core fundamentals that every successful digital marketer has already learned how to master and continues to master and develop on a day to day basis. If you focus your energy in these core skills that we highlighted above in six months you will find yourself so far in front of your competition that you will be amazed at just how little competition you have left.
Mastery of these skills isn’t going to make building a business easy or effortless. Not by a long-shot. But mastery of these skills will better prepare you as you face the inevitable challenges all digital marketers have to push through, and instead of being stymied by these obstacles when they pop up you’ll able to blow right through them – relying on these skills to help you do exactly that.
Spend your time, effort, and energy on mastering these core skills and you’ll build a rock solid foundation to grow your digital marketing enterprise on top of.