Joining an all-star digital marketing team on one’s favourite agency is every online marketer’s dream.
A survey by The Manifest showed that 50% of businesses use a marketing agency for help with their internet marketing efforts.
Digital marketers are crucial to the success of an agency. They run successful campaigns on behalf of the agency thus increasing profits. Not only that. They also help the agency market itself better.
Therefore, agencies are always on the lookout for A-list marketers. There’s always room for one more, provided you have the requisite skills and are adept at using the myriad digital tools marketers should master. And that’s why Digital Marketing is rated one of the best career options nowadays. You can read more about it along with the payouts in various counteries.
Which brings us to the question: what exactly are agencies looking for when they hire crème de la crème digital marketers?
What standout qualities are they searching for?
Glad you asked. In this post I’ll reveal five things agencies want in an online marketer of note.
Let’s get straight to it.
#1. Extensive Experience
Agencies have no time for hand-holding new recruits.
They don’t have the bandwidth to teach the basics of digital marketing like SEO optimized content, list building, funnels, social media marketing and more.
They’re crazy busy. Because of the high-pressure environment, they operate in, they want you to hit the ground running. Only veterans can do that, newbies would be overwhelmed in no time.
Here are 3 quick reasons why agencies prefer veterans over newbies:
- Veterans get it right the first time– great marketers are able to get things right the first time or at least after fewer attempts than greenhorns. These successes turn into quick ROI for the agency.
- It saves on training costs– training workers is expensive. Anything that can help cut down training costs is welcome. A well-rounded marketer requires less training because they know a lot already.
- It saves valuable time– every hour spent in training is a production hour lost. Hiring a seasoned marketer who won’t waste time learning the ropes is a wise move.
In particular, agencies delight in marketers who have industry-specific experience that matches what they want. Veterans are able to answer with a resounding yes to all these questions:
- Do you have any certifications, apprenticeships, etc.?
- Have you built a campaign from scratch before?
- Have you revamped a couple of campaigns?
- Any case studies with percentages and real results to share?
- Have you worked with a business similar to ours before?
- Do you have a tried and tested link strategy?
- Any specific plans on content optimization?
According to Adobe the primary battle-hardened skill 45% of organizations are looking for is content and experience management.
#2. Insatiable Learner
Top digital marketers are life-long learners.
They’re an ever-curious bunch, driven by the desire to acquire more knowledge about their passion: marketing.
Here’s the big question you may be asking: is formal education a must for a career in digital marketing?
Yes and no.
Admittedly, a formal marketing degree makes you more versatile in the job market. In fact, according to the University of Maryville, a marketing degree positions you for up to 19,700 career opportunities.
But formal credentials are not enough.
Agencies want someone with hands-on experience. This makes sense when you think about it. Education is all about learning, growing, and upskilling oneself. Whether this happens inside a classroom or in the trenches of the industry is beside the point.
What’s crucial is to stay curious and hungry to learn. This attribute is vital because things change fast in online marketing these days. Only perpetual learners will be able to keep up with all the latest trends, tools and approaches needed to stay relevant and be on top of your game.
#3. Adaptive Collaborator
Modern online marketing is not a lone sport.
Here’s a graphic from Quora that shows the spectrum of typical digital marketing operations.
So many players are involved in any one campaign: content creators, SEOs, designers, data analysts, you name it. All these people are as only as strong as the weakest link in the chain. If anyone drops ball, there’s a domino effect on the rest of the team.
Each person has a lot to glean from the next person to improve their work and the overall performance of that particular campaign.
Agencies, therefore, require workers who are open to feedback and input from other team members. Mavericks don’t stand a chance in such an environment as they’ll step on everyone’s toes and inevitably stall the team’s performance.
That’s the last thing an agency needs.
So, if you have an independent streak, forget about working for a top agency.
If anything, the proliferation of work collaboration tools and apps shows that the work environment is becoming more and more synergistic.
#4. Time Management Ninja
As said earlier, agencies, especially highly successful ones, work under intense pressure.
Because they’re good at what they do, they’ve got plenty of clients.
There are multiple projects going on at any given moment. Each of those has its own timeline and deadline. A delay by one team member means the whole project will be delayed. And, when one project delays, this has a negative knock-on effect on the timely delivery of other projects.
These are the sort of attributes they’re looking for:
- A person who not only meets but beats deadlines — every time.
- A person who communicates promptly if there’s a possibility a project may be delayed.
- A person who prioritizes work over personal comfort or convenience, no matter the circumstances, as far as is humanly possible of course.
In short, agencies require a highly productive no-excuses kind of person who has mastered time management.
#5. Strategic Thinker
Agencies want strategic marketers who go beyond tactics.
Too many average marketers are obsessed with tactics and the latest fad in the industry. As a result, they forget strategy and the bigger picture. Once that happens results won’t be forthcoming.
A strategic marketer:
- Has a good handle on all the moving parts of digital marketing and how they fit together.
- Knows how to evaluate a company’s selling approach using a tried and tested template and checklist.
- Keeps what’s working or tinkers it for even better results and discard what’s not working.
- Identifies hidden or underutilized opportunities for growth and comes up with strategies of exploiting them.
- Quickly gets to the bottom of issues without wasting time or resources.
- Understands the mission of the company they’re working with from A to Z.
- Shows willingness to try new ways of doing things in order to achieve company goals.
Without a doubt, an expert marketer adds value to a business.
That’s why choice ones are hard to find.
But if you hone these five skills you stand a chance of being picked by agencies or big brands and build a thriving mutually beneficial relationship.