How to Become a Self Made Digital Marketing Expert 2017
As consumers spend more time using the internet and less time with several other channels – advertisers are left with no choice than to follow this trend. The ads have to be exactly where the eyeballs are to be efficient. Unfortunately, digital marketing is not as simple and straight forward as traditional marketing. This is the obvious reason that digital marketing experts are sought after all over the world right now and the demand will only be on auto-pilot in the nearest future.
If you have a marketing background and want to become a digital marketing expert; you may be wondering which is the best way to go about it. Truth be told – there are several courses on digital marketing which are being offered as workshops, online courses and one-on-one coaching programs.
There are even MBA programs with specialization in digital marketing such as this one: NYU Stern MBA Digital Marketing. There are certification exams such as HubSpot Inbound Marketing certification program and Google Adwords certification. Here is the golden question: Does paying huge to attend all these courses and getting all the certificates make you a digital marketing expert? The answer for me? A big NO. It may help you learn the fundamentals and even some advanced concepts in digital marketing but it does not make you career ready for a position like Digital Marketing Manager or starting your own digital marketing agency. Digital marketing expertise only comes with digital marketing experience.
The best way to become a digital marketing expert is to start practicing digital marketing, and the best time? today! The fascinating thing about digital marketing is that you can start doing it at a very small scale. All you need is a computer, an internet connection and a small amount of money to play with. You can learn digital marketing by applying some concepts in your own small projects here and there. Here are the things you can do right away:
Applying Digital Marketing on a Small Scale
- Choose a topic you are passionate about and start a blog about it. Cost: Approx $75 for domain and 3 years hosting. Amazing right?
- Learn a little about SEO and write SEO optimized articles in your blog.
- Install Google Analytics tracking code and see if you are getting some traffic to your blog. Explore Google Analytics. You just have to roll with the big boys – google.
- Open an Adwords account and do some keyword research to see what people are searching for in Google to find more detaailed information on the topic you are blogging about.
- Then write problem solving articles and publish on your blog.
- Open a Facebook page dedicated to your blog (apart from your personal page) and share the articles on your Facebook page.
- Promote your page with Facebook advertising. Budget for promotion can be as low as $10, or even less.
- Embed Facebook like box in your blog.
- Embed social sharing buttons in your blog articles. This can be easily done using WordPress plugins and it is free.
- Sign up for an email marketing service such as MailChimp, it is free. Guess what they just launch their auto responder on the free plan. Well, if you have some money, then consider Aweber.
- Embed email signup forms in your blog and get subscribers. Email subscribers whenever you publish something on your blog.
- Promote your Facebook page through email marketing and in turn also get more email subscribers from your Facebook page.
- Invest in your blog over time by promoting your blog via Adwords. Get started with very low CPC bids. Unfortunately Nigeria my country do not get a free $100 upon signup.
- Sign up for Google Adsense and deploy advertising codes in your blog, if you wish.
- Convert your blog into a mobile friendly blog and create mobile ads in Adwords.
All the above steps can be done in 30 days by investing one hour per day. After you do all the steps above your would have gained a bit of hands-on experience in the following areas which pretty much sums up to the following major components of Digital Marketing:
Components of Digital Marketing
- Content marketing
- Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
- Paid Search (PPC)
- Email marketing
- Social Media Marketing
- Digital Display Marketing (Ad Ops)
- Web Analytics and Reporting
- Mobile Marketing
30 hours of experience does not definitely make you an expert in Digital Marketing but you will be a much better qualified digital marketing professional than most of the people out there on the market. After this you can continue scaling up your mini-project and add even more things to it. For example, Google webmaster tools integration is something I have not mentioned in the above list but it is important for digital marketing. Your expertise will increase to the level you are ready to scale up your project.
I should let out this secret – Being certified a digital marketer doesn’t make anyone a digital marketing expert.
I became a digital marketing expert on my own. My first project dapsdiary.com started a little creepy. I never knew anything about digital marketing. I did not even know setting up a blog is a piece of cake. Instead i paid a web designer hugely to design one for me. Until i had to look into it myself and started learning the ropes. Right now i do not only have ample knowledge about digital marketing, i set up this blog to keep learning and practicing digital marketing with the steps mentioned above. I am determined to make everyone see that the steps mentioned above works. That is why there was a shift from dapsdiary to dapsdigital. You probably are reading this piece because i began implementing steps above.
Having A Digital Marketing Agency?
Practical hands-on experience of applying digital marketing principles added with some qualifications and certifications makes you an ideal profile fit for to run a digital marketing agency.
If you can successfully practice steps above and you begin to pull traction, you will catch the attention of people or businesses. some would want you to teach them, another would want to hire you, either by offering a job as a digital marketer or as a third-party agency. You will be required to execute specific digital marketing actions. Digital marketing is most effective when all the components of digital marketing are used in such a way that they complement each other. This is also called Integrated Digital Marketing.
Digital marketing is highly lucrative! That is the new form of advertising, that is why most customers can be found.
You can also be a digital marketer, you can start today.