Digital Marketing As A Career
Digital marketing is one of the fastest-growing businesses, and positions in advertising and marketing have continued to rise even during times of uncertainty. So, today, I'm going to teach you how to start a career in digital marketing while also increasing your expertise and earning potential.
The main point of this article is to help you find opportunities as a freelancer - if that's a lifestyle choice that you want to make.
Who Am I?
I'm a digital marketing consultant in Hong Kong.
Since 2002, I've worked in digital marketing. And in the last 12 years, I've created and sold my own websites, freelanced, run an agency, advised, and now have the honor of working with a bunch of companies and SEO agencies in Hong Kong ~ here's a list of them.
Now, I do have a degree in health science and some investing and insurance credentials, but my digital marketing experience comes from the school of hard knocks.
Part of it is because I'm stubborn, but it's also because there wasn't much decent stuff online or in schools in 2008 to provide practical help and counsel. So I'd want to take you through the many steps of your journey to become a competent digital marketer.
Okay, so the first thing you should do is set up your own website or blog. You get your own testing grounds when you build your own website. It allows you to gain hands-on experience with marketing methods without jeopardizing the integrity of someone else's website. Simply pick a field that interests you and use WordPress to build a website. There are thousands of lessons available to assist you in getting started.
Don't waste time worrying about what your logo should be or how you'll generate money from it now. These details can be added later. If you're truly stumped, develop a website centered on your name. The crucial thing is that you put some money into your own website since you'll be less inclined to abandon it before giving it a fair go. Now that you've got your site up and running, I strongly advise you to concentrate on only one aspect of digital marketing. Let's look at the benefits and drawbacks of a few prominent web marketing tactics.
Web Marketing Tactics
The first is internet advertisements.
These are also excellent for driving instant traffic to your website. However, I wouldn't advocate trying these until you've gained some expertise. The reason for this is that you're more prone to spend money before making it. The second method is to use social media to advertise your business. And although this is excellent if you already have a significant following, it is unlikely if you are just starting out. This, in my opinion, is something to think about later on, once you've established a constant stream of visitors and an engaged audience. The third option is SEO or search engine optimization. The beautiful thing about SEO traffic is that once you're ranked, search engines like Google will send you free, passive, and constant traffic.
This means you'll be reaching out to new people on a regular basis and seeing more traffic. The disadvantage is that it is much slower than advertising or social media. If you're looking for long-term growth, SEO is the technique to start with, in my fully biased view, because the skills you'll gain are transferrable to many other aspects of internet marketing. So, the next step is to spend some time learning about the specific field of internet marketing that you wish to pursue. Reading or seeing a beginner's guide on the subject from a credible person or firm is the ideal place to start. I also offer a number of basic lessons on my YouTube channel and blog. Beginner's guides will provide you with a broad overview of the marketing approach as well as serve as a "hub" for further study into subtopics.
The next and most crucial step is to put what you've learned into practice. Consuming too much material may and will result in analysis paralysis, in which you spend too much time evaluating things and do little. So don't waste your time reading about super-technical topics like crawl budget or split-testing if you don't have a significant quantity of traffic. Rather, concentrate on learning the essentials.
Keyword research, content production, and link building are examples of SEO activities. These three items will make a bigger difference than spending hours debating whether or not to utilize category pages on your site. Finally, familiarize yourself with various free digital marketing tools. I'm sure it'll be difficult to pay for premium marketing tools if you're just starting off. However, there are a few free ones that I strongly recommend learning about since a) they're fantastic and b) you'll need to know about them as your career progresses.
The first is Google Analytics, a web analytics software that displays information such as the number of people who visit your site, which pages they view, how long they remain on your site, and hundreds of other useful indicators.
The second is Google Search Console, which lets you monitor how well your website performs in Google searches. You can check which pages in Google are indexed, which keywords your site ranks for, and which websites connect to you. Google Search Console displays your site's backlinks and keyword ranks, but you also gain access to a website audit tool that scans your site for common and often readily fixable flaws that may be affecting its performance.
ConvertKit, an email marketing solution, is the fourth option.
Their free plan is extremely user-friendly and allows you to manage up to 1,000 customers. I strongly advise you to start by developing an email list. Consider this: if you don't provide visitors the choice to subscribe, you may be missing out on possibilities to build a following that wants to hear from you. Starting your own website is now something you can do on the side, whether you're a student or have another employment. It will expose you to digital marketing and prepare you for the next step, which is to get a job or internship with digital marketing business.
Getting a job now is not the same as getting a job ten years ago. To even be considered, you needed a degree in marketing, business, or something like that. However, in my experience, many digital marketing companies are more interested in employing creative people with a track record of success.
Working in an agency is a terrific approach to learning digital marketing quickly because you'll be able to collaborate with people who are farther along in their careers than you are.
It's also a location where you can locate mentors and gain a lot of practical experience working on a variety of client sites. Work your way up to a more senior position, learn from your coworkers, and, if you want to be self-employed, study how agencies and firms operate. And when you speak with clients and upper management, this will come organically. It's crucial to highlight that you shouldn't abandon your other websites just yet.
Many reputable employers will actively urge you to work on your side projects in order to develop your skills. These are the sorts of individuals you want to work with because they'll push you to be the best at what you do. Now it's time to think about freelancing. Freelancing is an excellent approach to gaining more practical experience while also improving your earnings.
And if you've been in digital marketing for more than three years, there's a strong chance you've already secured some freelancing employment. Now, the two best things about freelancing after getting a job are that a) you'll have more experience to perform outstanding work for customers and b) you'll still have a consistent wage to pay the expenses. If you're not getting any referrals or inbound work requests, you may now join up for general work sites like Upwork or People Per Hour and apply for positions where you believe you'd be a good fit. These assignments will also aid in the development of your personal portfolio. If you've decided on something more particular, such as copywriting or blogging, I'd look for side projects on Problogger Jobs or other sites that cater to a certain clientele.
You might consider moving full-time into consulting when you've built up a portfolio and a strong reputation in your field. "Consider" is the essential word here. There's nothing wrong with remaining at a job and working your way up to the top before retiring. Not everyone is cut out to work as a consultant, and to be honest, not everyone should. Those who have perfected their skill and wish to maximize their earnings potential, on the other hand, will usually do one of two things. They'll create their own agency, for starters. This necessitates assembling a team and, in most cases, executing both the strategy and the execution.
One of the best things about working for an agency is that you can deal with a number of clients at once since you'll have teams to handle client accounts. Because your workforce will most likely be diverse, you'll be able to give additional services.
Being a one-stop-shop also helps you to optimize your upsell possibilities. One disadvantage is that, because you're dealing with salary and even office space, it can be rather pricey. The second option is to work as a freelance consultant.
This has a far greater net margin in my experience, and hourly fees typically vary from hundreds to thousands of dollars. The disadvantage is that the amount of clients you may take is generally limited. To tackle higher-level business challenges, companies frequently engage consultants who specialize in a certain field. So it's possible that all they want is a plan. Alternatively, you may focus solely on training or execution. Clients will choose you for your knowledge, even if you have a smaller crew to handle the more systematized portions of your firm.
As a result, you'll be limited in the number of clients you may take on at the same time. Whether you choose to work for an agency or as a consultant, networks will be crucial to your success. And it is for this reason that all of the other processes must be completed. You study and gain real experience with digital marketing methods when you build a website. When you start working, you learn from those who have gone before you.
You get a sense of what it's like to operate projects on your own when you freelance. This also aids in the development of your networks as well as authority in your area as you build your own brand. Speaking at events where your clients may be present and a push with inbound marketing are two more options to explore at this time. The majority of speaking engagements are unpaid. However, if the room is packed with your target group and you have 30-60 minutes to demonstrate your knowledge, it may be a very profitable trip.
For example, I recently presented at a conference with a mostly decision-making audience. And many of these folks worked for funded companies. Following my presentation, three people approached me for consultancy employment. I currently specialize in inbound marketing. We create videos regarding issues that our target audience may encounter. Despite the fact that we don't include sales pitches in our material, we get a lot of requests for consultations. It's never too late to get started in digital marketing, no matter where you are in your career.
And, like any other profession, learning and growing take time. So, if you're brand new to digital marketing, I strongly advise you to watch our beginner's video on the 7 effective digital marketing tactics, pick one to focus on, and then narrow it down from there. If you loved this video, please like, share, and subscribe to receive more useful SEO and internet marketing tips. I'll catch up with you at the next one.