Breaking into a new industry and exploring career options can be difficult, but it isn't impossible. Kirstie Lane, marketing manager at RED Academy gives her tips on how to make a move into digital marketing.
Currently, we’re seeing a surge of individuals who are interested in the digital marketing industry. When making your next career jump, experience is crucial, and the digital marketing industry is no different.
It’s important to remember that making the transition into the industry can happen at any time in someone’s life. There isn’t a time limit, and there certainly isn’t a limit to someone’s previous experience. To really succeed in the digital marketing industry, individuals must have experience. Here, I provide my best advice on how to break into the digital marketing industry!
Whether you are a finance director, a university graduate or someone who has taken a career break, digital marketing may be the right move for you. Passion and the willingness to learn is the only thing that’s needed in order to start your career. As long as you’re willing, you’ll be able to build up your experience by working on projects, whether that be within a course or individually. You’ll need to showcase what you can do, even if it’s not perfect.
Know the field
In order to gain a good understanding of a career, exploring the industry as much as possible before making this decision is essential. You can research a lot of information online but solely relying on other people’s experience and knowledge won’t help you decide if it’s the right career move for you.
I would really urge you to get out there and explore. Attend as many events and courses, as often, as you can. Going along to free events such as networking opportunities and evening workshops can give you good insight into the various components of the digital marketing industry. For example, attending an insights workshop which explores Google Analytics gives you a snippet into one part of the business which you may enjoy. See what works for you and what doesn’t. There may be some elements which really stand out for you, such as search engine optimisation (SEO) or analytics, and realising this early on, allows you to take informed next steps.
In order to really crack the industry, it’s important to have experience that makes you stand out from the competition. For example, what really makes you, you? Is it the full-time course that you studied in User Experience which allowed you to work with Barnardo’s? Or is it that you’re a guru in Search Engine Optimisation?
There’s plenty out there for you to explore; this can be something that requires little commitment, such as work experience opportunities, or something that demands a little more, such as a part or full-time course that will provide you with a qualification and hands on experience
Many courses, such as those provided by RED Academy, tailor the learning to include real client work. Our students will work alongside clients on real deliverable projects. For example, students will work with businesses such as Barnardo’s and Trekstock Cancer Support on a design or digital marketing project. From client discussions to coming up with the solution, the students will experience what it is really like to be client facing. By doing this, you are prepared with the hands-on experience ahead of entering a full-time job in the industry, but you also have that support system and guidance.
It’s so important to really explore a career before you jump into it. There’s plenty out there, whether that’s networking events or a bigger long-term commitment like courses. Building up your confidence and knowledge is essential, but so is your passion for the industry. Don’t be put off by your previous experience; the digital marketing industry is open to everyone!
Like any other sector, gaining real experience is essential for understanding an industry and seeing if it’s the right fit for you. Keeping your options open and attending as many events and networking opportunities as you can will be extremely beneficial in the early days of your research. After all, there is a way and a place to start for everybody – new graduates or company directors alike!
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