An SEO Ninja, Digital Overlord and Data Rockstar walk into a bar…
Anyone who’s worked with me will know one of my favourite phrases is: ‘Job titles mean everything and nothing’.
I honestly believe this. When you’ve worked in recruitment as long as I have, you’ll know not to just accept a job title on face value- but to ask questions about it. What will the team look like? Will the job be managing anyone? What’s the objective of the role? Where does it fit in the hierarchical structure? Budget responsibility etc. you get the gist.
I ask these questions because a job title in one company can mean something quite different in another. And even more interestingly, with the digital industry being so new, dynamic and fast-paced there are regularly new job titles being introduced. Some are excellent, both inspirational and conjure up the exact image of what responsibilities a job might have. Others, not so. They appear to have had little thought behind them and conjured up as part of a rapid think tank with little rhyme or reason. Perhaps at best they’re created as part of a trend, to either be adopted or phased out as appropriate.
Much of this is what led me to compile this list- The Weirdest Job Titles In Digital Marketing.
Probably the oldest and most common title addition. You can “Ninja” just about everything. There would be a PPC Ninja or a Digital Marketing Ninja. Created by trendy start-up’s who were looking for the most experienced in that job function. By not calling it Manager or Director, the theory was it was more attractive to those best at their job. In my experience, it was the companies who were experiencing such rapid growth they didn’t know how to attract skilled talent or have a clear recruitment roadmap or infrastructure in place to manage all the hires once they were on board.
Some employers, in their desire to appeal to young, energetic job seekers are creating titles which will make many in HR choke on their tea. The good thing is they are what they say on the tin, so to speak. Similar to the more industry-accepted Performance Marketer / Audience Acquisition type roles, we could be seeing an overcompensation in the desire to appeal to the industry elite with trendy titles like this one.
Looking to appeal to the movers and shakers of the Digital industry, it’s a shame to dumb down such a significant job in a business.
Others might call this a Website Manager. But in the race to attract the best talent, a label of Digital Overlord gets created. Really? Overlord? Doesn’t it infer a dictatorial leader rather than a keeper of your most valuable asset? Are you getting the feeling my mantra of ‘Job Titles Mean Everything, and Nothing’ might have a place in society today? Is the influence of Star Wars and Battle Star Galactica becoming too strong?
Data Wranglers, Priests, Rabbis and Shamans
We all know data is important, but the industry also recognises people who work with data are a prized commodity. More recently they have become god’s gift to the industry, which may be why job titles like Priest, Rabbi and Shaman have come into play. The historical title of Data Scientists and Data Analyst might be more traditional but really? A Data Shaman? Is this a badge you’re going to be proud to take back to your University’s MDC reunion?
I nearly forgot, the storyteller. With some much unique data, this is someone who helps understand the data, assessing the insights and making them into commercial recommendations.
Director of Storytelling
This is a very different job to the Data Storyteller. It’s about driving creative content or copywriting. At least this job title alludes to what the job function actually is.
This is one job title which I believe has seen its day. Whilst this one used to be popular, it appears to be phasing out. It used to label a ‘Digital Innovation’ role or likely to label a Contractor working for a brand to hand-hold it through the induction to digital marketing channels, facilitating the external agencies, coordinating the team and driving the strategy. It’s likely this person would be well versed across all channels and have the experience to draw upon, shortcutting the road to success.
Social Media Junkie
In the early days when social wasn’t integral to the marketing funnel nor recognised as customer service, it was just a broadcasting company or product news. The idea behind the Social Media Junkie title was to appeal to sitting on social platforms all day long. I’m pleased to say this is long gone and more sophisticated titles and responsibilities have evolved.
The digital marketing landscape is evolving so rapidly, companies are hard pushed to keep up with the job titles. With new jobs being created along with new technologies, it’s important we evolve alongside them. Having said this, it’s also important we don’t just throw out new job titles without giving them appropriate thought. If you’re not sure what to call a job, have a look around. See what the industry is telling you.
Better yet, why not get in touch with experts in digital marketing recruitment who can help handhold you through the recruitment process from start to finish, guiding you into making a great hire. Or if you’re called Ninja, Rockstar or Overlord, we can help figure out what the next career move for you should be! Get in touch by emailing me, Natasha on firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling 02037514108.