Your how-to guide on career paths in digital marketing!

So you want a career in Digital Marketing but don’t know where to start? Or perhaps you think it sounds appealing but have tons of digital marketing questions? Look no further! We’ve got all the answers. There are so many career paths in digital marketing that you can take.

My name’s Sophie and I’m the Digital Marketing Executive for clockworkTalent, specialist Digital Marketing recruiters. I am a recent graduate; I studied a BA in Photography and an MA in Graphic Design. I would have loved to have been exposed to more information about where I could go post-graduation or even earlier. My ultimate reasoning behind this blog is to make sure that you know there are plenty of opportunities waiting in the universe of digital marketing (regardless of whether you have a degree or not). 

First and foremost, when I say the universe of digital marketing, it’s no exaggeration. This industry is constantly changing, evolving, and demanding new talent in brand new job opportunities. Personally, I have been blown away by the number of different job roles that I have watched pass through clockworkTalent’s doors. I feel as though I have so much more insight into the gigantic umbrella industry of digital marketing now that I understand the roles people play in the creation and optimisation of it all, and so I’m writing this to share it with you!

Which digital marketing career path is the best for you?

Let’s walk through a breakdown of some of the most prominent “categories” of digital marketing so that we can understand how they all work harmoniously together. 

We will cover 5 topics:

  1. Holistic Digital Marketing
  2. Organic Digital Marketing (SEO, Digital PR, Copywriting, Content, Social Media etc.)
  3. Paid Media (Search and Social)
  4. Data Analysis
  5. Bigger Picture (other options)

Holistic Digital Marketing

This job role covers a broad spectrum and is usually an in-house role (working for a brand). A holistic Digital Marketer will be responsible for creating meaningful connections between a brand and its consumers through multiple channels. They will put in place, and execute, strategies across social media, SEO, paid ads/search etc. 

Ideally a mixture of data-driven and creative, they will use analytics to inform their decisions. They are adept in content creation, copywriting and the use of reporting, scheduling and basic content creation tools.  

Some people with this title may class themselves as a ‘T-Shaped Marketer’, for example, if they are accomplished in all digital marketing but historically have specialised in SEO, PPC or one of the other channels. 

Organic Digital Marketing

Organic digital marketing refers to the non-paid or earned methods and strategies used to get a website to rank highly on SERPs (Search Engine Results Page). The aim of the game with organic is to strive for the most visibility for your website by ranking highly for specific keywords relating to your brand. 

Ultimately, the idealistic goal is for your website to appear on the first page of Google, beneath the paid advertisements, when your consumers search for your chosen relevant keywords. We call this organic because you are guiding traffic to your website, and creating long term, sustainable growth of traffic, lead conversions and ultimately revenue, without paying for your place on the SERP. 

If you love working with computers and data or have a keen interest in writing or journalism, this could be a great career path to explore further!

Paid Media

Paid Media is an umbrella term for both Paid Search/Pay-Per-Click (PPC) and Paid Social. 

Paid Search refers to the advertisements you would see in a search engine above your organic (unpaid) search results and on the right-hand side of the search engine results page (SERP). 

PPC success is based on a relevancy score out of ten for your website’s chosen keywords as well as a price bid. Each time your ad is successfully clicked on, you pay. We can measure paid search by looking at the return on investment (ROI). You want the advertisement that you’re paying for to drive enough sales/conversion that you improve the return of what you spent and earn profit. 

Paid Social is just what it sounds like! It refers to the advertising that you see all over your social media which always seems spookily accurate. 

These kinds of roles are often suited to people who are great at spotting trends and patterns. We’ve seen people thrive who’ve earned economics degrees or excel at maths. Funnily enough, musicians often make skilled PPC specialists. Being competitive in spotting patterns or trends and working with data all contribute to success in Paid Media.

Marketing Data: Analytics and Reporting 

Data Analytics, to some extent, underpins all digital marketing roles, but you can also specialise in a Marketing Data Analyst job. You’d be responsible for supporting the marketing team with analytics, data visualization, and statistics reporting. This will be used to inform strategists and campaign managers on how best to proceed; are their tactics already increasing traffic or conversion or do they need to tweak anything based on data capture, trends or competitors?

Bigger Picture

The digital marketing industry is still rapidly growing, and with that comes the evolution of new job titles. There are jobs which don’t fall perfectly into any of these categories but you still may be suited to them. 

With the industry’s fast pace, there are systematically trendy new job titles being created and dumped. For instance, Hacker, Ninja, and Wizard were all relatively common job titles at one stage or another (believe it or not!) but have since been frowned upon and disappeared from the market. It’s always good to take the job titles with a pinch of salt and look into the responsibilities of that job to understand what the role really is.

In digital marketing, all departments work towards the same goal; to achieve digital conversions and visibility for a brand online. There are many different departmental cogs turning that mesh together to work most effectively, and whilst you have the main categories of digital, there are also other roles people need to play to keep it well oiled and running smoothly. 

For example, if you find that you’re particularly strong at building relationships, you could be suited to client services. Or, if you find that you’re great at sales, perhaps account managing or directing, whereby you will look after a portfolio of brands (clients) for an agency. 

On the basis of this, there are a few other areas not yet covered in this blog that may pique your interest:

  • Email Marketing
  • UX (User Experience)
  • Web Development 
  • CRO (Conversion Rate Optimisation)
  • UI Design (User Interface)
  • Marketing Automation 

Finally, if the technical, more hands on digital marketing activities aren’t for you there is also a plethora of jobs in the commercial side of the industry. Jobs include:

  • New Business Sales
  • Account Management
  • Business Development
  • Client Services

If you’re just starting out in digital marketing, we’ve rounded up a few great (free!) courses to get you going:

📘Google Digital Garage

📗SEMrush Academy

📒Hubspot Academy

📙Blue Array Academy

You may also be wondering… who are clockworkTalent?

A long time ago, Natasha noticed a distinct lacking in the quality of service and depth of technical knowledge from the digital marketing industry’s specialist Recruiters. She’d independently helped both of her brothers’ digital agencies brief their recruiters, and knew it could be so much better.

So in 2012, clockworkTalent was born!

Since then, we’ve developed into a small but specialist digital marketing recruitment agency trusted by exceptional businesses like Bridebook, the Telegraph and Buddycare to hire digital talent into their teams. Irrespective of whether you’re job seeking or hiring, we consult with you to understand what’s important, hand-hold you throughout the process and share our expertise with you along the way.

Why you’ll love us…

Our job seekers love the way we listen to their ambitions but also offer our opinion as to what is realistic and what might need development. As part of our unrivalled service, we provide each job seeker with a free CV critique to make sure their application represents them at their very best.

Our employers love the way we understand the jobs they want to hire, helping refine the job descriptions with subtle nuances from each employer’s environment. We look to make the match not only on professional skills but also with the company’s culture.

Get in touch with us today, or follow us on social platforms, for tips and tricks to further your digital marketing career!