The online culture has created a niche advertising area where expertise is hard to find. Digital marketing requires a unique skill set that can vary drastically from position to position.
The trend of hiring digital marketing experts is rising with 44% of companies looking to hire more marketers over the past two years.
Of those positions, 27% were interested in digital advertising, 23% required content creation and curation, and 20% required content strategy. With this trend continuing upwards, demand for digital marketing courses should also see an upswing as the workforce tries to meet the requirements for these high demand positions.
1. Digital Marketing Drives Professional Development
With a growing need for digital talent, there has also been growth in digital marketing hires.
There was a 19% increase in just one year for digital experts. Furthering the fact that this area of expertise will continue to be in demand, the report showed that of those hired, 42% were permanent positions.
In fact, in the US digital skills are driving the professional development market with a forecast of $8.5 billion by 2020.
2. High Demand Skillset
56% of the companies surveyed with plans to hire this year will be including digital marketing expertise to the skills required. These skills include:
- Content creation and curation
- SEO & SEM
- Lead generation
These skills will not just be unique to digital marketing jobs. They will continue to spread to traditional advertising positions.
That will make it more important than ever for people in the industry to seek training to remain relevant and valuable in this changing job market.
3. Skills Gap
The majority of skills required in traditional marketing and advertising roles have over saturated the market. These skills range from research and analysis to product marketing.
The gap is quite wide with supply at 24% and the demand for talent at 56%. In the creative skill set, there is 35% demand with just 27% supply.
According to The European Commission, the use of digital has grown in 90% of workplaces in the past five years. The skills gap is becoming more prominent with 38% of workplaces finding that a lack of skills is impacting performance, including a 46% decrease in productivity.
In addition, 88% of workplaces admit that they haven’t done anything to improve the skills gap within their companies.
4. Smartphone Invasion
There is no escaping the smartphone invasion, and its predominant use in all areas of communication.
Figures from Statista show the global use of smartphones to be astounding:
- USA – 260 million users
- Singapore – 4.3 million users
- Hong Kong – 5.6 million users
- Australia – 19.4 million users
- UAE – 3.9 million users
The same report forecasts that by 2020 there will be an estimated 3 billion smartphone users.
5. Digital Invasion
There is a digital invasion taking over all aspects of communication, making it the best way to reach an audience.
Digital marketing jobs are required to support advertising on social media as it continues to grow. According to We Are Social and Hootsuite's recent report, social media use of the top platforms saw almost 1 million new users every day in 2018, with 3 billion people using social media around the world each month.
Here are their most revealing numbers:
- The number of internet users is up 7% year-on-year
- The number of social media users is up 13% year-on-year
- The number of mobile phone users is up 4% year-on-year
6. Increased Investment in Digital Marketing
By 2021 digital marketing spend is set to increase to $118 billion. Companies will be looking at high-quality, meaningful brand experiences that resonate with their audience.
Paid search ads are also forecast to dominate ad budgets with display advertising and digital video ads seeing a 13% investment in ad dollars.
There has been a 114% increase in online video budgets in the past four years, and there is an estimated 18% increase expected to go towards video ad spending.
In fact, 72% of media buyers will put money towards online video instead of television.
7. Growing Demand for Online Marketing Positions
There is continuous growth for online marketing positions across industries and markets. The key roles that are in huge demand include:
- Brand Marketing
- Content Strategist
- Conversion Rate Optimization
- Digital Project Planning/Management
- Digital Media Manager
- Digital Marketing Strategist
- E-commerce Specialist
- Social Media Marketing
- SEO Expert
- Web Design
8. Third Party Education
There is a bounty of third-party training courses available offering new credentials and certifications the workforce needs to add to their resumes. These third parties often offer self-directed courses.
According to Pew Research, close to three out of four adults agree they are responsible for having the right skills and education to be successful in today's economy; that compares to 52% of colleges and 49% of employers.
With the rising expense of tuition at universities, more students are looking at less traditional forms of education. Online courses provide them with the education and skill set required to fill many of today’s high-demand digital marketing positions. In hand with this new form of education, companies in need of the digital skill set are beginning to view non-traditional credentials with more respect.
9. Upskilling and Retraining
Finding the right skillset to fill positions is becoming more challenging for businesses. Companies being unable to fill jobs is one of the biggest challenges for small businesses with 37% of small business owners reporting having job openings they could not fill.
Companies are opting to assist their employees with upskill plans; for example, AT&T will eliminate many obsolete roles while providing a plan to train people in positions with new skills they can use to fill updated roles.
With these challenges, more and more companies, large and small, are seeing the logic of including some form of retraining or upskilling programs.
10. Salespeople Need Digital Skills
The growth and influence of social media has made it an effective channel for sales professionals to develop and nurture relationships and find prospects. With 67% of the buyer's journey now done digitally, sellers need to be online to have any chance of reaching quotas.
When incorporating social media into their sales efforts, 72% outperformed their peers. They also exceeded their quota by 23%, and 54% of those related their closed deals to social media engagement.
With these numbers, more and more sales teams will want to see some form of training in place to provide them with the tools they need to exceed their quotas. It will also provide them with the skillset needed to connect with their customers in a more meaningful and timely manner.
The demand for digital marketing experience will continue to grow, leaving plenty of fertile ground for teaching opportunities in universities, colleges and training providers.
With the workforce missing the mark on the skills required to contribute to digital marketing efforts, an increased interest in digital marketing courses will make it well worth the investment for educators.