Marketing is a very broad type of career that can allow you to specialize or generalize as much as you want. If you are considering your future career path or want a change in direction, how do you know if marketing is the career for you?
The basics of marketing are about identifying consumer demand and providing a product or service that meets it. This means that almost everything we buy is marketed to us in some way – TV ads, newspaper ads, online ads, social media, email and much more. This is why marketing is a wide and varied industry that has so many different ways to get involved.
The job of the marketer has also changed significantly with the rise of the internet. At one time, marketing was seen in a slightly negative light as ‘salespeople’ trying to get us to buy something we maybe didn’t want. But today’s marketers are more about helping people, finding solutions to their problems and giving them information to make an informed decision.
Types of marketing
There are also lots of different types of marketing you can consider getting involved with. You can specialize in one or more and can start with relatively little formal training or qualifications.
Content marketing is a traditional type of marketing that has been reinvented for the online world. Content is anything you create to help people making a buying decision – an ad in a newspaper, a social media update, a Pin for Pinterest or perhaps the most popular now: the blog post. Content marketing is about putting different types of content together towards specific goals, usually sales or lead generation.
Email marketing is another specialist area of the industry that concentrates on building an email list and selling products or services through it. It involves things such as email opt-ins or ‘freebies’ to encourage people to sign up, email sequences and newsletters to communicate with people and email marketing automation to operate it all without the need for constant work.
Starting in marketing
You can train to be a marketer and there are lots of courses both full and part-time. You can also take a more hands-on approach by working with experienced marketers and learning the ropes before starting out on your own. It can be glamorous when it works but there’s a lot of hard work involved so you need to be committed to it and ready to work outside the normal 9-5. But the rewards can also be substantial!
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