Top 6 Digital Marketing Skills To Succeed And Get Noticed

man on top of mountain.

A digital marketer needs to have a wide array of skills and abilities to succeed but master these top 6 digital marketing skills and you’ll increase your chances of landing that new gig!

HTML and CSS

Not what you were expecting? I can hear you now, “Is HTML and CSS not just for web development? What’s that got to do with digital marketing?” It is precisely for this reason that you must learn the basics.

html and css book with javascript and jquery.
HTML & CSS with Javascript and Jquery

Digital marketing is much more than social media and online advertising. Having HTML and CSS in your back pocket might just make the difference to hiring managers.

Just in case you are not familiar, HTML stands for hypertext markup language. It is literally the base code that creates the basic layouts of all websites. CSS stands for cascading style sheets. If HTML creates the layout then CSS creates the styles, the colours, fonts etc.

It is easier now than ever to learn these skills and there are plenty of free resources to get you started. A good starting point is Codecademy.

Email Marketing

A firm understanding of email marketing is irresistible to hiring managers in the digital marketing sector. Email is not dead and some big brands survive entirely on the success of their email marketing campaigns.

email marketing. laptop open with email marketing header. plant sitting on the desk.
Email Marketing

There is a fine line between good email marketing and just spamming your email list. Unfortunately, some businesses haven’t found a happy medium.

When used correctly your email list should be responsive and actually look forward to receiving your emails. There are various platforms out there you can choose from, some even have free packages. A great first option is MailChimp.

Get your feet wet and take the free email marketing certification course at HubSpot.

Perseverance and Self-Study

Ok, that’s two but they go hand in hand. Nothing in digital marketing will ever land on your lap, as is true for most skills.

A book on a desk that reads, let your dreams set sail.
Let your dreams set sail

I managed to catch up with Fernando Moutinho, Community and Social Media Manager for Apex Online Racing. That’s @ApexOnRacing for all you twitter peeps out there.

On the subject on how Fernando secured his role, he had this to say:


I got this role by simply wanting to be a Community Manager. I didn’t study marketing, everything I know is self tought. Having done similar roles in the past as a hobby among several gaming communities, I honed my skills by supporting Codemasters on Twitter with their (then) new game Onrush since October 2017.

My “just do it” approach is what got me this role in the first place. There was no vacancy, or job application either. In July last year, Dan Hawkins (co-founder of Apex Online Racing) messaged me one day asking if I was interested in being their Community Manager – I happily accepted, it was a dream come true for me!

Fernando makes a few good points here. He knew he generally wanted to work as a Community Manager. Without any formal qualifications in marketing, he simply set about the task of learning everything he could, soaking in as many digital marketing skills along the way as possible.

He persevered with a “just do it” approach. By showcasing his skills, he secured and landed his dream job. Don’t underestimate how far a little self-study and perseverance can take you.

While we’re on the topic of learning, I reached out to my LinkedIn connections and asked: “If you had to pick one skill to suceed in digital marketing, what would it be?” Sam Page had this to say:

Aptitude for learning. While I don’t think the important things change as quickly as we all pretend, we constantly need to learn then re frame and reevaluate what we knew before.

Social Media

One of the pretty important skills to be a digital marketer right?

social media digital marketing skills.
Social Media

Where do you start? Which platforms do you use? How can you manage all these various accounts for various clients? Don’t let the various platforms out there scare you away. In digital marketing, it is unlikely any client will be on all of them. In fact it is extremely unlikely. The art is discovering which social platforms your particular client needs to be on.

Start looking at the big four. Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, and Instagram. If you haven’t already got personal accounts on these platforms, then do so now. Piyali Dasgupta is the Principal Growth Manager for Skyscanner. She says her number one piece of advice is the “ability to build connections.”

You can use Hubspot Academy’s free social media certification course to get you started on the basics, develop a social media strategy and the learn the basics of digital advertising.

Mahmood Bashash, founder of Persist Media said that his number one recommended skill for digital marketers would be “marketing automation”.

Marketing automation is the use of software to automate certain marketing tasks. This can include email marketing but also includes social media. Some good social media management tools include Hootsuite, Buffer and Sprout Social.

Adobe Photoshop

Pieter Verschueren is the Digital Marketing Advisor and Social Media Strategist at TVH Group. Pieter says the number one skill to make it as a digital marketer is “creativity”.

macbook showing abobe icons.
Adobe Photoshop

Pieter, of course, isn’t just referring to your graphic design skills however many employers are looking for their team to know their way around Abobe Photoshop.

Adobe Photoshop is a graphics editing program. As a digital marketer, you will need graphics for various social media platforms, advertisements on social and search engines and possibly even websites.

Luckily Adobe has various training videos and resources to get you started. You can download a free trial version of Adobe Photoshop CC to accompany your online training.

How to use Analytics

Ok technically this is skill number 8 but HTML and CSS go hand in hand, as do perseverance and self-study. So consider this a bonus.

laptop on top of glass table showing analytics data.
Mastering Analytics

Analytics in the world of digital marketing is one of the most important tools at your disposal. After all, you want to know what is working and what isnt working so that you can adjust your strategy.

There are a plethora of tools out there for various platforms. One of the most well known that employers would be looking for your knowledge in is Google Analytics.

With analytics you can see who visited your website, where they came from, what device they were using, what webpage they visited, how long they visited for and if they purchased anything. Analytics captures lots of fantastic detail for you to play around with and an essential tool in your arsenal.

Don’t forget some social platforms also give you some basic analytical data such as facebook. Useful for seeing what content performs best and what advert made the most sales.

Your Future Plans

If you are reading this, you are most likely at the start of your digital marketing journey. I have only briefly touched on a few topics to give you a general overview. This list is by no means exhaustive.

If you follow some of the free training materials I have linked to, you can begin to get a proper sense of the digital marketing skills you will need.

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