Necessary Digital Marketing Skills for Tomorrow

Aug 25, 2023 | Digital Marketing Certificate, Tech Trends

What is Digital Marketing?

Digital marketing consists of using the internet and social media to connect with consumers that might be interested in a product and/or service. Through social media channels, email, and search engines, digital marketers use digital tools to help attract and keep consumers up to date on their products/services. In an age of constant online communication and interaction, consumers learn about and purchase products in ways drastically different than a decade ago; current digital marketers are essential to small, medium, and large businesses across the globe in order to remain competitive and reach their intended audiences.

Marketing itself has been around for as long as humans have; digital marketing is an elevated and a bit more complex game to play when the entire economy has become digitized. For businesses, having a consistent and effective online presence is essential for growth and building a brand that others rely on, recommend, and come back to. No matter the industry or business, having skills in digital marketing can offer limitless opportunities.

Essential Skills in Digital Marketing

The essential digital marketing skills continue to evolve as technology evolves but there are key skills that all digital marketing professionals need to be well versed in to be successful. Some of those key skills include extensive knowledge in Search Engine Optimization (SEO), Content, Email, and Social Media Marketing, and Pay-Per-Click (PPC) Advertising.

While reading up on the essential skills for digital marketers, it is important to know that most of these skills can be developed through experience and other educational means besides earning a college degree.

8 Essential Skills All Digital Marketing Professionals Need to Succeed

  1. Search Engine Optimization: SEO is what helps websites rank higher in a user’s search on popular search engines. Using keywords that users might use to search for products/services in content marketing is one of the most important skills in digital marketing; the goal is for your product/services to be one of the first a user sees when searching for it.
  2. Content, Email, & Social Media Marketing: Social media publications, email designs, and content for websites are central to a digital marketer. In the 21st century, social media marketing is an absolute must have for any business as many of the networks built within social media channels play a huge role in the modern consumer’s life and choices. While email might seem to be okay to put on the back burner, 92% of U.S. adults use email with 61% of those users checking and sending emails on the daily. Effective social media and email content marketing helps drive users to engage with your products/services website, which in turn further increases the chance of a consumer choosing the business.
  3. Basics of Targeting & Customer Engagement: With the advancement of technology, targeting specific audiences to turn them into customers has become an essential part of delivering content to digital channels. Targeting is all about organizing audiences into groups for easier management and interaction with specific interests and demographics. Better targeting and engagement with customers means a better return on investments (ROI) made on any advertising.
  4. Pay-Per-Click Advertising & Sales: Professionals who are able to blend both organic and paid content have the most potential to be successful in driving sales from digital marketing. Being well-versed in the process of ad placement across multiple platforms and in creating sponsored posts curated for specific audiences are essential skills to have as a digital marketer.
  5. Basic Design Skills: As a digital marketer, there will probably be a marketing team that you’d be apart of and while there will be UI/UX designers to create, design, and write the content, knowing the basics of design skills will help with the overall understanding of what works, what doesn’t, and what delivers the best results.
  6. Storytelling: Stories tell us a message; storytelling in marketing is a must-have skill to increase brand awareness, drive more attention to your content, and helps foster a more meaningful connection with your audience and future customers. Someone is more likely to support something if they know the story behind it!
  7. Creativity & Problem Solving: The modern digital economy requires creativity and problem solving skills that help digital marketers outthink their competition. Becoming creative about finding solutions will help not only the growth of the business but growth of that business’s audience.
  8. Analytics: Digital content comes with its fair share of data and without basic knowledge and experience in analytics, digital marketing professionals will have a hard time keeping up with all of the information. Having a clear understanding of brand metrics, how to execute, and how to analyze them will take a digital marketer far in their careers.

There are plenty of skills that a digital marketing professional should possess and these are just a few of the essential skills; some more possible hard skills include copywriting, video production and editing, and graphic design. The list could go on for quite awhile if we were to add every single skill a digital marketer should and could possess but skills in SEO, email, social media, and web marketing, PPC, ROI, and others listed above are skills that keeps a digital marketing professional in demand.

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Digital Marketers Are Crucial Across Industries

With marketing a necessary aspect of any business, service, and brand, digital marketing has become the next crucial step to gaining an audience, a loyal following, and making consumers aware of what they are missing out on. That said, digital marketing professionals can safely assume that opportunities reside and arise across all industries, from small to large, from a backyard small business to an international company.

Small Businesses

Small businesses are those who have less than 1,500 employees, according to the U.S. Small Business Administration. Those who own small businesses know that having go-to marketing strategies is a must but there might be some that are not as keen or knowledgeable on digital marketing. In a 2020 Forbes survey, 60% of small business owners “stated they had to pivot to a stronger online presence and offering because of the pandemic.” If a small business owner needs to hire a digital marketing professional, it is important that that professional knows how to tailor their efforts to the specific needs of the business, meet the customer where they are, and lean on their knowledge of digital marketing tools and content creation to effectively push SEO and ROI.


This is where digital marketing as a freelance opportunity becomes plausible; those who have the skills to help create marketing strategies for small businesses in industries they enjoy the most have the possibility of making a career in freelancing their digital marketing skills and knowledge. In many instances, digital marketing professionals can become a business themselves through freelancing. With the right self promotion and marketing, digital marketers could have a few projects with a few different companies going on at the same time.

Large Companies

Large companies like marketing agencies are also places where a digital marketing professional can find a plethora of opportunities that they can be successful in. Most of the time, large corporations like name-brand clothing companies or big-chain grocery stores will have their own marketing team or hire out to a marketing agency to complete the massive job that is their marketing efforts. When hired on to a team such as this, roles are a bit more specialized and there is room to move up the ladder of responsibility over the land of opportunity in small business and freelancing. Digital marketing professionals who are just starting out and new to the big world of digital marketing might find it easier to be on a team of other digital marketing professionals so that they have more room to learn and grow their abilities.

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Advance or Jumpstart a Digital Marketing Career

With marketing having been around for ages and digital marketing here to stay due to the overwhelming reliance the economy has on technology, expected career growth and opportunity only continue to rise. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, Advertising, Promotions, and Marketing Managers can see 10% job growth over the next eight years and Market Research Analysts can see a 19% job growth, both well over the national average.

DWC offers a digital marketing certificate program that helps beginners and pros alike upskill their digital marketing knowledge and skillset. Our certificate looks at the fundamental concepts and strategies of marketing, as well as the data-driven digital marketing skills needed to successfully propel a digital marketing career forward. Enrolled students will learn from subject matter experts how to examine analytics to understand the effectiveness of marketing efforts, create pinpoint targeting to a defined audience, and understand content that speaks directly to specific customers.

Learn more about the certificate program here: Digital Marketing Certificate Program

Sign up to speak to an advisor here: Register for an Info Session & fill out a Program Application