Marketing is a rather universal language. No matter what country or region a brand is in, the language of reaching consumers remains the same. Advertisers all over the world are constantly seeking the next big concept or the next message — and everyone wants a piece of the pie.After all, marketing is an industry that will always have a home. If anything, the marketing space will continue to get increasingly more competitive and strategic as consumers become more and more difficult to reach and impact.
So how does a new marketing professional break into the industry? What if you don’t have much in the way of marketing experience? That’s okay — there are still plenty of ways to get started in a marketing career.
Build A Portfolio
Any digital marketer should have at least some samples of work they’ve done in the past. Even if you’re brand new to the space, it’s still acceptable to create some content that can be used in a portfolio, even if it’s not anything that will be published by a brand. This is simply an exercise in showing off a skill set, such as writing or graphic design. Of course, if there is any published work this is a great opportunity to show it off. When creating a portfolio, find samples of the best possible work you’ve done. Remember, even if there is not much in the way of published work, creating a sample will still be useful in a portfolio.
Be sure to show some diversity. If the best skill you have is writing, show it off in different formats. Show a longer article, a shorter piece, an email, and some short and long-tail copy for ads. Showing versatility and an understanding of different formats of writing for marketing purposes will serve any professional well. The same can be applied to graphic designers or those with other skill sets. Additionally, it’s important to showcase an understanding of metrics and analytics. Perhaps there is a client for which you can showcase a report that was done for a campaign (without releasing proprietary information, of course). At the very least, find a way to show that analyzing marketing data is a task that you understand and are capable of performing.
Finding Your First Clients
Finding clients can be difficult, especially at first. If finding your own clients interests you more than an in-house position, great! However, this can present more of an uphill battle.
Don’t be afraid to send out cold emails to businesses within the niche you’re focusing on. Cold emails, while difficult, can often be productive, particularly if they’re well-written and have an impactful statement. This is a great opportunity to practice writing words that make an impression and that prompts the reader to take action.
Finding an agency or in-house position is also an option, and may be a more viable path for those with little to no experience. Be sure to showcase your best work in any requested writing samples, and show any sort of performance data possible in your resume. By staying on-task and diligent, a savvy professional can find a new career in the digital marketing space.
The industry is competitive and requires a sharp mind willing to keep learning, but the payoff is well worth it in the form of a meaningful career that has the potential to impact many.
Ronn Torossian is the CEO and Founder of 5W Public Relations.