Last week, an article from The Guardian circulated around our office.
Jon Myers of Marin Software posed the question “Under-resourced and isolated: who would be a digital marketer?”. With such a bold statement and quite staggering statistics, it’s not surprising that some of us felt we needed get a few things of our chests:
“I am not arguing with 72% of managers feeling their job has become more complex in the last year – in fact I wholeheartedly agree. The competition are more savvy, the customer is demanding increasingly exciting and interactive campaigns and as always, the company needs to see increases on YoY metrics. But if it stayed the same (or got easier) then we’d all be bored, unsatisfied and in desperate need of a challenge. Yes, Google are making life increasingly more difficult for companies to cope, but the game changes and life moves on – it’s happened before and it’ll happen again. If you can’t stand up under the pressure of a changing environment then maybe working in digital was a mistake for you.
And although I agree that sometimes digital teams can be misunderstood and face a split between the different sections – this doesn’t necessarily mean that digital marketing managers are ‘isolated and under-resourced’. In fact, in my experience, with the support of a digital agency such as ourselves to guide them, teach them and support them, plus the creation of job roles such as social media managers and the like, the classic marketing team has been restructured in a way that offers less isolation and far more resource than it ever did.
Digital has an enormously huge impact on commerce, advertising and the purchasing process. And so what if we no longer know what that process is? We will find out – and isn’t that where the fun lies in all this?”
“I wouldn’t say there is anything new to us in the post; undoubtedly things are getting more complex and consumers are becoming harder to track. What I would say though is that whilst it’s all very good and well saying that digital managers should try and concentrate on integrating the different facets of digital marketing (how can any digital marketing really work unless search, SEO and PPC are integrated, anyway?), until the rest of the business and other managers take the time to understand the role of digital marketing and its components, then it’s always going to be an uphill battle for resources and a lonely one at that.”
“The statistics don’t surprise me at all, but rather than feeling like I have to “grapple” with my clients’ media channels and data, I enjoy the process of generating ideas, working towards a predetermined goal and then integrating each aspect of digital marketing to help reach it. Thing is, I’m working with organisations that “get it”. The fact that they’ve made the decision to outsource and rely on expert opinion means they understand it’s a big ask to have one person in-house keeping all the plates spinning, especially if the rest of the company don’t appreciate how intrinsic online campaigns can be to your organisation’s overall success.
Communication is key: If you’ve seen success due to an online campaign as your company’s digital marketing manager, tell others about it, present it the board and help them understand the impact it’s had or will have on the business. On the other hand, if it’s not going so well, there are a tonne of case studies out there to help show how assigning resource to online activity is imperative. At the very least, it might get other internal bods on-side, or maybe it’ll encourage marketing and IT to work together more for that all-important ‘Integrated 2015’.”
“The digital marketing manager’s role hasn’t become as complicated as the purchasing journey. The purchasing journey can only be deemed as complicated if it isn’t understood. A good digital marketing manager will take the time to understand the different sources across multiple channels and devices not with an aim of ‘getting a clear picture of what a “normal” customer journey looks like’ but to have a better understanding of where the product, service or even brand sits within those channels in order to earn visits to their website.”
Are you in digital marketing? Do you feel overwhelmed or isolated by the complexity of your job? Let us know what you think of the article in the comments box below – we’d love to hear from you.