The social media and digital marketing industry is never at a standstill. With the constant changing of technology and online media, the demand for professionals who are specialized in the digital space continues to rise.
During a recent panel discussion at the Johnson & Wales University Providence campus, four digital marketing professionals (and JWU alumni) shared their professional takeaways, including career tips for how a student can succeed in his or her desired industry.
1. Stock your professional toolbox so you are ready for new opportunities.
Luann Edwards ’02 said she noticed that the need for personal social media consulting was constantly rising, offering her a new potential opportunity. After many connections specifically reached out to her asking about personal media consulting, Luann founded Socially Professional, her very own marketing communications consulting firm.
Career tip: Luann encouraged students who are interested in social media and have a desire to someday work for themselves to understand how to use tools such as Google Analytics.
2. Set realistic expectations.
Every industry comes with the potential of struggles, and the industries of social media and digital marketing are no different. Sierra Barter ’09, social media manager at AAA Northeast, pointed out the typical struggle between an agency and a client in the contemporary digital media world. “Clients can sometimes have unrealistic expectations of social and digital media,” she said. “But it is our job to manage those expectations and let the client know that it’s a marathon, not a race.”
Career Tip: Sierra said that social media can offer some exciting outcomes; however, it is important to keep clients grounded. Don’t be afraid to point out that small scale wins are just as important as any other win!
3. Be a good communicator—and don’t forget to network.
Ryan Healey ’12, senior digital strategist at Hill Holliday said, “Being an effective listener and communicator is key in this industry.”
Career Tip: Aspiring digital marketing professionals should make it a point to communicate with others throughout the industry so that they can continue to learn even after their formal education has ended. Never stop learning!