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As the digital marketing job demand has surged by 52%, it becomes evident that most businesses nowadays tap into the digital landscape to achieve success.
As a digital marketer at ClickDo I combine SEO with various other marketing disciplines like social media marketing, email marketing, and more to make our online magazines thrive while providing content marketing and PR services.
So, if you’re an aspiring digital marketer and you wonder if:
- You need a degree.
- Digital Marketing is for everyone.
- You can start out as a digital marketer, and how.
Then read on.
In this guide, I will explain the role of a digital marketer like me and how you can get on the path of becoming one to earn money online from the get-go.
The CEO of ClickDo, Fernando Raymond, has been a digital marketer for over 10 years now and built several digital businesses as a digital entrepreneur based on his success as a digital marketer.
I joined ClickDo in 2018 as a part-time content writer while having a full-time teaching job and I explain my journey from teacher to digital marketer in this video:
The beauty of digital marketing as a skill is that it is versatile and can be utilised in many different ways in the thriving digital economy.
So, let’s discover what a digital marketer does to earn a living.
What is a Digital Marketer?
A digital marketer is a professional who focuses on promoting and advertising products or services using various digital channels and platforms.
Their primary goal is to drive traffic, engagement, and conversions for businesses or clients while building a brand.
Digital marketers employ a range of online marketing techniques to reach their target audience, build brand awareness, and generate leads.
They typically work within an organization’s marketing department or may be part of a digital marketing agency.
Top Fact: The United Kingdom is the largest digital ad market in Europe and one of the leading digital advertising spenders worldwide according to Statista. There is a clear trend that spending on digital advertising has increased for over a decade as digital continues to thrive.
However, many start out as a freelance digital marketing consultant. That’s how Fernando started back in 2013 to then launch his digital agency ClickDo which employs digital marketers to provide digital marketing services for businesses in the UK.
I didn’t start out as a digital marketer as I didn’t have the skills when I joined ClickDo. But I was good at writing content, had a passion for it, and had done a summer course in journalism at the London School of Journalism. With ClickDo I learned SEO skills, which are important for digital marketing.
While I started building and growing some blogs for ClickDo like the London Business News Magazine or Green Living Blog, I gained more skills like WordPress skills, social media marketing, and email marketing skills to increase the reach of these blogs.
So, it is fair to say that becoming a digital marketer doesn’t require a specific qualification, but rather a passion for creating and promoting digital content. Depending on how you get started, you can focus on different online marketing skills that you enjoy the most.
The best part is that you can always make a start with your own website and channels as a first case study, so you wouldn’t necessarily rely on being hired right away or having a degree.
Top 5 Responsibilities of a Digital Marketer:
1. Search Engine Optimization (SEO):
Optimizing website content to improve search engine rankings and organic traffic is key to driving traffic to online channels. For instance, a digital marketer working for an e-commerce store would focus on using relevant keywords to enhance their website’s visibility on search engines like Google or Bing to gain more exposure.
2. Social Media Marketing:
Creating and managing social media campaigns to engage with the target audience and promote products or services is a key driver for additional traffic and leads. For example, a digital marketer for a fashion brand might run Instagram ads to showcase new collections. Many brands now require daily content for all their socials to keep their audience engaged and growing.
3. Content Marketing:
Producing valuable and relevant content, such as blog posts, videos, or infographics, to attract and retain customers is vital for brands to be seen and noticed. An example would be a digital marketer working for a software company creating informative blog posts about industry trends or how-to guides, which can then be turned into videos and social media posts.
4. Email Marketing:
Developing and executing regular email campaigns to nurture leads and encourage repeat business is another important role of a digital marketer. A digital marketer for a travel agency might send personalized vacation offers to their subscriber list and encourage new subscribers to sign up via the website and socials.
Developing and executing branding campaigns to increase the visibility and awareness of the business interlinks with all above mentioned disciplines. Thinking of the most famous brands, what a digital marketer would do is utilise advertising on television, streaming channels, social media channels, radio, websites/platforms, etc. to build the brand’s reputation. Working with influencers and celebrities always works for branding and the content makes the biggest difference.
How to earn money as a Digital Marketer?
As explained above, if you want to start out as a digital marketer, you can look for job opportunities, however, most employers will want to see your experience and expertise before they hire you.
If you’re only starting out, then the best thing to do is to start with your own case study by creating your own online presence and marketing it yourself. To make money on top of that you can try to land some freelancer gigs via freelance job platforms.
You can then build an online portfolio and if you land more freelance gigs, you can potentially scale your services and develop it into an online business. You might then end up as a digital entrepreneur, who identifies and leverages digital opportunities to create, launch, and grow their online businesses.
So, you would hire other digital marketers who will work for you, and you’d delegate all marketing tasks to them while you are responsible for the entire venture’s success or failure.
To scale your business successfully you need to use your creativity, innovation, and business acumen to develop products or services that cater to specific market needs or gaps.
However, a smart digital business like ClickDo can have multiple digital entrepreneurs that work together for the business that’s founded by a digital entrepreneur who also holds the CEO role of that business.
For example, Fernando Raymond is the founder and CEO of ClickDo and SeekaHost web services. You can learn more about what is digital entrepreneurship in this guide. He trained other ClickDoers to replicate what he did and build their own teams within ClickDo to essentially run their own departments, offering the services they prefer and are best at.
I now work with around 5 assistants who help me manage the blogs, the content, the socials, the emails, etc. I never thought I could do this, but it organically grew with Fernando’s guidance and continues to flourish as ClickDo grows.
See Anna, one of our content creators at ClickDo, in action in this video, where she explains how to earn as a digital marketer:
So, while working as a digital marketer, you might learn additional entrepreneurship and management skills, which you and your career will benefit from. But with success comes responsibility so let’s look at that a bit more.
Top 5 Responsibilities of a Digital Entrepreneur:
1. Generate a Vision:
Identifying a market niche or a problem that can be solved through digital means is the first step in a new venture. However, having a clear vision of the business idea is key to turning it into reality. The vision will determine the journey and focus. For example, a digital entrepreneur might notice a lack of user-friendly productivity apps and decide to create one. They might have a clear vision of its application and the target user, so they know how to build and market the product.
2. Develop a Business:
Creating digital products or services, which could be software, e-books, online courses, or digital consulting, depending on their expertise and interests, is the starting point where the entrepreneur needs to source funds, people, partners, and resources to develop the business.
3. E-commerce Skills:
Building and managing an online store to sell products, and services or drop shipping items is a core skill in the digital economy. For instance, a digital entrepreneur may launch a fashion brand and handle the entire sales process online. So, they need the knowledge or team to manage the e-store effectively.
4. Digital Service Skills:
Utilising digital services like web design, social media management, or content writing are important for running any digital enterprise. An example would be a digital entrepreneur starting a graphic design agency.
5. Marketing Skills:
Implementing digital marketing strategies to grow any business is a must in the digital economy. Digital entrepreneurs often need to wear the hat of a digital marketer in the early stages of their venture until they can scale and hire a marketing team.
In summary, digital marketers focus on promoting products or services for businesses, while digital entrepreneurs create and run their own digital ventures, utilizing digital platforms to innovate and grow their businesses from scratch. Becoming a digital marketer can be the stepping stone to becoming a digital entrepreneur.
So, how do you want to make money?
Whether you’re keen on earning as a digital marketer or digital entrepreneur depends on your preference.
As a digital marketer, you can be employed, which can provide more job security and a regular income. On average digital marketers can expect an annual salary of £36k in the UK. The more senior the role, the higher the salary. As a freelancer this could be more, depending on the clients one lands, but the income may not be regular and more uncertain.
So, starting out as an employed digital marketer might work best to learn best practices with an established employer and you could even offer some digital marketing on the side to earn extra cash.
As a digital entrepreneur, you would be self-employed so you would be responsible for your own and your staff’s income plus the revenue of your business.
It’s therefore easier and less demanding to start out as a digital marketer and once one has the funds and resources to start an online business, it might be less stressful to manage one.
Either way, the digital economy offers a huge earning potential in the digital marketing sphere alone and I’ve written this make-money online guide to showcase this:
If you just specialise in any of the above digital marketing fields/skills listed, you could make a good living with the potential to scale as explained. Check out my Make Money Online in the UK guide, where I list different jobs in the marketing sphere and potential earnings:
Whatever you choose to become it’s vital you start learning digital skills to become an experienced digital marketer first. So, you can apply that knowledge to other businesses and/or build your own online digital business.
Working in digital marketing opens many opportunities like location independent work, and freedom to travel and work as a digital nomad, which motivated me hugely. You can read this digital nomad guide to discover more.
If you are interested in discovering more about such topics, you can follow me on my socials or ClickDo, where I regularly share digital marketing and nomad insights.
Blogger and Educator by Passion | Senior Online Media & PR Strategist at ClickDo Ltd. | Contributor to many Education, Business & Lifestyle Blogs in the United Kingdom & Germany | Summer Course Student at the London School of Journalism and Course Instructor at the SeekaHost University.