Which marketing skills will give you the edge in 2017 and in the years ahead? Is it more ‘traditional’ abilities like social media marketing and SEO? Or is it something newer like growth hacking or conversion rate optimization?
A recent Venngage study offers some clues The study, released in September 2016, looks at ‘supply’—competencies listed in job postings in the market—and ‘demand’—the skills marketers list on their LinkedIn profiles.
The study’s astounding finding: there’s currently a massive skills gap in the marketing industry as certain specialties face undersupply.
Marketing Skills 2016 | Infographics
What skills companies want from marketers
According to Venngage, the following marketing skills are most in-demand as of 2015:
- Content marketing
- Data analysis
- Email marketing
- HTML and CSS
Evolution of Marketing Skills | Infographics
So what about in 2017 and the years ahead?
The biggest opportunity, according to Venngage, is with data analysis. Here’s why, according to Ryan McCready, the study’s author:
There is a MASSIVE shortage of marketers that are skilled in the art of data analysis. In fact, only 3% of all marketers are competent in crunching large sets of data at every job level.
And the number of marketers with analytics skills is DECREASING as the job levels increase toward CxO. This discrepancy between the demand and supply is the most in all of the experiment, at over 10x for every level! Wow.
Supporting technical skills like “Excel,” “Google Analytics” and “SQL” follow a similar pattern. “Excel” skills are being demanded by companies at a rate of 3x more than the supply, even though it is a highly supplied skill for marketers.
Venngage also noted that content marketing remains a hot skill as companies face the consequences of the rise of ad blocking. HTML skills are also hot since there are more jobs mentioning this than people having it in their profiles.
One area where there’s an oversupply: social media marketing. There are way too many marketers claiming to be social media experts despite the fact that social media marketing jobs are trending down. Just another reason why you don’t want to be known as a social media guru.
Specific marketing skills are cool—but don’t forget about the ‘soft’ skills
Venngage’s study a data-driven look at the specific marketing specialties companies are looking for. It’s very useful, especially if you’re an entry-level marketer deciding what to do concentrate on.
That said, it’s important to consider the soft skills you need in the long term. The marketing profession is changing a lot, so the specific technical skills required to thrive will likely change over time. But things like interpersonal and communication skills will never grow old. More than ever, marketers need to flex their curiosity muscle and embrace continuous learning in order to succeed in their professions in 2017 and beyond.
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