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How to improve your marketing skills

Marketing professionals employ their skills to promote products, services and ideas. Incorporating these skills will help you capture the attention of your employer and clients. Improving your marketing skills can help you identify the aspects that can make your marketing strategy more appealing to the audience. Read on to learn more about the skills required for marketing, and a few tips to improve those skills.

Essential skills needed for a successful career in marketing:

  • Communication skills – strong communication skills are required to deliver a clear message to the target audience. When exercising successful marketing communication, it is important to use an appropriate tone. This includes communicating through writing, digital channels (online), and verbally. This form of marketing skills can be broadly classified into:

1) Professional communication

o   Engaging clients during product promotion;

o   Crafting advertisements;

o   Creating scripts for television;

o   Composing a satisfactory budget proposal;

o   Creating multimedia campaigns.

2) Verbal communication

o   Speaking directly with potential buyers;

o   Communicating effectively with your team;

o   Composing marketing emails and promotional copies;

o   Writing reports, executive summaries and press releases;

o   Constructing consumer surveys;

o   Collaborating with designers to create logos;

o   Generating sales.

3) Interpersonal communication

o   Empathising with colleagues;

o   Communicating thoughtfully with team members;

o   Treating colleagues with equal respect;

o   Working closely with the team to ensure effective work output;

o   Understanding the need of the clients and demand of the consumers;

o   Offering strategic contributions;

o   Demonstrating effective listening abilities;

o   Learning about new market trends and customer behaviour.

  • Visual and technical skills – it is necessary to be aware of the changes occurring in the market due to new technology and online trends. The following skills can be utilised to deliver continuous services and information:

o   Using the latest technology to present market data with new insights;

o   Handling contemporary digital tools, platforms and channels, in order to maintain continuous customer engagement;

o   Using analytics programmes for social media campaigns and project management software to check the progress of all projects;

o   Using spreadsheets (Excel or Google docs) to track social media marketing and blog-post traffic, reviewing campaign metrics, planning SEO-based keywords and determining website traffic;

o   Experience with digital advertising tools, such as Google AdWords and Remarketing;

o   Acquaintance with analytical tools (Google Analytics, Hubspot, Pardot and Tag Manager) to promote quantitative communication.

  • Analytical and creative thinking skills – to achieve success in marketing, you need to develop critical thinking and problem-solving skills. The skills required to approach problems systematically and respond to such situations in a creative manner are as follows:

o   Research-based analysis to determine the demands of the audience;

o   Anticipating the impact of alternative strategies;

o   Ability to draw logical conclusions based on your own judgement;

o   Planning of promotional events and distribution of products;

o   Conducting market and media research;

o   Applying the principles of differentiation and segmentation to marketing plans;

o   Analysing consumer survey data, demographics and preferences;

o   Selecting retail sites and calculating retail pricing for products;

o   Financial analysis and statistical skills;

o   Thinking in an innovative manner to create exciting marketing concepts;

o   Ability to justify your values, beliefs and assumptions.

  • Commercial skills – to master this skill, you will need to have expertise in business, psychology and technology. Commercial agencies will require you to develop the following skills:

o   Understanding the requirement of customers;

o   Knowledge about industrial issues, company history and product services;

o   Awareness about company press releases and trade publications;

o   Keeping up with the legislation and regulation of the organisation;

o   Ability to understand buyer needs and the sales process;

o   Understanding of inbound marketing methodology;

o   Negotiating with clients on budget, timeline and expectations.

Tips to improve your marketing skills

  • Building confidence – this will enable you to enhance your public speaking and leadership skills. Confidence is essential when it comes to presenting marketing plans or pitching ideas to the audience. You should be comfortable speaking in front of a large audience, handling on-the-spot questions and managing presentation software (PowerPoint or Prezi).

  • Managing time – to focus on your goals clearly, you should learn how to optimise your time. This can be achieved by segregating your tasks under two categories: important and urgent. Placing every activity under these categories will assist you in creating an ideal schedule for the day. Time management will further help you to meet your deadlines.

  • Listening – you should develop your listening skills to communicate with your clients in a better way. As a marketer, you need to understand the preferences and needs of your clients. Therefore, having a proper listening strategy will not only help you frame relevant and direct questions but also allow you to respond in a creative and planned manner.

  • Relationship building – establishing a personal connection with clients will give them an idea that you genuinely care about their well-being and progress. To be in contact with your customers, you need to make certain gestures throughout your professional relationship period. This includes sending thank you notes, holiday greetings and informational emails regarding industrial proceedings. Furthermore, you can build personal networking by being active on social media and joining social clubs.

To advance your marketing knowledge, you need to be aware of the marketing tools being used by the highly-effective professionals who are working in your field.

The MA in Strategic Marketing course offered by the Berlin School of Business and Innovation (BSBI) will help you to develop basic marketing skills and more complex ones. You can apply to the postgraduate course here, to learn how to keep up-to-date with new developments and trends in the marketing field.

This article was written by Deblina Dam and edited by Anisa C.