It takes more than a master’s in marketing – one of the highest-paying master’s degrees – to be a great marketer. To succeed in the field of marketing and enjoy the work you do, you need to have personality traits that complement the skills, strengths and job duties that go along with this career. Some examples of personality traits that will help you be successful in marketing include creativity, communication skills, curiosity, adaptability and strategic thinking skills.
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Coming up with clever campaign ideas isn’t all marketers do, but the creative aspect of the field of marketing as a whole is important. Creative thinking is often more important in the field of marketing than hands-on skills in creative endeavors, like graphic design or drawing, because these aspects of a marketing campaign may be outsourced to experts in those fields. If you can think outside the box to identify unique angles and memorable, compelling stories for the purpose of making sales, you might have the creativity to be a marketer.
That said, creativity alone will only take you so far in the field of marketing. Many marketing roles combine campaign concept development with job duties in coordinating campaigns and analyzing their success.
If you don’t feel like creativity is your strong suit but you still want to work in marketing, you might focus on the analytics side of the field.
Strong Communication Skills
Marketing is all about communicating messages – particularly, the messages that drive sales. These messages may be expressed in several ways, including written advertising copy, videos and visuals. If you have a gift for communication, particularly in multiple media, that gift will help you succeed in marketing.
When working in marketing, you also need strong communication skills for your day-to-day job duties and professional interactions. Whether you’re collaborating with your creative team, presenting return on investment data to company leaders or giving clear specifications and instructions to the skilled creatives whose services you use, communicating clearly is important.
Fortunately, your communication abilities are skills that are easy to strengthen through practice, both in your academic studies and your professional experiences.
Good marketers tend to be curious individuals. They ask a lot of questions and search for answers. Some of these questions may be obvious, like what compels consumers to make purchases. Other questions are of a more technical nature. How does a marketing team judge success in a campaign?
In the modern world of digital marketing, the questions get even more granular, and the analytical data available to answer them is even more plentiful. Ads can be targeted in new ways that weren’t possible through traditional forms of advertising. Technology like A/B testing services allows marketers to compare the success of different designs, slogans and images used on a website. Even what counts as success can be measured in different ways, like contact form submissions, phone calls using special tracking numbers, clicks, impressions, social media interactions and search engine rankings.
Another important quality in marketers is having strong analytical skills. You need these analytical skills to answer the questions that your curiosity compels you to explore.
The field of marketing is constantly changing to keep pace with emerging technologies. If you aren’t big on diving into the newest channels for reaching potential customers or learning new tools and strategies for maximizing the impact of your work, this field may not be ideal for you. Today’s marketers need to be flexible, agile and eager to adopt new ways of doing things. Although some marketers may spend a sustained amount of time on one campaign, it’s not unusual for marketers to be managing numerous campaigns and projects at a time.
If you’re eager to join the hottest new social media site or try out the beta version of an up-and-coming technology, that’s a good sign that you would feel at home in the fast-paced field of marketing.
Strategic Thinking Skills
Successful marketing requires strategy. While it’s possible for a company to get a social media post to go viral by sheer luck, the more consistent and sustained marketing success companies need for growth takes more than a hunch that happens to pan out. Being a good strategist is particularly important for high-level marketing roles, but you don’t have t be a marketing director for your strategic thinking skills to matter. Strategy is a part of every marketing project and even the individual stages and components of a successful marketing project.
Taking academic coursework in marketing and business can help you gain a better grasp of strategic thinking, but you can also boost these skills in more entertaining ways, like playing strategy games.