So…I’m just going to say it. Digital professionals are always banging on about why they should be paid more for their services and skills.
When I first heard this I used to ask myself why, yet having been around digital marketing people for the last few years I completely support what is now, quite regularly, being said at marketing meet ups.
Somewhat unsurprisingly, I’m all for marketing being financially recognised but why digital in particular?
At first, I was thinking ‘hold your horses’… do marketers in general need to be paid more?
However, there’s been a bit of a shift over the last few years in terms of what is truly valuable for the typical commercial company.
The key to that last sentence is ‘commercial’. Digital is everything about ROI and making sure if you put ‘x’ into something, you’re going to get ‘x plus x’ out of it.
Think about it, backtrack to the last time you wanted some ‘buying guidance’ on something. Which hedge trimmer to buy? Where to stay whilst in Bognor Regis? Or what time the local fish and chip shop closes, you know, the one that sells chips and gravy like your gran used to make for you? Traditionally these were things you’d be asking friends and family about yet which are now things you type into google and look for yourself. Or you search for the reviews to get the opinions of complete strangers. Brand marketing isn’t really something which is just there – it’s to be engaged with nowadays and that’s what makes digital so powerful.
Now, I promise I don’t just visit review websites trying to find weird and wacky reviews but do think about how companies can now be affected by people giving three stars for a beach which is too sandy…
Fair enough with regards to the DVD, that probably deserved one star.
The point I’m making is that digital marketing can make or break a brand or product. Look at the launch of some of the top tech; if the bloggers don’t like it and the tech review sites don’t support it, then are we likely to buy it? Probably not.
Digital marketing is everywhere though, and in lots of different forms. Email marketing, banner ads and even those little pop ups which we all try to disable, but can’t. Digital is being forced down our throats but you know what, it works, because if it didn’t… they wouldn’t be doing it.
So why is it that digital people should be paid more…?
Measurability is one of the areas which digital people do well on. Think of it like this… If a sales manager can sit down at meeting and say “I brought in these sales and signed these people up to this service/product”, then why can’t digital marketing people say that exact same thing?!?
Digital brings customers to the website and tracks which products look appealing through software which analyses which links are clicked on.
Digital then promotes further products associated with the original one and links it all together with the ability for the customer to buy from the company without having any human interaction, thus saving salary bills on the shop floor. There also doesn’t need to be a shop floor. Zero shop floor means no shelved products, just a stock room. Which is replenished by a link attached to the ecommerce platform, by the way.
If sales are brought in by digital marketing and only digital marketing activities, is there then a reason why digital marketing professionals shouldn’t be rewarded for the amount of ROI they bring in? Are digital marketers now just slightly more ‘geeky’ salespeople with the brains to outperform their salesy co-workers?
Marketing and sales have always had a ‘them and us’ kind of relationship, but in reality, they are now so closely aligned that one simply doesn’t function without the other. It’s certainly become apparent that sales would really struggle without marketing.
Is there a reason why digital marketing professionals shouldn’t be rewarded on the basis of what they bring in? Because as far as I can see, there’s not…
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