If you think that college knowledge is enough to become an expert in marketing, you are wrong. College education gives you only the basic understanding of marketing, so that you know what’s ROI and customer loyalty. However, this knowledge won’t be enough if you are planning a career in marketing. The matter is that there are many neglected marketing topics that the universities should really teach, as these topics are of top importance for young marketers and trainees.
Modern marketing trends have nothing common with trends of 2010. Moreover, the trends of 2018 differ from the trends of 2017! Of course, the college program is not changed every year. Therefore, students do not know what’s actually going on in the marketing world.
To keep college marketing education up to date, the university syllabus should cover at least following topics:
- Social media
- Content marketing
- Email marketing
Want to know why these topics are so important? Keep reading and you’ll find the answer!
Social media (exemplified by Instagram)
Today, Facebook and Instagram are not the platforms where you can build brand awareness and communicate with the audience, but the real selling platforms (a company can actually sell the goods and services here, as this option has recently been added). New features are added all the time, and it would be a huge mistake to ignore them in building an effective marketing strategy.
Just a few years ago, Instagram was just a platform to publish photos and share them with your friends. But it grew big rapidly, and now this is one of the most powerful platforms for marketing. The recent studies show that 70.7% of the United States businesses are already using Instagram. Instagram research states that 80% of accounts follow at least one business Instagram account.
Even though some of the universities and colleges may teach students how to use Instagram for marketing, still they do not provide the full overview of the changes in Instagram algorithms (like, today a user does not see all published posts in the feed). Moreover, the trends in Instagram are changing so rapidly so that the professional marketers sometimes don’t keep pace with them.
A great example is stories. Only in one year, the number of users who watch stories every day grew twice! More than 50% businesses already use stories, and it would be a mistake to ignore this option in running marketing campaign.
A blog is no longer personal space for sharing ideas. Today, blog is part of marketing strategy, as it helps to attract leads and even turn them into clients. 61% of users make a decision to buy a product or order a service after reading a blog post, and this number is too huge to be ignored.
To make the most out of blogging, it’s not enough just to write well. Blogging is more about marketing knowledge and skill than writing, although the ability to write efficiently is also important.
Blogging for marketing covers such aspects as:
- Defining target audience
- Determining topics that are interesting to TA
- Finding a proper tone of voice
In fact, it’s quite easy to implement blogging in the college syllabus. For example, essay topics may be considered as the topics for the blog. A student will need to decide WHO is his audience, WHY they need this information, and WHAT they need to read. An additional assignment to write a blog post instead of the essay will be more useful for the student than writing another paper.
Blogging and SEO are an integral part of general content marketing strategy. But today it’s not enough to write search engine optimized posts to be successful. The modern approach requires from you using all available content spheres, like videos, images, and even podcasts.
Youtube channel is a part of marketing strategy. Livestreaming on Twitch is also a part of content marketing strategy! Your Pinterest account is the same. The more spheres you cover, the better content marketing is.
One of the latest trends in content marketing is content seeding. It works in the following way: you write an article and publish it on different platforms. You just scatter content and build brand awareness faster and cheaper than by using ads.
Many marketers choose emails to communicate with the audience and nurture leads into clients. However, email marketing is also changing all the time, so a marketer should never follow the tendencies of the previous year to get the desired effect.
One of the main changes of the past two years is that email marketing goes mobile. But many companies still think that their clients check emails from the desktop. Colleges should always remind students that sticking to desktop is ruining for any strategy.
Analytics and big data
A marketer should know how to analyze the results of the chosen strategy. Moreover, each marketing campaign should be analyzed in order to define the mistakes that should never be made again. In most college, analytics is not the part of marketing syllabus, so young marketers have no idea how to track the performance and analyze the results. Big data is the newest trend in marketing so that most of the marketers don’t even know how to use it in building a strategy.
Of course, everyone knows about A/B testing, but it’s not enough to build an effective strategy. There are many analytics tools that help to work effectively with big data, but in most cases, young marketers don’t even know about them. They think that Google Analytics is enough (and in some cases, it is), but in most cases they don’t even know how to make a proper setting to get all information.
Changing marketing course syllabus at least once per year is a great idea, but unfortunately, most universities and colleges cannot afford that. Hence, the students need to track the changes in marketing world on their own.
Self-education is important for students, young marketers, and marketing gurus alike. If you are still a student, you need to get used to learning something on your own: reading marketing websites and blogs, attending workshops and seminars, watching tutorials, etc. The habit of self-education will come in handy for your future career, as marketing will change all the time, and you will always know what’s really going on and what changed to introduce to the current strategy so that it corresponds to the latest trends.