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Want a Gig in Marketing? 6 Tech Skills You Need

If you’re looking for a new marketing gig, consider this: 90% of marketers now use social networks in their efforts. So, whether you’re just breaking into the field or you’ve been around for years, landing that next job means you’ve got to be on top of your online game.

Between endless tech tools, tweets, and timelines, there’s a lot to master—but there are also some great ways to get your digital expertise up to speed quickly. To get you started, here are the top social media and tech skills that will help you shine.

1. Notching Up an Online Presence

Expanding is the name of the game for businesses, so hiring managers are looking for people who know how to steadily increase online followers and interact with them on social media platforms. Do you know how to increase likes for a Facebook business page or followers on Twitter? Do you know how to get more followers on Pinterest and grow your network on LinkedIn?

If you haven’t done this with your own social media following, lend a hand to a nonprofit or your alumni organization so you have some results to show. And if you need some pointers, get started with this Slide Share on how to build an online presence.

2. Mastering the Latest and (Not-Quite) Greatest

Most of us can figure out Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest, but employers also want to see that you’re skilled at creating a marketing strategy that includes newer and niche social media tools like Instagram, Foursquare, Quora, and OnlyWire. After all, new tools that can help enhance a digital marketing plan come out by the week, so it’s important to show you can adapt.

Go to your interviews ready-packed with knowledge about these latest, cutting-edge tools. Even if you haven’t tried them out yet, you should have a working idea of how they’re used to show that you’re on top of social trends.

3. Blogging

Writing compelling copy, using proper keywords for SEO, and promoting a blog are all part of a marketer’s job. And what better way to show you’ve got this expertise than by having your own name up in bolded letters?

Start your own blog featuring your unique take on marketing trends and campaigns, and post regularly. You can even create a content calendar that maps out the key topics you’ll be covering weekly or monthly. (Score extra points by learning how to build a customized WordPress or Typepad blog from scratch.)

4. SEO

While you don't have to be an SEO expert (that’s a job in itself), it's good to have general knowledge about how SEO operates and how it relates to marketing. Here’s a primer: SEO (or Search Engine Optimization) is the ticket to getting free traffic on search engines like Google. Each search engine has an algorithm for categorizing and organizing search results, based predominantly on keywords and links. If your website is SEO'd well, it aligns with this algorithm, resulting in higher ranking in search results—and more people finding your site.

Prepare for your interview by watching Common Craft’s great video explaining the ins and outs of SEO and Dave Saunders’ on how to pick proper keywords.

5. Online Video

Web video continues to grow rapidly in popularity among consumers, perking the ears of any marketer—in fact, Fast Company predicts that short-form video is the future of marketing. More and more businesses are using compelling content-driven videos—rather than advertisements—to create a more meaningful way to interact with consumers.

So, at the very least, you should have a knowledge of how web video is used in marketing, with some specific examples to point to. (For starters, watch T-Mobile’s moving "Welcome Home" video created in 2010 that’s still going viral today!) Bonus points for knowing how to shoot and edit video, especially since it’s getting easier to produce with familiar tools like mobile phones.

6. Making the Most of Mobile

For better or for worse, mobile phones come with us everywhere (yes, everywhere!) we go. So it's no surprise that businesses are becoming more eager to connect with consumers in the mobile space, creating relevant and appealing content like apps, games, and other mobile tools.

And as a marketer, you’ll need to show that you understand how to add mobile to the mix of your marketing campaigns and strategies. To get some inspiration, Chris Brogan shares six mobile marketing case studies that will get your best ideas flowing.

The amount of digital avenues for marketing a message is endless, but don't get overwhelmed. Make it a priority to become proficient with these top social media skills, and you’ll have a digital edge over all the other job candidates.

Photo of marketer courtesy of Shutterstock.