Thursday, October 24, 2013

Digital Marketing Executive

What's it really like?

Virgil Ierubino is a 25 year old Digital Marketing Executive, currently working at the publisher Cambridge University Press.

Virgil Ierubino - Digital Marketing Executive

Here he explains his career so far:
 I graduated in 2008 with a degree in Philosophy from Cambridge University. As arts students will know, apart from academia, there is no obvious career path for graduates in this subject. However, philosophy taught me to think logically and write creatively, and both these skills ended up being invaluable for my marketing career so far. Apart from philosophy, I had always taken a huge interest in the digital field. I have always been very technical, and my knowledge of software made me an ideal candidate for digital marketing roles.

After I graduated, I secured the role of Marketing Manager at a company which sells animation software. I managed the brand, devised marketing campaigns and controlled the company’s website. Just under a year later, I left the company and for a brief period decided to be a freelance web designer. I then took up my present role as digital marketing executive at Cambridge University Press, where I market the catalogue of English Language teaching books and software, in a medium-sized team with other marketing colleagues.

My typical day in the office involves lots of varied tasks for different projects. I work on a lot of documents such as marketing plans, sales support guides and website briefs for suppliers. I also attend team meetings to discuss upcoming products and how best to promote them. Once a month I login to various systems to generate sales reports, and circulate them within the team together with an executive summary and commentary. I also login to social networking sites frequently and post appropriately.

I like the job a lot because of how varied it is — I am involved with a number of different projects at once so I never have to get bogged down in one thing. I also like the opportunity I have to influence and define the company’s direction for new types of digital products. The main thing I like though is the chance to be creative and experimental: because digital products and digital marketing is a quickly evolving field, there’s a chance to promote very interesting new products and be really innovative in campaigns.

Even though there is plenty of room for creativity, there are some more mundane aspects of the role which I don’t enjoy so much, such as generating sales reports. Also, because I am in a very traditional company that isn’t used to digital marketing, I often have to persuade people of marketing initiatives that they don’t immediately agree with. The other frustrating thing about this is that digital marketing and marketing for software is not always given the same priority and budget as traditional marketing or the marketing of books.

My advice to anyone seeking a career in digital marketing is to be very aware of what is happening in the digital scene. Know all the digital jargon and latest developments in gadgets such as mobile phones. It is worthwhile developing your skills in computer software too. Once you get the role, chances are you will be in the same team as people who don’t have digital marketing interests. Make yourself an expert and don’t be shy in taking the responsibility for all things digital in your team.