Some time ago, there were two ways to make a successful living in marketing: as a specialist marketer or a general marketer. Where the former relied on events, emailing, branding, or communications, for example, the latter specialized in more strategic endeavors, and one’s career path typically involved moving from the specialist to the strategic. As one moved up the ranks, multiple team members were necessary to maintain specialized, execution-related tasks.
With the advent of digital evolution, a new breed of marketer—the hybrid marketer—is on the rise. This type has a broader, deeper, and more versatile skill set that is increasingly self-directed and geared toward acquiring whatever knowledge is helpful to expand skills further and obtain any information that may be relevant. As a result, contemporary marketing career paths are combining the specialized with the strategic.
An evolving skill set
These new hybrid marketers understand that the evolving marketing landscape has become far more connected and coordinated, and keeping “email marketing” or “social media marketing” or” brand communications” on separate shelves is an outdated and redundant practice. Instead, a greater realization that an in-depth understanding of multiple relevant and specialized areas improves execution across the board. For example, many of these contemporary hybrid marketers are adding coding fundamentals to their repertoire to stay abreast of the technology-driven marketing landscape.
Additionally, when one examines the evolution of marketers’ skills on LinkedIn and other professional networks, this change has become quite apparent. Whereas the old model of separating specialist and strategic marketing required basic and common skills such as strategy, social media marketing, online advertising, and digital marketing, for example, the newer hybrid marketer has added a host of other, new, and exciting skills.
Among the fastest-growing skills include social media marketing; content marketing, e-commerce, search engine optimization (SEO), and inbound marketing. Further, experience and prowess on such platforms as Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, and HootSuite are also not only in high demand but in any successful hybrid marketer’s toolbox.
Becoming a hybrid marketer
Not only have the skills mentioned above become more desirable and valuable than they were merely a few years ago, but they are also far more accessible. Gone are the days where increasing one’s marketing skills required classroom-based courses with permission and investment from one’s employer. Instead, there are hundreds of video courses and free online learning resources on marketing automation, programming, and SEO, for example, which enable marketers to pursue their interests and improve their skills—and to do so on their own time.
Hybrid marketing and career advancement
Considerable evidence from the career paths of successful senior marketers attests to the importance of hybrid marketing and marketing in general. Former boundaries separating corporate communications, insight, innovation, marketing, and customer service are becoming increasingly blurred, and the more hybrid marketers who reach senior levels, the more this trend increases.
Ultimately, not only does hybrid marketing improve individual opportunities, but it also advances the entire marketing sphere by augmenting its applicability, connectivity, and relevancy in an increasingly sophisticated technical world.
Do you have questions or are you interested in the opinion of one of hybrid marketer? Feel free to contact me.
Read more about Kasia Bialek.