Bridging the digital skills gap

Digital Marketing Association 2016-04-15

The importance of education in digital marketing

IN THE LAST decade alone, the rise of new technologies has had an enormous impact on the business landscape, and fundamentally reshaped marketing theory and practice.
The digital revolution gave birth to the always-connected individual, who logs into social media to connect with others, uses search engines to find information, receives emails every day, and completes various tasks on the go using a mobile phone.

The internet has driven both cultural and behavioral change and as a consequence, companies had to evolve their marketing strategies, and cater to the needs and habits of the modern consumers.
This is why digital skills and knowledge are more important than ever within an organization, and opportunities for marketing professionals to embark on a career in this field are constantly arising.

HOWEVER, THE BUSINESS world is suffering from a digital skills gap. While companies are eager to hire highly trained and skilled individuals, there is short supply of this type of candidates.
At the same time, business managers are increasingly tasked with digital activities, but often find it difficult to effectively complete them, since the web requires a different set of rules to traditional marketing. CEO of the Digital Marketing Association and lecturer, Marialena Zinopoulou explains:
– There are new tools and methods available to digital marketing professionals that can help them identify target audiences, understand the marketplace and strategically plan for effective results. Knowing those tools and the techniques to apply them, is what the industry needs today.
Education in digital marketing represents the solution to fill this skills gap, making sure both professionals and entire companies are able to achieve their corporate goals.

THERE ARE NUMEROUS reasons why digital marketing education is crucial for established marketing professionals, individuals wishing to launch their career in this field, and entire teams within an organization.

Firstly, as digital marketing is a young and constantly evolving profession, it is extremely helpful to put structure around the topic. A program that trains in this discipline equips marketers with a robust strategic approach and knowledge about best practice and industry standards within the different disciplines of the digital marketing world.

It also increases confidence: a professional certificate empowers executives and managers to perform activities for their organization with greater insight and clarity, and allows them to illustrate their knowledge in the workplace.

In addition, education in digital marketing helps improve credentials: a professional Diploma specifies that an individual has consolidated certain skills, and demonstrates commitment and initiative to keep learning about new ways to improve and optimize performance.

This will also help current or potential managers to raise their value to employers and stand out in job applications: as the market becomes increasingly competitive, employers prefer candidates who have a formal education in digital marketing, rather than those who simply claim to have them.

Finally, corporate training in this field is surely beneficial, as it ensures the entire company is on the same track, consolidating its digital capabilities and leading to a stronger position within the business environment.

It is no surprise that an increasing number of professionals are looking to improve their digital skills. However, choosing the right program is fundamental in this field. Educational courses must offer insight in the latest development within the industry, with a focus on best practice. In addition, the program must offer official accreditation, to guarantee the quality of the learning experience and the validity of the certification within the job market.

THE UNIVERSITY OF California Irvine (UCI) Extension, which has over 30,000 enrolments from students worldwide every year, has developed two cutting-edge Diploma programs that develop digital marketing and social media skills.
In partnership with the Digital Marketing Association (DMA), a leading body for promoting and encouraging global digital marketing standards and education, they offer the Postgraduate Diploma in Digital Marketing and the Postgraduate Diploma in Social Media Studies.

These Diplomas lead to Certified Digital Marketer status through the DMA and UCI Certified Digital Marketer Program. Essential for all marketing and business professionals, the qualifications provide professionals with a comprehensive knowledge about the best strategy and tactics across various disciplines, including social media, online analytics, search engine marketing and mobile marketing, and equips individuals and companies with all the knowledge needed to achieve business goals such as acquiring, converting, and retaining online customers.
The qualifications are taught in the UK through the Oxford College of Marketing, a leading training institution in the Oxford, United Kingdom.

The courses are designed to help you learn at your own pace online or face 2 face and suit your specific needs, including the option of on-site bespoke training for organizations.
UCI is ranked among the 50 top universities in the US, the courses have the advantage of offering an official accreditation from a leading university, giving you a prestigious certified status to showcase your skillset and level of digital education.
At the end of the courses, marketing professionals will know all the aspects of digital and how to make the best of it, taking advantage of the digital skills gap to achieve a leading edge position within the current marketing world.
The Digital Marketing Association is a not-for-profit organization registered in the United Kingdom that supports digital marketing professionals with membership and education.

For more information on the UCI Digital Marketing qualifications and the Certified Digital Marketer Program please email