A few years ago I co-authored a series of whitepapers for P&G on learning and education in the digital age. One of the things that struck me as we brainstormed and created the papers is that the requirements for marketing and advertising professionals are very different in a digital age.
In traditional marketing, the landscape doesn’t really change all that often. The “formula” for great TV spots is fairly well defined, and television as a medium hasn’t really changed much in the last few decades. The same is basically true of print and billboards – the mediums have been relatively static.
Digital Changes All the Time
Now comes digital. It changes. All the time. The medium changes, the content that works changes, the websites change, the way that people interact and respond to the medium changes. Everything changes.
As professionals, we can no longer learn our craft and sit back and reap the rewards. Our knowledge and skills are outdated before we’ve even really had the opportunity to master them.
The More Things Change, the More They Stay the Same
That being said, the more things change, the more they stay the same. The tools and technologies are rapidly changing, but the one constant is the people. While social media tools, tactics and implementations change week by week, the strategies that work are relatively stable. Because the people we are communicating with are the same.
While this may sound contradictory, the point is that as marketers we must first master our understanding of people – what makes them tick, what do they want, how do they want to be treated – and then master our knowledge of the communication vehicles.
With the vehicles changing so rapidly we need to invest even more time in staying up to date.
What is Your Training Plan?
As a professional, what is your plan to stay up to date? It may involve formal and informal training, education and knowledge transference, but one thing is for certain – you should be allocating more time to education and learning than in the past.
Build a training and education plan for yourself and your organization. Many of the organizations that I work with are leaning towards more comprehensive programs for digital marketing education vs. how they traditionally approach training. They want a year-long learning plan that keeps professionals fresh and up-to-date vs a single point-in-time program.
Marketing and advertising professionals must build learning into their standard operating procedures, or risk becoming obsolete.
How Do You Stay Educated?
Share your tips and ideas….