Digital Marketing Interview Series with Tourism Richmond's Digital Marketing Manager
How did you get the background and skills necessary?I went to Capilano, majoring in Arts & Entertainment Management, where I learned a variety of different skills in marketing and event management. From there, with a partner, I launched a music promotions company. Once we realized the budget needed to market events, we quickly adapted to an almost completely digital strategy (oh MySpace…) and had great success selling out events by doing this. That was the turning point for me in learning how powerful digital marketing can be and how it can be accomplished on a restricted budget. Through that time I learned many of the skills that I use in my job today: how to hustle, how to be dedicated and how to be appealing online to an audience that you need to convert to purchasers.
What advice would you give to young people who want to enter the digital marketing field some day?Be passionate and be firm. Be an advocate for your brand. Digital marketers hold a lot of power when it comes to the brand and it is integral that that power is respected. You need to know your brand well and be able to communicate (within your office and with stakeholders) clearly about what is/isn't acceptable on your online platforms. I would say that is a very important part of being a good digital marketer.
What do you see as the biggest challenges for marketing professionals over the 3 years?I think digital marketing professionals specifically will continue to fight the battle of proving ROI and the brand equity that comes with having a strong online presence. For marketers with a more traditional focus, the challenge will be to prove the value of a print ad or radio spot over a digital marketing campaign. It’s a cyclical challenge of digital marketers proving the value over traditional marketing and traditional marketers trying to prove the value of their campaigns over digital ones. I think the other big challenge is a lack of understanding on digital marketing. Unfortunately, there are still many people in marketing who don’t buy-in to the power of digital, leading to some struggle as digital and traditional vie for time and budget . As recognition of the value of digital marketing continues to grow, and more people seek education regarding digital marketing, this will hopefully lessen.
When someone says “I want to know the ROI of my digital marketing campaign” what are your first thoughts?
- First thought: #facepalm
- Second thought: Let’s get to work!
- I think it’s incredibly important to have strong analytics on online campaigns because it truly is one of the few ways that we can prove the value of a campaign. How you determine your ROI will change from company to company, but at the end of the day you need to know the basics: how the campaign stacked up against its goals and what your cost per engagement was.
In your experience, what are the top success and failure factors for a marketing campaign?This will change with each and every campaign that you do. For some campaigns, your entire metrics are based on overall engagement. On other campaigns, it may be specifically about conversion to purchase. It is difficult to have generic ways to measure successes and failures because that in itself is the biggest failure of many campaigns. When we start putting cookie-cutter metrics on digital campaigns is when we start to get into trouble truly proving successes and failures of each stand-alone campaign.
What excites you the most about your industry?I am excited by all of the students coming into the industry who are passionate and vocal about digital marketing. Not just as professionals but as consumers of digital marketing. They are going to provide an incredible increase in momentum in this industry and will assist in building stronger awareness and insights into the online space. Another thing that excites me? More budget allocated to digital marketing. The more budget that we get, the bigger and better digital campaigns that we can roll-out.
Brittany Senko is the Digital Marketing Manager for Tourism Richmond. She is a coffee enthusiast with an iPhone addiction who loves everything to do with marketing on the interweb. You can find her on Twitter at @notbranded.
Check out our other interviews such as Digital Marketing Interview Series with Talk Shop Media or Digital Marketing Interview Series with BCAMA President.