Very many of the requests that land in my inbox from the various agencies and clients I work with surround the subject of digital training.
"Can you come in and do a digital training session with my team?"
"We think we need more training on digital, can you come in and run a session?"
And every time I wonder, what exactly does that mean? Digital training.
Digital is a very broad canvas, you see. To avoid being facetious, I instantly rule out the definition of digital as relating to the binary number system, which only uses zeros and ones to count, the basis of how computers work. They don't want training on that surely...
And yet, even though these requests relate to digital marketing and communications training, which in and of itself is also a very wide subject matter, the more I ponder these requests, the more I reach the conclusion that having a reasonable understanding of the fundamentals of how computers and the Internet actually work is what agency and client teams very much do need to understand. Not at a detailed level for sure, but, at some level. First, principles if you like, the foundation on the back of which the rest of the more specialist, applicable, digital marketing and communications knowledge can be built.
What's the best way to do that in my opinion?
Build a website. Build your own website.
By undertaking a little self-study, the benefit of attending a digital training session run by an expert with many years of digital marketing and communications experience will be multiplied. For a start, you might understand what on earth he or she is talking about. And you'll see the relevance to your role and expertise much more readily.
We're in the process of preparing a whole digital training syllabus for our staff across our group of agencies as well as their client partners. We've identified 36 topics that we think are relevant for everyone to have a good understanding of digital communications. From website analytics to search audits to digital videography to RFID infrastructure and beyond. But all these sessions, all this knowledge and experience imparted will be for nought without a good understanding of the basics.
You wouldn't expect to become an authority on PR, say, without an understanding of the fundamentals of marketing communications on which to build. The same logic applies when wanting to develop expertise in digital communications without an understanding of computers.
This doesn't have to be a huge personal time investment. You don't have to turn into a geek overnight. You don't even have to be any good at it, but you do need to understand what IT, the computer, is. How they talk to each other, how the Internet works, and what a browser is and does (and doesn't do). Upon these foundations, everything else can be built through training and experience.
On the heels of a fantastic event in New York City, ClickZ Live is taking the fun and learning to Toronto, June 23-25. With over 15 years' experience delivering industry-leading events, ClickZ Live offers an action-packed, educationally-focused agenda covering all aspects of digital marketing. Register today!
With an honors degree in economics, and vast commercial and technical expertise in the digital communications industry, Jon provides business, communications and marketing acumen as well as detailed digital technical knowledge to the agencies in the Constituency Management Group (CMG) of IPG across Asia Pacific. Based in Hong Kong, he established the firm's Centre of Digital Excellence in 2012 and also has executive responsibility for the network of in-house digital content studios established across the Asia Pacific region for the benefit of all of CMG's below-the-line agencies including Devries, Futurebrand, Golin Harris, Jack Morton, Octagon and Weber Shandwick.
Hong Kong, May 5-6, 2015
Gartner Magic Quadrant for Digital Commerce
This Magic Quadrant examines leading digital commerce platforms that enable organizations to build digital commerce sites. These commerce platforms facilitate purchasing transactions over the Web, and support the creation and continuing development of an online relationship with a consumer.
Paid Search in the Mobile Era
Google reports that paid search ads are currently driving 40+ million calls per month. Cost per click is increasing, paid search budgets are growing, and mobile continues to dominate. It's time to revamp old search strategies, reimagine stale best practices, and add new layers data to your analytics.
May 6, 2015
12:00pm ET/9:00am PT