VIDEO: Agencies Face Significant Digital Marketing Skills Shortage [Study]

Ad agencies and Fortune 500 companies face significant digital marketing skills and knowledge shortages, according to part one of a report released by the Online Marketing Institute (OMI) in partnership with ClickZ and Kelly Staffing.

The State of Digital Marketing Talent study surveyed 747 advertising and Fortune 500 marketing executives on the state of digital marketing skills, knowledge, and training in their companies. The study found that ad agency and company executives were not satisfied with the current skill levels of digital marketing talent, and there are significant gaps between the skills digital teams should possess, and the skills they currently have. Only 8 percent of executives surveyed believe their employees are strong in all areas of digital marketing.

“As the digital marketing space continues to evolve, agencies and companies are finding it difficult to hire and retain talent. The survey itself illustrates how much further we, as an industry, need to go in order to educate and build more knowledge. Most people are still missing the basic essentials of all the major disciplines of digital,” says Aaron Kahlow, chief executive and founder of OMI, in a video interview with ClickZ.

The study also found that:

• The largest skill gaps are in analytics, mobile marketing and marketing automation.

76 percent of Fortune 500 companies surveyed believe analytics is a very important/important skill to have, but only 39 percent believe their talent is stronger/much stronger than other teams. Also, 58 percent of those surveyed believe mobile is a very important/important skill, but only 29 percent believe their talent is stronger/much stronger than other teams.

Meanwhile 74 percent of agencies believe mobile is a very important/important skill to have, but only 31 percent believe their talent is stronger/much stronger than competition – a gap of 43 percentage points. Additionally, agencies perceive a gap of 30 percentage points each for analytics and marketing automation.

• It is difficult for companies to vet and hire qualified individuals in social media and digital.

Over 80 percent of companies surveyed face significant challenges in consistently locating, hiring and retaining top talent.

• There are more open positions than available talent.

40 percent of companies surveyed have more projects and positions open than they can fill with qualified talent, and analytics is the most desirable skill. This is a tremendous opportunity for job seekers.

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