Second careers may seem daunting. It may seem like you only get started with a second career because you made a mistake with your first. The truth is far more complicated and nuanced. Done right, your second career can help you really get the most out of your life. It can help you enjoy your work and feel more fulfilled every day.
You don’t even need to forsake your previous career in order to do it. You can combine them and use your experience with your new skills to start a new career that allows you to touch on more of your passions without having to backtrack.
Marketing is a great second-career choice because it can be done by anyone. If you are a specialist looking for a more creative career to pursue, then working as a marketer in your old field can be just the ticket. You’ll know the industry and the work inside and out, and with this guide, you’ll have the marketing skills to back you up:
Why Choose a Masters in Digital Marketing
Marketing is one of the oldest fields. Yet today, the tactics and methods used by top marketers today have never looked more different. Today there is unfettered access to your customers, but with that access comes massive amounts of competition. Marketing isn’t just yelling out a sales pitch. It isn’t just convincing people one-on-one. Today you also need to understand design from visual to music. You need to understand data analytics; you need to understand IT and web design.
The best marketers wear multiple hats. It is for this reason that it is one of the most multidisciplined roles out there. You can quite genuinely get started in marketing from any background because you will always be bringing an interesting approach to the table. The background you bring can be professional, it can be cultural, it can even be something so far-off left field that no one saw it coming and yet still be useful.
Marketing is all about connecting, but with so many tools and so many competitors vying for the limited amount of time and attention a person has, it has transformed into something entirely new.
The good news is that this also means there is a lot of opportunities, especially for those who come in with a specialist background. Perhaps you worked as a technical expert and want to focus on something creative. With just a bit of extra training, you can become the go-to marketer in your field.
If you are coming in from a non-marketing background, then earning a digital marketing and analytics degree can be just the ticket to make your big career change. It will help you cover everything you need to design and manage a winning campaign. Once you graduate, you can then start to look for new opportunities in marketing in your field.
Those with a general background in marketing alone can technically work anywhere but at the same time find it very difficult to market specialist fields or organizations. After all, if you don’t understand what you are trying to sell and market, you won’t succeed.
Earning a master’s in marketing as someone from a non-marketers background can be the perfect way to get into this new world. The field you work in beforehand can even be associated with marketing, like art or design.
Regardless of what specialty you have, branching your skills with a master’s is the best way to get started with a second career in marketing.
Additional Topics to Learn to Thrive in Marketing
You don’t need a degree in every topic to be great at marketing. Understanding how to design and craft – and more importantly, to analyze – a campaign are hard skills that are key for every marketer. Softer skills, like psychology, sociology, art and design, and so on, will also play a huge part in how successful you are as a marketer. The best part is that you can easily adopt a lifelong learning approach that allows you to understand your target audience and design better at a comfortable, natural pace.
Reading is a great place to start. From books to journals to reports, there are so many different resources out there that will help you understand the human and cultural psychology of society. There are also podcasts and talks if you are more an audible learner than someone who enjoys reading.
Not understanding your audience is one of the biggest faux pas in marketing, and yet it happens every day. Why? Because the cultural, economic, and personal backgrounds of every person mean that they each need their own approach. If you don’t understand these backgrounds, the language you need to use, and, most importantly, their values and needs, then you won’t be able to effectively market the product, service, or organization you work for.
No one expects you to intimately understand everyone, but if you actively work towards learning more about the human mind and different cultures, then you will only improve as a marketer.
Getting that First Job in Your Second Career
Learning and building your skills is a great way to start when it comes to a second career, but at the end of the day, work experience is critical. The good news is that you do have experience; you just need to know how to frame it so that you can use your unique background and new skills in your second career.
You have a lot of work experience; you just won’t have a lot of marketing experience. By focusing on the experience you do have and also using your network to source unique opportunities to train or work, you can make that transition.
Always start with your current employer. They know you, they know you are intimately familiar with their business, and if you are actively working towards a marketing master’s, then you can be the perfect fit for a horizontal promotion over into marketing.
There are many ways to start your second career, so take that first step forward today.