As it is now 2009 I wanted to reflect on 2008 and my Internet marketing achievements and look to see what goals I could set for 2009.
2008 began by making the decision to move into online marketing. Having previously been a professional website designer for over 8 years, the step into online marketing was one of my best decisions yet. My first step was to enroll on an online course with the Chartered Institute of Marketing and gained a Professional Development Award in e-Marketing in July. Becoming a member of the Chartered Institute of Marketing alone has opened many new doors; I’ve been to as many seminars, workshops and networking events as I possibly can and loved each one as they’ve either given me the chance to learn something new, meet other marketeers or teach people about Internet marketing.
As a web marketing consultant I also became a Qualified Google Advertising Professional. Simply studying for the exam was a great experience – it’s not often you have the chance to get a qualification from one of the key players in your industry. I also created web marketing packages to offer to clients for services such as search engine optimisation, Google AdWords, email marketing and more, and gave one-on-one training sessions.
One of my most exciting achievements of 2008 has to have been speaking at web marketing seminars. It’s something I’d never thought I’d want to do, but I got an incredible kick out of it. Having the opportunity to actually talk to a room of professionals about their understanding, concerns and needs for online marketing was fascinating. I came away able to drastically improve my approach to my current and prospective online marketing clients by understanding them better and improving our packages and support.
I’d had experience of search engine optimisation (SEO) as a web designer in the past, but never had the chance to focus 100% on it, research it to the depth I have now or create and implement an SEO marketing plan. In 2008 I did exactly that and got a new website ranking on page 1 in Google for its top 10 keywords, from initially appearing on page 10, in just 1 month. A personal best (so far – watch this space!) and something I wasn’t even sure was possible in such a short time frame, but with a lot of planning and hard work, including with the great team I’ve been working with, we did it.
So what does 2009 hold for online marketing? I’ve been using more and more relatively new services such as Twitter, and as everyone is predicting, those services will undoubtedly become more and more widespread. It won’t be long before I’ll be creating web marketing packages for my clients that will include them in their overral marketing plan. Customer relationship management and online PR is made so much easier with those services, and taking advantage of them will be key to keeping a competitive edge online in 2009.
As for my career? Hopefully, much more of the same rewarding experiences and achievements. I’ve learned that qualifications in marketing are great for creating firm foundations of knowledge, but it’s the experiences that are the most valuable. Therefore, I’m going to be grabbing every opportunity that comes my way with both hands and giving it my all. But also, just as online marketing creates a unique two-way communication channel between businesses and clients, I’m going to make sure I give as much as I get in this industry by contributing where I can to research, development and training in online marketing and become a true online marketing evangelist!
What are your career goals or online marketing predictions for 2009?