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Marketers. Generally speaking, are highly creative, commercially savvy and digitally literate. However, over the past few years, there have been a growing number of calls for marketers to become far more methodical, analytical, data-driven, and on occasions a ‘competent coder’.
So, the question is, is coding the next must-have skill for the modern marketer?
We’re going to take this opportunity to explore whether or not this is a skill set that would be highly advantageous for the everyday marketer by looking at the benefits this skill provides.
Let’s dive straight in…
Saving time is something we all strive for. While coding is an excellent skill to have, it can also save you so much time. Even if you don’t completely understand the back-end code, simply knowing how to use the tools will allow you to speed up processes. Many helpful apps let you do anything and everything — from building forms and pages to creating buttons. If a team member can do this, it’ll allow your developers to continue working on the heavy coding duties. This is also an excellent skill to have if you want to run a competition, for example, and need a landing page created – there will be no need to wait, and you can hit the ground running from the get-go.
Not only that but understanding coding fundamentals and the structures that are in place that bring a website to life will give you an understanding of what is possible and what isn’t. This will allow you to dream big – but in an obtainable way. This is where knowledge of coding and its incredible abilities can become an inspiration. You’ll be able to look at competitors or others in the industry and make improvements to your website to create new and innovative tools that will truly delight your customers. It’s incredible to think that learning to code can provide you with new opportunities to pursue creative ideas.
It can be frustrating when a page goes live on your website, but the paragraph spaces are all over the place, or imagery isn’t being resized correctly. This is generally something we want to be fixed straight away – however, with developers being busy selecting broken pages; it isn’t always something that can be corrected right when we want it.
Learning just a basic knowledge of HTML will allow you to make these small changes on your own, saving time for both your team and theirs. Familiarity with a handful of programming languages can boost the effectiveness of many basic digital marketing tactics.
A/B testing is a digital marketer’s bread and butter – in most cases. It’s their chance to test and see what will resonate with their audience. Imagery without people vs imagery with people for example. It can even be comparing colours and terminology.
This can be for entire websites, or even just blogs and certain pages, maybe you want to test our different ‘get a quote’ button colours. It will allow you to test and measure their effectiveness and overall impact on conversion. While this task may fall to the developers on the team, it’s more effective to have it handled by the marketers, as they have an understanding of the customer and where/why they will click on certain parts of the website.
To move a “Contact” button or social share button around, marketers will need to understand HTML to move it and CSS to make it look good and not accidentally break the page. This is why learning even just basic coding and HTML is probably a must-have.
If you’re keen to get started, here are some helpful resources!
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