My Digital Marketing Apprenticeship
ClearScore is proud to support apprenticeship. Read about Aleksandra's digital marketing apprentice journey.
I have now been part of the ClearScore team for 7 months. I started as an intern and within three months I moved to my current role of Marketing Executive. I primarily look after this blog, creating content which aims to inform visitors both about our company and the industry, and I also manage our social media channels. ClearScore is still a small company, but we’re growing quickly. With only two people in the marketing team, I have also had plenty of opportunities to take part in other marketing activities, such as organising email campaigns and customer surveys, and helping to run our pre-launch Beta Test this summer.
Alongside my day to day tasks, being at ClearScore has also given me the opportunity to do a 12 month Digital Marketing Apprenticeship with Arch Apprentices. The apprenticeship consists of three key parts: a Google AdWords certification, an individual Pay-Per-Click (PPC) project, and the Squared Online course. This higher apprenticeship is designed to teach essential digital marketing skills which are likely to be useful in whatever marketing role you go into. Digital marketing skills are now more relevant than ever – the UK is the first country in the world to spend more on digital advertising than it does on all other traditional formats combined.
In general, apprenticeships are a great way to gain essential work place skills. As you work and study at the same time, your learning is not only theoretical but also practical. You can see the significance of apprenticeships in the UK, as they have often been discussed as one of the government’s priorities in recent years. And digital skills are even higher up on the priority list, as the rapid growth in the sector in recent years has shown that UK is lacking people in this area. Some estimates suggest that the UK will need around 750,000 skilled digital workers by 2017. Ben Rowland, co-founder of Arch, says that they recognised the need for a Digital Marketing Apprenticeship in 2012, when the parent Blenheim Chalcot Group had 60 entry level roles perfect for young people but no framework to support them in their digital training.
“We pointed out to the Government that one of the fastest growing professions – Digital Marketing – had no apprenticeship structure equivalent to traditional professions,” says Ben. In response, the Government supported Arch with some funding to help bring the Digital Marketing Apprenticeship to life.
The first part of my Digital Marketing Apprenticeship has consisted of becoming certified with Google AdWords, which involved taking two Google exams. Most of this part of the apprenticeship is based on self-study, which means that you can fit it in easily with work and often you learn through practice. Being at ClearScore has given me the chance to create an AdWords account from scratch. Starting from nothing is a great way to learn about digital advertising: setting up campaigns, optimising maximum CPC (Cost-per-click) and finding new keywords.
The start-up environment has given me the opportunity to create and own this area of our marketing, whilst the apprenticeship is giving me skills to make the most of this opportunity. It’s challenging but also rewarding as PPC (pay per click) advertising is a very dynamic form of marketing, where you can quickly see what works and what doesn’t. As a junior member of the team, it has also give me the opportunity to quantify the contribution that I’m making to the company: using such tools as Google Analytics and Kissmetrics, I have been able to see how many customers we acquire through the Paid Search channel, and what the cost-per-acquisition is.
Having just completed the first part of the apprenticeship, I look forward to the coming months which will give me the chance to learn more about wider developments and opportunities in digital as I progress through the Squared Online course.
1 Guardian, UK’s digital advertising spend set to outstrip all other forms, (18.02.2015), http://www.theguardian.com/media/2015/feb/18/digital-advertising-spend-set-to-outstrip-all-other-forms and Half of ad spend is on digital media (27.03.2015), http://www.theguardian.com/media/2015/mar/27/half-ad-spend-digital-media.
3Guardian, A UK Digital skill s gaps looms, (18.08.2014), http://www.theguardian.com/media-network/media-network-blog/2014/aug/18/uk-youth-shortage-digital-skills.