In today’s competitive recruitment market, it’s important to showcase both hard and soft skills on your CV to help you stand out as a top marketing candidate. One of the best ways to do this is to make sure your skillset is sharp and that your key attributes are clearly stated on your CV. We recently ran a LinkedIn survey to find out exactly what hard and soft skills companies are looking for – here, we discuss the findings so that you can stand out in your upcoming job search.

Hard vs soft skills: What’s the difference? 

Firstly, it’s good to understand the difference between hard and soft skills. Hard skills are measurable, often technical skills which you might gain through courses or formal education. Meanwhile, soft skills help you accomplish technical skills and adapt to certain situations.  

4 soft skills marketers need 

1.    Communication 

Strong communication skills came up trumps in our most recent LinkedIn survey, with 53% of respondents saying it was the most important soft skill they look for when hiring. 
Communication skills in marketing are essential, whether that means being able to listen to others or having good verbal and written communication. Marketing teams are often big, with multiple departments working together on simultaneous projects and campaigns. They also work closely with other teams such as sales, as well as clients and agencies. That’s why businesses want to make sure their next marketing hire is confident and clear when it comes to communicating to both internal and external stakeholders.

2.    Creative flair 

22% of respondents said creative flair is the most important soft skill they are looking for when hiring for a marketer in 2021. For many businesses, competition is tough, so having a creative marketing team who can go that extra mile with campaigns is essential to cut through the noise. So, if you have a creative side, you want to show this off throughout the recruitment process. 
There are a few easy ways to do this: 

  • Look at designing your CV using free tools like Canva to show your creativity in action and also help you stand out from the crowd. 
  • Put together a portfolio of all the creative projects you’ve worked on in the past to showcase your talents and the projects’ success. 
  • Make sure you have a few examples of your creativity in your back pocket ready for the interview process. 

3.    Attention to detail

If you’re sending out an email campaign to a huge database, you want to be able to spot a typo or catch a mistake before it’s too late. If you’re reviewing a large amount of data, you want to be able to spot the trends and anomalies without missing a trick. That’s why attention to detail as a soft skill is important for sustained productivity and efficiency. In fact, 15% of companies include this skill as a requirement for perspective candidates. 

4.    A passion for learning 

A further 15% of respondents are currently looking for candidates with a real passion for learning and a growth mindset. It’s also important for businesses to see that you want to grow with them and develop both professional and personal skills whilst working at their company. In our fast-changing world, a passion for learning is key to career success.

Other sought-after skills for marketers include: 

  • Adaptability 
  • Curiosity 
  • Teamwork 
  • Honesty 
  • Problem-solving 

4 hard skills marketers need

1.    Data analysis skills 

Data is key for most businesses in 2021. 33% of businesses said that data analysis is the most important hard skill they look for in a potential candidate. Finding candidates who know how to digest data, extract key findings and convert those into actionable takeaways will help businesses stay ahead of their competition. As a marketer, it’s essential that you have this hard skill under your belt. 

2.    Conversion Rate Optimisation

24% of businesses are currently looking for an understanding of CRO in the marketers they recruit. So, make sure you understand the major terms associated with this such as engagement metrics, conversion funnels, and A/B testing. After all, the ultimate goal of marketing is for your leads to take a given desired action. So, whatever role you’re applying for, you want to make sure you’re demonstrating an understanding of how this will impact leads, conversations, and engagement. 

3.    Email marketing 

Email is a marketing tool that provides you with the ability to create a fluid, interconnected and undisrupted customer journey. More importantly, email marketing allows you to build relationships with leads and customers as well as re-engage past customers. So, it’s obvious why 24% of businesses want potential marketing candidates to at least have an understanding of this essential skill. 

4.    Strong SEO knowledge 

Search engine optimization has become a core language of solid digital marketing in recent years and is a tactic many businesses have shifted towards. That’s why 20% of businesses are currently looking for candidates with some form of SEO knowledge. So, if you know a thing or two about what Google likes (or doesn’t like) when it comes to web design or content, make sure you add that skill to your CV to really stand out to potential employers. 

Other sought-after hard skills for marketers include: 

  • Social media marketing 
  • PPC & advertising 
  • Research abilities 
  • Tool proficiency: Google Analytics, SEMrush, AdWords 

What’s next? 

For more expert career advice, look through our collection of articles for top tips on everything from interview tips and how to grow your career, to how to be happier at work and more. If you’re looking for your next career move, browse through our current live marketing and digital jobs or request to speak to our industry-leading consultants at Michael Page Marketing – they will help you find the perfect role for you. 
 

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