The skills needed to succeed in the modern workplace are evolving. This article is part of our skills series, which investigates what different roles and different departments need in order to do their jobs effectively and efficiently.

This article we’ll dive into the marketing skills that are vital for being a successful marketing professional. We’ll take a look at the different facets of marketing, and what to look for when hiring someone for your marketing department.

6 Key Marketing Skills

Inbound expertise

Inbound marketing refers to marketing that drives people to you. Whereas outbound marketing goes to where your audience is (billboards, advertisements, traditional media), inbound marketing is largely digital and works with content marketing to make your customers come to you. For example, if you sell kitchenware online and know your audience is interested in cooking, an inbound marketer will know how to run a recipe blog that will attract your target marketing without having to spend on magazine ads or sales calls.


Understanding how to get content to rank in relevant search results ties into inbound marketing, because it enables your target audience to find you. Search engine optimization takes into consideration as much as 200 ranking factors, such as internal and external backlinks, author bios, keyword density, and more. A great marketer will understand SEO at least at a basic level, and be able to ensure your content is optimized.

Outreach and communications

Being able to send a great cold email that gets a response is one mark of a great marketer. A marketing department will have to partner often with other brands and external shareholders (or even clients–for testimonials). Good marketers can stay on top of their communications, know when and how to followup, and ultimately get a response.

Time management

Deadlines are a key part of marketing operations, from ad placement deadlines to editorial calendar management. A great marketer will have excellent time management skills and be able to coordinate multiple projects at one, ensuring quality work is delivered on time, every time. Part project manager, part quality assurance, a great marketer can manage time and schedules like a pro.

Target market identification

Being able to identify your target market means having an innate understanding of the product or service, your brand, and the consumer. It shows the ability to research, keep updated records (since sometimes your target market changes), and compose a report highlighting key facts. Great marketers understand the important of identifying, confirming, and regularly reevaluating your target market to ensure conversions.

Analytics and ROI

One of the most in-demand marketing skills is the ability to evaluate data. A marketer needs to be data-driven in order to understand whether what they’re doing is working or not. Look for experience with A/B testing, KPI tracking, and a focus on results and numbers. Good marketers get results, and they have the numbers to back them up.

What marketing skills do you look for in your business? Tell us in the comments below.

About the Author: Jocelyn Pick