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top marketing skills video analyticsIs video the most desirable skill for marketers? Jay Baer, president of Convince & Convert, believes it is. He cites several statistics from a recent survey by Animoto to prove his point in a recent blog post:

  • 77% of professional marketers and small and medium business owners that have used video marketing say it has had a direct impact on their business.
  • 60% of marketers and 55% of SMB owners are using video and call it a “must have” for marketers.
  • 42% of marketers and 32% of small and medium business owners listed “video marketing” as the skill they wished they or their teams were more adept at.
  • 23% of marketers and 30% of SMB owners feel their video marketing strategy is “behind” or “way behind” competitors.

“Now is not the time to shy away from video creation and promotion,” Baer declares. “It’s the time to embrace it.”

Other marketers also cite video as one of the most valuable digital marketing skills, although not necessarily the single most desirable one. “It’s unsurprising that YouTube is the world’s second largest search engine – video content is easy to consume and generates enhanced levels of engagement,” says Sophie Elizabeth Smith at the Digital Marketing Institute. “It’s a formidable marketing platform that is often underused due to a lack of necessary skills.”

Smith ranks video content marketing as number two on her list of the most important digital marketing skill after SEO. Other top skills include community management, marketing automation and analytics.

Demand for Analytics Skills is Growing

Many marketers rank analytics as the most desirable digital marketing skill.

“Marketing in the future will be all about metrics, analysis, and proving performance,” states Angela Hausman, a marketing professor at Howard University, writing in a Business to Community post.

“Big data will continue to influence how marketers reach customers,” agrees Laura McGarrity, vice president, digital marketing strategy at Mondo, in The Future of Digital Marketing. “The ability to analyze and interpret that data will be the core driver in optimizing customer engagement across all channels.”

A Spencer Stuart survey of more than 150 marketing leaders revealed that many worry about data analytics skills (or the lack of them) on their teams. When asked what skills are most difficult to find when building a team, 57% named data analytics, more than any other skill.

Asked what skills are most important to their team’s success 49% cited data analytics, more than any other skill except digital marketing, cited by 62%.

Analytics is More Important for Public Relations

Data analytics is also more important than ever for public relations professionals. Almost two-thirds of PR executives surveyed for the Global Communications Report from USC Annenberg Center for Public Relations believe analytics is a required skill for PR pros. In fact, PR teams face a growing shortage of employees with data analytics skills, executives warn. Only basic, traditional skills like writing, strategic thinking and verbal communications are considered more important.

Analytics skills are increasingly essential to measure PR campaigns and demonstrate PR’s contribution to the corporate business goals. Two-thirds of agency executives and over half (54%) of in-house PR executives say measurement is very or extremely important as a growth driver.

Bottom Line: Some leading marketers say video is the most in-demand digital marketing skill. Others rank data analytics as the most valuable. Surveys of business leaders show that companies have a deep and growing need for people who can perform data analytics for marketing as well as public relations.

William J. Comcowich founded and served as CEO of CyberAlert LLC, the predecessor of Glean.info. He is currently serving as Interim CEO and member of the Board of Directors. Glean.info provides customized media monitoring, measurement and analytics solutions across all types of traditional and social media.