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In Demand Skills for Career Progression in Marketing

April 19th, 2019

Working in marketing requires professionals to have a diverse skill set. You need to know your marketing area of expertise but also have a strong business sense, strong technology skills and a detailed understanding of how business and technology affect and mesh with marketing.

With skill gaps in marketing and many other industries, becoming an issue for companies and marketing professionals, it’s important to understand the in-demand skills you need (the skills companies are seeking from marketing professionals) to help you progress your career.

Vital Marketing Skills and Knowledge Areas

marketing skills

According to research by Smart Insights, the following skills were deemed to be very important or extremely important by marketers based on the amount of time they spend doing these tasks in their current jobs. Here’s the top 10:

  1. Project management: 77% of respondents viewed this as very or extremely important
  2. Communications planning and strategy – 77%
  3. Customer and user experience – 76%
  4. Email marketing – 74%
  5. Data analysis and reporting – 72%
  6. Analyzing customer data and insights – 70%
  7. Optimizing campaigns – 69%
  8. Client management – 68%
  9. Social media – 67%
  10. Evaluating creative work – 66%

Other important skills that made the list include direct marketing, content marketing, copywriting, producing content, and database management.

The Skills Gap

Smart Insights also did some research into the current skills gap that exists among marketers. They compared the skills marketers have now and the skills they will require in the future. These skills are also desirable by recruiting companies. In terms of career progression rank, here are the top 10 skills marketers need to have:

  1. Communications and planning strategy
  2. Analyzing customer data and insights
  3. Data analysis and reporting
  4. Project management
  5. Optimizing campaigns
  6. Customer and user experience
  7. Client management
  8. Evaluating creative work
  9. Email marketing
  10. Content marketing

Marketers need to develop management and data skills to become more well-rounded candidates. While management can perform various marketing functions, the ability to manage, assess and analyze these functions will help them progress to more senior roles in marketing in the future.

Get More Marketing Recruiting and Career Insights

Read more about how to progress your marketing career. Check out these insightful blog posts by our expert marketing recruiters:

How Marketing Professionals Can Score the Year That Was to Improve the Year Ahead

Fast Track Your Marketing Career with These 4 Tips

Digital Marketing Jobs of the Future – Are You Qualified for Them?


IQ PARTNERS is an Executive Search & Recruitment firm supporting clients across the country. We help companies hire better, hire less & retain more. We have specialist teams of recruiters in Executive Search / Board & C-Suite, Technology, Media, Digital & Marketing, Accounting & Finance, Financial Services & Insurance, Cannabis, Startup, Data Science, Consumer, eCommerce & Retail, Operations & HR, Manufacturing, Supply Chain & Engineering, Legal & Professional Services, Pharmaceutical & Life Sciences, Non-Profit & Sustainability, and Sales. IQ PARTNERS has its head office in Toronto and operates internationally via Aravati Global Search Network. Click here to view current job openings and to register with us.


Paige Allen

Paige Allen is a Recruitment Consultant on the Marketing Services team, specializing in Public Relations, Marketing Communications and Pharma. Prior to joining IQ PARTNERS, Paige worked in customer service and IT Procurement, where she developed a passion for people and aptitude for research and analytics.

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