How to design marketing content without being a designer

A decorative banner displaying the blog title, reading How to design stunning marketing content without being a designer

Designing professional-looking content may seem like an easy task on the surface, but many of us realise very quickly that it is a lot hard than we think. Equally, some of us may have a knack for design but just can’t get their designs to have that last bit of finesse. Personally, I’ve seen this quite a lot, elaborate pitch slide decks that are so close to perfect but lacked that one design principle which would have taken little to no time to fix. Or social media marketing content that was too cluttered to understand what was being said, resulting in me ignoring the post.

For many small businesses and startups, the visual design of assets is often left to the marketing team who may not have any design training. Being a digital marketer means being able to create content in order to promote your brand, product or service. Balancing planning content to put out and making content can be a struggle for many marketers, and many may not have the time or interest in committing to graphic design courses. Whether you are a designer or not shouldn’t be a barrier to creating stunning content!

Why are visually aesthetic and presentable assets so important? Well designed assets communicate a professional brand. Humans are visual creatures and aesthetic designs actually can subconsciously make us like content more, regardless of how valuable or invaluable the content actually is; this is called the aesthetic usability effect.

Leveraging this effect in your digital assets can make worlds of difference to your social media game, or even give you the edge in a sales pitch. The bottom line is that visual design is what creates the first impression of your brand.

Top down view of a desk with a designer working on logo designs, stationary is lightly scattered on the desk and different print outs of logo variations are overlapping eachother.
Image from Shutterstock https://www.designinc.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/shutterstock_1194925357-1920×1230.jpg

The basics

Let’s start with the basics. Here are some general rules that your should follow when designing and sort of visual content for your marketing campaigns, whether that is social media posts or an email campaign.

Fonts

You should never use more than 3 fonts in a design.
If you don’t have a branding guideline limiting your typeface, then you should ideally choose 2 fonts that complement each other and use them consistently. One font would act as your title font and the other one for your body. Equally, you could choose one font family and choose a heavier weight to use as your title font, this will guarantee that the font will match and is less hassle. Approaching fonts in this manner will prevent your content from looking too overloaded, and balance the reading hierarchy- guiding the reader’s eyes through the content, and increasing readability.  Note that even if you are only using one or two fonts, you can still overload it by using too many font weights. Finding a balance is key.

There are also fonts that you should never use under any circumstances, some of these include, but are not limited to; Comic Sans, Papyrus, Kristen or Bradley Hand. If you want to be taken seriously as a brand you should not use fonts like this.

While looking for your fonts you may come across “display fonts” these are fonts that should only be used for main titles which aren’t too long, never for body text. Display fonts are a great way of drawing attention to your content as well as making them modern and unique. 

Colours

Your choice in colour can really make or break your designs. Choosing complementary colours are really important for making your content easy to look at. Incorrect use of colour can be jarring to look at or even impossible to read, driving impressions away from your content in seconds. There are plenty of online tools you can use to create great palettes such as coolors.co or Adobe colour wheel.

You might be limited in your choice of colour by a branding guideline, in this case, why not try to experiment with different transparencies or play around with some tasteful gradients?

Assets

One major life hack in creating eye-catching designs lies with the assets you use. Adding images, patterns or illustrations to your designs can really take them to the next level. The only roadblock with this is these often aren’t free. You can get started by playing with assets like these on a platform such as Canva.

Advanced Tips!

Now for the juicy tips! Maybe you have got the fundamentals down already and are looking for a way to improve the content you have already.

Spacing

Something I see too often is a lack of margins. Your margin is the invisible frame that sits on your canvas. All text, images or whatever content you are displaying will sit inside these margins. Margins stop anything from getting too close to the edge of the canvas, framing it, making it easier to read and more presentable. Where I see this go wrong is when they aren’t used or used incorrectly. The margins should be even on all sides from the edge of the canvas, like a frame and everything must stay inside it! This also means that appropriate content should sit/ touch the margins. This is what creates the illusion of the frame- the content frames itself. For example, left-aligned texts should start at the left margin, touching. Logos in the bottom-right should touch the bottom and right margin in the corner.

Having too shallow or too wide margins is problematic too. Too wide and there isn’t enough space for the elements, too shallow and it looks crowded. Finding a happy medium is the key.

White Space

White space on the other hand is what draws attention to certain elements of a design. White space is the ‘breathing space’ in between elements such as a block of text of an image. Increasing the white space around an element draws attention to it as it sits in isolation, whereas decreasing it takes the attention away as it starts to group with other elements. If you want an easy to read a piece of content, you should keep the white space even. This creates an even flow to the composition, making it easy to read.

Hopefully, you learned something new from these tips and can use them to improve the quality of your visual marketing content! If you want to be updated on more blogs like this, why not sign up to our mailing list for updates? Don’t worry, we won’t spam you! If not, why not follow us on Twitter or LinkedIn?

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How to Improve SEO in 5 Simple Steps

The acronym “SEO” on a plain white background

Why is SEO Important?

SEO, also known as search engine optimisation, is the process of improving your website in order to increase its visibility on search engine results pages (SERPs). SEO is vital to every online business, whether you have an e-commerce website or run a blog like us, search engine optimisation can benefit everyone. The better visibility your site has, the more traffic and new visitors you will get to your website, and we all know that increasing organic traffic is one of the most important tasks in digital marketing.

Improve SEO in 5 Easy Steps

  1. Research relevant keywords
  2. Improve website speed
  3. Optimise page content
  4. Optimise title tags and meta descriptions
  5. Build links

Research Relevant Keywords

Keywords are the ‘key’ to successful search engine optimisation. Keywords are used by potential users and customers every day. When you’re using a search engine, what are you searching for? Most of the time you are using keywords to find relevant results, you probably used keywords to find this blog! That is what makes keywords the foundation of SEO.

So how do you perform keyword research? Researching for relevant keywords is easy, there are loads of keyword researching tools available to help you in your search for the perfect keyword list. The first tool we suggest is Google. 5,6 billion searches are done on Google every day, so where is a better place to find keywords. You can use features such as auto-complete search, ‘people also ask’ section, and top search results. These features from Google show what potential customers are searching for, helping you to get in the mind of the customers.

You can also use keyword research sites to help you find the best keywords for your business. The benefit of keyword research sites is that you can see search volume and difficulty. The volume shows you how often that keyword is searched for, this is useful because you want to get a high volume of searches, however, you need to take into account the difficulty of the word. Keyword difficulty refers to how easy it is to rank for that specific keyword. If you are a small business it will be easier for you to rank in SERPs for low volume, low difficulty keywords. One free keyword tool you could use is Uber Suggests.

Once you know which keywords you want to rank for it will make SEO seem a breeze!

Improve Website Speed

Improving website speed can be difficult, that’s why we have one simple tip anyone can do that will help you improve your website speed instantly! This tip is to remove any images that are over 300KB and replace them with images that have a smaller file size. Large file size images take longer to load, this can result in pages that aren’t fully loaded and can also cause page shifting when they finally do load in. So now, you may be wondering how do you make image sizes smaller? It’s easy, there are hundreds of free sites that you can use which will make your images smaller, all you have to do is upload the image. One site we suggest is Reduce Images.

Optimise Page Content

The second step you can take to optimise your page content is to add image alt text. Image alt text is copy that appears in place of the image if that image fails to load, it also helps webpage crawlers understand what the image is showing and how it relates to the content on that page, in turn, this will improve your ranking. Image alt text is important to get right, you want to be detailed while not having too much text. Using keywords in your image alt text can also help with boosting your page rank. Below we have attached an example of good and bad image alt text to give you a better idea of what it should look like.

A small Jack Russel dog sitting in front of a pink background

Bad Alt Text: “cute small dog pink background”

Good Alt Text: “A small Jack Russel dog sitting in front of a pink background”

Optimise Title Tags and Meta Descriptions

Optimising a title tag and meta description is just like content optimisation, all you need is relevant keywords for the content. When you have your relevant keywords, you are able to create your title tag. You want this to be similar to the page title, and you want to use similar keywords in your title tag that you use in your page content. Doing this allows search engines to understand the content of your page, and will rank it highly for being consistent in its messaging. 

Meta descriptions are harder as they are longer summaries of the page, but make the most of this space. Meta descriptions should keep between 140-160 characters long. This gives you enough room to hit a few keywords and give a brief summary of the contents of the page. When writing your meta description keep in mind your USPs (unique selling points) this is a feature search engines will praise you on. You want your description to be a compelling argument as to why someone should click on it. Below we have added an example of a good and bad meta description. 

Good meta description: “Find all of the best phones and tariffs on the official Carphone Warehouse site – Shop Apple, Samsung, Sony and Google for a new phone with all the latest deals”

Bad meta description: “Apple iPhone 6.9” screen touch screen face ID, 11th gen great deals O2, Three and EE. Shop Carphone Warehouse”

Building Links

Last but not least is linking. Building inbound links allows Google to see how trustworthy you are, if you have inbound links coming from big, trustworthy companies, then Google is more likely to see your website as credible and so will increase SERP ranking. One easy way of building these links is through affiliate marketing sites such as Awin. Affiliate marketing is when you gain publishers to put ads on their website for your company, and they get a commission from doing this, these commissions can be from sales made or generated leads. By using affiliate links you are able to communicate with big and trustworthy companies to give a larger online presence to your brand and website. It also allows you to choose whose site you have links on, meaning you can pick websites and pages related to your company.

You can also do external links, this is where you add links on your website to other websites. By doing this you further increase the credibility of your website, while also improving the reader’s experience by providing them with outside references.

In Conclusion

In conclusion, SEO doesn’t have to be as hard as it looks. If you follow these 5 simple steps, whether you’re a business owner or are doing a digital marketing apprenticeship, you can increase organic traffic with ease. 

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Digital Marketing Specialist Areas

For those new to Digital Marketing, perhaps a budding apprentice, this blog post will explore definitions of the 6 specialist areas. In addition, you will be provided with tools to explore further.

What are Specialist Areas?

By ‘specialist areas’, we mean key pillars that make up Digital Marketing. They form the base of Digital Marketing, and can help inform a Digital Marketing strategy.

Specialist Area #1 : SEM

Search Engine Marketing (SEM) is a blanket term used for methods to optimise website performance. This includes SEO and PPC, the second and third specialist areas.

Specialist Area #2 : SEO

Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) is a core piece of Digital Marketing. SEO relates to a website, and it is what controls how well a website performs in the search engine results page (SERP). Good SEO will mean a website has a better chance of ranking on the first page of Google. Nobody clicks onto page 2 right?

To improve SEO, a key factor is creating content and optimising it for target keywords. This will increase relevance and rankings. Tools to support SEO include: SEMRush, UberSuggest, and WordTracker.

Specialist Area #3 : PPC

Pay-Per-Click (PPC) is a model of internet marketing where companies pay a fee each time one of their adds is clicked. PPC is a way of buying visits to a site, instead of visits being organic. If PPC is working correctly, the fee is often low.

Tools for PPC include: Google Ads Editor and Google Ads Performance Grader.

Specialist Area #4 : Email Marketing

Email Marketing is an effective strategy within Digital Marketing and can often help retain customers. Email Marketing can push anything from general information like a newsletter, or have a more sales driven focus like sending out an offer or discount code.

Emails have a higher consumption rate than social media, for instance, even if people don’t open an email, they still see it. However, on social media there is an algorithm battle because content isn’t always shown to all of your followers.

Tools like MailChimp and Campaign Monitor allow you to design and send email campaigns. In addition, they show metrics such as open rate and link clicks to help you see how the email is performing.

Specialist Area #5 : Web Analytics

So, specialist areas have been implemented, but, have they worked? This is where Website Analytics comes in.

The most popular tool for Web Analytics is Google Analytics (GA). GA provides a brilliant insight on what people are doing on your website including: page visits, traffic and sources, time on page, bounce rate…The list goes on.

Specialist Area #6 : Mobile Apps

This specialist area means that applications on a mobile phone should be optimised for the user. Elements such as visibility, resolution, pixels, and app optimisation must be considered.

A user will have a negative experience if apps are not optimised for mobile. Ultimately this could be the difference between making a sale or not, therefore, this is an important pillar.

Conclusion

So, now you know the 6 specialist areas:

  • Search Engine Marketing (SEM)
  • Search Engine Optimisation (SEO)
  • Pay-Per-Click (PPC)
  • Email Marketing
  • Web Analytics
  • Mobile Apps

Now you can hopefully understand the main pillars of Digital Marketing and you will have a head start in strategising!

Keep an eye on our blog for more handy tips!

Paid Social Platforms. Who, when, why?

In the modern world, it feels like there are constantly new social media platforms that you need to be on to keep up with news, friends and cute pictures of animals! It can be daunting to keep up as a consumer, but even more so as a digital marketing apprentice. It is your job to take your clients goals for a marketing campaign and decide which paid social platforms you should run activity on to meet these goals. In this Blog I will cover the four main social platforms in 2022, their strengths, weaknesses and when you should use them!

Social media phone screen

Facebook

Facebook remains the largest social media platform with 1.93 Million Daily active users in 2021 According to Statista. It has been at the forefront of social advertising since its release meaning that it is one of the most developed platforms in terms of features and capability.

Strengths:

  • Largest user base which allows for widest scope and audience segmentation allowing you to target exactly who you want to
  • In depth testing capability allowing you to understand the best methods to meet your business goals
  • Plethora of Ad types and placements which you can read about here.

Weaknesses:

  • Aging user base
  • No ‘100%’ ad format allowing you to reach all DAU in one day like Snapchat and TikTok offer

When to use:

Facebook should almost always be in your Paid social marketing strategy due to its sheer size and targeting capability. It often drives the strongest results of any platform and is extremely versatile

Instagram

Instagram is owned by Facebook. This means that it shares the same ads manager and therefore most of the same features. It has 500 Million DAU making it smaller than FB but with a younger demographic. Instagram puts more of an emphasis on images and videos than Facebook.

Strengths:

  • 59% of users between 18 and 29.
  • Feature rich in terms of audiences and placements
  • Ability for more creative marketing due to its focus on media over text

Weaknesses:

  • Again, a lack of a ‘100%’ placement

When to use:

Instagram is similar to FB in that it should be used in almost all paid social strategies due to it having a range of targeting and content options. However, if your creative is more visual, IG is always a platform to consider.

Snapchat

Snapchat used to be the shiny, new social platform to advertise on (more on this later!) but it has now had time to solidify its offering and become a staple of most paid social strategies. As the platform has matured, so has its offering of products. One thing to note is the simplicity and easy of use of the platform when creating ads. This is due to the fact that Snapchat poached engineers that worked on Facebooks Ads manager during its infancy, taking away some of the unnecessary complexity and keeping it feature rich. Snapchat boasted 319 Million DAU in 2021.

Strengths:

  • Wide range of placements before, between and after content
  • Young user base
  • Ease of use

Weaknesses:

  • Testing is less in depth than FB and is mostly handled by the platform itself

When to use:

If you are looking to target the younger generations with your ads, Snapchat should be part of your strategy. Similarly to IG, SC also lends itself very well to video content.

TikTok

TikTok is the new platform on the block. With massive growth especially within Gen-Z where 59% of Gen-Z people are on the platform, TikTok is now incredibly important when targeting younger users. It has had such an impactful rise that Facebook blamed its first QoQ reduction in DAU since its launch on TikTok.

Strengths:

  • Massive growth of audience base especially in younger generations
  • Most users watch with sound on, lending itself to video content
  • Option for a ‘top-view’ which is shown to every user that opens the app on that day, guaranteeing performance

Weaknesses:

  • Questions around security may make your client hesitant to use it

When to use:

TikTok only works well with assets made for TikTok due to its reliance on video content. If you have this available and are trying to reach a younger demographic, TikTok is the platform for you and your client’s goals!

That’s a round-up of the main social platforms and wen you should use them. Have we missed any? Let us know by getting in contact here:

Top tips for your Web Content as a Digital Marketer

Man in Striped Long Sleeve Shirt Sitting on Table Using Laptop writing web content with ApprenticeTIps.com logo in bottom right

Having trouble with your web content? As a Digital Marketer your web content should be the cornerstone of your output. As a result of this it is crucial that what goes on your website is to a high standard and above all engaging!

No matter what Content Management System (CMS) you use whether it is WordPress, Joomla or Jadu, this article will help provide an easy-to-follow web content framework for you.

Aims of Web Content

Before you post anything on your website it is important to identify what the aims and objectives are for that web content. This should have been agreed in a marketing plan or campaign plan during the planning stage of a project/campaign. An example of this could be: To provide information on apprenticeships in the UK to help grow the business.

All content should work together to help reach the agreed goal, in other words don’t just post for the sake of posting but upload content that is engaging, original and targeted.

Having a content/project managing plan is helpful to ensure what you are posting matches the aims.

User Experience

Now you know why you are posting; the next step is thinking how you are posting. You will have heard the phrase ‘customer is king’, this applies to web content too! If the user doesn’t find what you are posting easy to read, engaging and original it is unlucky they will return to your site or content in the future. Using the Yoast plugin’s readability function can help with ensuring your content is of the highest quality and what you may need to improve it. If text is too long and confusing then it may need simplifying, think to yourself can I say this in less words?

You need to ensure all links within your content are up-to-date and working because if someone is sent off your site to the wrong place, they might not find your content trustworthy or could not return. Using website monitoring tools such as SilkTide and Monsido run regular scans of your site’s content and provide reports on spelling mistakes, grammar issues and broken links.

Accessibility within your Web Content

When posting anything to your website you need to take everyone into consideration. As a result of this you provide yourself the biggest possible user base. When including links into your content make sure it is within the text and makes sense instead of just having a ‘click here’ link, as these can cause an issue for those using screen readers on your site. Similarly, if an image has been used Alt-text should be applied to it. Alt-text allows for an image to be described to someone who is using a screen reader on your site, so this will allow them to engage with your content the way you intended.

"Designers should always keep their users in mind" on laptop screen

SEO Optimisation

The next step is to ensure your web content can be found. There is little point to posting content no one is going to see; this is where SEO comes in. You will need to do some keyword research and decide what search terms you want to be found for. Using tools like Google Trends can help you decide if you want to target a highly competitive keyword which will be harder to be found for or a less competitive keyword which will have a lower possible user base.  Now you know your keyword you want all the content you post to be SEO Optimised. Using Yoast plugin will help you track how optimised your content is.

Key factors in SEO Optimisation include:

  • Keyword Density
  • Meta Description length
  • Mobile Friendliness
  • Internal and External Links
  • Content length

Success of your Web Content

You’ve posted your engaging, optimised and accessible now what? The next stage is to track the success of your web content. The most popular tool used by digital marketers is Google Analytics, this is because Google is the most used search engine, this is what you want to be ranked on.

Google Analytics provides a wide variety of data such as:

  • Unique Page View
  • Time on Page
  • Bounce Rate
  • Sessions

Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) will have been agreed in a marketing plan and these will provide the framework for what you are tracking. An example of a KPI for web content could be: Increase our average page views each month by 20%, this can be achieved with SEO optimising the posts and increasing the rankings.

Conclusion

These tips should help you on your way to posting engaging, optimised and accessible content, to meet those aims! If you would like to know more about any of the topics mentioned within this article, please find out more on our website.  

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Digital Marketing Degree Apprenticeship

Social Media

You may find that you have just finished high school and you are currently looking for another route as you are not going to university. You have landed at the right page as this Digital Marketing Degree Apprenticeship consists of working across various digital channels in order to execute digital marketing strategies. This may be challenging but if you have a plan it be executed efficiently. If you want to have a kick-start in your digital marketing profession and start an apprenticeship now, this is the best place to be, therefore please read along for exciting progression opportunities that we have available for you when completing our level 4 Digital Marketing Degree Apprenticeship

What is Digital Marketing and how do I progress to Level 6?

Digital Marketing is marketing that is implemented through the use of digital channels such as Website Optimisation, Search Engine Optimisation, Social Media, Instgaram Ads, Email Marketing, and much more. This is compared to traditional marketing such as billboards/television marketing therefore, it is vital that we maximise the digital tools that are available in the industry to excel the growth of businesses presence and show the advocacy of a brand.

If the above seems interesting to you, we have progression opportunities as well so you can earn a degree equivalent qualification whilst working as a full-time digital marketing apprentice for your marketing career. The below theory knowledge is essential for you to progress as it shows in your job role you are able to apply theoretical knowledge to real-life digital problems.

To progress you will be working along-side be taught the following modules:

  • Marketing Concepts & Theories
  • Market Research
  • Budget Management
  • Business Understanding & Commercial Awareness
  • Marketing Campaigns
  • Products & Channels

What Skills and knowledge do I require to succeed in a Level 4 Digital Marketing Apprenticeship

Skills Required

  • Create content for online channels that include CTA (Call To Action)
  • Lead on digital marketing projects.
  • Apply marketing mix knowledge to meet customer demands.

Previous Knowledge Required to excel

  • Multichannel marketing and working with agencies/clients to localise and make changes to content e.g. banners
  • Content Management System knowledge and the importance of content meta descriptions e.g. SEO, Page descriptions, and site structure + knowing the trends to make a better user journey when purchasing productss.
Word cloud displaying skills network engineer apprentices need to know.

Job Entry Requirements

  • Level 2 in Maths & English
  • Between 4-9 GCSE’s Gradesd between (C-A*)
  • Previous Marketing/Sale Experience
  • This is a UK Apprenticeship therefore, you must be living in the UK.

Job Details

  • You will earn a Bachelor’s Degree in Digital Marketing
  • Course Duration: 3 Years
  • Earn 24,000 a year

Expectations we require for you when completing your Digital Marketing Degree Apprenticeship

We require you to hire a serious candidate that would like to go beyond the normal job role expectations and show off their passion in this field. Further to this, you must be professional in your job profession through data privacy of the company and pay high attention to deadlines when work is due.

Conclusion

If you are interested for this apprenticeship and would like to continue for 3 years for a long term progression, please click this link here and one of our team members will get back to you

If you still need time to think, have a read of what employers are currently looking for in a candidate here

A guide to digital tools for your Digital Marketing Apprenticeship

A computer screen showing editing software

The term “Digital Tool” in your apprenticeship will refer to any software program, online resource, or website which helps you in your role as a Digital Marketer. For a quick guide on the types of digital tools and how they can benefit your Digital Marketing Apprenticeship, read on!

What is a digital tool?

These are tools that you use for:

  • Content creation,
  • Content scheduling,
  • Sending email content,
  • Web metrics, analysis, and reporting,
  • Communication,
  • and more.

Digital tools for content creation:

Content creation spans across text posts, such as status updates and blogs, graphic and infographic content, animated graphic video content, filmed video content, pdf content, email content – essentially any kind of visual that you see online.

Canva

Canva is an online digital tool for making graphics and videos. They have both a free and paid plan available. Canva has a huge library of templates, icons, animations, royalty-free images and music that you can use for your business. It’s a must-have for any digital marketer looking to create infographics, videos, or dynamic presentations with a bit of extra eye-catching content.

Herefish and MailChimp

Herefish and MailChimp are both digital tools for creating templates for email marketing newsletters. They both have a library of pre-existing templates, and the option to create your own from scratch, adding in your company branding.

Adobe Creative Cloud

Adobe Creative Cloud is a library of content creation programmes. There are many different ones available, but here were we’ll discuss;

Photoshop

Photoshop is used to create original images, or edit existing images and photos. You can remove distracting objects from a photo, adjust the colours of an image, or create GIF content. Content created in Photoshop has the option to be high resolution, so it is a great programme for logo and asset creation.

Premiere Pro

Premiere Pro is a video editing software. You can cut and move around clips, adjust the speed, audio and colour levels, and layer videos, music and images on top of one another. Premiere can export GIFs, .mov, .mp4, .mp3 and more.

Audition

Audition is an audio editing software. You can import your video content and remove any background noise, amplify the voice of someone speaking, add ambient background noise, and more. Audition is great for anyone looking to clean up audio if you’ve filmed content without a mic – or to polish and perfect audio that already used a mic.

Digital tools for content scheduling:

Content scheduling allows you to plan a date and time for a post on a social media channel. By creating and scheduling content in advance, you can work on other tasks and know that every post is going out as planned.

Sprout Social

With Sprout Social, you can connect multiple accounts to schedule content. You’re given a calendar, which shows all your upcoming posts. You can set posts to go out on specific platforms, at specific dates and times. For certain channels, you can set thumbnail images too. Currently, you can schedule images and videos, but not documents or Instagram carousels.

An image of a person on a computer, editing a video using a digital tool.
A person using video editing software, which is a type of Digital Tool.

Sending email content:

Every email that you receive from a clothing brand, service, or company is classed as email content (or email marketing). This type of content plays an important role in lead generation and can also be used as a method of linking back to your website and social media.

Herefish and MailChimp

In Herefish and Mailchimp, you can create lists of contacts to receive your content, and put together tailored automations to reach these lists. By using these programmes, bulk email campaigns are sent out without having to manually type out each individual address. If you’ve got content you want to go out to people in a specific postcode, make a list for your contacts in… Derby for example, set up the automation, and hit send! Your contacts will then receive it instantly.

Digital tools for web metrics, analysis and reporting:

Web metrics are classed as a specialist area, and will be important in your apprenticeship when showing that you can monitor your social media accounts, pull through data, and interpret it to form short and long term marketing plans.

Instagram Insights

This digital tool is only available through the mobile app. Instagram Insights will give you the ability to see your audience demographics, such as age and location.  You can also view metrics for feed posts and story posts, narrowing these down to engagement, reach, shares, and profile visits.

One feature that sets Instagram Insights apart is the ability to see which days, and time of day your audience is most active. With this, you can develop a content scheduling plan tailored to your business and audience, posting when they are most active and likely to see it.

Sprout Social

Sprout Social is a one-stop location for all your social platform metrics. You can compare content across channels or view content from one specific platform. Sprout has a Reports feature, where data is automatically pulled through and formed into charts and graphs. This saves you time inputting data to create your own infographics for presentations. Sprout also automatically compares stats from month-on-month, giving you a percentage for each metric so that you can see where stats have reduced or increased.

Herefish and MailChimp

After sending out email content, you’ll need to monitor how it performs. Herefish and MailChimp track data from those who receive your content. They can tell you who received the email, who unsubscribed or opted out, and who clicked a link. They can sometimes also tell you which company the contact works for, and what industry they’re in. This is crucial information to know whether your content is reaching the right audience.

Communication

How do you speak with team members, other internal staff, or external companies? For every email or direct message you send, a digital tool is keeping you connected.

Outlook

Outlook is an email application. You can use it to send and receive emails, schedule meetings or confirm attendance. You can also set out-of-office automatic replies, and make rules to re-direct emails you receive.

Zoom, Microsoft Teams, and Skype

After the last few years of lockdown and working from home, you’re likely familiar with at least one of these digital tools. They can be used for online meetings, helping you to communicate from afar. They allow you to share your screen and lead presentations, so this can come in handy for any client proposals you make.

 

Conclusion

There are many digital tools that can be used in your digital marketing apprenticeship. They can make completing tasks much easier, whilst also showing that you have a great understanding of your role as a digital marketer. These digital tools are often part of our everyday lives, without us even realising.

Now that you know how to make, schedule, and report on your content, it’s time to learn some social media etiquette! Check out our guide “The do’s and don’ts of social media as a Level 3 Digital Marketer” to find out more.

Speaking of social media – connect with us!

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Top ways to improve your professional qualifications as a digital marketer!

Are you currently doing a digital marketing apprenticeship? Maybe looking to start one in the future or have even completed one? Now you’re wondering how to stand out against everyone else! Read on as this blog will show you the best way to improve your professional qualifications and stand out.

Facebook Blueprints

Facebook Blueprints is an amazing opportunity to learn valuable up-to-date information in the digital marketing industry. With a wide range of free courses available to everyone, you can learn the best practices for digital marketing on social platforms, whether it is budgeting for paid campaigns, growing your audience organically, or even how to create engaging ads. While most of these courses are created with being used for mainly Facebook, the knowledge you learn from these courses can be used for any social media platform.

You can take your digital marketing qualifications to the next level and complete the certifications that Facebook offers, however, these do cost money and last for a limited time period.

If you want to find out more about how you can use Facebook Blueprints to improve your digital marketing qualifications, click here.

HubSpot Academy

HubSpot Academy is another amazing opportunity for growing your digital marketing qualifications, home to 100s of free online courses with free certifications too! However, these certifications last for 2 years but can be completed again for free.

While they offer courses on how to use HubSpot as CRM, they also offer a range of digital marketing courses, covering sectors such as SEO, contextual marketing, email marketing & digital marketing basics.

This is a number 1 ApprenticeTip.com recommendation, sign up today and start climbing the digital marketing ladder! Click here to learn more about HubSpot Academy!

A illustration of a man in a graduation outfit surrounded by electronic devices, books and a certificate.

How to show your impressive qualifications!

So you have followed the recommendations above and now you’re sitting on a throne of certifications, right? But now you’re wondering how to show them off? Here is ApprenticeTips.com trick to show everyone in the digital marketing industry how qualified you are!

Create a LinkedIn account

LinkedIn is the perfect networking platform to connect with valuable peers and thought leaders in the Digital Marketing Industry. Everyone that you hope to work for or with is already on LinkedIn is building their networks, which is why you need to as well!

Fill out your LinkedIn profile

Now that you are set up on LinkedIn, you should be making sure you have completed your personal profile. This is the perfect opportunity to put all your new qualifications on display, with the sub-section “Licences & Certifications”, you can all of the courses you have completed as well as a document of the certificate.

You can also complete LinkedIn’s Skill assessments, which is essentially another certification awarded by LinkedIn to confirm that you are qualified within the skill you choose.

Start building your network

Your profile is all set up and you’re ready to show how much of an expert you are in the digital marketing industry! Now you just need to find who to show it to.

Join relevant groups in the digital marketing industry, follow hashtags that are relevant too! Use these to not only find useful content to gain from but to find people in the same industry as you and connect with them, comment and like their posts and make yourself stand out in the network.

Conclusion

Congratulations, you should now be on the path to being an expert digital marketer and ready to grow your career path in the digital marketing industry. If you found this article useful then you may find that our other digital marketing blogs are worth a read, click here for more.

To make sure that you never miss an ApprenticeTips.com update, make sure to join our email list for newsletters and new blog notifications!

The do’s and don’ts of social media as a Level 3 Digital Marketer

Social media platforms on iPhone

Social media, as we all know, is a wonderful but difficult platform to perfect when it comes to digital marketing. Social media is full of differing opinions, which is one of the reasons it is so exciting at times, but it’s also the reason there are strict guidelines you need to follow as a digital marketing apprentice.

Without following guidelines, you are increasing the risk of harming your brand/personal reputation. Social media is increasingly becoming a key factor in business-to-business deals, so ensuring you are representing your brand strongly in social media is ever more important. 

Below are listed some of the most important Do’s and Don’ts of social media.

Use social media scheduling tools

Starting off with the do’s of social media, there is nothing more important than a social media scheduling tool. 

With social media being 24/7, being able to post at the right time for when your audience is online. If you work the common 9-5, then posting at 3 pm might not be suitable if you’re targeting office workers. This is where a social media scheduling tool is beneficial. 

A tool like Hubspot, Hootsuite, or SEMRush will allow you to schedule posts, while you’re at work (so you’re not spending out-of-office house posting online), and then the tool will post on behalf of you at your desired time.

There are multiple benefits of this, including:

  • Advanced scheduling
  • Posting at times your audience is online
  • Being able to create one post and schedule across multiple platforms

Social media analytic tools

Utilising effectively a social media analytics is growing ever more important, to prove to senior managers that the work you’re doing provides value to the business.

Tools like SEMRush or Hubspot will allow you to see post engagement, times that your audience is online, what type of posts work well, and your level of followers over a set period of time.

This is extremely useful for not only yourself but also when presenting your strategy and research to the senior managers. An analytics tool will allow you to review your own social media strategy, over a period of time, in order for you to make improvements.

A range of content across your social media is necessary

A common misconception about social media is that you always need to have a selling point in every one of your posts. This isn’t the case.

Nowadays, social media is flooded with companies trying to sell constantly, but the new generation of social media listeners want to build a personal relationship with brands, from which they will then purchase.

This leads to my above point of posting a range of content, incorporating ‘soft’ content with posts that are directed towards inbound leads or sales. ‘Soft’ content would ebb team updates, product updates, which allow your followers to feel a part of your brand, which builds the personal relationship between them. 

Don’t leave messages from customers or clients unread

Shopping cart with a laptop to signify online shopping
Online customers are just as important as in-person customers, so customer service needs to be paramount.

Answering queries or engaging with comments on your posts is critical. Sometimes, negative reviews can often be left to avoid conflict, however, followers have to see that your brand takes negative reviews seriously, and deal with them in the appropriate manner. 

Commonly, the best practice is to ask the negative reviewer to message the company’s social media page privately to avoid the conflict taking place in the comments, and for everyone to see. 

Responding to customers also allows your brand the opportunity to build a personal relationship with the customer further, by engaging in conversation with them and assisting/replying to them.

Don’t allow obvious grammatical areas

Social media is one of the most important brand representation tools for your business, so ensuring you represent your brand appropriately is necessary.

This is extremely important for grammatical errors. To avoid this error, always ensure you have double-checked your posts, and installed Grammarly, just in case you miss anything! 

Another good practice is to send your posts to another team member to check over. This can ensure you have two pairs of eyes, checking posts for grammatical and context errors. 

Don’t follow accounts that are not useful to your company

Although not commonly checked, or viewed by clients or customers, the accounts you follow on social media are extremely crucial to your brand reputation.

By following companies on social media, you are almost creating a connection between the two brands, because you are following them to view their posts or tips.

This makes it extremely important as to who you follow, as the brands you follow can reflect on your brand also.

Conclusion

In conclusion, adhering to these points above can somewhat ensure your social media reputation is proofed, and you have tools to ensure your social media management can prove its value, with little effort, made easier by the scheduling tools.

As with anything though, social media management requires you to be adaptable, in order to stay on-trend.

Level 6 Geospatial Mapping and Science Specialist Apprenticeship (Degree)

Geospatial engineering and science Specialist map with pins

Does Interpreting and analysing geospatial data as a geospatial mapping and science specialist sound like a new and exciting opportunity to you? How about the use of high-tech digital technology such as laser scanning? If so, then this UK apprenticeship could be for you. This apprenticeship presents a great opportunity to start a new career in a construction-based area.

Geospatial mapping and science specialist areas

Knowledge required

Skills required

Behaviours requires

Specialty areas broken-down

What does a geospatial mapping and science specialist do?

They analyse data and provide advice for such things as satellite navigation, infrastructure, mapping, international boundaries and much more. With access to a wide range of state-of-the-art technology their more specific duties include interpretation, manipulation and analysation of geospatial data and measurements. Opportunities for work in both the private or public sector are plentiful with jobs in the military, private companies, and the government. Geospatial engineering is a crucial part of civil engineering construction projects and geospatial engineers are often at the forefront of any project with precision mapping and careful planning being their area task.

Entry Requirements

A minimum of three A levels at a grade C or higher or their equivalent. A level 3 apprenticeship in construction or property related discipline is also accepted but the final decision is that of each employer.

Geospatial mapping and science specialist have the opportunity to specialise in the following:

  1. Geospatial engineering – Creating detailed layers of geographical data for urban development
  2. Hydrography – The surveying and charting of water
  3. Utilities – The identification and labelling of public utilities
  4. Geospatial surveying – The mapping of boundaries, land, and land registration

Knowledge and Skill Requirements for Geospatial Mapping and science Specialists

  • Cadastre (land boundaries) and land boundaries
  • Advanced geospatial technology
  • Advanced mapping and measurement
  • Geospatial data management and analysis
  • Geodesy
  • Health and safety
  • Law of land and sea
  • Sustainability
  • Personal effectiveness

Behaviour Requirements for Geospatial Mapping and science Specialists

  • Provide a high standard of service
  • Act in a way that promotes trust in the professions
  • Treat others with respect
  • Take responsibility
  • Act with integrity
Geospatial Engineering Surveying Equipment in City Landscape

Depending on their job role, apprentices will take one of the following specialist areas:

Geospatial Engineering:

Geospatial engineering is the collection and analysis and interpretation of geographical data on the earth’s surface using modern mapping technologies. A geospatial engineer develops up-to date plans for structures to be built in the correct place and to scale.

Hydrography:

Hydrography is the measurement and description of the physical features pertaining to bodies of water and near bye land. Harbours, rivers, and lakes are examples of where and what they would work on.

Utilities:

The role of a utilities engineer is identified, label and map underground public utilities. Their job will be to understand the law, regulations and geospatial data requirements of these utilities and services. Water mains, streetlights, cable television, telecommunication and electricity distribution are just some of the things they would work on.

Geospatial Surveying:

Geospatial surveying is the science and study of the natural environment. State of the art technology is used to map and analyse the natural environment.  The mapping of land, boundaries and land registration being their focal point.

What qualification will you gain?

Apprentices that pass will gain a BSc/BSc (Hons) in a geospatial science subject. This will be accredited by either the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors or the Chartered Institution of Civil Engineering Surveyors.

Apprentices will gain the knowledge, skills, and behaviours to apply for membership to the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors or the Chartered Institution of Civil Engineering Surveyors.

Apprenticeship Duration:

Typically to be undertaken over a period of 5 Years for level 6. The apprentice will be reviewed after three years.

Learn more about level 6 geospatial and science specialist apprenticeship here.