Things I Learn from Real - Life Digital Marketers

Joining the User Experience Design talk (from previous post) led me to getting daily emails from the organizer. Sometime after the talk, an email about Digital Marketing talk caught my eye. The official title was Essentials of Digital Marketing: Must Have Capabilities of Digital Marketers. I went with my best friend Siska and learned about trends of digital marketing, where real life digital marketers get their information and what skills and knowledge they need for their jobs.

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In the talk, it was said that one of the current trends of digital marketing is to produce video content. It is not only about YouTube ads or Facebook viral videos but also about Snapchat, Insta story (snapgram) , and the recently launched Instagram TV. Brands should know how to utilize these platforms and produce impactful videos. 

Another trend is automation in digital marketing. Marketing automation is the use of tools that help automate marketing actions including sending out emails and social media replies or posts or showing up in people’s web search. (HubSpot, n.d.)

One of the speakers, Dustyn Smith (from a webinar platform software company ON24) talked about how, presently, digital marketing needs to be able to come across as personal even though the effort is targeted at a big scale. Content marketing is also beneficial to influence the buyer’s journey. "Nobody likes being sold to!” he said. people like to get value from companies, thus making content marketing work. 

The speakers were gracious when sharing where they get their information and how stay in the loop. They mentioned about podcasts, and resources such as google analytics, marketing blogs, and blogs of e-marketing companies. 

Other than the skill and knowledge of marketing, being a digital marketer naturally requires the person to know and competent to handle the tech side of the job. He/she needs the skills to use the digital tools, having knowledge about SEO, how social media and their ads work, Microsoft excels skill, develop coding skills, etc. 

Yang Jieyu of Sephora Malaysia shared how he started in general marketing, and then shifted to performance marketing. The job is technical and provides measurable objectives but it also let him stay in the know and works closely with the team that dabble more about the what and why and the idea of marketing. He said as he realized the need to sharpen his technical skills because he was in marketing (not performance marketing) before, but said his background also came with advantages in his current position. 

In the Q&A session, one of the speakers Lisa Matthews shared that when companies come to her, as a digital marketer, she would want the company to let her know, what would be the one focus/goal (- is it branding? is it to grow following on social media?) This would let her help the company more efficiently rather than trying to achieve everything at once. 

Lisa also shared that anyone who wants to work as a digital marketer would usually have two routes to pick. One is to apply to big company. This will let the person to see how the big company works, and often will have more budget and support from other departments to do projects. It will also comes with a set work responsibilities, work hours and company perks. While the other option is to work for a small marketing firm. This will most likely require long hours but it is a great place to be a part of the team. The person will take on different job responsibilities, have more ownership or the project, and having a closer knit of community at work.

Looking inwards after this talk, I am glad that I know my way around insta story and its features as a young and active user of Instagram. I am also happy to have the  knowledge and some practice for video content producing and editing. Even as a general fashion marketing, I want to develop the skill to make good video content.

It is interesting that automation and content marketing were brought up, I have heard more about the latter than the former, and I might need to read about both things in the near future. 

I tried to check out some digital marketing podcasts, but none of the speakers’ tone and format worked for me, making me bored even when the topic was supposed to be useful. I think I will just stick to my favorite fashion business podcasts. I am glad to find out about the other resources, though. 


From what I can tell right now. a role in digital marketing seems to be more technical and has to deal with the digital tools and numbers, and data evaluation than the creative marketing idea creation process  Currently, I lean more towards the marketing, given my skills and knowledge (and also interest), but knowing technical aspects of digital marketing would be ideal because it will have its advantages as a general fashion marketer in this era. 



The speakers for this talk were : 

  • Lisa Matthews - Tech Digital Marketer & Lifestyle Photographer
  • Dustyn Smith - Sales Director , Growth and expansion of ON24 Singapore
  • Yang Jieyu - Performance Marketing Specialist of Sephora Malaysia (LVMH)

Moderated by Jonathan O’Brien - Regional Admission Director of General Assembly Singapore 


- this blog post is more about what I personally remembered and what I learned from the talk and not a full coverage of the talk 

- because I did not take many notes for automation, I referenced Hubspot (Hohoooo - using the said resource already) 


HubSpot. (n.d.). what is marketing automation? Retrieved from

Hanna Bella