11 Must-Have Skills To Look For In Your Next Online Marketing Hire

What is one important skill for an online marketer to have when you’re considering hiring a full-timer or freelancer? (Explain why this specific skill is so important to have.)

The following answers are provided by the Young Entrepreneur Council (YEC), an invite-only organization comprised of the world’s most promising young entrepreneurs. In partnership with Citi, YEC recently launched StartupCollective, a free virtual mentorship program that helps millions of entrepreneurs start and grow businesses.

1. Analytical

Ronnie CastroSo much of online marketing and SEO boils down to numbers; the skill is in the measurement and interpretation. Candidates not only need to have an analytical mind set, but they also need to be comfortable continually iterating processes and re-examining results.
Ronnie Castro, Porch


2. Innovative

Sam SaxtonYou’ll never get above-average results using average techniques and venues; look for an eagerness to set trends and test the untested.
Sam Saxton, Salter Spiral Stair and Mylen Stairs


3. Ability to Evolve

Brett FarmiloeThings happen fast in the online marketing space. Any full-timer or freelancer needs to have the ability to evolve with new tools and trends. One day Facebook will decrease its organic reach while AdWords increases its rates for the keywords that convert. What then?
Brett Farmiloe, Internet Marketing Company


4. Objectivity

Danny BoiceWhen hiring any online marketer, whether full time or not, you must seek out people who are data-driven. Online marketing has changed. It is no longer a subjective art. It’s objective, data-driven and scientific in nature. Online marketers spend their time running experiments via SEO, paid advertising and other channels to find those one or two channels that are gold mines for user acquisition.
Danny Boice, Speek

5. Knowledge of XHTML

Andrew SchrageThere are several technical aspects to the position of online marketer (especially a full-time position). Plus, most businesses don’t use HTML anymore — another reason why it’s an important skill.
Andrew Schrage, Money Crashers Personal Finance


6. Understanding

Emerson SpartzThe common denominator of every marketing effort you’ll make is the human brain. An understanding of how people think, their cognitive biases, their motivations and their decision-making processes allows smart marketers to really take their skills to the next level.
Emerson Spartz, Spartz


7. Trouble-Shooting Skills

Joel ApfelbaumIt’s not something that’s found in many entrepreneurs. Specifically in online advertising, marketing is all about testing. The more you can troubleshoot, the better you are at working to figure out a solution to a problem, the more that you will be able to grow, both within a company, and in other aspects of your life, too.
Joe Apfelbaum, Ajax Union


8. Self-Awareness

Maren HoganSelf-awareness pretty much covers the bases. When you are self aware, you know what your motivators are, where your pitfalls can be and what you are most likely to do well at. The chances of someone with a high level of self-awareness being toxic are slim to none. It will enhance their productivity, help them know where to place their efforts and makes them easier to manage.
Maren Hogan, Red Branch Media

9. Multi-Discipline Understanding

Andrew ThomasThe most important skill for online marketers is the ability to understand multiple parts of the online marketing puzzle and how their actions impact the business as a whole. Online marketers need to understand consumer psychology, analytics, business strategy and accounting so they can combine all into a plan that is efficient and maximizes consumption at the lowest cost possible.
Andrew Thomas, SkyBell

10. Strong Writing Skills

Sarah SchuppIt is critical for an online marketer to have strong writing skills. Sloppy, error-ridden content will give your readers a bad impression of your company.
Sarah Schupp, UniversityParent



11. Adaptive

Gideon KimbrellUltimately, marketers need to be able to adapt to their target audience. The audience they are trying to reach will stop using certain social media tools and mobile apps, and marketers need to understand these behaviors. These changes are natural, and excellent marketers will always look for where their customers are moving to online so that they can reach them with the right message.
Gideon Kimbrell, InList Inc

The Young Entrepreneur Council

The Young Entrepreneur Council (YEC) is an invite-only organization comprised of the world's most promising young entrepreneurs. In partnership with Citi, YEC recently launched BusinessCollective, a free virtual mentorship program that helps millions of entrepreneurs start and grow businesses.