Recently someone reached out to me asking for advice on how to learn Marketo. It’s similar to that age-old question that new grads face: How do you gain experience when all jobs require experience? Marketo adds a much different complication. Due to its robust, customized nature, it’s not a software most people can access without working for a company that uses it. Marketo is deeply tied to the company that implements it because of its reliance on data and an existing website. It’s not like Photoshop that you can easily purchase and ‘mess around with’. Smart marketers understand that marketing technology and tools like Marketo are critical components of a marketing career. So if you don’t work at a company that has already invested in Marketo, how do you learn Marketo to get hired by a company that uses Marketo?
Marketo’s website offers a great assortment of videos, blogs, and resources. They have even opened up the Marketo Community, now known (online user forum) so that it is accessible to non-customers. Here are some quick links to help point you in the right direction:
Many different vendors and power users have taken the time to offer instructional videos about Marketo tactics and strategies. While I can’t attest to the quality of all the Marketo-related content, I have learned a lot by watching Joe Reitz’s #MarketoFu videos. (https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCR1gLMRmt-snX0zMWVQB7Vw).
Prior to consulting, I worked as a Director of Marketing where I was responsible for hiring marketing team members. Although finding a person with Marketo experience was desired, it was not critical. I looked for people with a positive, proactive attitude that showed a knowledge of marketing fundamentals coupled with the ability and desire to learn quickly. Technology continues to evolve at such a rapid pace that no one stays an expert long without continual effort and education. The aptitude for growth is usually a much stronger indicator of future success than any specific past experience.With that in mind, here are things that might help your resume stand out when you are looking for a Marketo job:
The principals of marketing automation are the same no matter which platform you use. If you can learn to use a competitive system, then you can be trained on Marketo. In fact, as a hiring manager, I would be interested in bringing a person onto my Marketo team if they were skilled in a competitive platform. Understanding multiple software programs and technologies gives you a broader perspective on the different tactics available for nurturing leads. Having a deeper knowledge of the tactics available can actually help you develop better marketing strategies.Even though services like MailChimp, Emma or Constant Contact aren’t true marketing automation platforms, they do rely on the same principals of engagement. You have to develop the content, design the email, gather an audience and review success metrics. Most services also allow you to A/B test the messaging and design. These skills are fully transferable to Marketo.
If you have the will, the internet will provide the way. Sites like Udemy and Lynda offer low-cost online courses on digital marketing topics, as well as design and coding. Hubspot, Google, and other vendors offer training courses and certifications. Even though free certifications may not carry the weight of the paid certifications or degrees, they demonstrate to an employer you are striving to learn and grow.
Marketo is only a tool. Teams that succeed with Marketo do so by tapping into the talents of their marketing teams. Marketo can only be effective if you have good SEO bringing people to your website and content that people care about. Mastering a specific marketing discipline can make you a vital part of a marketing team.
Develop your own website. Write your own content. Create your own email campaigns using your own email account or Constant Contact. With tools such as WordPress, Wix or Squarespace you don’t need coding experience to build a beautiful website that you use to showcase your own compelling content. There is no better way to appeal to a future employer than to display your own initiative, creativity, and insight.