How does your sweetie jar look?

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Veronica does a monthly interview with key members of the nesma network to discuss their marketing challenges or insights into the industry. This month she caught up with Nigel Hedley at GoCareer about the rapidly changing face of the marketing industry and the roles within it.

Can you describe the shift we are witnessing at the moment from traditional marketing roles to digital technology roles?

The marketing profession is going through exciting times:

  • Less than half the number of job adverts in the first half of 2019 compared with the same time in 2018
  • The emergence of digital marketing skills as a new category
  • A significant cooling down in some digital marketing sectors

Think of the job title as the sweetie jar and the skills as the sweets. We all have one or more job titles and a set of skills. However, which flavour sweets are in demand, and which are going out of ‘flavour’?

What evidence do you have that this is the case?

The GoCareer Insights platform uses natural language processing and artificial intelligence to scan over 17 million CVs and millions of job adverts, across sectors, every day and can support decision making in the public and private sectors.

So, what is that showing us?

Looking at a snapshot of the skills on marketers’ CVs in Q3 2019 for the whole of the UK, it’s no surprise to see digital, social media and online making up a significant proportion of the skills out
there. However, we found significant differences between London and the UK regions – the London market swamps the UK regions in terms of both job adverts and marketing professionals.

There is another crucial difference. We searched job adverts for the top 30 marketing job title clusters in London and the South East but found only four of these marketing job clusters in the North East of England and five in Scotland. There was a similar picture in CV data with the North West fairing a little better with nine clusters, and the West Midlands with eight.

Back to the sweets. What’s in demand and what’s not?

We looked at around 5,000 marketing job adverts which mentioned digital and compared their market share of job adverts in the first half of 2019 at the same time in 2018.


  • Statistical analysis skills such as SSIS, SSRS, and SSAS jumped 15-fold (0.4% of total 2019
    market compared with 0.026% in 2018)
  • Software development as a skill for marketers jumped tenfold (0.026% in 2018 to 0.28% of
    the total market in 2019)
  • Employee engagement

On the up:

  • Facebook marketing
  • Artificial Intelligence
  • Software consulting

On a level:

  • Amazon Web Services
  • Online travel
  • Service management
  • Online advertising

On the decline:

  • Twitter
  • Photoshop
  • Salesforce
  • AP
  • Marketing Automation

The big story here is the emergence of the statistical analysis tools in job adverts for marketers.

So, what can people already working or wanting to work in marketing do to keep themselves employable for the future? 

There is an opportunity here; if you’re a marketer in the North East then look at the skills swing above – you don’t have to be in Soho to have the most marketable sweets in your sweetie jar and we are seeing great examples of this across the North East marketing landscape.

Make sure your qualifications are not only up to date but ensure you are also able to embrace the digital technology aspects of emerging roles and don’t limit your job search to marketing or communications.

If you have time to have a cuppa with Veronica, please get in touch.