What is a Digital Marketing Consultant? (2023)

And what does a digital marketing consultant do

Definition of a Digital Marketing Consultant

So what is a digital marketing consultant? Well, a digital marketing consultant acts as an external advisor to develop a company’s digital marketing strategy. 

They create new digital marketing plans or optimize a current digital marketing strategy. Or recommend appropriate online marketing campaigns and the best digital channels based on resources, buyer personas, and products.

Some digital marketing consultants may execute digital marketing campaigns to generate qualified leads and improve sales conversion through digital marketing techniques.

Others may use online channels to increase brand and product awareness. 

A digital marketing consultant can work as a full-time employee for a digital marketing consultancy or as a freelance digital marketing consultant.

What is a Digital Marketing Consultancy?

A digital marketing consultancy is a company that provides digital marketing services to businesses. The consultancy will have a team of digital marketing experts and offer its services to help companies grow online.

Digital marketing consultancies provide website design, SEO, SEM, social media marketing, email marketing, and more.

Freelance Digital Marketing Consultants

Many digital marketing consultants are freelancers. As a freelance digital marketing consultant, you can offer digital marketing consulting services on a project-by=project basis. However, some are hired as an extension of a company’s marketing team, but you’re not part of a digital marketing agency.

Being a freelance digital marketing consultant allows you to work in many different businesses and industries. You can also work with companies of all sizes, from small local businesses to large enterprises. As a result, the number of potential clients is endless.

As an added benefit, freelancers have more freedom and flexibility to design their workday and working week. Additionally, you can create a business around your lifestyle and typically charge more for your services.

What Does a Digital Marketing Consultant Do?

The reason why it’s sometimes hard to define what is a digital marketing consultant is that you can work on a wide range of online marketing activities.

And not all digital marketing consultants focus on every area of digital marketing. For example, some SEO consultants only focus on on-page optimization, while others may also offer link-building services. 

Below are a few areas a digital marketing consultant can provide services.

Search Engine Optimization (SEO)

Support clients with SEO by conducting keyword research, optimizing website content, and improving link-building efforts.

Content Marketing

Help businesses create a valuable and engaging content strategy for blog posts, infographics, videos, and other content to attract and convert their target audience.

Social Media Marketing (SMM)

Assist with social media strategy by identifying the best social media channels, creating content, and managing social media campaigns.

Email Marketing

Set up email marketing campaigns, design email templates, and create valuable content to increase email subscribers, nurture leads, and convert customers.

Digital Advertising

Manage digital advertising campaigns on Google Adwords, Bing, Facebook, Instagram, and other platforms. This includes developing ad creative, setting up targeting, and optimizing campaigns for performance.

Website Design & Development

Design or improve the website to be user-friendly, mobile-responsive, and fast. Also, ensure that website pages are optimized for SEO and meet the established business goals.

Analytics & Reporting

Monitor website traffic and campaign performance data. Then provide detailed reports and analyses to help businesses make informed decisions.

Example Digital Marketing Consulting Projects

The important thing is that digital marketing consultants have an in-depth understanding of how each online marketing activity works, how it impacts other digital marketing efforts, and how a potential customer will perceive the campaign.

Conversion Rate Optimization (CRO)

A conversion rate optimization project would improve the website design, copy, and overall user experience to increase leads and sales.

CRO projects include conducting A/B testing, heat mapping, user testing, and other data-driven research methods.

The goal is to identify what’s working well and what needs to be improved to increase conversions.

Search Engine Marketing for Product Launch

During a product launch project, you would use search engine marketing to target the customer base and generate awareness and interest around the new product or service.

This project would involve developing and executing a paid search campaign on Google Ads, Bing Ads, or another platform. 

The goal is to drive traffic to the product landing page and increase conversions.

Digital Marketing Audit

A digital marketing audit is when you review all aspects of the business’s online marketing efforts. This audit would include using digital marketing tools to analyze the website, blog, social media, email marketing, and digital advertising.

A digital marketing audit can be a one-time project or something you do regularly for clients.

The goal is to identify any areas that need improvement and make recommendations to improve the overall digital marketing strategy.

Website Sales Funnel

A website sales funnel project is when you create a system that takes website visitors (prospective customers) through steps to become a customer.

This project would start with creating valuable content that attracts the right audience. Then, you need to have strong calls-to-action and lead capture forms to get visitors to take the next step.

The goal is to turn website visitors into leads and then customers.

Digital Marketing Strategy

A digital marketing strategy project would be focused on developing a comprehensive plan for online marketing. This product would include setting objectives, researching the target audience, and determining the best digital marketing channels to reach them.

It also includes creating content marketing strategies, launching campaigns, and measuring results. 

The goal is to create a roadmap for business owners to follow to achieve their online marketing goals.

What Are the Educational Requirements for a Digital Marketing Consultant

Many digital marketing consultants have a bachelor’s degree in marketing, advertising, or a related field. However, it’s not required.

Some consultants may have a web design, development, or programming background. Others may have experience working in digital marketing for a company.

The important thing is that they have the skills and knowledge to help businesses succeed online.

Digital marketing consultants should be up-to-date with the latest digital marketing trends and changes. For example, Google makes algorithm updates multiple times per year which can impact SEO.

It’s essential to keep up with these changes and be able to adapt the digital marketing strategy accordingly.

What Skills do Digital Marketing Consultants Need?

Digital marketing consultants should have a wide range of technical and creative problem-solving skills. 

First, we will list some general digital marketing skills that all consultants should have. 

Next, we’ll get into some of the more technical skills for you to consider to be a digital marketing expert.

Strategic Planning

A digital marketing consultant needs to be able to develop and execute a digital marketing strategy. They should be able to create a digital marketing plan with objectives, target customer research, and determine the best digital marketing channels to reach them.

Analytical Skills

A digital marketing consultant needs to be able to analyze data to make decisions. These skills include website traffic data, social media analytics, and Google Analytics. In addition, they need to identify trends and patterns to make recommendations on how to improve the digital marketing strategy.

Project Management

A digital marketing consultant needs to be able to manage projects from start to finish. Project management includes developing timelines, budgets, and scope of work. They also need to be able to manage multiple marketing initiatives simultaneously and ensure compliance with the marketing budget.

Creative Thinking

A digital marketing consultant needs to be able to come up with creative ideas for content, campaigns, and strategies. They should be able to think outside the box and develop new and innovative ways to market a business online.

Communication Skills

A digital marketing consultant needs to be able to communicate effectively. Communication skills include written communication, such as content creation through storytelling and copywriting. 

And verbal communication, such as presentations and client engagements.

Now, we’ll list some of the more technical skills for digital marketing consultants to consider:

Search Engine Optimization (SEO)

Understanding how search engines work and how to optimize website content and architecture for better search engine ranking.

Pay-Per-Click (PPC)

Ability to set up and manage PPC advertising campaigns on Google Ads and other paid advertising platforms.

Video Ads

Capability to create and run video ads on platforms like YouTube and Facebook.

Web Development

Skills to build and design websites. A digital marketing consultant should have a basic understanding of HTML, CSS, and JavaScript.

Analytics & Reporting

Ability to set up, interpret, and make recommendations from Google Analytics, Google Search Console, and other reporting tools. 

Email Marketing

Understanding how to set up and manage email campaigns while ensuring email deliverability, compliance with spam laws, and design best practices.

Social Media Advertising

Capability to design and manage ads on social media platforms while respecting each platform’s different algorithms and best practices.

Lead Generation

Skills to generate leads through various digital marketing channels, such as email marketing, social media, and pay-per-click.

Digital Marketing Consultant Certifications

There are many different certifications you can get as a digital marketing consultant. However, not all of them are necessary. The most important thing is to have the skills and experience listed above. But if you want to get certified, here are a few options:

  • Inbound Marketing Certification from HubSpot
  • Content Marketing Certification from the Content Marketing Institute
  • Google Ads Certification
  • Bing Ads Certification
  • Hootsuite Social Media Marketing Certification
  • Meta Blueprint Certification
  • Twitter Flight School Certification

Digital Marketing Consultant Salary

The average salary for a digital marketing consultant ranges between $63,000 to $90,000 per year. Your salary will depend on digital marketing experience, skills, and location.

However, as a freelance digital marketing consultant, you decide on your niche, how much to charge, and how often you work. So, your salary potential is unlimited.

Many digital marketing consultants charge by the project. Others charge by the hour. 

The average hourly rate for a digital marketing freelancer is $100 per hour. But the price per hour can range from $100-$500 per hour.

Digital Marketing Consulting Job Growth

Digital marketing is one of the most in-demand skills today. Moreover, the growth rate for marketing professionals is 10% from 2020 to 2030, which makes a digital marketing career exciting. 

However, there could be much competition for these jobs because they are relatively new, and no specific education or training is required.

We recommend niching down into a digital marketing specialist and focusing on a specific industry or sales process (B2B, B2C, e-commerce, etc.). The benefits of being a specialist are that you can charge more and have less competition.

Becoming a Digital Marketing Consultant

If you want to become a digital marketing consultant, there are a few things you need to do:

1. Get the experience and skills listed above. You can do this by working in-house or at an agency, taking online digital marketing courses, or getting certified in online marketing strategies.

2. Start freelancing or working part-time for clients. This will help you build up a portfolio of work and get experience working with clients.

3. Once you have a few clients under your belt, you can start branching out and growing your business. This includes hiring employees, sub-contractors, or partnering with other agencies.

4. Marketing yourself is key to success as a digital marketing consultant. Make sure you have a solid online presence and are active on social media. You should also have a website that showcases your work and lists your services.

5. Network with other digital marketers and stay up-to-date on industry news. This will help you be the best consultant you can be.

If you want more information on becoming a successful marketing consultant, read our article on “How to become a marketing consultant.”

Wrapping Up What is a Digital Marketing Consultant

Now you know what is a digital marketing consultant. A digital marketing consultant is responsible for generating leads and increasing sales conversions through online marketing channels. They should have experience in various digital marketing channels, such as email marketing, social media, and pay-per-click.

Certification is not required but can help you get ahead of the competition. The average salary for a digital marketing consultant ranges between $63,000 to $90,000 per year.

However, as a freelancer, you can charge by the project or hour, and your salary potential is unlimited.

Stewart Swayze
Stewart Swayze
Stewart Swayze is the Founder and Chief Editor of The Weekly Consult. He's a B2B Marketing Consultant that supports large companies and private equity firms. He conducts market research, collects VOC, and creates go-to-market strategies. Stewart also conducts commercial due diligence projects for private equity firms. He's lived, traveled, and worked all over the world. In his spare time, he enjoys trail running, walking his dog, dinners with his family, and woodworking.

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