Coding - it’s not just for the super-geeks anymore. Today, coding goes far beyond just building websites. In fact, getting a little coding knowledge under your belt has proven to be a valuable tool for employees across many industries, not just computing. As National Coding Week 2015 begins Monday 21st September, let’s examine why coding is an essential skill for marketers.
1. Knowledge is inspiration
Marketers are experts in strategy, creativity and ideas. What better way to open the doors to inspiration than to understand the possibilities that lie there? By getting your head around the structures of your website, apps and digital platforms, you’ll gain a better perception of what can be done and how much effort it would take.
2. Don’t become a digital dinosaur
Basic IT skills like word processing and spreadsheets are great. However, nowadays, children as young as five are learning “digital literacy” - not how to work a computer, but how to make a computer work for them. As coding is introduced to the national curriculum, it will inevitably become a core skill for the next generation. Don’t get left behind. Just as computer literacy is essential today, basic knowledge of coding will be essential tomorrow.
3. Smoothing out the hiccups
By no means should marketers feel pressure to be up to par with professional coders. But I’m willing to bet we’ve all been there - an image you’ve embedded just doesn’t look right or the latest news item on your website is returning a duplicate page error. These are the kind of problems you want to fix yourself, as soon as possible. Rather than waiting on the IT department, basic coding knowledge gives marketers the freedom to update and adjust digital content successfully, in real-time.
4. Time to optimise
Basic HTML and CSS are essential for optimising landing pages online. While it might be someone else’s job to create the company website, it’s the job of marketing to get web traffic rolling in. For SEO to be effective, marketers should be able to write SEO-friendly website content and understand how to find and edit meta descriptions, title tags and keywords, without the risk of accidentally trashing the existing code.
5. It’s not so difficult after all
You’re unlikely to find many marketers who don’t use the internet or digital technology for their day-to-day tasks. Without tools to automate and simplify marketing, a marketer’s job would be difficult, not to mention tedious. Marketers should embrace coding as another form of technology to make their job easier. After all, there is a plethora of online programs, downloadable guides and face-to-face courses available that make learning to code easier than you’d think.