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What are the most important hard and soft skills of a modern VP of Marketing?
Are you a marketing leader? What role do you have? What hard and soft skills provide the most value to your company and why?
This is a really good question - I never thought about it until now.
Role: I am the founder and CEO of my marketing agency, Perfect Pixel Marketing.
Hard skills: I can bring the most value to a company through my ability to perform multiple tasks and wear multiple hats. Recently, one of the best hard skills I've been taught and now teach to novice marketers is how to interpret analytics and use that to make data-driven decisions. I think it is pretty easy to look at a few rows of data and point out winners and losers of an experiment, but understanding what is occurring and being able to leverage that data for growth has been invaluable for me the last few years.
Soft skills: My ability to tell a story and speak to my audience has helped me since my days studying to be a journalist to when I started working at startups. It really became valuable when I began working on client-facing reports at a digital marketing agency; I used to show a table of data on a slide and write a summary that repeated everything that was clearly visible beneath it. My CEO at the time pushed me to look beyond the data and to tell the client what was happening that resulted in the data below not to just present the data in another format. I used the hard skills I learned to interpret the data and then used my creativity to present the data to my clients. My ability to present information to our clients in a way they can understand improved the client-consultant relationship and help us retain more clients even if the results were less than desirable.
Note: There is also a difference between telling a story and stretching the truth. The former being the method used to explain what caused specific results and the latter being untruthful and hiding information to make things look better than they are.
Hope that helps!
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