We’re really excited about Search Engine Strategies this week because it is one of the premier events for search, social and Internet marketers who want in on the latest developments in the Search and Social industries.

We have a fantastic team at the conference including Chris Taylor, from the Executive Search Team, Jamie Young, also from Executive Search, and Jackie Harmon, from our Los Angeles office.

I caught up with them today to get the scoop and they’ve reported great buzz around the hiring environment in search.  The hottest needs we’re hearing about right now are for Executive level Internet marketing positions, plus everything and anything related to Social Media.

One of the highlights of the show so far for us was “Search, What is Next?“, led by speakers Shashi Seth from Yahoo!, Brian Kaminski from iProspect, and Marc Poirier of Acquiso. This session was all about predictions on where the search industry will be in the next five to ten years, and specifically, how Social Media fits into the mix.

It provided a good backdrop to understand what you should be thinking about in terms of career development as an Internet marketing professional:

  • Web analytics: The big point here was that analytics is rapidly evolving from a specialized skill set to a an expected area of expertise that is part of the standard search marketing tool set. If you don’t have a grasp on managing analytics, statistics and database technology, you will be at a disadvantage against other candidates in the job marketplace.
  • Social Media: They reaffirmed that search engine results (and Internet marketing in general)  are becoming more and more reliant on what’s being communicated via social media.  What that means for your career, and what we’re already seeing in the marketplace, is that you will be expected to manage, or at least participate in, your company’s social media strategy in addition to traditional SEO and PPC.
  • Mobile: They talked a lot about the convergence of technology, with mobile (non-PC) being the biggest theme.  From a careers perspective, this is really important.  The mobile channel has grown exponentially over the last few years and until recently has not been directly tied to SEO strategy.  That is changing quickly.  We believe that before you know it, Internet marketers will be expected to provide direction on how to drive customer acquisition via mobile as well as the traditional web.
  • Integrated Marketing: Believe it or not, print isn’t dead. They commented that display advertising in particular, remains hot and is becoming a driver of traffic to support an online strategy, as opposed to the opposite dynamic which characterized the early-Internet days.

So you might be saying, “OK, Hillary. This is interesting, but I can’t say it is a revelation.  I mean, I’ve seen this stuff coming.”  True, but there’s a key career takeaway in all of this:  search and Internet marketing is evolving… fast. The skills of yesterday are not the ones that will get you the job of tomorrow, and you need to ensure you’re always staying on top of what is coming next.

I’ll continue to keep you up to speed on the good career-related stuff coming out of SES.  See you soon!

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