Internet marketing continues to be a quickly growing field, making a big impact in school course offerings. Courses in Internet marketing start as early as high school, and students at Utah’s Davis High School are learning to look at websites like Facebook, Twitter and YouTube in a whole new light.
Currently, job opportunities for Internet marketing are one of the few bright spots in a down economy. With more than 2 billion Internet users worldwide, it’s easy to see how companies like Salt Lake City-based PurePPC.com are hiring those with a keen understanding of how to market to consumers via the Internet.
Companies are realizing the value of social media and Internet marketing. Experts said Internet marketing could grow to a $20 billion industry in 2012
Davis High School teacher Jeff McCauley’s classes touch on areas like search engine optimization, pay-per-click advertising and social media.
“Chances are these kids will be working a lot with [Internet marketing] in the future. I’m not trying to make good high school students; I’m trying to shape the next generation of marketing professionals,” said McCauley.
Universities are also teaching Internet marketing in the classroom and beyond. Many are offering programs for non-traditional students. The University of Utah, University of San Francisco, Columbia School of Journalism and University of Virginia are just a few of the schools offering certificate programs through weekend courses and online education. These programs cater to everyone from senior executives to rank-and-file marketing professionals who are interested in broadening their skills or seeking career advancement.
But according to Tim Gilson, vice president of sales and marketing for PurePPC.com, one of the best ways a person can become well versed in Internet marketing is outside the classroom through individual study.
“When it comes to school, a university is going to provide more depth. But to make it in an field like pay-per-click advertising it takes a lot of private research. Someone needs to spend a lot of time studying Google AdWords,” said Gilson.
Gilson said the biggest change in Internet marketing over the past few years has been the growth of social media.
“A student should study Internet marketing because search engine marketing is number one for hiring. A quality Internet marketing company shouldn’t be affected by the recession,” Gilson said. “Having a technology-based education fits well within the future of sales and lead generation, and with all business. Studying Internet marketing gives students an edge over traditional marketing studies.”
PurePPC.com President Todd Julien said he expects the demand to increase for students who have backgrounds in online marketing.
“Internet marketing firms are searching for individuals who can demonstrate success and provide a good return on a firm’s investment. Social media marketing and pay-per-click advertising skills are in high demand,” Julien said.
Rajan is the founder and Editor-in-Chief of BIG Marketing for Small Business. He's an award-winning marketing strategist who is passionate about branding, digital marketing and social media. He spent nearly a decade as the marketing executive at global IT firm Peer 1 Hosting and was instrumental in their explosive growth.