The demand for skilled digital marketing leaders has been on the rise in recent years, especially due to how digital is now thriving as one of, if not the most lucrative and fastest-growing industry in the past half-decade or so.

Whether you aspire to enter the digital marketing field, or are already in the business with a digital marketing career, there are endless opportunities to improve yourself as a digital marketer and digital marketing leader.

Below, we’ll discuss the top 7 essential traits of a successful digital marketing leader. Learning how to improve yourself in these areas can help in growing your digital marketing career and leadership and move forward in the lucrative digital marketing field.

1. Analytical Thinking

Modern digital marketing now demands data-driven approaches, and a successful digital marketer in 2021 should always analyze and compare data, insights, statistics, and trends to ensure the business can always stay ahead of its competition.

Digital mediums and channels allow marketers an easier time to measure the ROI of different marketing campaigns, and digital marketers should leverage this to track the progress of campaigns according to the marketing objectives, generate more leads and revenue, and secure the commitment from stakeholders and executives for future marketing budgets.

It’s not enough for the digital marketers to come up with great campaign ideas, but they should also take the scientific approach to back creativity with data, ensuring the objectiveness of the campaigns, aggregating and analyzing data to ensure more informed decisions and more effective communication of the marketing strategy to their team.

2. Creative Problem Solving

On the one hand, modern digital marketers are demanded to be data-driven, but on the other hand, creativity is another key quality that must be possessed by any digital marketing roles, not only for creators and strategists but also for marketing managers and other leadership roles.

Marketing won’t be effective it’s not engaging and interesting, and it takes creative ideas to develop engaging marketing campaigns that can attract your target audience.

We can always expect something new virtually every day in digital marketing: new Google algorithms affecting your website’s SEO, new competitor’s ad or campaign, negative customer reviews, and so on. New challenges and situations that demand quick decision-making are the norms in digital marketing, and digital marketers are expected to always be creative and stay on top of their game in solving these problems.

3. Cybersecurity Awareness

In this day and age where data is now the world’s most valuable asset, digital marketers are not only required to possess the technical skills and knowledge related to marketing, but awareness regarding data privacy and cybersecurity threats is also extremely important.

There’s no value in successfully generating a lot of leads and other marketing successes when our valuable and sensitive data is stolen by hackers and cybercriminals. Even worse, the protection of customer’s sensitive data is heavily regulated in many countries, and thus being affected by data breaches and other cyber attack vectors may result in expensive legal fines besides loss in revenue and profits. Also, it can ruin the business’s reputation on a long-term or even permanent basis.

Cybersecurity can also directly affect the performance of some marketing campaigns. For example, a successful digital marketer must have sufficient knowledge to protect the website from web scraping bots, which can ruin our site’s SEO performance by creating duplicate content issues.

4. Communication Skills

At the core, digital marketing is about communicating personalized and targeted messages to a target prospect/customer. Thus, adequate communication skills are extremely important for any successful digital marketer.

On the one hand, digital marketers must be able to use these communication skills to craft attractive product stories and brand messages that can effectively engage audiences on an emotional level. On the other hand, communicating the marketing strategy, insights, and data to the rest of the marketing team and other stakeholders is also crucial.

5. The Ability To Stay Motivated and Discipline

Digital marketing is often a field that allows flexibility in time and overall professional freedom. So, if a digital marketer can’t stay motivated and push him/herself to follow through in finishing their tasks and jobs, they’ll simply never succeed.

With remote working becoming more common due to the COVID-19 quarantine situations, digital marketings are presented with more autonomy, and while in many cases it can be a good thing, it will also mean you alone will be responsible for managing your own time, deciding which tasks to prioritize, and so on.

Unless you can maintain a high level of discipline and stay motivated, it will be extremely difficult if not impossible to succeed in digital marketing.

6. Curiosity and Desire To Learn

Digital marketing, as we know, is a rapidly evolving field. There will always be new marketing channels to adopt, new technologies to implement, and new strategies from competitors we can adapt against and/or imitate.

Passion for lifelong learning is a must-have quality for anybody who wants to be successful in digital marketing, and there are many activities you can do to stay up-to-date with the latest trends, information, best practices, and knowledge, including:

  • Taking digital marketing certifications and credible courses, even informal online lessons can be valuable
  • Attending online/offline events and conferences
  • Staying up-to-date with current industry news like SEO algorithm changes, new social channels, new apps and technologies to pay attention to, etc.
  • Take refresher courses on important topics to update your knowledge
  • Learn new relevant skills (copywriting, graphic design, etc. )

Curiosity is extremely important, and arguably one of the most important traits if you want to be a successful digital marketing leader.

7. Leadership

Digital marketing is obviously a field that involves a lot of different people with different roles, skills, and requirements.

It’s very difficult if not impossible to do everything by yourself in digital marketing, and it’s more productive for marketers to work with others that possess different skills and backgrounds to achieve the same goal, in short, having a proper marketing team.

To lead such team, strong leadership and management are required to ensure tasks get done on time and accurately: assigning roles and responsibilities, delegating projects, and motivating everyone to stay focused and on track. This can be extremely difficult and will only become more difficult the bigger your marketing team grows.

This also means that a successful digital marketing leader must be able to collaborate and work together in a team: prioritizing team efforts rather than individual agenda is very important in achieving digital marketing success.


As you can see, digital marketing isn’t exactly rocket science, but by having the traits we’ve discussed above, you can develop yourself further as a digital marketer and digital marketing leader and stay on top of this competitive but highly lucrative industry.

Above all, successful digital marketers must always stay up-to-date with the latest marketing statistics and trends to accommodate lifelong learning. Also, with today’s cybersecurity threats being on the rise, an awareness for data privacy and cybersecurity best practices is now also an essential trait.

Leave a Reply