My First Week in an ECU Digital Marketing Course

This semester I decided to take a new marketing class at East Carolina University, Marketing Technology and Automation. This class is designed to provide students with real marketing experience while using an interactive learning approach. Throughout this semester we will learn how to use two great marketing tools. The first portion of the semester will be dedicated to Google Analytics and the second will be revolved around Act-On Marketing Automation.

Creating A Website

During the first week of class, we were instructed on how to purchase a domain and hosting. We were given the option to purchase these through either GoDaddy or TigerTech. I personally chose GoDaddy due to the fact of the brand recognition that I have associated with the website. The purchase of both domain and hosting amounted to around $68.00, which is far cheaper than a textbook.

Once we purchased those, we then went to the next step of managing our Linux hosting through our cPanel navigation. Within the cPanel, there are multiple options. However, we went straight to the WordPress building wizard. The steps were very easy to follow and once we completed them we were able to customize our new website in a unique design that demonstrates our own personal brand.

Google Analytics

Although we weren’t completely finished customizing, we were still able to link Google Analytics to our websites. The first step in this process was to create an account. After I created my account, I copied the Universal Analytics tracking code and pasted the JavaScript into the footer widget of my website. Placing this code in my website connects Google Analytics and allows it to track the data associated with my site.

The reason we were instructed to place this code within the footer of our site is because JavaScript loads extremely slow. In fact, it loads 2 times slower than HTML code. By pasting this code within the footer widget, anyone who views my site will not realize how slow it is loading because the footer is the last place that they will look. As a result, people won’t automatically bounce because they are tired of waiting for the site to load.

Outside of implementing Google Analytics, we also have begun the first part of the preparation for the Google Analytics certification. During this first week, our homework assignment was to complete units 1-3 in the Digital Analytics Fundamentals section. This section includes videos and practice questions on the basics of using digital analytics, creating a measurement plan, and of course, how to begin using the wonderful tool, Google Analytics.

Act-On

We briefly have begun getting our feet wet working with Act-On Marketing Automation. This section of the course will be mostly executed during the second portion of the course. However, the first week of class we created our Act-On accounts and put the Act-On JavaScript in the footer of our website so we can begin obtaining results.

Similarly to Google Analytics, this JavaScript also goes in a footer widget on our website. It does not matter which footer this JavaScript is placed. Although, it is vital to place this JavaScript in a completely separate text box than the one used for the Google Analytics JavaScript.

What I’ve Learned

As you can see, I have learned a lot this first week of class. Outside of the website building and marketing tools I have been implementing, I have also gained some new basic knowledge about digital marketing. Just to touch on a few key points, we can track everything that people do using digital marketing. For instance, Google Analytics tracks real-time results using numerical data and Marketing Automation monitors descriptive specifics such as who.

Secondly, the reason behind why we track people is because our prospects can sway back and forth. Often times, what people say they do and what they actually do turns out to be two completely different things. Thus, monitoring behavior on a website can be very important and revealing to what their actual behavior will be.

Lastly, the only constant in digital marketing is change. We are living in a thriving digital world that constantly introduces new innovations. Therefore, being a marketer means that learning will never stop. Throughout the entire career of a marketer, it is essential to stay relevant and to learn new skills.

I look forward to learning more throughout this semester about the world of digital marketing.