The marketing skills crisis: How to upskill your team in 2022

Imagine if you decided to launch a marketing campaign without any customer insights.

Or tried to push a product that you have no idea if customers like or dislike.

Imagine if all your marketing efforts were just based on intuition and you crossed your fingers hoping that things will work your way.

Tough, right?

Yet this is what is most likely to happen if your marketing isn’t data-driven.

And what are the chances of seeing positive results?

Pretty low.

Analytics and data is the biggest area people have fallen back from in terms of knowledge and training.

In fact, according to Marketing Week, 33% of respondents reported that their key talent issue is finding a data analyst for their business.

This is in comparison to  content and copywriting talent (17%), performance marketing expertise (17%), social media talent (15%) and ecommerce skills (14%).

In this post-Covid 19 age, getting to know your customers intimately both online and offline should be a priority and that’s where a data analyst comes in.

In this article, we cover:

  • The importance of data and analytics
  • The role of a data analyst
  • Outsource vs upskill employees
  • What to look for in a data analyst talent
  • Tools to help in-house teams with data

The Importance of data & analytics

  • Laser-focused targeting. Data analytics helps you know which types of advertising reach your customers effectively and bring better results
  • Predict future trends. Based on information gathered you can come up with other products that your customers are likely to buy
  • Save money and resources. You’ll be able to avoid activities that add no value to your business and know where to maximise your efforts
  • Increase profitability. Since you make precise decisions and put resources where you get the highest ROI you increase your profitability as a business

The role of a data analyst

Data analysts play a huge role in helping businesses make data-driven marketing decisions.

Here are their roles:

  • Gathering important data using methods such as surveys and interviews
  • Interpreting raw data findings into meaningful information
  • Discovering vital missing data
  • Creating conclusions from analysed data
  • Developing, implementing and maintaining databases
  • Preparing visual representations of data such as graphs, charts and diagrams
  • Identifying trends from data

Outsourcing vs upskilling employees

Outsourcing and upskilling are two methods you can use to help your team become better equipped at data analytics.

Pros of outsourcing

  • Efficiency. Outsourcing allows you to be free from time-consuming activities that are important
  • Boosts your competitive edge by helping you tap into deep expert knowledge that may not be readily available within your team
  • Reduced labour costs. Outsourcing may be cheaper than training employees from scratch

Cons of outsourcing

  • Little control due talent not being available on-site.
  • Differences in time zones
  • Employees may feel they are not being valued

Pros of upskilling

  • Your employees know your business better than an outsourced talent. In addition, they’re more aligned with your mission and vision
  • Employee retention which enhances morale and motivation at the workplace
  • You have some level of control and communication is much easier since it’s one on one

Cons of upskilling

  • Upskilling might be costly since the training fee will be on you
  • An employee might decide to leave after receiving the training
  • Other important business activities might be forced to stop during the training sessions

Depending on resources and time available you may opt for either of the two and evaluate which model works best for your business.

What to look for in a data analyst

Skills of a data analyst

  • Technical skills. They need to have a deep understanding of technology and how different softwares work
  • Presentation skills. They should be able to present findings in a logical and easy manner
  • Communication skills. Data analysts should have both written and verbal skills for ease of communication
  • Data visualisation skills. They should be able to paint a picture of what their findings show
  • Critical thinking. This will be based on their own judgement from data collected and then make sound recommendations

Tools to help in-house teams with data

Google Data Studio

This free tool helps to report on data from different sources, without programing. It  turns your data into fully customisable informative reports, with dashboards that are easy to read and share.

Microsoft Power BI

An interactive data visualization software product developed  with a key focus on business intelligence. Features include power pivot, power query and power view.


This data visualisation and business intelligence tool is used for reporting and analysing  data.


A data analytics tool that uses sales data to detect and harness offline word-of-mouth buzz and helps to predict future customer behaviour.


Funnel groups and maps your data in one secure place, and makes it analysis-ready for you and your team.

Whichever route you take, data analytics is a key component in your business and can help you make better data-driven decisions.

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