2021 Career Guide: Digital Marketing in Hong Kong

Thomas Ho

4 Feb 2021

Exploring Digital Marketing as a career in Hong Kong

The world of digital marketing is exploding at mind-boggling speeds as companies can target users in a better way using data on consumer behaviour, demographics, and more. For example, using big data, search engines, and social media platforms can show the right kind of content to the right audience to maximize conversions. The sudden spike of work from home culture due to the onset of the coronavirus pandemic in 2020 further complemented the growth of marketing in the digital space. Add to this the whopping internet penetration rate of more than 90% in Hong Kong, and you have a perspective of how valuable digital marketing could be in this region!

Although there was a significant dip in the global GDP, the year 2020 has set the pace and trends for digital marketing in the coming decade! According to PR Newswire, the market is then expected to recover and reach $237.5 billion in 2023 at a CAGR of 11.87%. Some notable ones are; more emphasis on localized digital marketing and voice search optimization.

As you might already know, digital marketing is not limited to any industry or niche. Most emerging and booming companies, from startups to large multinationals, all are trying to get the most out of their digital marketing efforts. Owing to the surge in the requirements of digital marketing jobs in small and medium-sized companies, it gives Hong Kong residents several opportunities to enter the realm of digital marketing.

digital marketing mobile marketing

How is Digital Marketing Different from Traditional Marketing?

The world has come a long way from traditional marketing. You are now living in a world of information technology. Every word that is written, every picture that is shared and every video ever uploaded on the internet will probably stay forever in history and will continue to build authority over time.

What is Traditional Marketing?

Traditional marketing refers to the marketing tactics that were employed before the internet was as widespread as it is today.

Companies all around the globe, including in Hong Kong, put up advertisements and shared content on platforms like newspapers, magazine covers, radios, and roadside banners. Unfortunately, there are several shortcomings to this. Some of them are listed below.

  1. Companies are limited in terms of targeting their audiences

  2. Marketing campaigns can get very expensive

  3. Campaign metrics are not easily available

Consider the example of a billboard sign on a highway. If you are putting up an advertisement for your product or service there, you do not get to choose how many people see it, what kind of people see it, and will not receive any direct feedback from the people. The best you can do is hope that at least a small fraction of people pay attention to the ad and engage with your brand.

Another example could be handing over pamphlets and brochures to passersby on a busy street. Again, this is a very inefficient marketing strategy. The reason is, as you might already have guessed, most people throw them away without even having a good look at them. This is a big dent in the resources of the company, which can be easily avoided with digital marketing.

Tokyo street view

What is Digital Marketing?

Digital marketing is the ‘new-age marketing’. It gives immense power and control over the critical marketing attributes, like audience targeting, to the marketers and content creators.

As a digital marketer, you can precisely choose the kind of audience that would see your ad. So, if you are running ads for an investment company or a real estate business, you can comfortably avoid showing your ads to people in their early teens as they are unlikely to find them relevant. This lets you and the company itself save a lot of money that could be used for other fruitful purposes.

You can filter your target audience not just by country or region, but also by age, gender, interests, profession, and more!

Above all, when you put authentic content out into the internet, it is going to be there in perpetuity, until and unless it is intentionally taken down. It would also build authority and generate revenue as long as it is online.

Digital marketing also fills in the other gaps of traditional marketing, i.e., tracking and tweaking. You can easily track the metrics of your ad campaigns from a single dashboard and tweak your campaigns according to your needs in an instant. Such flexibility is not available in traditional marketing.

As a recap, here are the 3 benefits of digital marketing over traditional marketing:

  1. Targeting audiences

  2. Tracking metrics

  3. Tweaking campaigns

social media marketing

Will Traditional Marketing Go Extinct?

At first, it might sound as if digital marketing is crushing traditional marketing. However, traditional marketing still holds value in the actual world.

Companies in 2021 are likely to use traditional marketing strategies primarily for:

  • Creating brand awareness

  • Uplifting brand reputation

  • Building brand authority

The onset of the COVID-19 pandemic and the lockdown of many countries across the globe did anything but slow down the growth of digital marketing. As most people were confined to their homes, the scenario acted as a catalyst for the rapid rise of the digital marketing space, creating more jobs in advertising and marketing.

Therefore, traditional marketing is unlikely to go extinct in the foreseeable future. Rather, traditional marketing tactics are getting more and more intertwined with digital marketing strategies.

The Outlook of Digital Marketing in Hong Kong

Hong Kong sea view

Hong Kong, being a place of rapid technological growth and a hum of financial centres along with commercial trade routes, has an untapped potential in the digital marketing space. This is further reinforced by the fact that, out of about 7.3 million residents of Hong Kong, 6.8 million people have access to the internet, and a staggering 80% of the population is active on various social media platforms.

With 100% urbanization and a fast-paced emergence of startups and medium businesses in Hong Kong, companies are spending mountains of money on advertisements, especially on social media platforms and search engines, your chances of making a successful career out of digital marketing are growing fast!

The companies in Hong Kong collectively spent a whopping USD 1.23 billion (HKD 9.5 billion), and are estimated to spend a total of USD 1.36 billion (HKD 10.5 billion) in 2021! Sounds exciting, doesn’t it?

Here is a small list of top-of-the-line companies hiring for digital marketing in Hong Kong in 2021:

  • Accenture

  • Amazon

  • IBM

  • Oracle

So, to kick start your career in digital marketing, start applying for jobs today or enrol in a digital marketing course in Hong Kong that will refine your skills and speed up your journey of starting a successful career.

Marketing 4.0 – For a The Rise of Growth Hacking

Marketing 4.0 is a marketing strategy coined by Professor Phillip Kotler. According to Kotler, the face of marketing is transforming because of a new set of audiences and customers. This new breed of customers:

  • Live a fast-paced life

  • Are mobile

  • Are more connected than ever

  • Have greater aspirations

  • Are largely digital

Such traits of the new customers make them ideal targets for customers, and Hong Kong, being a hub of technology, innovation, and creation, is witnessing a rapid surge of these audiences.

social media savvy

The traditional methods of marketing do not yield fruitful results when targeting these customers. That is why companies and brands are recruiting digital marketers who are familiar with multichannel marketing and omnichannel marketing that involves not only different social media platforms and search engines but also various devices like smartphones, laptops, and tablets.

Going one step ahead is growth hacking. Unlike traditional marketing, where the marketers focus on driving traffic only to one landing page, website, or profile, growth hacking takes care of the entire journey of the customers from awareness to conversions and referrals!

To effectively market the brand or product, digital marketers and growth hackers of today should indulge in creative marketing, data testing, behavioural psychology of the masses, and work in tandem with the developers. To carry out all of these tasks successfully, the marketer should be well-versed with big data analytics and cross-platform marketing.

This new "breed" of customers, although greatly digital, value physical experiences greatly! As a result, brands that are producing content and ads that are more engaging, not only appealing, have higher chances of conversion. So, you, as a digital marketer, should align your marketing skills to tackle these new-age challenges effectively. A 4-week digital marketing and growth hacking course can help you do this through data-driven and project-based learning. Of course, all that is not a single person’s job. Digital marketing has different profiles. Following are some of the most popular and in-demand digital marketing job profiles.


Read Also: The Incredible Rise and Ever-Evolving Applications of The "Growth" Hacker


Find the Right Digital Marketing Job for You!

As the world of e-commerce expands, the job profiles of digital marketers converge. Thus calling for more people skilled in product management, data analytics, growth hacking, and UX design.

Digital marketing entails a multitude of processes like email marketing, content strategizing, and Search Engine Optimization (SEO). Technology has become so vast that all of that cannot be done by a single person effectively. Hence, companies employ several people for their digital marketing requirements.


Read Also: How UX Design Influences Digital Marketing Strategy?


So, let’s dive into what is included in a digital marketing team.

digital marketing team

A Digital Marketing Team

There is no definitive structure for a digital marketing team. The size and roles of people in a digital marketing team vary with several factors like:

  • Size of the company

  • Needs of the company

  • Type of company

However, here are the top four essential roles that you can typically find and apply for in companies hiring for digital marketing.

  • Content Marketing Strategist

  • SEO and SEM Specialist

  • Social Media Specialist

  • Digital Marketing Analyst

1. Content Marketing Strategist

Content is king. The content that a company puts out to its audience can make or break the brand! Hence, a lot of thought and planning goes into not just creating the content, but also in finalizing what type of content should be created.

content marketing

A content marketing strategist helps the digital marketing team plan, create and curate content that has the highest value for the brand and is also aligned with the business goals. The strategists do this through:

  • Studying buyer personas

  • Researching trending topics

  • Examining the impact of different types of content for each topic

  • Supervising writing style and techniques

  • Developing and enforcing content guidelines

The average salary of a content strategist in Hong Kong ranges between HKD 262000 - 372000 per year, with plenty of room to branch into larger roles given the nature of the work. The skills required for you to kick start your career as a content marketing strategist include:

  • Content, business, copy and technical writing

  • Content strategy with User Experience (UX) mindset

  • Content management & marketing

  • Email marketing

  • Data analytics

  • Growth hacking mindset

  • Basic coding skill


Read Also: Coding for Digital Marketers and Why You Should Learn It


Content creation is well and good, but that is not enough if businesses have to make their mark in the digital world and rank high in search engines. The content should be aligned with SEO best practices and be reinforced with strong SEM strategies.

seo marketing

2. SEO and SEM Specialist

A Search Engine Optimization (SEO) specialist puts every piece of content under the microscope and examines it to ensure it creates the maximum impact on search engines like Google and Bing. As an SEO specialist, you will also employ Search Engine Marketing (SEM) strategies to create value for the brand.

The annual paycheck for an SEO Specialist in Hong Kong currently ranges between HKD 180000 - 360000 depending on experience.

The in-demand skills for a career as an SEO specialist include:

  • Search Engine Optimization (SEO)

  • Social media & search engine advertising

  • Keyword research

  • Strategic content writing

  • Website optimization

  • Growth hacking mindset

  • Data analytics

3. Social Media Specialist

Social Media Marketing (SMM) and an active social media presence are essential for a company to build its brand. With billions of active users every month, social media platforms like Facebook, Instagram, and LinkedIn are critical for a to create a brand for itself in the digital space.

social media marketing

Social Media Specialists handle the company's presence on various social media platforms. For example, if a company is small and is primarily a B2C company, it will probably not benefit much from a social media platform like LinkedIn, which is mainly a B2B platform. Hence, the company can direct its limited resources to other platforms with greater potential. A Social Media Manager handles such decisions. As a Social Media Specialist, you would also manage the company’s social media accounts and curate the content for various platforms.

A Social Media Specialist in Hong Kong is paid approximately from HKD 313,000 to HKD 400,000 on average every year.

The essential skills of a Social Media Specialist include:

  • Data analytics

  • UX Copywriting

  • Community management

  • Creative and growth hacking mindset

  • Understanding different social media ecosystem

  • Social sensitivity

  • Content curation

  • Basic UI skill

  • Basic Video skill


Read Also: Tech Skills for Social Media Influencers


4. Digital Marketing Analyst

As a Marketing Analyst or a Digital Marketing Analyst, you will be responsible to supervise, track, and report the performance of the company's marketing campaigns to relevant authorities. Then, you would have to make recommendations to maximize the impact of the marketing campaigns and meet business goals faster.

data analytics

In Hong Kong, you could expect an average annual salary of HKD 320,000 to HKD 546,000 as a Digital Marketing Analyst.

Below are some of the essential skills for a Digital Marketing Analyst:

  • Campaign management

  • Data analytics

  • Product management

  • Project management

  • Basic coding skill

  • Customer relationship management

  • User Experience (UX) mindset

  • Growth hacking mindset

Conclusion

The career outlook for digital marketers in Hong Kong appears to be filled with lots of opportunities and untapped potential. Besides the skills mentioned above, a digital marketer should also have excellent communication skills and a strategic thinking mindset. All in all, digital marketing is an inevitable part of the tech world. To get a head start in the world of digital marketing and to stand out among the crowd for companies to recruit you, check out the following courses to get you well-prepared.

Digital Marketing related courses:


Read Also: Unlocking New Efficiency: Data Analytics For Sales and Marketing


Need more Advice?

If you are at a choice point in your career and need someone to help you navigate professional challenges. You can make an appointment to our complimentary 1-on-1 Career Consultation and receive personalised career advice.


Career Consultation

Thomas Ho

4 Feb 2021

Accelerating humanity by future-proofing workforces