The hottest digital marketing jobs in Leeds—is yours one of them?

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    • 12th February 2020

    Leeds is a hotbed of creative talent, with plenty of exciting opportunities. Many digital professionals are exploring what career paths and progression options Leeds offers, and asking if the skills they already have will stay relevant.

    We’ve reviewed our own job listings and taken a wider look at jobs in the Leeds area. We’ve also looked closely at Leeds’ digital marketing recruitment landscape, the recruiters offering jobs, and whether freelancing or agency work is the right choice for you.

    The top four digital marketing jobs in Leeds

    In our previous article on in-demand creative jobs of 2020, we identified some key career paths to consider. While these are still popular choices, the digital marketing field has its own trends and top jobs.

    1. Web Developer

    men working at computers

    Web development is a specialist role that’s in high demand at the moment. This is because there’s a shortage of technical skills, making this a solid choice for any professional.

    Businesses and agencies interviewing for web development jobs will look for examples of you practically applying your technical knowledge. This doesn’t have to be within a job, however. Anything that shows you know your onions—and demonstrates your problem-solving abilities—will reflect well on you as a candidate.

    Web Developer salaries to expect in the Leeds area

    • Junior web developer: £18k–£19k
    • Career progression to £25k–£29k
    • Senior web developers with multiple years’ experience: £39k+

    Freelance vs. agency

    Freelance web developers must grow their client base to succeed. A good approach is to start with local jobs, build a portfolio of work, and use your experience to later secure larger projects.

    Freelancers typically handle smaller web builds for small to medium businesses, as well as startups looking to save money. However, once freelance work is large enough to require additional support, some freelancers set up their own specialist agencies.

    In contrast, working for an agency or in house offers a mix of larger, more challenging tasks, as well as a diverse range of products and technologies to work in. You can look forward to different development challenges, which will help you progress in your career. You’ll also need to manage your time effectively, and potentially juggle several different clients.

    Since Leeds plays host to many different industries—including finance, fashion, food and retail—you’ll be kept on your toes, especially since web development skills are very desirable in Leeds.

    2. Digital Marketing Manager

    woman pointing at post-it notes on wall during a meeting

    Digital marketing managers of Leeds enjoy a varied role; it’s broader in scope than web development and overlaps with general marketing, but it still requires some technical know-how. Digital marketing managers need hands-on executive experience in one of the many digital disciplines before taking on the job of a digital marketing manager. Technical SEO, content marketing for SEO, PPC and social media are all ideal backgrounds.

    That said, good managers should aim to develop a general and broad digital marketing skill set. Google Analytics know-how is a must, as are project management and communication skills. Since digital marketing managers look after the overall plan of growing a business online, they will also need client service skills. They’ll often be meeting clients face-to-face to pitch campaign plans or report on results.

    You can get a more in-depth look at what a digital marketing manager does with our previous article on the subject.

    Digital Marketing Manager salaries to expect in the Leeds area

    • Junior digital marketing manager: £27k–£28k
    • Digital marketing manager: £29–£35k
    • Head of department or director level: £40–55k

    Freelance vs. agency

    Digital marketing managers often work on a contract or consultancy basis rather than as freelancers. They need robust networking skills to succeed—especially in the Leeds area, which is a highly competitive market.You should expect to work with other agencies to implement services if you are contract based; if you’re working in-house you’ll be working with internal teams or external agencies instead.

    Typical client variety

    Freelancers tend to specialise in a specific industry, such as fashion, finance or property. In comparison, agencies tend to offer a wider mix of clients. If you enjoy learning about new industries and having different challenges every day, then working at an agency is a fantastic career option.

    3. Social media jobs in Leeds

    person holding smartphone

    Social media officers and managers are responsible for a brand’s identity and messaging. Since a brand’s social channels are often the first point of customer contact, it’s very important you get the right tone and the right message across.

    Social media jobs demand good storytelling skills, as well as an understanding of how to grow a brand and audience. You should also know how to network and manage a community if you’re looking to thrive in Leeds’ social media industry.

    Social Media Officer and Manager salaries to expect in the Leeds area

    • Junior social media officer: £20k–£22k
    • Social media manager: £35k–£38k
    • Senior social media manager: £40k–£50k

    Freelance vs. agency

    Like digital marketing managers, social media officers do best with some experience under their belt. If you’re lacking this experience the best way to get it is a stint at a Leeds agency.

    Agencies that focus on social media marketing are on the rise in Leeds right now. Unlike digital marketing managers (who build a broad body of skills) social media managers should consider specializing in social media marketing to get ahead in the job market.

    Typical client variety

    Social media managers take different approaches to their job. Some focus on one client across multiple channels, and often specialise in a specific industry like fashion, technology and entertainment. Others juggle multiple clients across multiple channels, with a focus on storytelling and audience identification instead. These social media professionals enjoy a variety of client industries and are highly adaptable.

    4. Videographer

    person holding camera in front of colourful background

    This is another in-demand job at the moment. It requires technical and editorial skills, as well as good storytelling skills and business knowledge. Videographers must also be able to develop creative, unique ideas, and to grow a brand’s social media audience. Branding projects (including social media videos) are a common project.

    Videographer salaries to expect in the Leeds area:

    • Videographer: £19k–£22k
    • Video editor: £22k–£26k
    • Video producer: £31k–41k

    Freelance vs. agency

    Videographers can establish themselves privately, just as a photographer might. However, the biggest and most varied jobs can be found in video production agencies. Luckily, Leeds has plenty to offer in that regard. BBC’s Look North, ITV and Channel 4 all have premises here, alongside smaller companies like Screen Yorkshire and Vera Studios.

    That said, videographers don’t have to turn to studios for work in Leeds. Digital marketing agencies and social media agencies need videographers for ever-more ambitious content campaigns. This gives freelance videographers a key advantage, since many non-specialist agencies lack their skills, equipment and experience.

    Typical client variety

    Expect a broad range of clients and responsibilities as a videographer. As video content has grown in popularity, videographers must often produce, direct and shoot campaigns in days—or even hours. This puts variety at the heart of the role.

    That said, there are some industries that tend to need regular video content. Food and fashion often need marketing material, and you can expect to be involved in brand campaigns in these areas. This could change in the future, though, thanks to Leeds’ shifting video landscape.

    General recruiter vs. digital recruitment agency

    As we discussed in our article on the most in-demand creative jobs of 2020, Leeds is going through an exciting time right now. Its digital scene has been growing steadily for two decades, and it hosts an ever-changing job market. For recruiters, their connections, reputation and insight of the Leeds digital agency scene are all essential to place a candidate in a role successfully.

    General recruiters look after many different jobs in Leeds, like admin and finance roles. This means there are no guarantees they’ll have the unique digital marketing insight, or relevant connections, that digital marketing candidates expect from their recruiter.

    In addition, Leeds’ digital agencies often go straight to a digital marketing recruitment agency for new candidates, since they need people with expert digital skills. Digital recruitment agencies offer hiring creative agencies a tailored, targeted recruiting process, saving them time and money as a result.


    Stay on track

    As you can see, Leeds’ digital job landscape has plenty of different opportunities. At the same time, you need to have a strong idea of what you want in order to thrive.

    Gloss Recruitment is on hand to help you with your hunt for digital marketing jobs in Leeds. We have an in-depth understanding of Leeds’ digital job market, as well as what Leeds agencies are looking for in candidates. On the flip side, we understand what digital candidates need to maximise job satisfaction.

    Don’t forget you can sign up to our newsletter to stay up to date with all of our latest candidate tips. It’ll keep you posted on the latest digital marketing jobs in Leeds, and delivery quality careers advice direct to your inbox! We also have some great articles to help you in your job search. Take a look at our article on digital marketing job interview mistakes, as well as the top 3 interview task mistakes to avoid.

    Don’t forget you can check out the latest Gloss job vacancies on our Jobs page. Ready to get started on a career change? You can send us your CV via our Contact Us page, or give us a call on 0870 3219 788. You can also follow us on Twitter and Facebook for other updates.