How Apprenticeships Can Help You Mould Your Digital Marketing Skills
Guest Blog: MR SEO Case study
Author Bio: Michael is the founder and director of MR.SEO, and has worked in digital marketing for over a decade.
After gaining experience across digital PR and content marketing, Michael decided to focus his career on search engine optimisation (SEO), where he managed projects for some of the UK’s largest ecommerce retailers in an agency environment. He later went in-house for the UK’s fastest-growing travel agency, helping maximise growth across SEO and conversion rate optimisation (CRO). His passion for all things digital saw him embark upon his own journey in 2019 when he founded his own digital marketing agency.
Apprentice Turned Employer
Over 10 years ago I started my journey & career by leaving college once completing my A-Level. I didn’t have much of an idea of what I wanted to do but looked to pursue some form of Apprenticeship, which enabled me to continue education while gaining real job experience and an all-important salary.
My initial Apprenticeship was in digital marketing which enabled me to further my understanding of marketing and appreciate the specific discipline in generating leads for businesses. Over the years I progressed from Apprentice to executive, to manager and to now a director and owner of MR SEO – a leading SEO agency in Essex. I was able to achieve this within the first 10 years of my career, but the invaluable steppingstone that helped me start this journey was the Apprenticeship.
Benefits to hiring an Apprentice as an Employer
As an employer, I have found the process effortless and incredibly rewarding when on-boarding our Apprentice. We were taken through the journey and what the process would be for us as an employer, with a detailed understanding of how both the recruitment and training schedule would work. Below are the main advantages I’ve seen as an employer.
- Tackle a skills shortage
Depending on your business niche hiring and recruiting experienced staff can be incredibly expensive and risky. An Apprentice offers an alternative to this, it gives you the opportunity to mould the next generation of talent through your expertise.
- Increased staff retention
A recent study by lifetime training suggest Apprentices can help improve a businesses retention rate of staff. The study carried out to 5000 employers showed an Apprenticeship retention rate of 80%. This is a great long-term incentive for business helping reduce recruitment costs long term.
- Training specific to your business
Not only will you new employee get fantastic further education through the Apprenticeship. You have the opportunity to mould their on-site training to your businesses process and systems, helping you to fast track their career within your business.
- Government funding
As a small business owner, you must consider costs when looking to safeguard your business. As Apprenticeships are a government backed initiative, there is funding available to businesses who use the scheme.
- Freshness & Ideas
Another great aspect of employing an apprentice is they often to not have perceived or previous working experience, meaning they arrive with fresh ideas of how to do things. An example of this more recently is the younger generations tending to be tech savvy, which also enables them to add value to the wider business and upselling skills across multiple employees.
From an Apprentices’ Perspective
Author Bio: Charlie is a graduate from the University of East London. He graduated with a 2:1 in professional and creative writing. Unsure on which career path to follow, he pursued jobs and further education in SEO due to both the importance of content and the growing, constantly changing landscape within the industry.
Why an Apprenticeship?
As a university graduate, I could have pursued jobs in other fields and had a fair amount of freedom when looking at potential careers. Upon research, I decided on SEO. I chose this career path as the science behind marketing interests me greatly. With the extreme rise of ecommerce and companies using the internet to sell their services (especially during the pandemic), I believe SEO will soon become an absolutely essential service and expense for almost every business.
So when better to get into the industry?
The only problem I had was SEO can be very technical and I had no experience within website development or understanding how a website worked. Taking up the Apprenticeship here at MR SEO was a great way to learn not only SEO but digital marketing as a whole whilst also being in a full time working environment and earning money.
5 months later
5 months into my Apprenticeship and I feel I have a great grasp over the basics of SEO and my job role. As the business expands and grows at a fantastic rate, so does the spectrum of my work. Within 5 months I have worked on on-site content, external link building and outreach, technical SEO fixes, monthly reports for clients, building sitemaps, writing web pages and blogs and so much more.
TCHC Group’s Apprenticeship scheme has been brilliant from the start. They helped me get all of my necessary documents set up and ready to go so I could begin learning immediately. Despite the difficult conditions of the pandemic and the logistics behind that, the online learning has been incredibly interesting and the pandemic hasn’t limited my learning whatsoever.
The Apprenticeship exams are a really positive addition to the online learning. As someone who has hated exams since they were forced upon me at school, taking an exam in something that actually interests you and you know will advance your career is strong motivation to do the necessary work to pass it.
TCHC also put on an additional revision class before the exam. This really helped me and my fellow learners ask any questions or practice any sectors we were struggling with.
The things I have learnt already here have immense value for my career ahead and along with the Apprenticeship education I am receiving, I feel that I am going to end my Apprenticeship in a fantastic position to further my career in SEO.