5 keys to help you to get a job in paid search marketing

If you’re looking to establish yourself as a paid search marketing expert, here are five things that are absolutely critical.

#1. Experience

If you don’t have experience, it’s highly unlikely you’ll get a job, so you may want to start with an internship. Companies, and especially Internet marketing agencies, have to show a return on every marketing investment, so employers want to make sure that a potential candidate has been able to generate revenue using Google Adwords, Facebook ads, and any other paid search platforms before hiring them. Even a small amount of experience where you did everything from the ad copy to the ad group setups to advising on the selection of landing pages will show a potential employer that they won’t have to teach you everything from scratch.

#2. Certifications from Google

Being Google Adwords certified will definitely help. Google has a fairly rigorous testing system to weed out people who don’t take their system seriously. It’s highly recommended that you get at least the Google certification, and then consider more extensive training. Make sure to put your Google certification on your resume.

#3. Undergraduate degree and/or writing experience

You should also consider the fact that paid search requires you to think about keywords and ad copy, as well as landing page text. If you don’t have writing skills, at least at the undergraduate level, your ad copy and ability to analyze landing pages may suffer. For this reason, employers tend to prefer people with at least an undergraduate degree and some writing experience.

#4. Passion for web marketing

It’s really important that you show that you really love marketing. Having a deep passion and commitment will help you stand out among candidates who are just going through the motions. Internet marketing requires a lot of extra reading because it’s an always-changing industry, so people who don’t really love it will have a hard time keeping up with those who do, and employers are well aware of that.

#5. Willingness to be flexible on salary

A lot of web marketing agencies or companies that will hire you may want to test you out at a lower salary at first to make sure that you’re going to work out and then grow your salary as you prove yourself. They may not tell you directly how much they’re willing to increase your salary over time, but if you start a little lower than you may be comfortable with, you may find that very quickly – with experience – you can negotiate a higher salary.

If you’d like to learn more about web marketing and how to get your first job, check out the following blog post: How to learn digital marketing and get entry-level marketing jobs.

If you’re a paid search marketing expert, please consider applying for the following job (we are hiring immediately).


John McDougall is the founder and CEO of McDougall Interactive, an award-winning agency specializing in SEO, social media, paid search, blogging, content marketing, conversion optimization, PR and, most importantly, fusing them together and tracking return on investment. With a background in music and the arts, he enjoys the blending of art and advertising. Having provided Internet services full-time since 1995, John was among the first to implement search engine optimization.

By John McDougall
John McDougall CEO McDougall Interactive