Best Way to Learn Digital Marketing and Should you do a Course?

Often I am asked, what is the best way to learn digital marketing?

There are three ways I can think of.

  1. The easy way – Enroll in a digital marketing course.
  2. The hard way – Learn. Apply. Learn. Apply (keep repeating the cycle)
  3. The best way – Get paid to learn. (The Internship Route)

If you are not much of a reader, just watch the video below; though I would recommend the entire blog for context.

1. The easy way – Digital Marketing Course

I believe a digital marketing course should not be the first place to start learning digital marketing. Because:-

  1.  Expensive – It is going to cost you six months of savings or a chunk of your parents hard earned money. Most don’t have so much.
  2. Outdated – Most of the courses don’t update or change their curriculum over time, leading you to learning techniques and hacks that are outdated. You might have to unlearn that later which is more difficult than learning.
  3. Application – Any education without application is like the class 9th Physics lessons that you don’t remember anymore because you never applied it. But you still remember all childhood games. Because? You guessed it, application. Most digital marketing courses teach theory and give few application opportunities.

Do I hate courses? No. They add value, but they cannot make you a digital marketer. If the counsellor pitches with “We will make you an amazing digital marketer”, they are lying.

If you don’t want to make a career in digital marketing and just want to know the fundamentals, a course is a good solution for you. Otherwise, you have read the above 🙂

2. The Hard Way – Self Learning

Time to hear out the hard way. An easy step by step process is below.

  1. Find your Test Case – Figure a person in your household who has a small business and would allow you to digital marketing for that business. Ask them for a small sum of money from them to run their business’s digital marketing.
  2. Experiment –
    1. If the business doesn’t have a website, build a website using WordPress, Godaddy site builder or Wix.
    2. If the business does have a website, read up on Google search ads and start running them.
    3. Expand ads to Facebook and Instagram.
    4. Learn Google analytics simultaneously to see how your ads are performing.
    5. Start working on SEO and content marketing.
    6. Once you have gotten hold of the above, start thinking about Email marketing and affiliates.
  3. How – How to execute the above? Search on Google, my friend. A few links below to get you started. Oh, and one important thing, all these courses are FREE!
    1. Digital Marketing Fundamentals by Google
    2. Google Advertising Courses
    3. Facebook and Instagram Training 
    4. Inbound Marketing by Hubspot
    5. Paid Ads Course by WordStream

After learning by yourself, if you want to go for a course and can afford one, do it. How to choose a course is what I have already covered in the video above.

“Get the practical knowledge and then go for the theory. It is like doing an MBA after work experience so that you can relate to practicality.”

3. The Best Way to Learn Digital Marketing

If self-learning is not for you and you don’t have the money to do a course, you must do this. Reach out to digital marketing agencies in your city and ask for an internship.

Why is this the best way?

  1. You get paid to learn (amazing, right?)
  2. You learn from practical experiences.
  3. You get terrific practitioners as teachers who don’t charge a dime.
  4. You make a network that you know how important is in any industry.
  5. You are adding experience to your resume.
  6. If you put your heart to it, you might even land an offer from the same company. Free placement!
  7. Above reasons are enough, I guess 😉

Why would they give you an internship?

Because you would send them a kickass cover letter as to how you are willing to learn from them, add value to them based on what you learn and would prove a long-term asset. Also, if you really want it, you would explain how you are trying #2 and how you have added value to a family business.

You have to hack your way through this to stand out. You could

  1. Send a hard copy (nobody sends hard copy these days) of the letter and address it to the CEO. S/he would take notice.
  2. Send them a box of cookies with your letter; a happy HR would give you a call 🙂
  3. Make a short customised video application that you would tweet to them. The creative team would root for you!
  4. Make your image pitch and DM them on Instagram.

You get the drift. You have to stand out.

Most companies have paid internships and would be glad to give one to an enthusiastic applicant. People at My digital agency would unmistakably fall for the cookie hack!

If you have read till here, I truly appreciate you giving me your time. I urge you to drop a comment with your feedback so that I can bring better content next time and share this with someone who you think might benefit from this.

Snapchat Ads in India – The Complete Guide

World’s youngest social network, Snapchat has opened itself to Indian brands to advertise on it. In this post, I tell you all about Snapchat ads in India and help you determine if you should start advertising on Snapchat if you are an Indian brand.

Why advertise on Snapchat? Because it still commands a lot of attention.

  1. An average Snapchatter spends about 25-30 mins using the app daily.
  2. More importantly, 60% of them are creating new stories rather than consuming their friends’ stories, the content creation on Facebook is dropped while consumption has gone down.
  3. An average Snapchatter opens the app more than 18 times a day.

Those are impressive figures after Instagram copied them and delivered a punch to the gut.

Snapchat Indian Stats

  1. Total advertisable audience size in India is 7,050,000. The United States is at 92M.
  2. 2,475,000 males and 2,025,000 females. Snapchat couldn’t determine gender for the rest.
  3. One in every 4th user on Snapchat is on iOS.
  4. 94% of users are between 13-34.
  5. The 18-20 age category is the most populated with 1.75M people.
  6. The audience is highly urban and has high disposable income.

The population of Snapchat users in the Indian States.

Only state level targeting is available for now, city and pin code targeting would be available in India soon.

Note – Treat the below data as relative because as the number of Snapchat users grow these numbers would change over time.

LocationAudience Size
GOA< 1,000
MANIPUR< 1,000
MIZORAM< 1,000
ODISHA< 1,000
SIKKIM< 1,000
TRIPURA< 1,000

What are the advertising options on Snapchat?

Snapchat has the following three advertising options. Out of these three Lenses and Filters are not yet available in India, only Snap ads are available. Snap ads are not yet out on a self-serve model in India so you have to contact a Snapchat Agency agency like A&B to run the ads.

Snapchat Ad Options in India

Ad Objectives available in India

Snap ads options

How are Snapchat ads different from Facebook or Insta ads?

  1. Two-thirds of all Snap ads play with audio on
  2. Truly vertical video format optimised only for the phone
  3. 5x swipe up rate vs average CTR on comparable platforms
  4. Audio on by default, this is a big upside against Facebook where most ads have audio off.
  5. 100% native, no browser, preloaded mobile websites, instantaneous use leading to an 80% lift in on-site time
  6. App Install ads actually install the app in the background without leaving Snapchat


Targeting Options available in India

  1. Age targeting






  1. Languages – Major languages of the world, Hindi is not available
  2. Custom Audiences – upload the email IDs of people you want to target
  3. OS – Android, iOS
  4. Device make – The exact phone you want to target
  5. Gender – Male, Female or both
  6. Interests – Similar to Facebook but my belief is it would not be too accurate. How would Snapchat know if I am interested in entrepreneurship if that sort of content is not consumed by me on Snapchat?

Final Word:

If your product/service appeals to the urban 13-34-year-old then you must, otherwise, you can wait, for now. Examples-

  1. Dating apps, online grocery, electronics, education products, gaming products should totally do it.
  2. Real estate, Investment companies, pension funds, golf courses maybe should wait.

You get the point, Urban, young – Hell yes!; everyone else – Not so much.

Share this with a friend who works in marketing.

If you are interested in listening to me more, hit me up on my Facebook page and say hello.

Want to know more about me, read here.

What is Snap Map and how can brands use it?

If you are a marketer and you want to know about Snap Map you are in one of the two mental states.

  1. Frustrated – Because your CMO has asked you to find out about Snap Map which s/he thinks is big in the 18-35 audience.
  2. Curious – You want to completely understand Snap Map so that you can use it to do amazing marketing campaigns at almost zero cost.

If you are in the first mental state, you can see the official Snap Map video below and go ahead and close this tab


Otherwise, read on,

Brands can get a few hundred thousand micro video/photo views on Snap Map without spending a dollar. I got about 40,000 Snap Story views for a client in one day in Mumbai. Right now it is nascent and those numbers are easily achievable. By October 2017,there would be 15000 businesses in your area wanting a piece of consumers attention, and those number of views will drop.

How can your brand use it? Use the step by step guide below.

Step 1: – Know whether your audience is on Snapchat?

If your audience is between 18-35 and your product is not heavily B2B like SAAS software, they are pretty much on it. You personally KNOW people who share every single moment on Snapchat. If your argument is that all of them have shifted on Instagram, why not try it, see data and then decide.

Imagine if your business is a theme park. Everyone in the whole town can see what’s happening in your park right now. Plus you are not even doing it, the customers are doing the work for you.

Step 2: – What do you show? Which story to put up?

Like you do everywhere else, wait a second before flashing that up to 50% off in the users face when they tap on your story. Break your image for a second, show a human element of the company. Show how consumers are feeling great where they are. Show how employees are having fun.

Step 3: – Okay, how to do this step by step?

As you see in the video, users pinch on the screen and find out two things.

A. Where their friends are?

Remind people to open their Snapchat, that’s it. Just do a follow us on Snapchat standee in your store. This will prompt people to open the app, thereby updating their location in Snapchat, prompting their friends to come and join them in your store. And you know what happens when walk-ins increase 🙂

B. What places/geolocations are hot in their area.

If you have an event going on in your store, it might be a great idea to get some eyeballs on Snapchat.

Just take a few really cool Snap Stories, usually, 5-6 individuals with 5 stories each are enough to make a place red hot and getting everyone in your city to become curious as to what is happening there (This depends on competition though). Don’t know how to do that, read on.

  1. Snap something
  2. Hit story
  3. Tap on our story
  4. Repeat step one with a more interesting snap
  5. After about 20 mins you would start seeing results so don’t go rogue and upload 200 snaps of your feet. Wait!
  6. Once your business location is red, it would stay that way for about 24 hours but my gut is that Snapchat might change this anytime based on user activity in the area.
  7. Wait for data to flow in.
  8. Tell me how did it go for you in the comments section below. I would love to see more data on this.

Your location would look something like:-

Snap Map red Spot
Snap Map Red Spot

Using the above steps I did the same for a retail client and got about 40,000 views in 24 hours in Mumbai. You can get higher or lower views based on the city you live in Snapchat user base and other options.

Share this with a friend who works in marketing.

If you are interested in listening to me more, hit me up on my Facebook page and say hello.

Want to know more about me, read here.