How cross skilling and up-skilling elevates our SEO Manager Amanda Ranville
When Amanda Ranville first started at MessageMedia as our specialist SEO Manager, she was only two weeks in the office before the entire office went into lockdown. Over the last 10 months, Amanda has flourished working from home and has also been able to expand her skillset across multiple disciplines within marketing.
Tell us about yourself and your career, Amanda.
I have specialised in SEO for about six years. I’m originally from Canada where I studied communications. At the beginning of my career, I worked on small to medium-sized businesses and then I moved on to blue-chip clients within larger media agencies.
In Australia, my very first digital marketing role was at Sensis where I gathered content from small businesses and spruced up their Yellow Pages Online profiles. From there I moved across to the SEO team.
I didn’t know much about SEO, and it was very much a learn-on-the-job type of role. As I have a very curious nature, it was a great way for me to figure things out. It was a great learning environment.
What have you found challenging in previous jobs
One of the biggest challenges I’ve faced is feeling siloed and left out of projects. I didn’t get to collaborate as much as I wanted. As I said before, I have a very sticky beak, so it was disheartening not being a part of the bigger picture. I like to learn new skills, be hands-on and try things out, especially if it has to do with websites.
Why did you choose to work at MessageMedia
I was intrigued by SMS technologies because I think it’s a valuable service. It’s quite interesting to me because everyone texts and there is a lot it can do.
My current leader Ash emailed me about the job that was going. I told my friend about it and it turns out she had worked with him before. She said he would a good manager and a really good mentor. And she was right!
In our initial chat, he described the marketing team as having a start-up feel, like everyone’s hustling and getting their hands dirty, which appealed to me.
Tell us about your last year at MessageMedia
Even though we’ve been working at home for the past 10 months, I feel like this team is so bonded. It’s probably because of the experience we’ve all been going through together.
In the last 10 months, I’ve done things that I’ve never done before. I’ve designed wireframes, written copy about SMS features that I didn’t know existed, managed campaigns and so on. I’ve been given this trust.
Sometimes I want to ask, ‘Who… me? You want me to run this by myself?’ But I know everyone’s response would be, ‘Yeah, of course!’.
“Not only has Amanda developed an SEO strategy which has seen our traffic grow by 154% YoY, but she has also developed her skills by running A/B tests on the website, writing blog posts, and producing several of our new feature pages. From being an SEO expert, she is quickly developing into an all-round digital marketing gun.”
- Ashley Westwood, Digital Optimisation Manager
Why is cross skilling so important to you and your career
With SEO, once you have your base knowledge, you just want to keep going and learning more and more and more. It makes sense for me to cross skill and learn about everything I can because it will make me better at my job.
Cross-skilling is more than just, like, reading about something on the internet. I learn by doing and trying things out for myself. There are a lot of great skill sets in this team. There are people I can learn from and get that one-on-one guidance from.
Because there’s so much we can do and there’s so much opportunity, so there’s lots of different and fun ideas we can try. It’s really important to keep my brain engaged, especially if I see myself moving sideways rather than up.
What makes MessageMedia different to other businesses
The leadership is great. No one is too high up or too precious to do certain things. There are no egos and everyone just jumps in to help. There’s also a lot of trust, and you can tell that everyone’s very valued.
I feel like they’re really investing time and resources in their people here too, which helps keep employee motivation and morale up. That’s been reinforced by their focus on staff development and progression with new training programs soon to roll out. Training employees has been a big focus here, which is great.
The biggest thing for me? I finally feel like I can make a difference. And guess what? I have been making a difference, and that’s a very satisfying feeling.
What else are you looking to achieve at MessageMedia
Over the long term, I want to stay in the marketing team but refine my skill development by cross training in different areas. I believe the next step will be learning front end development. I like that feeling of coming up with an idea, planning it out and implementing it from start to finish.
Recently, I worked on a project called Text with Santa, which was a fun Christmas campaign. I learned a lot along the way, not only about different channels but also about SMS and its features. I loved getting to see a tangible outcome.
Why would you recommend working at MessageMedia to others
If you want days that are never the same, amazing leadership and room to grow and develop, this is right for you. It may not seem as glamorous as other roles or companies, but you have room to make the role what you want it to be. And, for some, that is everything… especially if you want to expand your knowledge base and skills laterally.
Overall, it’s truly a great place to work.
Make cross skilling a priority for your career
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Looking for a role that allows you to cross-skill? It doesn’t have to be in marketing! MessageMedia offers a variety of roles across finance, sales, tech and so much more. Check out the MessageMedia careers page.
MessageMedia is a global messaging provider that helps business of all sizes – from SMBs to enterprises – better connect with customers for almost 20 years. We are one of the largest specialist messaging providers and drive business success by creating engaging mobile experiences that customers love. We have offices in the US, AU, UK and NZ and are always looking for the brilliant, new talent to join us.