I wish I was a natural born coder.
My experience with coding begins and ends with 2008 MySpace customizing my layout so it was exactly how I wanted it. Honestly, beyond the basics, I’ve always been terrified by coding after seeing my computer scientist of a sister coding away till the late hours and witnessing first hand how stressful and picky it is.
But at the same time, I’ve always thought that coding was cool. After hearing about Anonymous Hacking Group and their plan to basically out all those who do wrong, I learned that it’s basically a bunch of computer scientists and programmers who have chiseled their expertise in coding into hacking. Which is pretty cool, if you’re into that kind of stuff, which I absolutely am. Anyways, they do a lot of coding (not HTML obviously, but probably some coding language I’ve never heard of).
I then got my next “coding” experience with MIS 220, where we learned how to code equations into Excel and Access. This was a pain in my ass and I literally hated it more than anything in the world. I hate it.
But as it turns out, Coding is a growing industry! There are classes in cities that cost like 10,000+ $$$ and give you all the knowledge your little coding hungry brain can suck in. And whether you’re an engineer, a computer scientist, or the less valiant Marketer, coding is extremely useful. Just read this article from Bloomberg if you need more proof.
Well, Shilpa. Why do you think coding is a good skill for a beginning digital marketer?
Uh, because it freaking is? No, I’m kidding I’ll be more specific. Remember when we talked about UI and UX? And how a lot of Marketers go into it (if they’re lucky enough?) Well, here’s whats cool: If you do end up going into something like UX and UI, you’ll be doing more coding than you want to do. But lets say you don’t go into UX. Lets say you’re just a, oh I don’t know, content creator for your website (Inbound Marketing holla).
If you’re writing a blog for company X and you want to make a bolded headline, or a list, or change the font color, add a link, etc. you’ll know what you need to do and you won’t struggle or have to bug the Software Engineering folks for stupid help. So not only will it make your content creator position easier, but you’ll be much more loved in the office place for not being that annoying person that needs helps writing a blog.
Want more reasons? Check out why HubSpot thinks a modern day Marketer needs to know some coding skillzzz.
Pshh, you’re all talk. You don’t even know how to code.
Well, that’s only partly true. I’m definitely a total noob. I signed myself up for this handy-dandy (free) coding academy, called very obviously, Code Academy. And let me tell you, it really is handy-dandy. While cooking dinner and watching part of the Bachelor I was able to multitask and do a little coding on the side. Seeing that it was the first time I’ve done it since 8th grade basically, I actually had a lot of fun.
The Code Academy Experience was pretty simple. It would give you instructions, and you would edit the already strung code to what they want you to do. So, I had to make some lists, add a picture of Bieber with a link to his twitter, and learned a few more handy tricks. It was nice, because CodeAcademy would tell you when you missed something – but wouldn’t tell you what you missed. So you actually had to make the effort to look through your code to see what you messed up on. While that can be annoying if you’re trying to get through it quickly (I don’t recommend trying this – it’s supposed to take like 7 hours), it’s a really nice learning tool for people who are actually just trying to learn it.
In the 2 hours that I worked on Code Academy (albeit, with some distractions) I made it decently far! And I actually think I will continue on with code academy, because it’s free, and I can put it on my resume as a skill.
Let’s say you’re kind of new to HTML, but you need to build a website.
There’s this really cool website called SquareSpace! It’s a website builder and gives you templates to work off of so you’re not stuck trying to do it all on your own. Rather than changing the color and font and stuff with HTML, you press easy buttons and play around with the design tab till you get what you like. Meaning, it changes the HTML for you on the backend of the website. So you can continue to be a coding noob, but still make a website.
I would say that SquareSpace is perfect, but it’s not. My first run at it, I totally messed up and wasn’t able to fix it so I started over and created my second SquareSpace and it turned out a little better. Honestly, it’s not a perfect website. It was really slow to update my changes, some of them didn’t even change because I had to keep refreshing when the dashboard would freeze on me. Only slightly annoying/irritating when you’re trying to multitask and watch the Bachelor. But I suspect even more annoying when you’re actually trying to create a functional website for real customers and users.
However, it was nice and easy to use when it worked! I liked that I was able to mess around with it and see the results immediately rather than having to plug in different codes and then having to delete it till I got the result I wanted (I’m talking color, font, etc.). So that was nice. Plus, I liked that they give you a template to work off of, so those with creative impediments aren’t stuck in rut.
That’s all from me! Next time, we’ll be talking about SQL. And that’s honestly terrifying to me because I know nothing about it so wish me luck.