A year after graduating from college, Rahayu Anggraini, usually called Ayu, had not yet found a job until she finally accepted any company that was willing to hire her. So, her first job was in the finance department of a company. However, despite her educational background in Business Management, she felt that her job in that field was not a good fit for her because there was too much paperworks.
Ayu resigned from that job after securing an opportunity to work in the field of digital marketing at a startup in the printing industry called CustomBagus. She remembered her boss at that time gave her a book as a guide to run a Google Ads campaign. Back in 2015, there were still few people working in the field of digital marketing in Indonesia. However, Ayu saw this new job role as a promising career opportunity.
For the next years, Ayu successfully developed her career as a digital marketer expert, particularly in paid advertising platform like Google, Meta (Facebook and Instagram), and TikTok by working in various companies such as Inbound (digital agency), Tokopedia, and Bukalapak (both are the largest e-commerce platform in Indonesia). Now, she is a Group Head Social at one of the largest multinational digital agencies, and also serves as an instructor for Facebook Ads and Google Ads at RevoU.
Here is Ayu’s journey in the digital world.
#1 How did you get started in the tech industry?
After realising that I didn’t enjoy working in the finance field, I decided to try applying for jobs in digital marketing. Initially, I attempted to apply to larger companies, but none of them panned out. Then, I tried applying to smaller startups and was called in for an interview at CustomBagus. During the interview, I honestly informed the boss that I didn’t have a background in digital marketing, but I was willing to learn. However, he still accepted me as his employee and was given the option to be an SEO (Search Engine Optimisation) or SEM (Search Engine Marketing) specialist. Because I wasn’t skilled in writing and preferred working with numbers, I chose SEM (paid marketing).
When I first started my career as a digital marketer, I can say I self-taught myself about SEM, running campaigns on Facebook and Google, by reading books and watching videos on YouTube. Even the digital marketing team at the office, consisting only three people, all learned together from scratch. In 2015, the field of digital marketing was still relatively new in Indonesia. Even my parents and friends had no idea what digital marketing was and what it involved.
#2 What kind of challenge(s) have you faced throughout your career journey?
Well, after working in this field for several years, I realised that the challenges were relatively similar for every project, whether it was a marketing campaign for a big brand or a small one. However, there are two challenges that I felt were quite hard to overcome: commuting to the office and a mentor.
Jakarta is famous for its unbearable traffic, so I think the most challenging aspect of my career was the commute to the office. When I worked at CustomBagus, the office was located in the Pluit area, which was approximately 40 kilometres from my home in Cibubur. This meant that every day, I had to travel a total of 80 kilometres and spend around 4-5 hours commuting on my motorcycle.
Also, since I started my career as a digital marketer, I did not have a human or a mentor that could teach me properly. Therefore, after a year of working at CustomBagus, I felt the need to learn more from people rather than just from books or videos. I also wanted to gain a broader understanding of digital marketing by working on various projects, not just limited to Google Ads for one brand.
#3 How is your day-to-day life as you work in the digital industry?
From my experience, day-to-day life of a digital marketer in an agency, marketplace, or a brand is almost the same. Every morning, I must check ad performance, budget spending, and search for insights to enhance the effectiveness of the ongoing advertising campaigns.
Afterward, since I am a campaign specialist, I would execute various recommendations and requests from the campaign planner or strategist. There is a distinction between a campaign specialist and a campaign planner. The campaign planner serves as a bridge between the client and the campaign specialist because they receive the brief and KPIs directly from the client.
The campaign planner is responsible for creating the media plan, allocating the budget to each channel for the campaign, and preparing images and ad copy. On the other hand, the campaign specialist executes all the plans created by the planner. Specialists also create the campaign ads structure, optimise, find insights, and report it.
Additionally, I would prepare weekly and monthly reports. If all the daily tasks were completed, I would also look for the latest news on trends or new features from Google, Meta, or TikTok.
#4 In your opinion, are you currently working according to your passion?
Yes, up until now, I’ve been working in line with my passion. However, I’m currently in a phase where I’m contemplating whether a career in digital marketing will continue to survive amidst the rapid technological advancements like the trends in artificial intelligence (AI) and data analytics.
Will there be other promising job types emerging, similar to when I first became acquainted with digital marketing in 2015?
#5 Do you think it is important to work according to our passion?
In my opinion, working according to your passion is important because if you enjoy your work, you will go all out to complete all the tasks assigned, even if they are challenging.
The world of digital marketing continues to evolve, so for me it is challenging to keep up with it. Especially now when I am working for a large brand that naturally comes with a high budget and high demands. If you don’t work according to your passion, it can feel burdensome to continue working on weekends or overtime.
#6 What is the most intriguing aspect of the technology industry that you have discovered?
What’s interesting to me is that the technology and FMCG (Fast-Moving Consumer Goods) industries often follow similar steps when launching a new product. In my experience, there is different pressure when launching a product in a marketplace compared to a digital agency. Currently, because I am managing a product for a large brand, I have to explore various promotion channels, including beta products from advertising.
Another interesting thing is the widespread acceptance of TikTok’s development among various demographics in Indonesia. TikTok offers a variety of features, such as TikTok Search, where users can search for various videos they desire. The TikTok Search user base continues to grow, causing a slight decrease in Google search traffic. TikTok has also ventured into the realm of shopping with TikTok Shop, posing a potential threat to e-commerce. With TikTok, users can not only enjoy entertaining videos but also shop simultaneously.
#7 What advice would you give to young women who are interested in pursuing a career in digital marketing?
Digital marketing has many channels such as SEO (Search Engine Optimisation), SEM (Search Engine Marketing), paid ads, social media, email marketing, and content marketing, so it’s important to choose the channel you want to specialise in.
After selecting a digital marketing channel you’re passionate about, dedicate yourself to learning and mastering it until you become an expert in that specific channel. However, even after mastering one channel, it’s important to try other channels to determine which one can further advance your career.
And if you’re still a beginner in the world of digital marketing, it’s important to obtain certifications such as Meta Blueprint (formerly Facebook Blueprint) or Google Digital Marketing certification.
#8 Whom would you want to thank and appreciate for helping your career develop?
Well honestly, this question is quite difficult for me to answer because so far there isn’t anyone who has truly dominated in shaping my career.
However, the first person I would like to express my gratitude to is myself because I have worked hard to learn many things to survive in this field and have been willing to commute 3-5 hours to the office every day, during the hot and rainy days.
The second person I would like to express my gratitude to is Putri Ramadhani Saragih, who gave me the opportunity to become an instructor and career coach at RevoU. From this experience, I, who was previously very introverted and unable to do public speaking, learned many things. This experience allowed me to discover a different side of myself because I used to not be very sociable. However, since becoming a career coach for students at RevoU, I have found joy in their success in being accepted as digital marketers.
And lastly, my family, because I am the eldest child, which comes with the responsibility of assisting with the family’s finances, often called a sandwich generation. So, I had to keep working to support them.
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