Why study Digital Marketing at Salford?

Why study digital marketing at Salford // Nim Tennakoon, MSc Digital Marketing student
Nim Tennakoon, MSc Digital Marketing student

Before I started my Search and Social Media Marketing module (SSMM), I did not consider optimising my digital profiles or worry about the ranking of my name in Search Engine Results Page (SERPs). Knowing what I know now this is one reason as to why I study Digital Marketing at Salford.

Most of us have social media profiles such as Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. I actually have more than 5000 friends on Facebook! Even my Facebook page has more than 2000 likes. On Instagram I have nearly 3500 followers. For a long time I was active online posting around twice a day. But only recently I have started to understand the theoretical and financial values behind it.

Once I began to appreciate the theory of social media marketing I became fascinated. Did you know I am what you might call in digital marketing a micro-influencer?

It’s true! I have now even read some studies that suggest users like myself with smaller follower numbers actually have higher engagement rates on social media compared to some Megastars. Therefore, people like me with similar followings can be of huge benefit to online brands.

The reason to study digital marketing at Salford

Search and Social Media Marketing is part of Salford Business School’s MSc Digital Marketing, MSc Marketing and MSc Social Business and Sustainable Marketing programmes. One thing I found exciting is how this module is the result of three years of a European wide study.

There is even a book that accompanies it called Digital and Social Media Marketing. It is also supported by a learning community using the hashtag #passion4digital. It is great to have an online place like this where we can practice our skills, discuss and learn from each other.

So what will you learn on this digital marketing course?

One of the first things I learned was about influencer marketing. For those of you who haven’t heard of it this is a type of marketing which focuses on specific key individuals rather than the whole market. I had never heard of it before and it is a growing marketing trend that we should all know about.

Here is a short video from SocialChain – a Manchester based start up that makes influencer marketing work for large brands:

Apart from influencer marketing, here are some other things we have looked at so far:

  1. We critically thought about the principles and processes needed to develop integrated marketing communications.
  2. We analysed the benefits, problems and challenges businesses face when using social media marketing communication tools.
  3. We discussed how online marketing strategies have evolved and what the latest trends and practices are.
  4. We looked in detail at websites to understand search and social media optimisation and digital presence.
  5. As a team we created digital marketing strategies that focus on developing content and amplifying this over media channels. Then we tracked and analysed the impact of these campaigns.

These are some of the international digital marketing skills that I know I will need when I go on to work in the digital marketing industry!

How does the Search and Social Marketing module work?

As a team project you get to run a one week long campaign for a real local organisation // Why you should study Marketing at Salford University
As a team project you get to run a one week long campaign for a real local organisation // Why you should study Marketing at Salford University

There are 2 assignments on this module. The first is individual where you work on your online personal branding. You have to optimise your digital profile so that an employer can see how you would be able to help their business. It has really made me think about how I use Social Media and the messages I send out! If you are new to personal branding you can learn more about it here on my blog.

The second is a team project. You get to manage a one week long campaign for a real local organisation. In this part you actually create a digital marketing campaign, implement it and track its performance.

My team project is to work with ‘Public Desire’! They are a successful footwear brand doing online business both locally and globally. How can they gain new customers and engage with existing clients?

Our solution was development of a viral marketing campaign. Our idea involved taking pictures of shoes #Shoefie and tagging your location with the hashtags #PDGoesGlobal. We  even created a Facebook page to promote our idea. if you want you can check our video here.

We would love to know your opinion!

How do I think the SSMM course has helped me?

Firstly, I personally did not have any idea before this course about the importance of keyword research or even how it worked. Then through the practical work in assignment one I also learned how to optimise my digital profile so it was more visible to Google. I really began to think deeply about my digital profiles. Until then I had mainly used Facebook and Instagram. But why had I not considered others?

For example, on my LinkedIn account I have started to make good connections, recommendations and endorsements from before the module. I only started my Twitter account recently and although I only have a few followers I know I need to work on this to succeed in digital marketing industry. I also have a Google plus account that I have never thought about until I started SSMM. I also started to consider platforms I had never used like Tumblr and Pinterest to experiment, learn and optimise my personal branding.

Why study digital marketing: How I scored before I started SSMM
How I scored before I started SSMM and after

I also learned to track my performances using Klout, Klear and Kred domain.

You can see my scores before I started this SSMM module and After I started this assignment.

To perform at my best I optimised my Social Media and  published a blog. I was really pleased to find that my article reached a larger audience than I had expected.

Why study digital marketing: Some results of my personal branding campaign
Some results of my personal branding campaign

You may be wondering how I achieved these results just in a 3-week module. Let me explain what I did!

Steps to achieve your SSMM module targets

  • I looked at how many social media profiles I have and created new ones I thought would be useful to my personal branding for reaching out to potential employers.
  • I did my keyword research for my blog posts and chose relevant primary and secondary keywords which might be used by potential employers.
  • I measured my performances with tools like Google Analytics, Twitter Analytics, Facebook Insights and Follower Wonk.

I will take this learning my long term strategy long after the end of this module!

Is MSc Digital Marketing not for you?

If you are not interested in being a post-graduate student, but you want to learn more about Search and Social Media Marketing you can join professional Digital and Social Media Marketing training at MediaCityUK  organised by Salford Professional Development too!

Why chose the University of Salford?

For myself the University of Salford highly ranks among national and international students because of the quality of teaching and learning in its modules. The teaching team are friendly and it is an award winning business school. These and many other qualities helped me choose Salford. I am really pleased that I am studying at University of Salford. My MSc in Digital Marketing course is really helping me enhance my employability skills and knowledge.

I can honestly say that the best decisions I have made is to come here to study.

As a student at Salford Business School I can also take advantage of their workshops to improve skills. You can also check My Advantage for latest updates about jobs. Finally, one of the main reasons I came here is the Business Innovative Project:


You can get more details about how to find work placements or internships at the Employability hub in the Lady Hale building.

I hope you have enjoyed reading this. If you have please leave a comment below, like or share it. Do you have other views on why study digital marketing at Salford? Please share! I really look forward to your feedback and it is always welcome and appreciated. You can always contact me on LinkedIn or  Twitter, or send me an email me.