The technology industry is thriving in Louisiana, creating more opportunities for skilled digital workers than ever before. While there are plenty of lucrative openings for programmers in the state, it doesn’t necessarily take a computer science degree to become part of this growing wave of digital careers.
From long-standing professions like graphic design to emerging fields like data analytics and social media, there are more creative and challenging digital careers paths available than ever before in Louisiana.
Here are four digital jobs don’t require a background in programming.
The field of graphic design offers one route for non-coders to take part in Louisiana’s trend of digital jobs, with professionals in this field designing everything from internal business documents and packaging to the user experience and interfaces for software applications.
Brian Rivet, a graphic designer based in Baton Rouge, offers print and web design services through his company Odyssey Design, with a special emphasis on small-business websites, including content management systems, front-end design and development.
“I like the fact that it’s always changing,” Rivet says. “I’m really into technology, so being able to build these websites and things using newer technology is always fun for me to do. There’s also a puzzle-solving aspect that I can relate to.”
Rivet started out as an LSU graphic design student with a focus on video game design but was pulled into the then-emerging field of interactive digital design. “As I got into the graphic design field, I just kind of steered away from the game stuff and more into traditional graphic design,” he says. “I was always into the digital side and interactive field, and it was just getting started when I was going through college. That’s what piqued my interest.”
He encourages people interested in graphic and web design to develop a solid base of graphic design knowledge, then supplement that with coding tutorials available online. But he says a computer science background is not necessary to thrive in the industry.
Social media coordinators or strategists develop and manage a comprehensive social media strategy for their company. That means they’re responsible for curating a brand’s social channels across platforms such as Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest and Snapchat.
They monitor, moderate and respond to audience comments, manage social media partnerships with other brands and create shareable videos and images. They can also analyze and report social media analytics and implement strategies to drive traffic and grow the number of followers.
Necessary skills include excellent communication, writing and design skills, as well as a deep understanding of the major social media platforms. Most positions will require a bachelor’s degree in journalism, mass communication, public relations, strategic communications, marketing or advertising.
Project managers oversee individual technology projects, such as installation of new software for clients, from the planning stage to implementation. In addition to managing the technology team, they serve as a key point of contact for customers.
Project managers should have excellent time management and task prioritization skills, along with good verbal and written communication skills. They generally have a college degree in business administration, marketing, mass communications or psychology.
Digital marketing managers are responsible for the development, reporting and analysis of digital marketing channels that either drive traffic to the company website or brick-and-mortar locations. The digital marketing manager typically supports brands through a wide range of marketing channels, such as Amazon, Google, SEO, YouTube, social media, email and more. They also commonly create, collect and coordinate content for email marketing and other online campaigns.
Digital marketing managers typically have an associate or bachelor’s degree in communications, public relations, marketing or a related discipline.
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