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Why Every Marketer Needs UX Skills

Jennifer DeRome  |  May 21, 2015

At UserTesting we believe that UX isn’t just one person’s responsibility within an organization; it’s a mission and a value the entire company supports. It’s not just designers and product teams that care, everyone from interns to the C-suite plays a part—especially the marketing team.

Yes, marketers, I’m looking at you. You probably hear about UX (and CX) on a regular basis. But have you ever considered that developing UX skills could make you a better marketer? If not, we’ve got a few compelling reasons why you should, and some tips on how you can get that experience on your resume.

Understanding your customers

As marketers, understanding your customers is at the center of everything you do. From target markets to buyer personas to nurture campaigns, all of it revolves around understanding who your customers are, and what you can do for them.

So how does adding UX to your repertoire help? Well, one of the primary goals of designing a great user experience is to understand what users are thinking and feeling, and ultimately what they want or need. See the similarities?

When you look at it like this, weaving UX into your marketing strategy makes a lot of sense.

Optimizing for conversion

Optimization isn’t just a buzzword to marketers. It’s essential to running an efficient and effective marketing program. If your landing pages or email campaigns aren’t converting, how can you figure out why that’s happening? Sure, running A/B tests will tell you what works, but to really optimize for conversions you need to go deeper.

This is where UX can have a huge impact. For example, let’s take a form on your landing page that’s not converting as well as you’d like. You’ve tried updating the copy, changing the CTA and even re-designing the layout, but nothing seems to make a difference. That’s when running user tests can be invaluable.

Watching users navigate your forms gives you context around why a user did or didn’t feel compelled to fill out a form. Maybe you’re asking for too much too soon, or your form is just too long.

Looking at conversion optimization from a UX perspective will give you new ways to test your content and messaging.

The omnichannel brand

Turning a brand into a household name is every marketer’s dream. But achieving that status can be a challenge.

Your brand isn't just a name or a reputation: it’s how your customers feel about their experience at every touchpoint. And more channels means more opportunities to win—or lose—with your customers. Crafting a brand experience means taking a holistic approach to your campaigns, messaging, and voice so that your customers get a similar experience, no matter how they interact with you.

By incorporating UX into your branding strategy, you can focus on creating a delightful experience your customers will soon equate to your brand.

How to get the experience

By now you can see that UX easily fits in with what you’re already doing, but you might be worried about how to dip your toes into the world of UX. Don’t be. UX is a skill, like writing or negotiating. All you need are the right resources.


Steve Krug does a great job introducing the concept of user experience and his two books: Don’t Make Me Think, and Rocket Surgery Made Easy. They’re both great resources to start building your knowledge base.

Next, start bookmarking all the blogs you can find on user experience. There’s a lot out there, so start with our handy list, and add to it as you discover more.


At this point, you’ll have a pretty solid understanding of the fundamentals, which means you’re ready to start the conference circuit. Conferences are great not only because they’ll help introduce you to the practical world of UX, but you’ll get exposure to people that actually work in the field. This is a great opportunity to ask questions and get a feel for how others work UX into their process. There are hundreds of options to choose from, and of course, we’ve put together an awesome list to help you out.

Get certified

UX is growing fast, and the number of certification programs available continues to grow. While getting your UX credentials isn’t necessarily a requirement as a marketer, it will highlight your broader knowledge of the customer experience, and show you know how to apply that to a holistic approach to marketing. This expertise will come in handy not only if you’re looking for a new job, but if you’re trying to champion UX within your own organization; having the proof you know your stuff will be a huge help. Start with our list of the top UX certification programs to find the one that’s right for you.

While UX and marketing may officially be separate disciplines (for now) they have too much in common not to benefit each other by sharing ideas and best practices. If you want to up your marketing game, start by boning up on UX.

If you enjoyed this post, check out our Marketer's Guide to User Testing!

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About the author:

Jennifer is a Senior Content Strategist for UserTesting. When she's not dreaming up new ways to connect with audiences, you can find her traveling around the world or enjoying a glass of wine with friends.