The start-up economy in Africa is booming, but that noise needs to be channelled and amplified in the right directions.
In order to thrive, new businesses require employees with relevant skills for the current digital age, but these critical skills can also help budding entrepreneurs launch their own businesses, and compete in this vibrant market.
In an increasingly remote working economy, having relevant digital skills can open up new employment avenues on a global scale, in which evidence-based capability is a stronger currency than academic qualification. Simply having a skill is nothing if you don’t put the work in and show the world what you can do and how easily it can be done.
Getting a Digital Ad Degree
The first step to getting noticed in the digital landscape is knowing how to make yourself heard above the noise. Aleph, a global leader in digital advertising, is the driving force behind the geographic expansion of the world’s biggest tech companies in emerging markets.
They are also committed to educating more than 50,000 people across over 90 countries within these markets, thus forming the core of the next generation of digital professionals.
This training is provided through Digital Ad Expert, featuring the flagship programme of Digital Ad Degree, and all you need is access to the internet and Zoom.
The course runs over 12 weeks with a mix of live and on-demand sessions, covering the basics of strategy and analytics, as well as platform specific advertising methodologies for all the major social media platforms like Twitter, Snapchat, Spotify, and others.
The Aleph degree awards badges upon completion allowing you to showcase your acquired skills across all social profiles. The programme also provides an overview of the current job market in Nigeria and Ghana, where these skills can immediately be put into practice.
Making Engaging Graphics
Canva is by far the best tool that has happened to the digital economy, it streamlines the graphic design process enough so that new businesses can get to market quickly. The Canva Design School is a resource that will walk you through the various stages of expertise within the Canva ecosystem.
These courses are specially designed to enhance design skills, for multiple levels of proficiency, featuring activities and downloadable cheat sheets to get you going as quickly as possible.
There are other companies with similar courses in the graphic design software space, including Adobe Express, if you want an alternative.
Creating Impactful Images
Photography is now more accessible than ever, however a great photo is one that can communicate a mood or tell a story, and the secret to this is in the edit. Gimp has been the go-to free alternative to pricey professional editing software for decades now and the company keeps a running log of tutorials as new features are added.
You’ll find everything from basic image manipulation to automating your edit workflow with Python coding. Gimp allows your knowledge base to grow alongside your software, so you’ll always find the tutorial you need, when you need it.
Learning a new Language
Take a look at senior digital job listings and you’ll find terms like SQL, HTML5, and CSS. These are in fact the building blocks of web pages and you can learn the fundamentals for free through Khan Academy.
The platform covers more than just coding, with resources for entire school syllabuses available, from Primary through Senior Secondary.
Khan Academy remained unmatched as a pure learning experience, building an understanding of digital system creation through coding.
It’s unfortunate that Python has been removed from Khan Academy’s vast list of courses, but the videos are still available on the YouTube channel.
Getting Real With Social Media
True digital natives already know that almost anything can be learnt from watching a few YouTube videos, but what you might not know is that the development of digital skills is no exception. The real magic of the internet is in the flood of information available for free.
While social media can seem overwhelming (and distracting), it can also be a valuable learning tool, allowing you to interact directly with your role models, and locate mentors. The Twitter Spaces tab, for instance, is your door to topical discussions that are relevant to your interests.
Similarly, apply the same strategy to podcasts and you’ll quickly build an audio library that will enrich your personal skills and feed your future career ambitions.
Sign-up to Digital Ad Expert for Free
Applications are open for the next group of the 12-week Digital Ad Expert programme. The first training kicked off on 17 August, 2022. Candidates can still apply to complete a free three-month comprehensive digital ad degree here for the next training. The program will be conducted in English, twice weekly, over Zoom.-
The author, Sean Riley is the CEO of Ad Dynamo by Aleph
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