In today’s blog I am going to talk about coding, which I am so excited about. At Western Washington University I am double majoring in Marketing and Management Information Systems. I personally love the MIS major because I am given the chance to learn the ins and outs of information systems. In the higher-level classes I am learning the basics of coding and it has been so much fun. Currently I am learning Visual Basic. It is very hard and complicated but after I finally get a program to work I feel so accomplished. I just wish I had the time and money to learn all the different types of computer languages. There is a solution to my problem and it is called Codecademy: http://www.codecademy.com/
This is a FREE resource, where you can learn all of the different computer languages. You can learn it on your own time and it is so user-friendly. It also doesn’t take very long to work your way through the different lessons. They give you step by step directions on each line of code. In less than a half an hour I was able to code my name into bubbles as you can see below:
On the actual website I was able to make the bubbles move around whenever I put my mouse over my name. The fact that I didn’t even spend 30 minutes and was able to do that is so cool to me. Coding is not as hard as everyone thinks. I then moved to learning how to write code for a website. This took me a bit longer to do but that was because I wanted it to represent me and honestly I got lost in all the fun I was having.
The last thing that I learned how to do in this two hour time span was create the sun and the earth. The earth rotates around the sun. That was a little bit more complicated but what is so great about Codecademy is there wasn’t a moment where I felt totally lost.
By the end of spending two hours on this site I had done all three tutorials and had begun learning HTML and CSS. Granted I have a bit of a background in coding, but it is not as much as anyone else. Yet I was able to accomplish all of this in such a short time. Honestly if I can do it you can do it. If you haven’t checked it out I really suggest you do, at least to just get the feel of what coding is about.
Now why does this matter to people in the marketing field?
This should not be an area that marketers ignore. You should not be in the dark about what the IT people are doing. I think the biggest mistake of a marketer is having no idea how the sites you advertise on are created. Now I am not saying that a marketer should be able to code a crazy complicated program but you should at least be comfortable with technology. Being comfortable with the technology is going to make you more confident and maybe step out of your comfort zone when it comes to working with the website or trying out new ideas. Another great reason to be comfortable with the coding language is you will actually be able to talk to and understand the IT people.
Gone are the days where you give the IT people a brief description of what you want and they get frustrated because you don’t understand the limitations and possibilities of what they can do. Now you can learn exactly what can be done and the challenges that IT people have to deal with. Your going to understand them better and that creates more of a consensus.
Really in the end everything you do is programming. Planning what to advertise and when to advertise and where to advertise is programming. You have to decide the process you are going to take and where everything is going to be. You just don’t see it as programming because you were not taught to see it that way. By understanding programming I think that you will learn to look even more analytically at all of your processes.
Learning to code is so much fun and it is so rewarding. I don’t know about you but the feeling that the meme below represents is a pretty great one and if coding makes you feel this way then why wouldn’t you want to learn?