A (Very) Blunt Guide to Your First Marketer
If you’re thinking about hiring a marketing person for your business, we have some (very!) blunt tips you won’t hear elsewhere.
Why? We’re a professional content marketing agency with a multi-discipline team, many of whom started out as in-house newbies.
We asked for their gloves-off advice for employers. The results? Some unmissable tips…
Hiring a Marketing Person: 1, Read This First
Firstly, while the lines between digital marketing and marketing are now almost non-existent, the specialism of your marketer can be very specific.
There are those who have studied marketing theory without much digital experience and vice versa. There are those who are geared towards data, content, design or brand. They might specialise in traditional PR and partnership-building marketing.
How do you hire a marketer? By taking time to understand the difference. And employ the marketer you need.
PS – A marketer isn’t a sales-person. Management of your marketer sits best with a senior person with a broad view across your business.
Hiring a Marketing Person: 2, The ‘Swiss Army Knife’ Marketer?
Looking for someone to do your video work, website development, SEO, design, writing, social media, strategy, analysis, brand and more? Or – or worse – hoping for all this and for your marketer to run the office too?
You might need to rethink your budget and your plan.
Your marketer will, naturally, have strengths and weaknesses. A professional approach to strategy, tactics, execution and assessing results will need investment – of time and money – going forward.
If you’ve decided a marketing person is needed, simply ‘bringing in a graduate’ as a tick-box act won’t bring in the results you need.
Hiring a Marketing Person: 3, Draw a Line and Listen
A common mistake when hiring a marketer happens when businesses don’t give the new team-member a clear remit.
The strategy, segments, social channels, content and more should be, openly and firmly, the ‘territory’ of the new marketing colleague. And everyone in the company should know this. You may need to rein-on others who have had a hand in marketing until now.
Your new marketer is unlikely to give your colleagues advice on sales techniques, your accounting or on administration. The true should be the same in reverse AND the marketer’s remit should be written in stone.
Hiring a Marketing Person: 4, Marketing ≠ Committee-Thinking
Marketing and content ideas need to fit in with strategy and goals PLUS have a clear purpose. This means a sense of customer journey as standard.
Ideas from the whole team should be encouraged. But fitting these into your marketing aims, brand, schedule and strategy for conversions will be the job of your new marketer. After all, in a era when marketing talks are common at business events, it can be easy to mistake third-hand advice (even this blog) as absolute wisdom.Cool –
After all, those outside your company know nothing about the context, strategy and goals of your business. Your new marketer will have a better sense of creating a community for your potential buyers in the right way for you.
Don’t make the mistake of having your new colleague derailed by random ideas, hard-sell demands and piecemeal actions with short-term, crowd-pleasing appeal.
Hiring a Marketing Person: 5, Hide the Log-ins
We’d bet most social media disasters – and remember these go viral very, very quickly – came from too many people posting content.
At the very least, your social media guidelines should be strongly promoted and kept updated.
At best, for a small company your social channels should be the domain of your marketer and your marketer alone.
Patchy content, off-brand and even potentially unwise posts, can often be the result of ‘too many cooks’.
Hiring a Marketing Person: 6, Your Buy-In is An Investment
The question ‘how do you hire a marketer’ is, as you can see, only part of the story.
A vital tip? Buy into their work and show your team that it holds an important place in the business.
Showing, from the top, that marketing runs at the core of strategy and everyday life for the business is an investment in results.
Hiring a Marketing Person: 7, …And Continue the Investment
Your marketer will need a budget for software, tools, collateral, online advertising and more.
A professional customer journey – including high-quality content, a landing page, a website to the latest standards and more – are all needed for marketing to work well. And for conversions to happen.
When you start to think ‘marketing person needed’, bear in mind an ongoing budget will be needed too. Your new marketer will help draw up a budget to match your marketing strategy.
Hiring a Marketing Person: 8, Need Help? Just Ask
As we’ve said, the ‘Swiss Army Knife’ marketer doesn’t exist.
If professional help with strategy, SEO, content or analysis will help win better outcomes for your business, it’s a worthwhile investment.
First, if you need to know ‘what can a marketing company do for me?’ examine their previous work and look for the right fit for your business.
Hiring A Marketing Person: 9, Innovation as a Minimum
Hiring a marketing professional means you have the means to keep ahead of things like VR, augmented reality, voice search and more. Outside help may be needed but will be budget will spent.
That’s because your potential customers can and will change how they look for your business, what they expect to see from you online and the devices they use too.
An investment in keeping on top of change, working closely with your new marketer, will mean surpassing customer expectations.
Meanwhile, your competitors will be reacting to change instead of planning for change.
Hiring a Marketing Person: 10, Partnerships, Partnerships, Partnerships
It can be easy to lose sight of the value of a old-fashioned, mutual-gain marketing partnerships.
Why? Because sharing online audiences, combined with offline events, can be a powerful way to repeatedly promote your brand until the customer is ready to buy.
For example: charity affiliations don’t just show what your brand is about, but they also access large social audiences and can be a great whole-team exercise too.
Give your new marketer access to your suppliers, charities, neighbouring businesses and more to see how working together can unlock audiences.
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