What Business Owners Need To Know About Hiring An Effective Marketing Team
This article was written by our Co-Founder, Sarah Yeverovich & also published on Forbes.com
Some of our success at Empowered Staffing is due to operating in the SaaS/tech, digital marketing and e-commerce/retail industries, where most of our clients have a revenue stream that stems from an online platform. Because online sales and properly marketing your business online is so important, we have been able to help a lot of companies that want to start investing in their marketing efforts by growing their marketing teams.
I have worked with a lot of small to midsize businesses seeking marketing managers, directors of channel marketing, PPC/SEM specialists, email and CRM marketing leaders, analysts and more. The one major thing in common for all these companies is that they experienced a tremendous amount of growth once they had the right marketing team in place.
Step One: A Qualified Marketing Lead
A clear lesson we've seen proven time and time again is that it is extremely important to hire an expert in marketing who can learn the specifics of your company and help choose and deploy the best marketing strategies to get you the best ROI. The right recruit will also be able to help with identifying out which roles to hire internally and which roles to outsource to an agency.
It can be difficult to figure out what that first hire or role should look like when you are eager to start building an in-house marketing team. I see a lot of companies combining two or three separate roles into one when making early hires, which can turn off potential good candidates. Start by identifying the three must-have skill sets and create the job description around those key areas. First-timers can also search the title or key responsibilities of the position you are looking to fill and find similar openings online to get an idea of what your role should look like.
When vetting a lead marketing candidate, add these helpful questions to your interview process:
- How do you measure success/accountability from your team once a new marketing initiative has been put in place?
- What are some things that you noticed from our site/ online presence that you liked and some areas that we are lacking in? (This helps to see how much research the candidate has done on your company and gives you some insight on their initial ideas and way of thinking.)
- Tell me about a time where you came into a new position and drove success. Tell me about some challenges along the way and how you overcame them.
- When you took over marketing operations, where was revenue at and where did you take it to? (This follows up on the previous question and addresses ROI.)
Step Two: Mapping The Marketing Team
The first hire of an internal marketing department is usually the hardest, and there are so many factors that differ from company to company. This is why it's a good idea to confer with other departments and leadership to define the role based on your specific needs and company goals. After you onboard a marketing lead, it is much easier to make future hires, as this lead should be able to define the supporting roles and design a starting point. It is also a good idea to create a sample organizational chart of what you would like your marketing team to eventually look like to map out marketing leadership and staff.
When you are growing your marketing team, remember that one of the biggest challenges could be the pace of hiring and attracting the best talent.
If you find a candidate you love, do not wait to move forward in your interview process with that individual. In a perfect world, it is always nice to have a choice of candidates to compare before moving forward with a hire, but many marketing positions are hot right now. With this, the unemployment being low and the need for internal marketing teams on the rise, you should be quick to hire if you find a great fit. These candidates are being approached daily — even if they are not actively looking for a new opportunity. If they are interviewing with you, chances are they are interviewing with other companies as well and could get snatched up in a matter of days.
To attract the best talent, be sure include some information on your job description about why someone would want to work at your company. Share details of the culture, benefits and in general why your company is a great place to work. Some recruiters or hiring managers get scared by this, afraid to hire someone who is "all about the money" or benefits. But remember, that is not what is going on in most candidates' minds. When you sell your company by sharing this information, you attract individuals who are passively job-hunting. The more enticing and excited about the culture of your company you are, the more you can attract top talent.
Just like in school, a student with straight As will not necessarily be accepted into the top colleges — the student needs to set themselves above the other fierce competition. So too must a company put its best foot forward in attracting talent by creating — and promoting — a great culture and workplace.