Are you in your marketing resource infancy?

We have all heard it before, “I need to hire a marketing person to launch our product in two weeks” or “We need a marketing VP ASAP… or maybe just an intern”. Marketing is one of the hardest business functions to actually ‘get right’, especially in a small business. Most business owners struggle with recruiting, managing and keeping marketing talent in their business.

In the immortal words of Peter Drucker – “Because the purpose of business is to create a customer, the business enterprise has two, and only two basic functions: marketing and innovation.  Marketing and innovation produce results; all the rest are costs.”

5 important considerations you need to get right before you make your next marketing hire

If you exist in an extremely competitive environment and are struggling with lead generation, then marketing is a must for your business. You absolutely need a capable marketing team with the right people, right positions and right skills. You must get the following five considerations right before your next marketing hire.

1. Timing

The right time to hire a marketing person or a marketing team depends on if your go-to-market strategy is more marketing or sales intensive. If you need to create a path to conversion that is marketing driven such as organic, paid, PR or content – you need a marketer soon when you reach 10+ employees. For sales, you will want a sales model in place first then layer on marketing to create a story and use channels to drive leads. This person will come in handy when you’re looking for someone to replace the founder’s job.

2. Budget

B2B businesses’ marketing budgets are historically too low and this inhibits achieving the growth you want in your business. The core things your marketing dollars need to pay for is:

  • Your website (SEO, content marketing, paid ads, analytics, etc.). Find out what it really costs to build a website here.
  • Marketing Collateral (Catalogues, sell sheets, advertising)
  • CRM & Marketing Automation
  • Trade shows (booths, displays, booth shipping, etc.)
  • Resources (learn more about what we mean below)

If you need more help creating a marketing budget, read this blog.

3. People in the right positions

You need different people for different positions of course so it’s good for your organization to be aligned on what specific roles you need to be filled.

  • Strategy Role – Someone with extensive marketing experience who can see things from the customer’s perspective and think about the bigger picture.
  • Execution Role – Someone who can do the grunt work, does not require too much direction but is not too senior because senior people will want to focus their efforts on strategy.
  • Analysis Role – Someone who can track spending and KPI’s to see if marketing efforts are effective and what’s not working.
  • Creative Role – Someone with a diverse set of skills including art direction, graphic design, web development, copy-writing and more. You may not be able to find one person with all these skill sets.

4. Skills

In the past 15 years, the number of marketing channels has grown tremendously. Marketing as we all know is now a dialogue between company and customer that occurs in real time. In order to execute effectively, you will need a variety of skills that may vary from company to company. From our experience, these are some skills you should look for (and P.S – don’t expect one person to fill all these roles).

  • Content Creation – Blog writing, photography, graphic design, and web maintenance are common skills needed. Occasional skills are video editing, podcast development, and white paper development.
  • Digital Marketing Management – Display ads, Search Engine Marketing, Google Analytics, email marketing, web design, and web development are common skills needed
  • Social Media – Common knowledge of Instagram, Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter are needed.

5. Resources

People (#3) might be costly and in reality, many marketing teams are understaffed (especially those in small business marketing), and they often lack the in-house capability to fulfill their marketing program. Agencies are a great way to fill one or more of the missing roles, we have summarized how you can seek help in an agency for the roles discussed in #3.

  • Strategy – Sometimes, companies need outside help to look at their situation and determine a broad direction for marketing efforts.
  • Execution – Agencies can take care of Adwords executions, and email newsletters that become messy and difficult to manage.
  • Analysis – Compiling all the data from marketing campaigns can be time-consuming and difficult. Agencies are good at figuring out what’s important to save you time and money.
  • Creative – You may not need a content creator or graphic designer full time so agencies are a great option!

If you need more help convincing your company that you need marketing, here’s a blog with some advice for how to talk to management about a marketing program.

Good decisions are driven by good data and it’s important to nail these 5 things before hiring your next marketing person. Contact us and we can talk to you about how Marketing CoPilot can help you minimize efforts or if you have any questions in general about how to get ahead and get ready.