The task of hiring your first marketer for your business can be daunting. Whether you are a budding start-up or an established company whose need for marketing has arisen now, business owners need to face the challenge head-on. Sarah, a Senior Consultant who works with companies making their first marketing hire discusses the considerations that businesses should make to get a great first-hire marketer.
Consider Seniority Level
Every business wants a do-er to steer their marketing efforts. This is especially true for start-ups. If you find yourself in such a situation, do not shy away from hiring a mid-management level. Adding such team members to your company ensure you get a team player who is happy to roll their sleeves up and get things done. Higher-level hires are typically used to managing a larger group of people rather than getting work done.
Related to the consideration above, is the company size the marketer is used to. If they come from a matrix/corporate structure, they might be able to adapt to the autonomy and the responsibility that comes with a role in a start-up. Haring a marketer who has been working with big businesses means it will take them some time to adapt to the scrappy environment characteristic of most start-ups.
You Can’t Have Everything
Sarah reckons that most start-ups are looking for a jack of all trades when they start looking for a marketer. They want someone who proficient at PPC/SEO, event management, a good copywriter, a sales guru and much more. It is very difficult to find a marketer efficient at all of these roles. And even if the marketer managed all of these tasks in their previous role, you should consider outsourcing tasks, allowing the marketers to oversight and manage them in-house.
Juggling too many tasks will in exhaustion and will negate their ability to draw from their natural talent to achieve the best results possible. Keep in mind many marketers will either have a creative brain or a data brain; rarely will they have both.
Where are the Growth Opportunities?
It is important to consider the future of your business when you recruit new team members. If you reckon that you will need a great content developer or an event specialist as part of your efforts to grow your brands, ensure you hire a marketer with these strengths. Importantly, however, ensure they are happy to delegate in the very same areas, should you need to hire a more experienced and specialised content developer in the future.
What is Your Budget?
Many marketers are used to working with a small budget and will gladly do so in a start-up. However, it is prudent and useful to let them know upfront. Your budget will help marketers define and optimise the channels they use and focus. As such, it will influence the kind of marketer you go for. For instance, a marketer used to managing a huge paid campaigns will have to change how they manage the budget. It is for this reason that most marketers will ask about the budget during the interview. As you can appreciate, it is worth it having a rough estimate while you interview candidates and to manage expectations.
Will You Hire More Than a Marketer?
Typically start-ups will have focus areas they need to handle in the immediate future. You might have a heavy event schedule but you might also need a comprehensive marketing strategy up and running. Ask yourself whether you need a junior event executive as well as a head of marketing. Jobs for marketing directors are important, but other areas also require your consideration.
It is common for first marketing hires to consider joining your company as they see a potential for their careers to grow as the company grows and become a shareholder, or become a director down the line. As such, keep in mind that you might find it difficult to bring in someone “above” your marketers after they get used to the autonomy that the first hires find. To this end, ensure your first hire has the potential to become a Director down the line.