Industry peers, work colleagues and business media tells us all the things we need to be doing to grow our business. However, even for growing businesses, there’s not enough time or money to do everything. So, we’re left with questions like ‘Where do we start?’ and ‘How do I hire first?’
In this episode, we tackle these questions and share a few tips on how you can fill the first three roles you need on your marketing team without prematurely taking on the financial burden of full-time staff positions. We’ve asked BELAY’s Director of Marketing, Amy Appleton, to join us on the podcast and guide us so we make the right investment in the growth of our organizations.
We’re often the lid to our own growth. While we’re spending our time juggling all of our various marketing responsibilities, we don’t have time to do what you’re supposed to be doing as the leader. Unfortunately, these tasks often take longer than they should because you don’t know how to the marketing task you’re supposed to do. Ultimately, there’s much more that you could be doing for the business with the time.
Hire a marketing generalist first. The first marketer you hire has to be able to do a lot of things and balance a lot of responsibilities. Ideally, you’d hire someone capable of immediately taking the marketing tasks you’ve been doing on your own while also adding a layer of expertise and experience. Job titles for this role could include marketing assistant, marketing coordinator, or marketing manager based on your organization’s budget and desired skill level.
Don’t hire a creative first. Most entrepreneurs assume is marketing is a creative function. While there are definitely creative elements to marketing, creativity isn’t mandatory with your first marketing hire. You’re looking for a task-oriented operator who likes getting stuff done. The person would be capable of organizing, managing, and executing multiple projects simultaneously.
Hire specialists to improve and expand your marketing. There will be certain functions or skills your generalist doesn’t have that your organization needs to improve the effectiveness of your marketing efforts. With your second and third hires, Amy recommends that you hire marketing specialists capable of adding essential skills to the team or additional focus in a key area that’s driving results. Common roles include graphic and web designer, writer, web developer, audio/video editor, etc. With a generalist in place, your specialists will already have a project manager or supervisor to oversee their work so nothing gets added to your plate.
Contract first, hire second. If you don’t have the budget to hire a full-time employee or if you’re not confident that you’ve figured out exactly what you need, consider contracting the role first. This approach allows you to grow into the role financially, determine what you need the role to do for the organization, and find the right person for your full-time position while limiting the risk to your organization.
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