So… you want to hire a marketing specialist. But what kind? What competencies and experience should they have? What’s more, which features should make them stand out?
In this article, I will show you how to start recruiting a marketing specialist and how to prepare for it in order to:
- avoid wasting time and money on analysing and interviewing the wrong candidates;
- hire the right person who will be able to meet the company’s needs and goals;
- hire someone who fits the company’s organisational culture.
Start with a marketing strategy
Before you start recruiting a marketing specialist, you need to think about the vision of your future marketing. If your company already has a marketing strategy developed, go for it, if not — think about the place where your company is and the place you want to strive for. Answer the following questions:
- what is the revenue and profitability goal in the coming year?
- what role should marketing play in achieving this goal?
- what is the marketing goal of the company?
- how do I want to achieve this goal? By what means?
- what competencies are needed to achieve this goal?
- what competencies do our employees have and what are they missing?
Next, think about what kind of marketing you need and what format has the best chances of achieving your goals. Prepare a plan that will determine the marketing direction of the company, and above all will define who you need the most to hit your targets.
Prepare the job description
Once you have a marketing strategy or an action plan in place, you have to create a job description. The job description should include the following information:
- scope of duties (what will be the main tasks and responsibilities of the employee? what areas will they be responsible for?)
- required competencies (what skills should such an employee have? what can they do? is it a junior or senior position and why?)
- position in the company’s structure (who will be the employee’s supervisor? who should they report to?)
- career path (how does this position fit into the structure of the company? is there a possibility to be promoted or retrained? what competences will they gain while working at the company?)
Create an ideal candidate profile
The next step is to create the perfect candidate profile. It must be closely linked to the company’s marketing strategy and the job description. Include all the desired competencies, skills, experience, as well as personality traits. When hiring a marketing specialist who will be responsible for organising trade fairs and conferences, you will pay attention to completely different characteristics than when hiring a marketing analyst.
Write an attractive job offer
Times are different, and good marketers struggle with finding a job very rarely. Often it’s them dictating the conditions and interested companies have to put in the effort and stand out from the competition. Your job offer is the company’s business card and frequently the first touch point of a potential employee with the company, when they decide whether they want to participate in recruitment or not. A lot of companies seem to forget it.
Pay close attention to ads. The job advertisement should be specific and present the most important information about the job offered, such as: the most important tasks, challenges, goals, requirements, remuneration offered, benefits. Avoid expressions such as „working in a young and dynamic team” and present what sets you apart from the competition. That could be, for example, large and ambitious projects, of which you already have case studies or awards from industry competitions.
Conduct research among your contacts
There are many ways to look for candidates. You should try as many of them as possible to make sure that your ideal candidate won’t miss your ad.
No way is however more effective (and that includes cost-effective) than a recommendation from your network. Ask around your colleagues about people with a similar professional profile or post on LinkedIn who you are looking for and ask for post shares. You will certainly get some contacts that are worth paying attention to.
Send the marketer an initial recruitment task
In order to save time on meetings with candidates who have lower competencies than it would appear in the resume, it is worth preparing a preliminary recruitment task. This task will allow you to „sift the grain from the chaff” and meet only those who have the potential to become your employees for longer than the trial period. Often upon sending such a task, it turns out that some people simply ignore or prepare it very poorly.
Sometimes it’s a good idea to give the candidate a job that will bring value to your business. Of course, in this case, don’t forget to determine the appropriate remuneration for it.
In addition to competences, the recruitment task will also help you diagnose the potential candidate’s thinking patterns, problem-solving or knowledge transfer skills.
Don’t recruit a marketing specialist just by yourself
One person will never pick up all the details from the conversation, and in addition, may have a skewed perception of its individual elements — especially if the recruiter is not an experienced marketer. To mitigate this type of risk, it’s good if the recruiters are people with different competencies and professional experience, able to look at the candidate from different angles.
If you need to hire a marketer whose competencies you aren’t able to check, definitely use a recruitment task, help from industry friends or consider the support of external consultants.
For example, in Casbeg, when we recruit consultants with a marketing profile, the recruitment process consists of at least 2 stages and includes up to 3 people. The first one is attended by two people: a team leader and an expert in the area for which recruitment is being carried out to verify the candidate’s knowledge. At the second stage, on the other hand, there is a meeting with Bartek Majewski, Casbeg’s CEO, to check whether the candidate’s personality profile fits into the company’s culture.
In this way, apart from confirming competencies, we minimise the risk that the employee won’t fit into the character and profile of the company.
It’s all because we have high standards in relation to the people we employ. You should set the bar high as well.
If you want to recruit a marketer, you need to think very carefully about why and what kind of employee you need. This is important because companies often hire employees who either don’t drive enough profits to make up for their salary or are unable to help in achieving the marketing goal, and thus the business goals of the company. Then the key ingredient is the profile of the candidate sought after and the way to attract them, and, finally — the interview, which should be analysed from different perspectives.
Using this model you will increase the likelihood of hiring a good marketing specialist with whom you will achieve the intended goals.