How to Build the Perfect Marketing Team
- Nao Madison
- June 12, 2023
The cost of a bad hire is at least 30% of their annual salary.
The cost of a bad marketing hire? That's a lot more. Your marketing strategies are how your customers develop an appreciation for your brand.
It's what keeps them coming back, time and again, as loyal advocates. Get your marketing wrong, and you'll see your retention numbers tankand lose a lot of revenue as a result.
What you need is the perfect marketing team.
Keep reading and you'll understand how to build one in the time it takes to have a coffee break.
Critical Roles in a Killer Marketing Team
What roles are critical in a top-performing creative team?
The answer depends on the nature and size of your business. Smaller workplace teams might have people wearing many hats, while large, corporate-sized marketing departments boast staff dedicated to specific roles.
Even so, some roles are essential:
- The leader(s)
- The storyteller(s)
- The analyst(s)
- The optimizer(s)
The marketing manager is the leader. The team captain.
Responsible for overseeing the marketing team's efforts, they need to have a broad understanding of all aspects of marketingand excellent leadership skills to steer everybody in the right direction. This role has many titles, like Marketing Director, Chief Marketing Lead, and Vice President of Marketing.
Unlike the rest of the team, the marketing manager's efforts aren't focused on specific marketing tasks, but on the overall objectives and performance of the people working under them.
Next are the storytellersthe content creators.
These people handle everything from writing social media updates and blog posts to creating infographics and video content. Their job is to create compelling content that draws audiences in and captures their imaginations.
The data analysts provide technical insight into your marketing efforts. Consumer behavior, campaign performance, and market trends all fall into their court, and their findings help the marketing manager make informed, strategic decisions.
Finally, we have SEO specialists.
These employees ensure that the marketing team's efforts are visible. They optimize your brand's website and content to rank higher in search engine results. By doing so, they drive more traffic to your website and increase your online performance.
Building Your Marketing Team From Scratch
Talent and team recruitment aren't easy.
Sure, it's easy to post job listings and attract hundreds of applicants. But sifting the good from the badmaking the right choicesis hard.
First, you have to know where to start.
Where to Start
Before you start putting your marketing team together, you have to answer some questions:
What do you want your marketing team to achieve; how much are you willing to invest; and how do you plan on finding good people?
Clearly defined, SMART marketing goals will help you determine what your marketing team's goals are.
Outlining a budget to meet those goals is your next step. Remember that you're investing in business growth and you should avoid skimping if you can. Yet you need to balance marketing costs with a healthy dose of realism and ensure you aren't stretching your resources too thin.
With a goal and a budget in place, it's time to start team buildingand decide how you're going to hire people.
Do you prefer job postings or recruitment agencies? Will you only hire locally, or will you consider hybrid or remote workers?
A clear recruitment plan will increase your chances of finding the perfect people for your marketing team.
Who to Hire First
You need to set priorities because you likely won't be able to hire everybody at once.
Who do you start with?
In most cases, it makes the most sense to hire your marketing manager first. This person is instrumental in shaping your marketing strategies and leading the teamand they should have a hand in building the team they're going to be leading.
The next roles to fill are those of content creators and SEO specialists. These are essential for getting your marketing campaigns underway early and they work closely together to create on-brand content for your business.
The data analyst is critical, but may not be necessary from the beginning. This is the role you can afford to wait to hire until you have some ongoing marketing initiatives that can gather data.
Why You Should Hire Early
Whether you're a startup hard at work on a minimum viable product or an established brand looking to grow, hiring your marketing team early in your business's life cycle pays dividends.
The most obvious benefit is that it allows you to hit the ground running. You won't waste time figuring things out better left to a specialist and you can start building brand recognition early.
Plus, hiring early will help you ensure your marketing strategies align with your business goals. Your brand identity and mission are paramount hooks that draw in customers and businesses. Marketing that supports and enhances them supports your larger objectives.
Lastly, hiring your marketing team early allows them to grow with your business.
They will gain a deep understanding of your history and evolution. And they'll develop respect for your goals and grow alongside you.
The 20-80 Rule
The 80/20 rule states that 80% of your results come from 20% of your efforts. Known as the Pareto Principle, prioritizing tasks that yield the highest returns is essential.
In the context of a marketing team, this means focusing on high-impact activities: content creation, data analysis, and SEO optimization. These tasks directly influence your brand's visibility and reach.
Conversely, tasks like administrative work (while necessary) may not contribute to your marketing goals. As such, they should take up a smaller portion of your team's time and resources. Other, minor tasks can be reevaluated later on with the help of your team leader and data analysts.
The core takeaway?
Don't do everythingbut do the important things well.
Freelancers vs. In-House Staff
A core decision every business wrestles with is whether to outsource work to freelancers or hire more in-house staff.
For small businesses in particular, freelancers can be a cost-effective choice. You can hire people with specialized skills on a needs basis and sidestep the commitment of a full-time salary and benefits.
Yet managing freelancers isn't easy. Their commitment to your brand lasts until their contracts run out, and it can be more difficult to coordinate with freelancers who often aren't under one roof.
In-house staff, on the other hand, are a significant investment in the long run but offer consistency and commitment. They're fully immersed in your brand and can contribute fresh ideas regularly.
In truth, there is no single best option.
The choice between freelancers and in-house staff ultimately comes down to your budget and needs. You may choose to use a combination of both, hiring staff to fill out key roles and using freelancers to supplement your team's capabilities when it's time to crunch.
Best Practices for Effective Marketing Teams
Hiring the right people isn't the endgame.
It's the first stepping stone towards growing your brand. With top talent on your payroll, you need to foster a positive environment that is:
You've heard it before, but communication is critical.
Every team member must understand their role and how they contribute to their team's goals. They should never feel out of the loop and team leaders should make each worker feel like they have a voice.
Remember, marketing is a team sport.
The best ideas often come from collaboration and brainstorming sessions. Team members should have the opportunity to learn from each other to stay productive.
Finally, prioritize continuous learning. The world of marketing is constantly evolving, and your team needs to stay up-to-date with the latest trends and techniques. Provide opportunities for professional development and encourage your team members to broaden their skill sets.
Focus on Retention From the Start
Attracting new customers is important.
But any business that's serious about its own growth understands that customer retention is a key priority of marketing teams. It's far more expensive to acquire a new customer than to keep an existing oneand existing customers are far more likely to become brand advocates and buy from you again.
Your marketing team needs to keep customers coming back from the beginning.
Make customer retention an early priority, and you'll reap the rewards later on in the form of repeat business and word of mouth.
The Future of Marketing Teams
Marketing has always been a fast-paced, ever-evolving sector. The marketing team of the future will need to be as adaptable, as creative, and as data-driven as ever.
Building the perfect team is no small feat; it's a milestone. And the rewarda team that empowers business successis well worth the effort.
Triibe Talent is more than a businessit's a network. Our services support recruitment and change from within. That's why we focus on building communities, and not on hiring people. Find out how we tear down borders and connect industry experts today.