It’s impossible to hit marketing projections if you don’t hire good marketers. In other words, your marketing plan is only as good as the people who will execute it. Leaders who hire ineffective marketers usually windup struggling to reach a wider audience, waste a lot of money, and wrestle to attract more customers. Leaders who hire effective marketers can grow their organization faster with less effort and maximize their limited advertising budget.
Some of my consulting work involves training individuals and marketing teams how to conduct advanced promotional tactics. Yet, I’m surprised by how many companies hire people who struggle with basic marketing skills. In some cases, the executive in charge may be unaware of the exact skills his or her team needs in order to do their jobs effectively. In other situations, the team isn’t properly trained or held accountable to master the needed skills.
If you’re in the midst of hiring new marketers, consider this approach. Don’t just interview people by asking questions about their work history or background. Go a step further. Give new applicants and trainees actual exercises to test their marketing acumen. If they cannot pass the test, continue your search for someone else. For example, every marketer should be competent at completing the following tasks:
- Develop attractive marketing hooks that generate consumer curiosity.
- Produce promotional copy that tells customers what’s in it for them.
- Create compelling titles for blog posts, books, and email subject lines.
- Write 500 – 1,000 word articles and press releases in 60 minutes or less.
- Curate interesting content people want to read for weekly newsletters.
- Create distinctive assets that develop the organization’s brand.
- Build email lists by developing free content people want in exchange for their email address.
- Setup website pages that tell consumers what the organization does or sells with crisp, concise, engaging language.
- Do all of the above in the midst of distractions, meetings, office politics, and deadlines.
Don’t hire someone for your marketing team just because they say during an interview, “I’m creative,” “I have a marketing degree,” or “I love social media.” Use the hiring process to prove someone has the skills your organization needs to succeed.
Remember, your marketing plan is only as good as the people who will execute it.
Business people image courtesy of David Castillo Dominici at FreeDigitalPhotos.net