If you’re confused about whom to hire for your digital marketing team you’re not alone. One of the questions I often get is ‘What are the skill sets we should look for?‘
If you’ve been bombarded by SEO gurus, social ninjas and other ‘one size-fits-all-solutions‘ you probably have more questions than answers. It’s tough when your business plan calls for acquiring online marketing competencies but you don’t know what to start looking for.
The below roles and skill sets are needed in an effective modern marketing team.
1) A wordsmith:
Someone who can write, yes, but more importantly someone who can weave a story both in long form blog posts, as well as in those shorter snippets that make social updates. The wordsmith knows how to vary the narrative and enrich it by contrasting the tone, yet stay true to the overall message.
Your wordsmith should also be as comfortable initiating online conversations and discussions as much as understanding how to write for the web.
2) A visual artist:
Will create art from of the most abstract concepts. This creative visionary is adept at a variety of design and publishing softwares and maximizes a fine arts training to craft aesthetic, compelling visuals that enhances brand storytelling.
If you’re lucky this creative genius has some experience in video production as well as with designing user interfaces for web and mobile.
3) Email marketing maven:
The email marketer will understand how to provide the best content for a buyer persona as the client progresses through the customer journey. She is someone who can segment and manage audience lists.
She knows how to set-up automated email campaigns that personalizes the customer experience.
She sees email newsletters and email sales offers as unique access points to a proprietary audience. She leverages this understanding to achieve business goals.
4) Search engine optimization wizard:
Has had quite a few years under his belt seeing search engine optimization progress through the early year tactics of meta keyword stuffing, mass directory submissions and stupefyingly incoherent blog comments.
He understands enough about duplicate content, link building and keyword optimization to know when it matters and when it doesn’t
His keyword analysis includes long tail keywords, search volumes and search competition in just the optimal doses.
5) Analytics junkie:
This individual has the ability to cut through the data clutter to discern actionable information. He looks at the data to understand what kind of content is working for customers. He can also measure ROI by marketing channels to optimize resource allocation.
Due to his superior data analytics ability he is also an asset in optimizing CPC advertising campaigns.
6) Coder and technology integrator:
Databases, APIs, scripting languages are the lexicon she is very comfortable with.
7) A master strategist:
We’ve been through a lot of skill-sets but knowing how all these can be brought together to create an immersive customer experience takes finesse. Your master strategist will decide which skill-sets of the digital marketing toolset is needed and when.
He is always looking for opportunities among the organization’s internal and external network to figure out how these relationships can be enhanced with technology and communication media.
He reiterates the importance of testing and agile marketing, embracing risk as means towards business objectives.
His business savvy complements his understanding of the marketing universe arsenal and how it fits into organizational goals at the tactical as well as the strategic level.
This is not a role that any old MBA program can deliver on. Your strategist has been through the start-up marketing grind or learned his lessons, the hard way, as an entrepreneur. He is comfortable in the knowledge that he has to often do more with less.
It is he is who creates and drives today’s data enhanced storytelling.
8) A diplomat, leader, project manager:
Even with all the above skill sets an organization’s digital marketing and transformation efforts can be undermined by its culture.
From entrenched legacy technology vendors to in-house resistance to change, the company culture is often the stumbling block for many a well intentioned online marketing effort. The CMO needs to have the skills to lead from top to bottom and sideways working their way through these challenges.
She knows the importance of executive sponsors and works diligently to educate the sponsors on how to re-align the organization for the hyper digital consumer.
This diplomat leader also understands that change takes time and is willing to invest consistent effort to bring people together towards a common goal. She builds healthy relationships with all internal stake holders, from customer service to product development. She is ready to train, focus, change-manage and motivate not only the marketing team but do this throughout the organization.
This gentle warrior is not intimidated by an uphill battle because the stakes are high indeed!
Make no mistake, it is she is who creates an environment where the customer experience can meet and exceed the customer expectation. After all a business cannot exist without the customer.
How’s your business doing digital marketing?
Yes, each of the above roles encompasses multiple competencies. A writer is not necessarily a marketer and more often than not, needs direction to achieve marketing goals. Similarly a designer may need the assistance of the writer to build a compelling infographic.
Therein lies the challenge for small businesses; there’s a shortage of marketing talent with the breadth of knowledge to assemble these various skill sets and direct these to achieve business goals on a consistent basis. Most online SME marketing teams are currently staffed only with few skill sets in the ‘good to have’ area of the image above.
How does your business cope? Which among the above roles, or which other skill sets are more important for your online marketing efforts?
What’s your online marketing story?