Marketing Team
Startups

How to Create a Winning Marketing Team and 5 Essential Positions to Fill

Many companies these days seem to realise that they need a marketing team but don’t know exactly how they should go about growing a team in the most sustainable and effective way. Online is becoming more and more important for almost all companies these days and when they are building their internal marketing teams, there’s several things that those charged with building the team need to know, as well as 5 key positions that need to be filled.

Before we look at the positions you need to fill in your marketing team, we’ll take a look at what you need to know prior to starting to build your team; things that you’ll be glad you’ve been informed of and also things that will go a long way toward helping you to create a winning marketing team.

Keep it Lean

There seems to be tonnes of different things that people go on about when it comes to creating a team and it can get a little confusing. Just because all these so-called ‘experts’ tell you that you need to focus on SEO, social media, paid search, having and implementing a content marketing strategy, having a beautifully designed website and of course, someone to take care of each of these different roles, doesn’t mean to say that A. they’re right or B. you should even do it.

It is in fact quite the opposite. The best piece of advice that could be given to someone who is building their new marketing team is to keep things as lean as possible. This allows you to focus on quality over quantity and it also allows you to put your focus into the channels and the tactics that will give you the best results whilst you’re building your new team. The last thing you want is to become overwhelmed.

Document, Document, Document!

Many companies have a great company culture or have some great staff who are all fantastic people but inevitably, someone, perhaps a key employee, is going to leave. Now, when you’re in the process of building your marketing team, it’s possible that you’re going to get things wrong and it’s not beyond the realms of possibility that one of your new hires could leave before they even properly get started.

If you’ve already started to work on implementing your lean marketing plan, you may be taken aback by something like this happening, but this is where it becomes apparent that documenting your key processes, despite being time consuming, is mightily important. Not only is it important, it’s also time saving. When you have your replacement new hire in, you can show them the key process documents and let them learn things at their own pace. This will save you going through all your processes with them and save you a tonne of time.

5 Essential Roles you Need to Fill

This leads us nicely on to the key positions that you need to consider when hiring people for your marketing team. These are the 5 key roles that you need to fill in your burgeoning marketing team, why you need them and where you could look to hire them from. We will also try to link this section back in to our recent recruitment drive here at Tharstern and the members of the marketing team that we have hired. So, without further ado, let’s kick things off.

The Team Captain

This person must be able to lead from the front, a leader in every sense of the word. The title isn’t what matters, whether it’s Online Marketing Manager or Head of Digital, they need to be able to lead others, be highly intellectual and have at least a flicker of an entrepreneur inside of them. These are all key for someone who is required to manage a team but also to get down and dirty and is happy get stuck into working with the rest of the team you’re going to be bringing in.

The other thing to consider with this role is that there’s a need for the ideal candidate to be less specific in terms of their experience and more passionate, full of energy and brain power, as well as someone who is comfortable with several different aspects of marketing, from traditional to digital and everything in between.

The ideal candidate for us was Amanda Newman. She came in with nearly 20 years’ experience in marketing and took the on the role with a real drive and desire. When Amanda joined us, she was a part of a one-man team and managed the work of a complete marketing team with aplomb. Her attitude has enabled her to go on and grow the team which, as such, has meant we now have a complete marketing team in-house.

The Searcher

Unless you’ve been living in a hole in the ground for the last 10 years or so, you’ll know that Google is the don when it comes to search engines. Google, but more specifically, SEO is also the boss when it comes your marketing plan. More and more people the world over have access to the internet now, well over 4 billion people actually, whether it be the more traditional desktop computer or a smart phone; people can access the internet with the flick of a finger, or a glance at their phone. With the rise in the use of smart phones, unsurprisingly, more and more people are searching for things with their voice and are looking for instant answers and if you aren’t optimising for this, you’re falling behind.

You’re going to need someone who lives and breathes search engine algorithm updates, knows their panda from their penguin and knows about that pesky new kid on the block, Fred. Search is a serious discipline these days and you’re going to need a serious player who can come in to your team and take control. This isn’t a role where you’re looking for a jack of all trades, you’re looking for the master with this one.

We found our master in Jake Oates. With almost 10 years’ experience in SEO he joined us in March and has fit in well with the team and our environment here at Tharstern. Jake’s role is to take charge of all of our paid and organic marketing and is also learning more about, and implementing, UX changes to the website to help us improve the customer experience.

The Non-Traditional Website Master

Now, you’re probably wondering what a non-traditional website master is and you’re in luck. It’s someone who can come in to your team and take charge of all your website development and/or website design needs. Managing the growth, development and change of your website in-house can save a lot of pain and heartbreak. Outsourcing to an agency can lead to several issues or people feeling like they’ve been misled, or as it’s more commonly referred to; over-promised and under-delivered.

In this day and age, your website is the front to your business and when it comes to keeping it updated, you want to keep things in-house as much as possible. Ultimately, it’s not worth risking putting the control of your website in the hands of others. It’s often difficult to find someone who is a hybrid designer/developer but if you can, you should consider yourself lucky as you’ve just hit the jackpot. It’s tough to find this person though and if you can’t afford to bring both a designer and a developer into the team, you need to decide which one you’re going to bring in to your team. We made the decision to bring in Elouise Sylkie Pemberton and, well, let’s just say, we hit the jackpot.

The Analytics Specialist

This is a role that is often overlooked, and it could also be seen as more of an operations manager role than specifically an analytics role. Either way, this is likely going to be a role that incorporates both things. It’s difficult to get by these days without a data-driven approach to your work and having someone who is data-driven, and operations focused on your team will enable you to make better data-based decisions. Having this person on your team will also mean you can set targets and goals for your team and know how you’re performing against those goals.

This is a role that we haven’t filled as a part of the marketing team but that’s not to say we don’t have the personnel within the business.

The Scribe

Last but by no means least, the copy writing role is vital because any content you’re going to need, you’re going to need someone to write it for you. If you have a website, you should have a blog. If you have a blog, you should have social media channel(s). If you have all these things, then you’re going to need to produce content. The different channels are all ways that people can find your business online and thus, it’s important that content you write is of a high quality.

For this, you’re going to need quite the wordsmith and finding someone with a primarily journalism background is ideal but by no means necessary. One necessity for this role though is that they’ve worked in a similar role in the past as you don’t want a junior coming in that you’re then going to need to train.

Here at Tharstern, we have Sophie Jackson, formerly a Digital PR Specialist at Branded3, a digital marketing agency based in Leeds. Sophie’s time at Branded3 gave her the experience she needed to come into Tharstern ready to rock and roll. Sophie’s role is getting stuck into various creative campaigns and managing our social channels and PR content, it’s safe to say that she’s not stopped rocking and rolling since she joined us nearly 12 months ago.

And there we have it. A pocket-like guide to creating a winning marketing team and the 5 essential positions you need to fill.