The buyer’s journey includes more and more digital touch points as technologyadvances. SiriusDecisions discovered a staggering 67% of the B2B buyer’s journey now occurs online.
As a result, a strong digital strategy is essential to scale your business. But developing and implementing an inbound marketing strategy can be a challenge without the right talent.
Cue the in-house hybrid marketer.
Create an In-House Team
For many years, companies looked for efficiency and savings in outsourcing talent. But it’s painfully difficult to create and execute a cohesive online brand experience with an army of disparate freelancers and agencies. The growth of technology makes it far wiser to create an in-house inbound sales and marketing team that can coordinate across the business and ensure alignment on everything from external branding to internal culture.
The technology boom “increases the importance of having strong technical talent on the marketing team. And it’s shifted marketing’s center of rotation – from agency operations to in-house marketing operations,” according to Scott Brinker, author of Chief Marketing Technologist Blog.
While we encourage SMEs to focus on developing internal abilities to execute and drive marketing strategy, it is often still important to work strategically with agencies and freelancers. Just aim to use this outside help for support rather than being completely dependent on it. Not only are successful businesses shifting from outsourcing to in-house marketing, but they are also looking for multi-dimensional talent rather than specialists and highly segmented teams.
Discover Key Traits of Hybrid Marketers
As businesses begin to build their in-house marketing teams, they should look for multidisciplinary talent that can play a hybrid role across the company. These multi-skilled professionals have the ability to work at both a strategic and a tactical level, with competencies in everything from technology to business tactics to content strategy. Technology changes quickly and brings frequent new challenges, so it’s imperative this talent is strongly oriented toward growth.
Paul Roetzer has outlined nine traits of successful digital marketing hybrids. He believes key characteristics to look for when hiring are: analytical abilities, creativity, intrinsic motivation, active listening skills, social savvy, strategic thinking, tech-minded, collaborative, and strong writing skills. The ability to think big picture and build integrated campaigns across digital platforms is key, especially during periods of growth and change.
Find Hybrid Marketing Talent
Since content primarily drives online marketing, it is imperative to identify candidates with strong writing skills. Ask potential hires for writing samples or have them complete writing tests for various mediums to measure ability.
A basic understanding of SEO is another essential skill to look for when recruiting your in-house marketing team. They don’t have to be master coders, but they should embrace new technology and be eager to develop new skills. Make sure to ask questions about emerging technology during the interview process. You just might learn something new yourself.
Some of your best candidates can be found at small marketing agencies since they are accustomed to juggling a multitude of media. Consider scouting for talent on LinkedIn, Twitter, Medium, and other blogs, where it’s easy to find tech-savvy marketers exhibiting thought leadership. Another great source for hybrid marketers is apprenticeship programs such as Digital Creative Institute where talent receives ongoing training and mentoring.
Take the Next Step
Hiring hybrid talent eliminates overly segmented teams and brings strategic thinking and execution to your sales and marketing efforts. These increasingly necessary hires can help you reduce long-term costs and create an integrated digital experience that drives success. Find your hybrid marketer today.