Why recruiting an in-house marketer could prove an expensive mistake

Employing people is a tricky endeavour at any time. Employing a marketing person can become an absolute nightmare. We meet clients regularly who’ve got into difficulty when it comes to recruiting an in-house marketing specialist, which if you think about it, makes a lot of sense. After all, a decent marketer should be able to do an above average job of selling themselves.

We’ve covered off why using an agency might make more sense before, but if you’re still convinced you need someone in-house, here are some tips to help…

Be honest about what the job entails

If you’re an SME, chances are that you need a marketing bod who will get stuck in with anything and everything. Make that clear from the off so you don’t end up with a marketing manager who assumes they will be spending their time managing rather than doing the day to day stuff. Be wary of recruiting someone with very clear specialisms or someone who worked in a big agency. They might be used to being able to call on planners, creatives, data specialists etc. Suddenly being expected to be a jack of all trades can lead to disappointment on both sides.

Consider a mix of in-house and agency

The ideal situation is to have someone in-house backed up by the expertise external agencies. If your budget doesn’t stretch to that, think creatively. There are lots and lots of talented parents and carers out there that would jump at the chance of getting a part time gig. Get the best of both worlds by splitting your funds between an agency/freelancer and a part time in-house marketer.

Think about management

Who’s going to manage your marketing manager? Unless you’re experienced in marketing yourself, there’s a risk you will just leave them to it. If you’ve got lucky and found yourself a superstar, this isn’t a problem. If not, you could find yourself in trouble quite quickly. Think about bringing in some external expertise to help you identify KPIs and make sure you’re working to the right strategy.

Budget properly

Recruiting someone in-house isn’t just about the salary. Make sure you’ve factored in the cost of software and equipment, additional support during holidays/sick leave and training. It’s unfair to expect an in-house marketer to be able to do the same job as an external agency if they’re working with sub-standard tools. Remember the costs of software and upgrading equipment can run into thousands of pounds a year.

 Get help with recruitment

If you’re recruiting for a role you’ve never appointed before, get some advice. Make sure your job spec clearly identifies what you’re after and consider getting an expert to sit in at interview stage. We’ve helped clients with this before and having an industry specialist in the interview room can really help sift out the wheat from chaff, and stop you making a very expensive mistake.

Still not sure what to do or want to know more about the benefits of working with an agency? Drop us a line. We’d be happy to help.

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Elizabeth Hudson

Elizabeth was once told by a university professor that she wrote too ‘journalistically’ for academia – something she’s always taken as a compliment. She's been fascinated by the power of words from an early age and loves reading and writing articles that challenge viewpoints and provoke debate.

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