Your Guide to Recruiting Exceptional Marketers

November 23, 2015

Marketers are the people who help make your company more than a company.

For Apple, marketers turned a computer company to a movement where creativity and freedom conquers conformity and totalitarianism. For Disney, they turned a film and amusement park company into the most magical place on earth. And for Nike (pictured above), a source of inspiration for everyone to find their greatness.

Getting people who can tell those stories, who can make your company bigger than just a company, is critical, particularly in a world noisier than ever. The problem is, there are millions of marketers out there, but there are only a few that can make car insurance interesting, for example.

To get those truly elite marketers, it starts – appropriately enough – with mastering some classic marketing techniques and ends with perfecting some sales and recruiting ones. Here’s the whole strategy, outlined in seven steps:

1. Get to know your market

The first part of getting great marketers is understanding great marketers. Where are they located? What do they want? Where do they work? What groups are they associated with?

Luckily for you, you can find out all the information via LinkedIn’s talent pool reports. These reports will show you the best places to look for marketers, what companies they work for and even survey data for what they are looking for in a job.

For example, let’s say you are looking for digital and online marketers in the United Kingdom. The talent pool report will show where in the United Kingdom there is a shortage of strong marketing talent (aka a bad place to recruit) and where there is a surplus of strong marketing talent (aka a good place to recruit).

  • recruiting marketer

As you can see, London has more demand for digital marketers than they have marketers to fill them, which means it will be a very competitive market. Conversely, Reading has less demand for digital marketers, and therefore is an easier place to recruit.

Going beyond that, the talent pool report will also show who are the biggest employers of marketers in the area you’re looking at and what LinkedIn Groups they are a part of. They’ll even tell you what marketers want in their jobs, based off of LinkedIn survey data.

As you can see for the example of digital marketers in the UK, that talent is primarily looking for excellent compensation and work/life balance.

  • what marketers want in job

2. Then, you have to build out your employer brand

Once you know where you want to recruit and what your marketers are looking for, you can start building out your employer brand to find those people.

How do you that? The best way is to master your own internal recruiting communications: optimizing your career page, writing great job descriptions and, most importantly of all, creating great content and sharing on social media so talent starts following you.

If you want to go further, you can focus your employing branding through targeted sponsored updates and do boots-on-the-ground recruiting in the exact areas your looking for great talent.

All of this will start bringing tech talent closer to your doorstep. One fact that illustrates the point – 70 percent of the people who follow a company on LinkedIn said they would consider working for that company.

3. Next, send your targets personalized InMails

So say you know you want to target online marketers in Reading and, through your employer branding efforts, have gained a few followers in the area. What’s the next step?

The InMail, which is one of the most common ways recruiters first reach out to prospects, particularly marketers.

The key here? Make it personalized and centered around the needs of the candidate, not yours. For specifics, here are four examples of great InMails (and eight examples of terrible ones).

4. Determine great marketers from good ones in the interview

Alright, so your InMails are successful and you’ve set up interviews with a few marketers. The interview is your chance to find out if these people are truly right for your company.

To do this best, science suggests a structured interview process that includes a work sample – perhaps have them do a creative brief for a marketing project related to your company.

As far what to do in that interview, here are three great interview questions to ask marketers and here are five great questions to ask any candidate.

5. Remember, candidates are also interviewing you

With highly sought after talent like an elite marketer, chances are they’ll be talking with multiple companies when looking for a new job. And the interview, as our stats show, is one of the key ways they’ll use to determine if they want to work for your company or someone else.

  • interview experience

So how do you make a great interview process? When surveyed, professionals said the interview with the hiring manager has the biggest impact on their interview experience; so train your hiring managers to make candidates feel as comfortable as possible.

Additionally, 49 percent of professionals surveyed said the most important thing to them during the interview is getting all their business questions answered, so be sure to clearly explain to candidates the functions and goals of the advertised position.

6. Sell the future to close your candidate

Let’s say the interview goes great and you want to give the candidate an offer. Be prepared to pay here, as more than 70 percent of professionals receive more money when changing jobs.

That said, the number-one reason people take a new job isn’t money, but career opportunity. So, yes, you’ll probably have to pay the candidate more money to take your offer. But more than that, you should also lay out a plan for them on how they can move up within your organization in the position and continue to advance their career.

7. Once you’ve hired them, ask if they know anyone else

The best source of hire is referrals, as it is both the least expensive and has the highest quality-of-hire. So, if you get an elite marketer, the best way to get another is asking them if they know anyone else in their network that would be good for your company.

A few things to keep in mind when building your referral program: for a referral bonus, experiences work better than straight cash; and the real key to a robust referral program is marketing it well internally. 

Tying it all together

There is more marketing than ever out there today. That only makes great marketers that much important, but also that much more sought after.

To get elite marketers, you need to master all seven steps of the above process. The good news is though that once you start getting some great talent, more is inspired to follow, and your company will be able to cut through that noise with great, compelling stories.

  • talent trends 2015