Building an in-house digital experience and marketing team

How to hire an in-house digital team who will help you transform your business through digital experiences.
Oct 25, 2018
James Hornick
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You’re growing your company, consciously thinking about the culture you want to promote and hiring employees who not only fit-in, but enhance what you’re trying to accomplish. Maybe as of yet, you haven’t been as focused on your digital needs, or have contracted out that work with experts on an as needed basis. But you are now wondering if it’s time to pivot, focus internally and build what you need in-house. And why shouldn’t you? As organizations continue to transform their businesses to engage in the digital space, the key to their success is hiring the right digital team who will make it happen. The question then is not if this is the correct move, but how to do it correctly and thoughtfully, and the questions you want to ask yourself include:

  • What positions makes up a digital dream team?
  • How do I find the best candidates to fill these positions?

We will tackle not only these questions, but some additional thinking on this topic as well, because we know that you want to keep growing, and that you want to do so as thoughtfully as possible.

Objectives and Channels For Your In-house Digital Team to Focus On

Two areas to concentrate on before you even approach filling the positions for your in-house digital team are:

  1. Knowing your objectives in growing an in-house digital team.
  2. Identifying the channels you intend to focus on in the immediate and long-term future. 

With General Data Protection Regulation there are tighter controls on sharing and buying third party data and you won’t be able to rely on that to build your business.. Given this, how you collect, organize and use first party data will be a crucial core competency going forward, and finding data-minded candidates, for any skill set, will be a priority.

Additionally, what are your objectives in utilizing digital? Are you looking to connect with a certain audience or generate revenue? Maybe you want to position your organization as a thought leader? Answering these questions requires you to understand your objectives here as well. Doing so allows you to focus on what you want to achieve. It also allows you to understand which channels will serve you best. Whereas you might explore implementing Snapchat or Tumblr to connect with a younger audience, you may want to look at email marketing if you’re looking to grow your revenue streams.

Positions and the In-house Digital Team

Whether you're looking to build your team slowly or keep the team small, you'll need people who can (and want to) wear a lot of hats to start, but you still want to understand the range of positions, and skills, you need to consider. These include :

  • Content Strategists
  • Content Developers
  • Search Engine Optimization (SEO) Professionals
  • Social Media Managers
  • Search Engine Marketing (SEM)
  • Paid Social Managers
  • Pay-Per-Click (PPC) Manager·       
  • Data Analyst
  • Customer Relationship Management (CRM)/Email
  • Marketing Automation
  • Visual Design
  • Web/UX Developers  
  • Front End Web Developers

There is a lot to think about in terms of skills and positions. As you assess your needs, we encourage you to stay focused on your objectives and preferred channels, while also learning about these skills and positions in more detail from sources such as Outbrain.

Finding the Best Candidates to Fill Your In-House Digital Team Needs

Finding the perfect candidate with all of the experience you seek may not be a reasonable expectation, but keep in mind, there's no substitute for passion, drive and the desire to learn. No matter how you look at it, if you're doing something interesting, there's bound to be aspects of it that no one you interview will have experience with already. 

The best hires however, are always the people who progress far beyond your expectations, and that means sometimes taking a chance on candidates who are excited about your vision and want to prove themselves by learning how to do what is needed.
Further, big name company experience may not be right for you either. The phrase "Nobody ever got fired for buying IBM," is an iconic part of the play-it-safe business culture mentality. In terms of filling these positions, however bigger isn’t necessarily better. Instead, you want to focus on finding the right people with the right company experience, i.e. those who have tackled the same sorts of marketing challenges you're facing right now. There's absolutely nothing wrong with big companies, but if you're growing something from scratch or taking on unique marketing problems, it just may not be what you need for your team to be successful.
Ultimately, you want to stay focused on what you can realistically accomplish with the budget you have and the talent you can afford. Given this, it’s also important to look at the talent you already have in-house and ask yourself whether you can bring someone along from within? Again, they may not have the experience you seek, but they already know the culture, they know the product, and if they’re excited about learning, and passionate about your work, they’re worth taking a look at.


Final Thoughts

As you transform your business to engage in the digital space, and recognize that building an in-house digital team allows you to grow employees immersed in your products and culture, the key to success is hiring the right digital team who will make it happen

This process begins by identifying your objectives and the channels you want to utilize.

It continues as you assess which skills and positions you want to fill.

The likelihood of success is enhanced when you recognize that you may not find the perfect candidate who encompasses everything you’re looking for, but you can find candidates with passion who will exceed your expectations.

Those candidates may even already be in your organization.

Hirewell is Your Partner to Help You Find the Best In-House Digital Team for Your Organization.

We’re here to provide you with the knowledge and support you need to get your plan started.

James Hornick

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