Five Things Advisors Need in a Marketing Director
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In a perfect world, advisors would spend their time meeting with clients, giving great advice and prospecting for new business. However, advisors often are small business owners, which means you have responsibilities outside of these core functions. On any given day, you might manage information technology, human resources, marketing and more – tasks that likely weren’t in your professional training or in your natural skill set.
When you lack the time and expertise to execute marketing initiatives, it is time to add a skilled marketer to your team. So, how do you ensure you hire the most qualified candidate to support business growth?
Look for these five factors in marketing director applicants:
1. B2B marketing strategy experience. Marketers can learn your industry on the job from colleagues, training and other professional resources. It isn’t necessary for them to have worked in financial services previously – although it’s certainly a plus if they have! You need someone who understands business-to-business marketing strategy. Although you might consider your practice a business-to-consumer entity, the strategies for effectively marketing an advisory firm align more closely with a B2B approach. That’s because the financial services sector has a long, logical, process-driven sales cycle, and you should care more about generating leads within in your niche than increasing broad consumer awareness of your brand. (This article does a great job explaining the difference in B2B and B2C marketing strategies.)
2. Tactical excellence. As an in-house marketer, applicants should have a broad skill set to implement marketing plans across multiple channels. Marketing strategists who work at agencies (rather than in-house) are often highly specialized and have access to robust teams to execute a plan. But solo practitioners must know a lot about different marketing tactics. Look for candidates with public relations experience, exceptional writing skills and strong knowledge of digital channels like social media and search engine optimization. Their competence should inspire confidence, but even the best marketing directors need the freedom to outsource to the pros when a tactic is out of their depth.