Marketing can be a daunting task for business owners. Who do I hire? Do I need to have one? How much should it cost me? What questions should you ask your marketing professional before you start working together?
Here’s a list of good questions that every business owner should ask their marketing professional before signing on the dotted line.
1. What’s Your Area of Expertise?
Marketing has become increasingly specialized as technology constantly changes. Most professionals now have a dominant interest in a single area of marketing, even though they may still do many tasks and work in multiple fields. You want answers that are relevant for immigration ads, for example, if that’s the project your working on.
Although some generalists do exist, more often than not nowadays it just means they are new to the field. But if you feel they could provide you with great permanent labor certification ads, for example, go for it. Everyone needs to start somewhere, after all.
2. How Can You Help Us?
You want to hire someone who is eager and excited about working for you, obviously. A great way to find out if they’re a good fit would be by asking them questions so that you can see their expertise in your field, (PERM advertising, for example) as well as watch how responsive they are. This will show whether or not the person has any interest in doing what’s best for both parties involved.
After all, you want to hire a person who has, at least, perused and gotten to know your website.
3. What’s Your Process?
In order to make sure you’re getting the best possible experience with a potential marketer, it’s essential to be able to get as much information from them about their process. You should ask what they want and need from you (ie: how many hours per week), if there is anything specific that would help your immigration ads stand out, or any other requirements on deadlines, for example. Getting all of this info upfront will help ensure both parties are happy in regards to expectations!
4. What Tools Do You Use?
Gain an understanding of what tools they use that marketers in their field typically use. A graphic designer, for example, might have Photoshop, InDesign, and Quark. For SEO experts, for another example, they would probably say Moz. Further, PR people need Vocus, or possibly PR Newswire in order to be successful. If a person can’t identify at least some tools it’s likely due to a lack of experience. Consider this when interviewing for the position!
5. What Type of Reporting Is There Going to Be?
Ask for a schedule of regular updates about the work and the results that have been achieved. Now, what’s in these reports will be different based on what you’re working on, a PR campaign versus permanent labor certification ads, for example, but they need to be able to tell you how updates will be delivered as it occurs so that your project is not in question if something were to ever happen.
Of course, you will have to strike a compromise between what will work for both parties. You can’t have your freelancer only delivering a finished product, for example, but you also don’t want them to update you on their progress twice a day. You don’t want to micromanage, but you also don’t want to be too much of a push-over, either. You’re paying good money, after all.
6. What Will Be the Timeline for Results?
Obviously, you want to hear something that sounds earlier instead of later. But keep in mind nothing happens immediately. Still, whoever you hire should be able to provide you with at least a rough guess. Most professionals have enough experience to make an educated estimate. Just bear in mind that things take time, and the results of a PERM advertising campaign, for example, won’t yield results five hours after launch.
7. What Will Be The Results?
You would be surprised how many people promise results without the support to back up their claims. It is better if you can find someone who sets reasonable expectations and has evidence of past success in order, thus proving themselves as a trustworthy source.
Of course, if somebody can promise you the front page of Google or an article in a respected newspaper or magazine, and provides you with past results to prove this, go for it. But on the whole, someone who has grounded expectations is always preferred.
8. What Will Be the Cost?
This question will definitely come around sooner or later. You want to know how much their time is worth. The final cost of a project can vary depending on the level, but it’s important for everyone involved to know exactly what they’re getting so that they don’t get surprised in any way-. And not just financially.
If you want, you can ask if there’s a way it can be done more inexpensively. It will give you a sense of this person’s budget-consciousness. If anything, it may help you receive much more streamlined work for your project (immigration ads, perhaps?)
9. Do You Learn About Changes in Your Specific Kind of Marketing?
Whether you are looking to get someone in-house, or outsource, it is ideal that they can name some blogs and websites that they follow in order to learn. If the person being interviewed can’t name any blogs or websites, or even gurus for that matter, be sure to ask them why. It’s a good indication they may have stopped learning and are relying on older structures that may or may not be dying out.