How to Assess & Hire Digital Marketing Experts

How to Assess & Hire Digital Marketing Experts


Businesses are aggressively investing in digital marketing, making now an excellent time to hire a digital marketer—especially if you want to withstand the fierce market competition.

However, most businesses struggle to spot the ideal candidate to perform the role.

The root of the problem is an inefficient skillset and, on the other hand, how businesses approach digital marketer hiring. They look for full-stack marketers who can do it all. And it may be tempting to do so as these marketers may have a diverse skill set, they aren’t always the best option for various reasons.

According to an Econsultancy survey, 92 percent of marketers believe there is a substantial shortage of digital marketing abilities in their business.

Finding a digital marketing manager with the necessary expertise is complex—a thrilling challenge. But it’s still a challenge. How new workers are recruited and onboarded impacts culture, results, and the bottom line.

Define the requirements correctly. Recruit with caution. Thoroughly train new employees. Get outcomes. The most effective digital marketers will have a well-balanced mix of digital marketing expertise and soft-skill brilliance.

In this blog, we’ll take you through the entire process of assessing and hiring the right digital marketing expert for your business.

But first, let’s understand what the role looks like

Digital marketers

  • Plan and carry out all digital marketing efforts, including SEO/SEM, marketing database, email, social media, and display advertising
  • Create, manage, and expand our social media presence
  • Track and report on the performance of all digital marketing efforts, and compare results to targets (ROI and KPIs)
  • Recognize patterns and insights, then optimize spending and performance based on the findings
  • Develop new and innovative growth strategies
  • Plan, carry out, and evaluate experiments and conversion tests
  • Work with internal teams to develop landing pages and improve the user experience
  • Apply excellent analytical skills to assess the end-to-end customer experience across numerous channels and contact points
  • Monitor conversion rates and improve user funnels
  • Work with agencies and other vendor partners to achieve your goals
  • Assess upcoming technology. Where applicable, provide thought leadership and perspectives for adoption

Key Requirements

  • Proven track record of leading and managing successful SEO, SEM, marketing database, email, social media, and/or display advertising campaigns
  • Extremely creative, with prior expertise in identifying target groups and developing digital ads that engage, enlighten, and motivate
  • Prior knowledge of optimizing landing pages and user funnels
  • Knowledge of A/B and multivariate experiments
  • Thorough understanding of website analytics tools (e.g., Google Analytics, NetInsight, Omniture, WebTrends)
  • Working experience with ad serving tools (e.g., DART, Atlas)
  • Understanding of how to set up and optimise Google Adwords campaigns
  • Basic understanding of HTML, CSS, and JavaScript development and restrictions
  • Strong analytical abilities and data-driven reasoning
  • Keep up-to-date with the newest trends and practices in digital marketing

What makes a good digital marketer?

  • A strategic and problem-solving mindset

A digital marketer’s purpose is to assist a firm in increasing brand recognition, conversions, and revenues and to grow the organization. This is no easy feat. It necessitates the capacity to perform the job that must be done daily and to look at the big picture and devise a strategy for achieving long-term goals or better positioning the organization.

Being given tonnes of data on how a digital marketing strategy works is great in principle, but until you can see how they fix any of the problems revealed by sifting through the facts, it’s all meaningless.

As a result, you should put their problem-solving abilities to the test to ensure that they can respond to emergent issues in real time, such as a sudden surge in bounce rate or a drastic drop in user engagement with social media campaigns. A problem-solving test can be used to assess applicants’ abilities to identify issues and interpret data and textual data in order to make sound judgments.

  • Finance and budget knowledge

With marketing costs currently averaging around 12% of total company budgets, there is an increasing need for people in charge of marketing spending to demonstrate accountability. Nonetheless, many marketers lack the financial ability to demonstrate ROI and other key performance indicators and relate these KPIs to overall business performance successfully.

Top digital has a solid financial understanding. This helps them acquire the C suite’s respect and buy-in since they can speak the language that matters most to senior executives: proving ROI.

  • Data and analytical expertise

Marketing has quickly shifted from being about intuition to being entirely about statistics. If there is one ability that marketers should invest in, it is data analysis and measurement. All digital marketers should invest in this area. However, having well-honed data analytics and visualization abilities is crucial for marketers who want to reach the upper rungs of digital marketing.

  • Excellent leadership qualities

Leadership is concerned with the human dimension of marketing. It is also crucial for any digital marketer who manages a team of marketers.

Strong leaders have the plans and abilities to use the talents of their staff correctly. They also accept responsibility for their actions, are forward-thinking, and can be flexible and adaptive to changing situations. These characteristics may come quickly to some, but for most people, investing in training on interpersonal relationships and vital leadership skills, as well as learning on the job, is the best approach to becoming a successful leader.

  • A strong network

Top digital marketers have extensive professional networks. According to LinkedIn, almost 80% of workers feel that having a robust professional network is critical to their job success. A strong network may also help you open doors and gain access to industry experts, as well as assist you in locating your ideal job.

Hiring Process

  • Give them an assignment

You must determine the candidate’s skill set by assigning a task. This will inform you of the specific talents they possess. Writing a blog for the website, for example, or developing a social media campaign or SEO strategy. Look for what they are skilled at.

A small test will help the candidate understand what your organization expects and how they can demonstrate their abilities; you cannot rely solely on a verbal interview. It is critical to assess the candidate’s practical expertise.

  • A 1:1 interview

You administered the test to the candidate, and they passed. After that, schedule a face-to-face interview with them. If a one-on-one interview is not possible for the candidate, consider a Skype video chat. However, it is critical to conduct a face-to-face interview. The interview will allow you to learn about the candidate’s true character and competency.

You might examine how they communicate, as well as their level of confidence and quality. With this interview, you may be more specific about your expectations and answer any applicant’s queries.

  • Specialization

When hiring a digital marketer, check for the candidate’s area of expertise. All of the characteristics listed cannot be found in a single candidate. They may be knowledgeable about all facets of digital marketing but may specialize in only one of them. If you are interested in technology, you will look for a digital marketer who is knowledgeable about it.

So, if you want a marketer who can write blogs, seek that speciality. If you’re going to find a marketer specializing in email marketing campaigns, aim for that speciality.

  • Communication abilities

It is an essential component of every job description. If you’re searching for a digital marketer, be sure they have strong communication skills and keep everyone updated. If a digital marketer is in charge of marketing your brand in the global market, they should be able to explain the message to the audience in the simplest way possible.

Despite the fact that many people are involved, the job of a digital marketer is to run campaigns. As a result, the marketer must communicate effectively with the team and keep them informed about the project.

  • Getting things done

A digital marketer has an assortment of responsibilities. Sometimes they are developing a campaign, other times they are reviewing a current campaign, and they are also in charge of the content strategy. All of these tasks are distinct. So, while looking for a digital marketer, ensure the prospect can manage many duties simultaneously.

Working under pressure is essential for a digital marketer. And a pressure scenario arises when you have too much on your plate. That is why it is necessary to test the candidate so that you can assess their performance and make an informed choice.

  • Awareness

If you’re searching for a digital marketer who can write blogs, make sure the candidate is up to speed on all the latest trends. If your organization focuses on corporate technology, the applicant should be familiar with augmented reality, IoT, virtual reality, etc., if they are an excellent fit and knowledgeable about all of this.

Also, if you want to engage a digital marketer to handle and build social media campaigns, they must be up to date on the latest social media trends that may be used in the campaign.

  • Assessing abilities

What if your chosen candidate is unable to assess the situation? It is necessary to evaluate conditions, campaigns, and budgets. During the interview, you might present a circumstance to see whether the candidate can assess things.

  • Time management abilities

This is true for all job profiles. If a candidate completes a task in 5 hours when the real-time requirement is just 2 hours, it is apparent that the individual cannot manage time. Look for a candidate that can complete a large amount of work in a single day.

Digital marketing is distinct from other job descriptions in that it is both complex and creative. And if a digital marketer can manage their time well, they can accomplish several objectives.

Interview questions that can help you filter and qualify the suitable candidates to meet your expectations and company goals

  • What digital marketing channels have you worked with before?

The goal of the first inquiry is simple: you want to discover what channels they can currently use for marketing initiatives.

A strong applicant will include the following information in their response:

  1. The channels on which they have worked include channel creation, campaign management, optimization, and reporting
  2. The length of time they have used specific media professionally is
  3. The outcomes obtained on such media for comparable brands

It is critical to note that an experienced digital marketing expert candidate can and should learn new platforms in the future. So, it’s not always a deal-breaker if they don’t have expertise with the platform you utilize.

  • What digital marketing efforts have you engaged in, and what role did you play in them?

Any digital marketing candidate can claim to have worked on a project, but this does not always imply that they actively worked on a campaign or had hands-on involvement.

As a result, determining how significant a role they played in the success of a marketing campaign is critical in determining whether they can genuinely execute ideas.

Top digital marketing candidates should have the following skills:

  1. What their function was, and what specific duties they were in charge of
  2. Whether they worked on a campaign from beginning to end or whether they joined a project later on,
  3. Did they participate in strategy, or were they only task executors?
  4. What the results were and how long it took to achieve them
  5. Who else worked on the project (copywriters, designers, coders, and so on), and how was the collaborative process?
  • How would you create KPIs and assess the effectiveness of specific marketing campaigns?

Digital marketing is more than simply authoring and basic setup; professionals must also be able to track outcomes and continuously improve campaigns.

Make sure to question your applicants about the key performance indicators (KPIs) they believe are vital in marketing projects. Indeed, you may further test them by inquiring about specific platforms and goals, such as retargeting for conversions or social media advertisements for brand recognition.

Any competent marketing candidate will be able to define the KPIs they would follow, why they are necessary to track, how frequently they would assess progress and generate reports, and even how they would tweak a poorly performing campaign to get better results.

Here are some tips for what information to look for:

  1. An ideal candidate should emphasize the significance and benefits of daily, weekly, monthly, quarterly, and annual accomplishment reports and what each report should have.
  2. Strong candidates should mention Google Analytics, Social Media Analytics, Cyfe, Supermetrics, SEMRush, Ahrefs, and Moz and should be asked about their expertise with each.
  • What do you hope to accomplish in the next quarter, and what do you hope to achieve in the first year?

When onboarding a new team member, many firms establish expectations for the work. This is a colossal error. Instead, it is better to develop such expectations before hiring or onboarding a new employee.

Although setting expectations so early may appear to be a waste of effort, it will keep you more effective because setting expectations for a position before a candidate accepts and is onboarded prepares them intellectually and emotionally for the labour involved and, therefore, more equipped for long-term success.

Because digital marketing, in particular, is so data-driven, you’ll need to know what this applicant intends to accomplish within three months of starting (the short-term objectives) and one year after starting (the long-term goals) (the long-term goals).

This will allow you to determine whether a candidate can think critically and develop meaningful marketing plans and, perhaps more crucially, whether their views and expectations coincide with yours.

Who is the Right One for You?

You now know who a digital expert is and how you can hire one. But the industry is bombarded with phoney marketers with no experience. So what can you do? This section will help you understand how you can find the right fit for you or your organization.

  • Key Area Points

Figure out the key areas where your business needs help and where you are lacking. Maybe your social media game is strong, and you need help with email marketing. An expert in social media will add less value to your business than a person with a marketing specialization. You can also choose a digital agency over a digital marketer.

  • Skill Assessments

Skill assessments are tests that are based upon real-life skills that are needed. Skill assessment saves you time when you have an overflow of resumes. It helps you to be objective and find the right person with standards.

Top 3 Skills Assessment Tools:

  1. Adaface
  2. Testdome
  3. Testgorilla
  • Alignment with your goals

Your goals drive you when there is no outside motivation. Finding a digital marketer that does not align with your plans will be a problem. Even after extensive efforts, the work would not yield the desired results. The best way to do this is to align your goals through email marketing.