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Is Your Staffing Agency Ready for An In-house Marketing Team?

As the owner or a managing director of a staffing firm, you may have already come across this dilemma, ”Are we ready for an in-house marketing team? ” In this video, Jeff Peliccio, founder of Allied Insight will walk you through the checklist of understanding whether you’re ready for an in-house team or not. He also sheds some light on what to do if the answer is yes, and what the expectation should be from a newly formed marketing team. 

Before hiring a marketing team, it’s important that you have your foundations of the brand in place. Just like a person, your brand has its own personality, vision & a unique reason to do things. Exploring what they are fundamentally can truly set your brand apart and give your marketing team a springboard to launch from. 

The next important aspect is looking at your current team. And although some may consider that counter intuitive, but it is important to find a manager to lead the marketing team. If you don’t have someone you can rely on, make sure to prioritize the leadership trait in recruitment. 

Then, you need to figure out your budget. And you need to consider more than the salaries when budgeting. A marketing team in 2022 without the right tools will fail to deliver the maximum output. You need to consider all the tools your marketing team will use and estimate a total expense. 

That begins the hunt for talent. For a marketing team, you’ll need a leader who strategizes, someone powerful with words to craft your narrative in social media & website blogs & you’re going to need design. Design can create that unique space for your brand where from any visual, even without the logo, people can relate an image to you and your brand.  

It is likely that you will need to allow your team to click for a month or two, and you need to go through that period of owning the brand and ideating with the team for a two to three more months before you start to see some results. 

But don’t get frustrated. Connect with us for any additional information or if you want coaching for your newly formed marketing team.

Jeff Pelliccio 0:02
Good morning. Good afternoon. And good evening. I’m Jeff Pelliccio, the founder of allied insight and we’re back again for another bite sized segment in order to dig into some little morsels that will help out your staffing agency. This week, we’re going to be talking about the main question, right? Is your staffing agency ready for an in house marketing team? It seems like a fundamental question that like you should probably have on your own. But I do want to be able to provide some insight to you based on my own experience, after running a marketing departments for a couple different agencies, some larger firms, as well as obviously owning a marketing agency, and providing marketing content for our clients. So in kind of breaking into this segment, really we’re going to do is we’re going to start off making sure that sort of the foundational components are in place first. So when we’re talking about those foundational components, we’re really talking about those things that make your brand a brand. So beyond the identity, like making sure that there are those foundational elements of your mission, your vision, your core values, and even like foundational principles, which I don’t think a lot of people tend to talk about. We all know what those first three are, right. So like making sure that we understand like what it is that we’re doing for our clients, what our bigger vision is for the world. And then also, obviously, the things that make us tick, foundational principles are a little bit different. Those are sort of those things that you would get into, like those details around, like the way that you go about the things that you do, they kind of are those elements that make you unique in the marketplace, and allow you to differentiate a little bit better against your competition. Next year, looking at things like your value propositions and your brand centric, competitive advantages. So having these things in place in advance, like knowing what types of terms you already have approved, that resonate with your audience that get people to say, yes, either from an employer or a candidate perspective, those things would be really valuable to have in advance of putting your marketing team in place, because it gives them a launching point to start from. So making sure that you have some of those fundamentals, as I said, like those background elements, those core values, those foundational principles, and even some of the things that make you stand out as a brand, would likely be able to sort of like provide a better springboard for putting a marketing team in place. Now, if you don’t necessarily have those things in place, it’s not awful to start incorporating the marketing department to be able to give you a hand with that. But a lot of those elements like that, that that mission, like the reason why the organization was created really needs to come from sort of the heart and soul of the Creator themselves. So trying to task an individual group with sort of coming up with those fundamental things that make you you, it’s gonna be a really challenging space to be in, especially for a new team member who’s just getting acquainted with the brand. So hammering out some of those details in advance will help make that a lot smoother, that onboarding a lot smoother. And give your marketing team a bit of a runway for them to be successful. After you have those things in place. Next, we want to look at obviously, the business needs as well as the corporate initiatives and goals. So from a business needs perspective, you know, you might already have an idea of what gaps exist from a sales enablement or marketing recruitment resource type thing, how it is that you’re going into presentations, and whether or not you need some additional items in order to kind of leverage your brand up or bolster your messaging. At the same time, corporate initiatives and goals are going to drive a lot of those, a lot of those criteria or a lot of those priorities. So having those initiatives in place, understand what your goals are for the year understanding sort of where it is that you want your organization, your staffing firm to be, as you progress through the quarters, will be important to be able to identify what types of a team orchestration you need to have in place, what types of talent you need, in order to give you those like those bits that will allow you to hit those goals to meet your initiatives, and to support the rest of your business ecosystem.

The next step is you’ll want to look at your existing landscape. So your existing talent pool and I know that sounds a little bit weird when we’re talking about growing an in house team. But a lot of what your marketing team is going to do needs to be led by somebody. So with that, you know, what do you have for marketing expertise on your current management team or within your current company structure where they’re going to need leadership strategy, guidance, direction execution, like someone who understands like those fundamental pieces will help to sort of give the environment that a marketing team especially a new marketing team needs in order to travel down the right path and and sort of accelerate that learning curve a little bit more. If you don’t have someone in place that has those capabilities or that skill set, or you don’t have Have someone who has had prior experience in in maneuvering a marketing team in order to get deliverables and output and ROI from that group, then you you are starting at a disadvantage. And it’s going to definitely dictate what type of resources you need to start with. So just sort of keep that in mind. Next, we’re looking at budget. In this case, we’re talking about real monetary budget. So when you’re planning out this team, it is a little bit more than just what budget you have for headcount, you really want to take into consideration the tools and the technology that they’re going to need to perform their job functions properly. So you know, do you need, do you need content resources, in order to be able to do audits or editing, do you need design resources so that that way, they can actually create those like really cool elements that are your brand that are on brand, and that will get delivered externally? You know, keeping in mind, there are those resources and much the same way that you would assess a tech stack, when you’re going in and you’re looking at those solutions that you want, you know, if your staffing agency wants to really put a hard drive on automation, well, then there’s going to be obviously automation resources that needs to be put in place, in order for your marketing team to develop communication that can get put into that into that task, or that that project. Next, we’re gonna look at the available budget of time. So time for management as well as time for guidance. Again, when you’re putting this team in place, there is going to be a requirement of your time in order to get them pointed in the right direction, and kind of in each of their individual swim lanes, but also orchestrating their outputs. So that that way, it gives you that meaningful thing that you want at the end of the day. So digging into that making sure that you have the the right amount of time available to be able to train and orchestrate and coordinate those efforts in the marketing group will be really important. And so just again, while you’re budgeting things, make sure that time is one of those elements that you’re on fact budgeting. So now we’re looking at the desired skills needed to support the delivery. Again, this is going to relate back to those those business needs, the corporate goals, the corporate initiatives, you really want to sort of break down to the extent that you can, what you think you need in order to be able to get those things accomplished. So from a sales from a business needs perspective, there might be sales enablement, resources that you need to have, you might need to be able to do sales tax, or at least create a template that’s on brand that allows your sales team to be able to do their own sales tax, you might need, you know, one pagers or print assets, I mean, we are starting to get back to a little bit more of the in person environments. So perhaps print assets might be important to you in the very near future, you might need web development done, you might want a whole bunch of landing pages that you want to run a campaign for, maybe you’re going to start doing more events, you see events starting to pop up a little bit more now. So maybe you’re starting to get back to wanting to coordinate some in person events, and you’ll need someone to be able to manage those things. Again, as you’re looking at your initiatives, as you’re looking at what your strategy is to build business going forward, you’ll want to make sure that you’re acquiring the right talent inside the marketing team to support the rest of the group so that that way you can better align those initiatives with their deliverables.

And so that begins the hunt for talent. So, um, you know, I know that we mentioned, you know, do you have someone in house? Do you have someone on the leadership team or within the management structure that’s already been involved or managed a group of creatives, it does operate and function a bit differently than than managing a group of salespeople. And so for that, you know, answer that question honestly, to yourselves, do you have that person that can fundamentally a has the time to be able to support this group and be has the experience to support the group? If the answer is no, then honestly, you’re going to be starting off this talent search this hunt. For someone who’s a hands on marketing leader, you’re going to want someone who not only understands the fundamentals of putting together strategy structure, who not only understands the fundamentals of like sort of orchestrating, obviously, what the deliverables are, but all can also hands on approach this, they can actually get into the software and kind of work through some of the bits and pieces. And with that said, we all know that unicorns are fantastic, but they’re really, really hard to come by. They’re also very risky to keep in your pen. And I say that because if you were so fortunate as to find a unicorn that can come in and be the jack of all trades and knock it out with a very high level of proficiency. The reality is, is that when that person is no longer with you, it will also leave a very large gap in your team. So kind of keep that in mind as you’re sort of pursuing what these individuals are and what talents and skills they bring to the table. Make sure that you’re not putting so many eggs in that one singular basket that should that basket, either go away fold on a flight of stairs, whatever it is, right. Should that basket win the lotto that um that you’re not putting yourself into a precarious situation that makes it more challenging for you to deliver and makes you take steps back in, in your approach and your delivery for marketing to support your organization. So from there, you know, we have that fundamental leader in place that’s hands on, we know that they can actually support one particular initiative or two, obviously, strategy and direction is going to be very important. As well as probably like some light execution in certain areas, maybe they’ve got a an influence of design or content. But outside of that leadership role, you’re also going to be looking for someone that can do content, and I sort of sandwich in here, because you’re starting a marketing team. That’s where this conversation is sort of, originating from, I kind of lumped together that content mark on SEO, now, it’s a really hard combination to come by. But typically speaking, if you find someone who could do long form content, those are all of your sort of thought leadership, blogs, and all of those kinds of things. If you could find someone that can do that stuff, then they likely can also be trained, or they can adapt to short form copy. Short Form copy is that stuff that lives on your website, that’s the stuff that goes into those specific containers on different pages, whether it be your homepage, or landing pages, or your services page, or whatever, right. It’s also the type of copy or the type of writing that gets orchestrated, that goes into your social media. So having that person be able to sort of handle both your blog article thought leadership, driving content that also helps support SEO and conversions onto your website, you’ll also want that person to be able to maybe do dual function, and be able to also support that shorter form content. I don’t think bridging that gap as a huge ask, where it does become a little bit challenging is where you try to find that person who can also do SEO. So fundamentally out of the gate, the unicorn would be the person that can do the trifecta, and then also the images and everything else. In this instance, we’re backing off of that just a little bit. If you could find someone that could do the long form content that’s willing to participate in short form or copywriting, that would be great, then it often it opens the opportunity to train them on SEO. So then you start to be able to get the best of all worlds inside that content engine inside that one person until it makes sense for you to bring on additional people to help support more volume and more messaging. Next is design. Never underestimate the power and the benefits of having a phenomenal designer on your team. You know, honestly, when you’re looking at designers, those are those people who should be able to interpret that brand, elevate your brand, and also be able to have your brand get noticed absence of your logo, right, that’s really what you’re looking for here.

You want someone that can understand who you are in the space and provide an amazing digital, visual digital footprint to your group. So that when you’re when you’re administering content, whether it be on your website, in a job board, on social media, in a PowerPoint presentation on a printed piece of material, whatever it is, that when you remove that logo, it is still very clear and present that that is your brand. So having a really strong designer on your team that can help orchestrate those fundamentals, I would say would also be a priority in this space. As you kind of move through now we start kind of getting into like maybe some of those nuts and bolts where maybe it’s not a full time role, maybe it’s a part time or even a half part time, like a quarter time role. But front end development is important. Obviously, you’re gonna want to make sure that you can amend your website, make those adjustments. Now your designer, if you’re lucky to find that sort of like dual purpose, you might find a designer who has capabilities of doing some light HTML and some CSS that can get you by, you know, in that designer phase. And we’ll actually just go back to that for a second. In this particular role, if you can find a web designer who has a little bit of experience as it comes to doing some print design work, you might get the best of both worlds in that in that role, because now that person understands the restrictions that come along with web design. But can also do that additional, that additional design output for you when it comes to like that static stuff, those images for blogs, things for social media templates for for presentations, and decks and stuff like that. You also get the benefit there too. That would be a great dual function. And a web designer typically has some of those skill sets for front end development. Make life easy for yourself, you know, as best you can, and try to not pull too many strings together at once in order to make this happen. But that would be certainly an avenue that I would recommend traveling. So now let’s just say for instance, the designer doesn’t have that skill set and you do have a lot of ideas that you want to accomplish when it comes to doing your development. If your website, at this point, you might want to look for, like I said, maybe a half time or a quarter time developer, someone who’s willing to invest a certain amount of time into your organization that can then perform these functions for you, you are going to have some website cleanup we all do, no matter who you are. So you’re gonna have some website cleanup, you’re gonna want to repair and fix certain things and make sure that you don’t have duplicate content, competing keywords, toxic backlinks, you know, a lack of organization to, you know, the the fundamental media components that will maybe drag down performance or slow down the speed. So, you’ll want to make sure that you’ve got someone that can kind of get in there and do some of those elements, as far as it pertains to like the website and how it performs. Also, as a side note, some of these people do have some SEO experience. So again, like starting to bridge that gap a little bit and get a little bit of overlap between your team would be massively beneficial, especially as you’re building out your initial team structure. Last, and certainly not least, I would recommend, as you’re building this team, there might be a gap, you might have a skills gap that you need to address early and quickly. And so with that, you know, look to those outsourced agency partners that can help you in the interim. So individual, like companies or organizations, agencies that are familiar with working with in house teams that know how to sort of like insert themselves provide that level of support that you need, so that that way you can continue marching along with where it is that you’re headed. And also, maybe someone who understands the fundamentals of growing a team specifically and can align and partner with you on that would also I would recommend, you know, be a good fine for you. Now, to come to the end, right, you’ve got all these pieces in place, we’ve already talked about. And we’ve talked about a lot very quickly. I mean, we’re we’re trying to keep these into bite sized segments. So I apologize for the speed. But as you come to the end, you want to make sure that you give this team time to fall in love. And it’s it’s sort of a weird concept. But if you think about it, you know, in order for them to celebrate a brand and to celebrate messaging, and to celebrate who you are, it does take time for them to get their arms around it. And to really be able to sort of like, feel like they’re a part of that brand, the more that they feel like they’re a part of that brand, the more they will be deliberate in their approach. And the more the more consistent the orchestration of that content. And that delivery will be when that happens, that’s when you really start getting very impactful marketing for your staffing agency. So make sure that you’re baking in that time to have those conversations to to help your team fall in love with your brand and who you are to identify better ways and innovative ways to position your products and your services. And, and also, you know how it is that you can get in front of the audience better.

I would say, you know, generally speaking, you’re looking at probably about a month or two months, for that sort of light bulb to go off for them to sort of click in and say like, oh, like Yeah, I get it, I know exactly who we are, what we’re doing. And then from there, you’re probably still looking at a handful more months to where they’re going to be testing and trying things and they’re going to you know, they’re going to bump into stuff every once in a while. And so just plan for that, right, you probably have a good I would say three to five month window, where there’s going to have to be you know, that falling in love, there’s going to be a bit of adoption, there’s going to be some innovation, there’s going to be ideation. And then there’s also going to be monitoring and checking. So you’ll want to make sure that you have that sort of setup in your favor. So that that way you’re kind of planning accordingly. These are the things that I look at when I consider you know, building out a team when I was building my own team when I was working at marketing agencies directly. These are also the things that I provide in terms of like coaching, when I’m talking to our existing clients, and they want to, they want to, you know, start venturing down this path. You know, staffing firms that are in and around that I would say like 20 million ish mark, give or take, you know, those are the companies that are starting to look to establish at least one or two people headcount in the department so that that way, they can be a little bit more reactionary, when the opportunity comes across the fence that, um, that does require an immediate attention to be able to like ramp it up and make an adjustment immediately. And so with that said, you know, if you’re in this ballpark, if you’re in this arena, and you’re considering putting together an in house team, you want some advice, or you want to kind of talk through the bits and pieces, I’ll be more than happy to make myself available, simply go to our website, Allied insight comm and click on any of the banners of connect with us, you’ll have access to my calendar directly. And I’ll be more than happy to jump on a call and see what I could do to give you a hand. I hope you found this segment helpful. Stay tuned, we do have our April list coming up where I am inviting some additional thought leaders from different companies to to join me to talk about things like change management, website technology and automation. So hopefully this coming month, we’ll have some additional morsels for you guys to chew on to sort of, you know, advance the ball and move the needle at your staffing agencies. Again, thank you so much for joining us. on this on this LinkedIn live and I look forward to seeing you on the next week have a great day

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