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How to find a true online marketing expert?

We are moving from B2B to the B2C market for our online diabetes/pre diabetes program (www.imhealth.com) and are looking to expand our on line presence. I have spoken to many folks but to truly find someone who is an EXPERT in the field of online marketing seems to be tricky (our company is in the business of reversing Type 2 diabetes and weight loss, and we use a unique integrative medicine approach that utilizes telemedicine).

Any thoughts on what specifically to look for in a candidate? Also what to be weary of?

20 Replies

Elise Connors
2
0
Elise Connors Entrepreneur
Full-Stack Digital Marketer and Customer Acquisition Specialist
I'm not sure you'll find what you're looking for.

There are a few types of marketers:

1. Those who know A LOT about one or two areas.

2. Those who know a little about A LOT of different areas.

3. Those who pretend to know A LOT but know NOTHING.

Who are you looking for?
Paul O'Brien
5
0
Paul O'Brien Entrepreneur • Advisor
Tech Economic Development and VC CMO
First stop looking for "online marketing"
That's a old fashioned term from when the internet was fresh and the new breed of marketers needed to distinguish themselves from traditional marketers. That distinction continues to evolve with digital marketer, internet marketer, and more recently "Growth Hacker" or Mar/Tech being the nom de jour.

Fact is this. The internet's technology has enabled marketing (marketers) to be analytical, real-time, search based, optimization oriented like never before. Anyone who isn't capable of "online" is being retired as quickly as we can pass a National pension and retirement program ;)

What you're going to get when you look for an "online marketing" candidate is a more often than not, a Jr. professional or one who claims to be online so as to broaden the scope of their resume.

Search out a Marketing Director or higher to get the experience you need and look to the skills you're seeking for this particular job.

Based on your tags it looks like you want Product Marketing. What else? Content marketing? Social marketing?
  • Search Marketing and SEO
  • Analytics & statistics
  • Web development (yes, Good marketers can do this)
  • Marketing automation
  • CRM
  • A/B testing or multivariate testing
  • Content marketing
  • Social marketing
  • Product marketing
  • Design
Having figured that out, here are some thoughts on how to attract them.
Nakeisha Turner
0
0
Nakeisha Turner Entrepreneur
Social Engagement Strategist | Creative Marketing Innovator
They should be familiar with current and future online marketing trends (SEO, the importance of mobile, paid advertising) etc. They should be able to assign clear goals to your online campaign that fit your business objectives. They should be able to define and develop a clear , online profile of your customers. What is their pricing model? Does it include creative? Can they integrate traditional media into your marketing mix where necessary, These are all things I present to potential clients when I explain my role as a consultant. So in reverse, I think these are the top things that should be considered as a potential client looks to decide on who to use for their online marketing program. Nakeisha Turner Digital Marketing Consultant [removed to protect privacy]
Gavin Heaton
0
0
Gavin Heaton Advisor
Digital Strategist, Advisor, Keynote Speaker
I agree with Paul O'Brien. Experience counts.

There are plenty of folks who now offer an outsourced CMO capability which may help you get the experience you need without the internal overheads. If you are after how-to guides for your startup, we have handbooks designed to get you from idea to launch and beyond.
Annette Tonti
2
0
Annette Tonti Advisor
Founder, President at The Start Exchange
Agree with Paul for the most part. I would add you need a person familiar with 'customer development'. By that I mean someone who can translate whatever needs to be packaged from your b2b to your b2c offering. Then it is a matter of creating the 'hypothesis' about which online channels will help you ramp the business. Important this person is senior enough to understand what it will take to listen to the market, make adjustments to the offering (working with your team) then retest. The online execution of marketing is fairly well defined, Paul listed the tactics. I would also be concerned that the person in charge understands how to listen to what signals you get back.
Jerome Pineau
0
0
Jerome Pineau Advisor
Digital Transformation Consultant
I agree with Paul O'Brien as well. Stay away from anything "expert", "guru" or "ninja" - ish. Overall experience and deep understanding of basic marketing principles - whether online or not - are more important than anything else IMHO. Of course there's nothing like track record and WOM either.
I actually did a small presentation on this a while back:
http://www.slideshare.net/JeromePineau/social-strategyseries-greatmarketers
Kym McNicholas
1
1
Kym McNicholas Entrepreneur
TV Host, Tech Jounalist, Director of Extreme Tech Challenge, Host of KDOW Radio's NewFocus On Innovation
I have five names I trust 100% having been covering startups since 1998. Emerson Spartz, Spartz Media Lewis Howes Tina Wells, Buzz Marketing Sean Malarkey Porter Gale, former CMO of Virgin America I'm happy to make intro's but keep in mind they're at the top of their game and likely price at that. Also, they're consultants, not full time. The best to you in your efforts! I love what you are doing! Kym
Joris Peucheret
2
0
Joris Peucheret Entrepreneur
Regional Manager Europe at MR PORTER
A true "digital" marketing expert would assess your current digital commercial and technical capability to execute digital marketing. It is back to your priorities and business objectives (user, aquisition, customer activation, revenue generation). Are you selling online or aim to generate leads as this may require variances such as dedicated UX and customer activation roadmap. What team do you have in place to ease execution (tech, design, editor for content creation, sales , etc...). Look in a candidate their ability to bring expertise relevant to your business and goals with actionable and feasible plan. Make sure you have a mix of someone who knows all channels and have worked hands on some channels. Be weary of your expectations and your available resources. I am happy to discuss and answer any questions you may have Geoff Thanks Joris Sent from Samsung Mobile
Cynthia Hernandez
1
0
Cynthia Hernandez Entrepreneur
Founder at KirinGie.Me (Social Entrepreneur)
I'd highly recommend that you find someone who is not only passionate about the topic but someone who already has connections and influence in that industry in order to make the greatest impact. Leverage your social channels connecting with the right groups and same with LinkedIn. Good luck to you. All my best, Cynthia Hernandez (480) 206-3300 Manifesto | LinkedIn | Twitter | Google+ | KirinGie.Me | Pinterest
Anton Yakovlev
1
0
Anton Yakovlev Entrepreneur
Founder of four successful businesses on two continents who can help you do the same
Totally agree with Paul in terms of there's no online and offline marketing any longer. It's just marketing, and all components of your marketing should work together. Digital part plays the main role in most cases though, so technically it could be called 'digital marketing' instead of 'online marketing'.

I believe I'm kind of expert in the field of digital marketing, as I did a lot of product and brand marketing in my life. I never ever dealt with diabetes market though, and I'm quite sure that to be really a greate fit for your team your CMO should have really huge expertise in the domain.

Where could you find a perfect marketer for you? Just continue looking for. Somehow it happens. It just takes time to find a gem. There's no marketplace for digital marketers for diabetes.
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