Why Hiring Practices in the Marketing World Are Upside Down.


I’ve spent my entire working life in the Advertising world. When I started my career there were basically two kinds of agencies, Advertising and PR.

Today, the marketing world is much more fragmented and segmented as Marketers like to say.

In the New Normal,Advertising is also Digital Marketing, Social Media, Lead Gen, Analytics, SEO, Content Marketing and any other segment you work in and promote.

In the Old Normal my elevator speech would have been much shorter but life changed the course of the world that some companies can’t see.

Most companies look for talent in the old way. They model the future, on the hiring practices of the past when trying to attract their future. That’s how I was hired so let’s repeat it. In the New Normal if you say that’s the way it’s always been done you will be disrupted.

Today PPC people, SEO and SEM people, Digital Marketing People, Analysts, Data Scientist, Content Writers,  Programmers and I could go on can work on either side of the street. Agencies want them and clients want them and they are very scarce.

There is more competition for talent, and everybody wants young talent.

One rarely searches LinkedIn for an Account Supervisor.

The staffing hierarchy of today is senior people and junior people and a few middle level people.

Companies post notices saying we want Rock Stars. Rock Stars today aren’t sitting around looking for company notices. They are creating their own worlds and may not even want a job.

I asked a 28 year old with nine employees the other day how to find an entry Level PPC person today. He said, “Train them.”  He is right but nobody trains employees these days.

Today you see ads that say Junior Strategist. Really? I thought that planning was heavy lifting and what agencies get paid the big bucks for.

You also see Account Coordinator, Entry Level Marketing Assistant, and Influencer Marketing Coordinator aplenty.  Everybody is looking for the same entry level people.

When I see job postings for a Junior Digital Marketing Specialist, I think how can you be a Junior Specialist?

When my network leads me into the recruiting space, companies tell me that they only use outside resources to help them find senior talent and not junior talent and yet junior talent is the hardest to find. It should be totally the other way around.

I was a judge recently at a local university, that I like a lot. My daughter graduated from there. The students were from the advertising, creative, PR, social media worlds. These are the people that companies will want to hire in a year or two.

I followed up with them on LinkedIn and most didn’t have much game. I’ve seen this time and time again. Snap Chat for sure, Instagram and Facebook? Definitely!

Only 22% of LinkedIn users are between the ages of 18 and 29.  Yet for most companies that is their preferred method of recruiting. One size fits all. Most agencies and clients would say that is bad targeting.

That is why companies need to reinvent their hiring practices and think of other ways to recruit their Rock Stars.


Connect with Hank on LinkedIn, Twitter, & Facebook:


Read: Does It Matter Where Your Agency is Located?

Can Your HR Department Find the Best Digital Talent?


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