I’ve yet to speak with a PropTech founder who hasn’t been burned in the process of securing good marketing talent. Rather than go into a long-winded explanation of why that is, I'm simply going to highlight the "need-to-know" points for you, right here.
When searching for a good marketing hire:
Don't be impressed by good chat, charisma, or pretty presentations. Be impressed by results. COMMERCIAL results.
Make sure THEY are asking YOU the right questions. They should be asking about your finances, your pricing model, your sales pipeline, your current acquisition strategy, market sizing, investment runway, budgets, timelines, and goals. They should also be asking about your marketing tech stack: CRM, automation, email platform, advertising, and any existing marketing relationships that exist, such as a PR company or a web agency. If they are not building in their mind a picture of your business and how it operates, they are not going to build a solution that meets the needs of that business - they will instead push an agenda that ticks their own boxes.
Check references. See Point 1: everyone talks a good game, especially people who work in sales and marketing. Make sure their reviews and references are from people who really worked with them and saw tangible commercial results from their marketing activities.
Don't expect B2B results from a B2C hire. These disciplines are COMPLETELY different. The world's greatest B2C marketer will flounder in a B2B environment and will need to be retrained. This is not a criticism, it's simply a fact.
You can teach skills, but you can't teach attitude and you can't fix a negative mindset. The best hires I ever made were junior members of the team who had little to no marketing skills, but were fast learners with a great attitude. (By stark contrast, the worst hires I ever made were charismatic people with no work ethic and an entitled attitude!) You can do more with an entry-level marketing manager who wants to be mentored and supported, than you will ever do with a mid-tier marketing manager or director who waltzes in and tells you it's time to rebrand.
Get help. As a founder, marketing is probably not your area of expertise. I know I'm blowing my own trumpet here, but there's a good reason for this: I don't want to see great startups burn their runways with bad hiring choices! Find someone who really knows B2B SaaS marketing, and pay them to help you acquire and onboard your marketing hire. Whether it's an NED, a mentorship programme, or a Portable CMO such as myself - you will save tens of thousands in runway, you will receive gold dust in strategic advice, and you will get unmatched mentorship for your new hire.
Did you find this post useful? Would you like some support in making it all happen? Book a call with me today - I'd love to chat with you!