Good morning, Marketers, do you need to know search marketing to hire for search marketing?

Many agencies and brands work with recruiters and/or their own HR departments when looking to bring on new talent, and just like hiring for any other skilled job, that may lead to some unforeseen friction.

Mark Preston, head of SEO at Hakim Group, recently tweeted about this, and while he was primarily referring to SEO, many of the comments and takeaways apply to PPC as well:

  • “I think they need at least deeper than surface-level knowledge,” said Alayna Frankenberry, “It’s too easy for applicants with little experience to throw out some buzzwords and dazzle recruiters who don’t know the right question to ask.”
  • “There should always be an SEO as part of the interview process but recruiters can get by with selecting candidates as long as there is a base understanding and they know what questions to ask and what to look out for,” said Ryan Ogilvie.
  • “I always felt I’ve been my own best recruiter,” said Jackie Chu, “There’s a lot of nuance to how people talk about their work but you need to weed out the ‘best practice/I just read blogs’ SEOs to the ones with actual SEO knowledge balanced with business acumen.”
  • “When I was hiring at my old job I sent them [LinkedIn] profiles of folks that would be the perfect candidate to use as examples,” said Topher Kohan, “I hired 2 rockstars that way so that seemed to work.”

If you’re working on the organic side, there’s a lot of benefit to educating your entire organization about SEO (particularly everyone who touches the site), which will also help you avoid this issue. In-house SEO Adviser for Search Engine Land Jessica Bowman has published a series of articles on embedding SEO into the fabric of your organization — this article is a great place to start.

George Nguyen,

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