Why you shouldn’t employ someone like me to take care of your marketing.

21 Aug

By Dee Jardine

Two years ago I left university with my BSc Marketing qualification and started applying for jobs.  I was enthusiastic and eager to get working, but to be honest I didn’t have a clue!

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As well as applying to a few highly competitive graduate schemes I interviewed for a number of small-to-medium businesses who were looking for someone at entry level to take care of their whole marketing efforts.

Now I thank my lucky stars I was unsuccessful on these occasions.  I can’t imagine how it would have felt to come into a business that had no marketing department and be solely responsible for marketing their company.  The responsibility would have been huge! I might have just got a degree in marketing, but I knew very little about marketing in practise. 

See that’s the thing about a degree, it’s all academic, the focus is on theories, research, and references.  While it’s good to know the “WHY” it’s equally important to know the “HOW”, and that’s where education is failing graduates.  For example, in my digital marketing module we learnt why digital is important, why search engine optimization is critical, and why having a website your customers can easily navigate is essential.  However, we learnt absolutely nothing about how to write ad copy, how to set up a Google Adword’s campaign or how to create persuasive landing pages.

This is why I would urge you if you’re a small business owner in Northern Ireland not to employ a recent graduate with no experience.  I understand why you might think it’s a good idea.  You know you need to market your business, you know little to nothing about marketing, and you don’t have the budget to employ someone with a lot of marketing experience, so the best option is to employ a recent marketing graduate.

By taking on a recent graduate however you’re employing someone with no experience, and as you have no one to train them, how can you expect them to learn.  You’re taking a risk with your budget, leaving it to trial and error, and guessing games. 

There is another option however, instead of spending around £1,000 per month on one recent graduate, you could take on a monthly retainer with an agency for around the same amount, maybe less, maybe more depending on your needs.  A retainer with Navajo Talk means having a team of experts work as your digital marketing department, for similar money as one inexperienced graduate.

Don’t get me wrong I’m not saying recent graduates with limited experience don’t deserve a chance.  Of course they do, like the chance Navajo Talk gave me.  Six months ago I had no experience whatsoever, the difference here is I’m part of a team, which means I gain support from my colleagues, and learn from their experience.  As a trainee I’m not expected to learn everything all in one go, it’s a process.  I’ve learnt so much in the past five to six months, but I still have loads to learn.

It’s really not as simple as just hiring a marketing graduate.


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