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In episode #621, Eric and Neil explain how marketers are full of shit. Tune in to hear how you can decipher a bullshitter from a talented marketer.
TIME-STAMPED SHOW NOTES:
- [00:27] Today’s Topic: Marketers Are Full of Shit
- [00:34] Marketers always talk a big game, but their results speak for themselves.
- [01:08] When hiring marketers, make sure whatever they claim to have done is backed up by proof.
- [01:45] Eric’s friend had to fire his marketing guy, because the marketer used up too many resources.
- [02:16] You must absolutely require proof of success and pay them for a trial period (run a series of paid tests).
- [02:48] Always test out a working relationship before you pull the trigger.
- [03:20] Neil doesn’t care what your title is, he is only focused on efficacy and results.
- [03:43] Eric and Neil can easily provide proof of their results.
- [04:05] “What is the most impressive win of your marketing career thus far?” is Eric’s favorite interview question. Once you start pressing for details, you can tell whether a candidate is lying.
- [04:40] Neil likes to show candidates his website and ask what they would do to fix any issues.
- [05:05] This is a great way to see if they can think on their feet or improve upon anything. It shows you if they know what they are talking about.
- [05:41] That’s all for today!
- [05:43] Go to Singlegrain.com/Giveway for a special marketing tool giveaway!
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Full Transcript of The Episode
Eric Siu: Welcome to another episode of Marketing School. I'm Eric Siu.
Neil Patel: I'm Neil Patel.
Eric Siu: Today, we're going to talk about why marketers are full of shit. Neil, what are your thoughts around this?
Neil Patel: Marketers always talk a big game on how they're good at stuff, they're the best paid, they're the best SEOs, but where are their own results? If you're so good, where's your own website, where's your own traffic? Heck, if you don't have your own website ... I'm not saying it has to be in the marketing niche. It could be on anything, or if you've never created your own website, but you've done stuff for other people, don't just talk about how the company grew. Yeah, you may have worked for companies, like Airbnb, but they're already popular, and they're already growing fast. Show me specifically what you've done to prove that you're a great marketer.
The reason Eric and I are bringing up this topic, a lot of you guys are trying to hire marketers or work with other people. Whether it's an agency or hiring people full-time, in-house, you have to make sure whatever the person claims that they're good at, they can show you proof that they've done it.
Eric Siu: This is huge. I was at a traffic conversion conference last week, and a lot of guys I talked to, it's like, "Eric, I'm really looking for a Director of Marketing or a CMO or a VP of Marketing," but the thing is they're not looking for a Mr. Or Miss Senior that needs to hire an executive team behind him or her. This is interesting, also, because I talked to another friend who runs a business that's doing very well, and he had to can his marketing guy that used to work with him. The relationship was going sour because that guy was requiring all these resources. The marketers that we're, Neil and I, are talking about right now are the people that can actually do the work, bring results, and, eventually, these are people that are growing into a Senior Director level role where they can also manage people, too.
These are people ... I had this discussion with someone else last week where these are people, probably 25-28 or so, that are really taking off in their career, and these people are hard to find. In terms of marketers, in terms of how you evaluate these people, the first thing is, yes, you have to absolutely see that these people have actually done work. Also, at the same time, when you're hiring these people, you don't need to necessarily pull the trigger right away. You can hire them on a project basis. Have them work on something, pay them for their time. This is something that Basecamp ... I guess it's no longer 37 signals, but this is what they do. They run them through a test. Sometimes, they run the test, maybe it might last a day. It might be a couple days, might be a week, might be a couple weeks, but at least you get to see how the working relationship is before you make a decision.
This is the same thing with how I hire designers and developers, too. You want to give them a little test run first before you just pull the trigger and say, "I'm going to commit to you long-term."
Neil Patel: The way I structure it is very similar. I don't consider it a test. I consider it like assignment. I'll pay them as a contractor. I'll make them go and do something. If the results are good and I'm happy with what they're doing, great, I'll work with you. Maybe we can figure out a full-time role and then go from there. A lot of people are like, "Oh, I'm good at this. I want a lot of money," or whatever. Prove it first. You prove it, I'm flexible. I don't care what your title is. I'm purely based on, "Hey, what can you do for me?" You produce certain results, I'm very flexible and generous where I'm like, "All right. You want 100, you want 200,000, whatever it may be, but if you can provide the ROI and the results, it makes no difference to me."
Eric Siu: Very similar vein, let's say, for example, someone wants to work with Neil, someone wants Neil for marketing consulting or someone reaches out to me. It's very easy for us to just pull up our websites and be like, "Hey, look at the stuff we rank for." This is no joke. Let's say they're talking to other people, too. It's like, "Why should we work with you?" It's very easy for Neil just to show his results. Same thing for me, too. Well, the proof is in the pudding. If you're looking for a marketer, here's the question I ask actually when it comes to recruiting people. What is the most impressive win of your marketing career thus far? Then they'll say they did so and so. Then, when you start diving in, "Well, what did you do exactly? What did you contribute? Well, what was your plan here? What was your thought process here," when you start diving in more and more and you keep asking more questions, you really get to the crux of it and you can start to feel when people are uncomfortable, and you can immediately tell when people are lying.
The thing is a lot of marketers out there are lying. Ninety-nine percent of them will say they can do something, but, at the end of the day, it's really the one percent out there that are, well, really that good.
Neil Patel: You know what's funny? The way I interview most marketers is, on the spot, I'll give them a problem for my website and say, "How would you fix this?" They'll be like, "Oh, I need to analyze the site," or, "I need to look into things." I'll turn around my monitor or I'll say on the phone, if it's virtual, I'm like, "Oh, wait, just pull it up right now. I don't mind being on hold for a few minutes," and just hearing what they're saying. You don't give them too much time because you don't want them to think it too much through. You want to see if they can think really fast and come up with ideas or solutions or figure out what's wrong. Even if they can't, but they can spot some things that you can improve upon that aren't that great or if they say, "Oh, I can see you did X, Y, and Z," at least you know they know somewhat of what they're talking about.
Eric Siu: Neil and I talked about the most creative marketers that we know are typically the ones that are affiliate marketers. They know how to get around things and they know how to just really ... They have to be creative because they're really aiming for a very slim margin. Keep that in mind. It's really important to build your own framework. What Neil and I do, that's really based on our experience. Neil, anything else to add before we hop off.
Neil Patel: That's it. If you want our daily marketing goodies, go to singlegrain.com/giveaway, and we'll see you tomorrow.
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