You've decided it's time to grow your business and hire an in-house link marketer. Let's assume you're looking at someone to market your business online and not simply build a mass quantity of links.
Whether you're a search engine optimization (SEO) company or a retailer, there are two important skills needed for the job. Ability to analyze information and marketing skills are two essential traits to consider when hiring a link marketer.
A good link marketer is much like someone who analyzes stocks for a living. They have to take in a large amount of data and make a sound recommendation. This is often based on their knowledge and skills. The rest is highly subjective. Rarely do they all agree. For those not familiar with the stock market, look at the recommendations on Yahoo.
The same differences of opinion are prevalent among link marketers. They look at various sets of data and then make recommendations. It's important that your applicant can analyze information to make sound decisions that meet your company's goals.
The resume can be a good starting point, but have some relevant questions to ask in the interview about decision making. Find something on their resume and have them explain how they came to make a particular decision. You're looking to determine their thought process.
- Do they see the world more in black and white or do they factor in all the grays?
- How do they handle conflicting information?
- Do they see the big picture?
Marketing & Public Relations Skills
This skill is becoming more important as search engines continue to devalue certain types of links and place more value on other links and indicators of quality. Just look at the recent investigation by Nichola Stott on anchor text of top ranking sites in Google. Then look at how often marketing came up in the recent group interview of link building experts.
One doesn't need a marketing degree to be a great marketer. This is especially true today with the rapid rate of change in technology. Some of the best marketers of tomorrow are teenagers going viral on YouTube today. They know marketing -- they understand the technology.
Include questions in the interview such as:
- "How would you market XYZ product to a college audience?"
- "If you had $100 and one week, how would you launch a new clothing line for baby boomers?"
Of course, customize the questions to your business.
While the technical aspects of link building can be taught, it's much harder to teach the creative side of marketing. That's why it's important to find someone who naturally thinks like a marketer.
I'm sure many who view link building from a purely technical standpoint will disagree. As mentioned before, link marketers are like stock analysts -- we rarely agree.
These are just two important skills to consider when hiring a link marketer. There are many other factors to be included in the interview and hiring process.
Remember, good link building is just good marketing.
Meet Your Favorite Search Engine Watch Contributors
Many of SEW's leading expert contributors will be at ClickZ Live, the new online and digital marketing event kicking off in New York (March 31-April 3). Hear from the likes of: Thom Craver, Josh Braaten, Lisa Barone, Simon Heseltine, Josh McCoy, Lisa Raehsler, Greg Jarboe, Dan Cristo, Joseph Kerschbaum, John Gagnon, Eric Enge and more!