May 22, 2017
Succession Planning 24 January 2017
Top 4 Ways to Evaluate Candidates for Senior Level Marketing Positions
Gisel Malek
hiring for marketing positions, hiring and recruiting, evaluating candidates

Great Marketers understand how to sell themselves and bring their creative ideas to the attention of those who matter most. You don’t have to have the word “marketer” in your job title to be a good one, either. Anyone that understands the value of demonstrating who they are to get what they want shares the many desired attributes of a marketer. 

So, what are the most important things to look for and how do you evaluate someone for those skills? 


1. Initiative

Showing initiative to answer questions, ask new ones, and solve problems that have yet to be found is important for any senior level position. You know you want to hire someone who shows initiative, but you are not certain how to evaluate this skill. You can conduct a project where candidates would be working on a project together to accomplish a common goal. Take a look at any current challenges your company is having or potential strategies you're looking to test. Have candidates take a shot at building a strategy or even run a small campaign. By having them work together you can easily spot candidates who rise above the rest and those who wait until asked. You can actively watch and determine which candidate is taking on the most tasks and who's doing the bare minimum. See which candidates are asking questions, getting clarification and which are reaching out to other team members. Performance during the project is highly likely to be part of their working habit already. 


2. Creativity

Keeping up with trends is one thing, but creating your own is another! Creativity is one of the most difficult things to evaluate in a candidate throughout the hiring process. Giving out homework assignments to see how people think, how they strategize and the solutions they come up with is the advice of Scott McDowell, senior consultant CHM management consulting. People understand that it can’t be done during a traditional interviewing process, so setting in place an opportunity to see in real time how your candidate deals with the same situations they would be dealing with if they are hired is a golden opportunity to get it right the first time. These projects could deal with everything from visuals, copywriting to execution tactics. Creativity can be shown in many ways but one of our favorites is flexibility. Watch that everything stays on point with your brand and look for the out of the box solutions that aren't "the norm". Giving limitations can push candidates to get creative with resources or strategy. Hiring for creativity means you should have complete trust in their creative vision, so designing a project that would give you insight into what their vision is would help answer questions about their qualifications. 


3. Numbers

At the end of the day, numbers matter the most. It’s not enough to hire someone who has had experience with analytics but has proven how to make positive changes and has measured his/her successes. That’s right, numbers without results are like Tupperware without the lids. Useless at that point, right?

How do you make sure your new marketing manager has a clear understanding and a proven track record with analytics? A great example would be to set up a challenge for your candidate to analyze a spreadsheet of various stats on how much readership a pretend blog is getting and what they would suggest A/B testing to garner better results. You could even use real life examples and see how they would approach the problem. Challenges can be completed in a shorter amount of time but can tell you a lot about how your candidate thinks, the decisions they make that could determine future leadership styles, strategy, etc. 


4. Social Media

We all know social media is not going anywhere, right? It’s important for your marketing manager to be on the forefront of what the latest social sharing site is and how to implement that into the social media marketing strategy. He or she may use it for personal use and know how to use it, but using it for business is a lot different than using it for personal use. How do you know how social media savvy your new marketing manager really is? What you are really looking for here is how will they be using social media to drive measurable results. Ask your candidate to put together a strategy of how they would accomplish getting more social followers or visits to a site or landing page using social media. They need to know how to craft the right messages that will help reach the right audience, so put their writing skills to good use by asking them to craft social media postings and coming up with strategies to of which sites to use based on the product and company. You could also ask them to put together a tech stack of what they would do with an allocated budget and how they would account for everything. This way you're able to see what resources they are using, if they've done their homework on your brand and what findings they uncover.


The next time you need to fill a position in your marketing department, you will be better equipped to determine who is your perfect candidate. These are our ways to evaluate senior level marketing candidates, if you know more please leave a comment below!


Do away with traditional hiring methods, and start evaluating your candidates today!