How to hire a digital marketer

How to Hire a Digital Marketing Expert for your Start-Up?

Published on October 2nd, 2022


Digital Marketing is the buzzword that turns the heads of most traditional companies as well as the Gen-Z ventures Why? Check this out: Gen Z most frequently use YouTube (95%), TikTok (67%), and Instagram (62%) according to hootsuite. And its only a matter of time till Gen-Z dominates the workforce.

Today, everything has a digital presence and it has become a thriving competition between similar organizations to stay on top of their game and promote their product with the help of digital marketers, to give your business that extra push.

Now that you are reading this article and are well past the first paragraph, we can clearly see that you have an open requirement for digital marketing resources or you want to ace the art of hiring the best one for your organization. When hiring a digital marketer be it a freelancer, an agency, or an individual, you need to vet their best features and potentials that might be the best fit for your company.

In this article, you will find answers to all your questions such as, “How to hire top digital marketing experts?”, “How much does it cost to hire a digital marketer?” and “What are key skills you should be looking out for while hiring digital marketers?”

When you start a new business, you are well-focused on how to get the first customer. While some companies may lean on old strategies such as print ads, billboards, and flyers, many others have started to rely on a more evolved technique, i.e, digital marketing.

Let us make it simple for you. How many devices do you have near you right now? Are you reading this content on a laptop, mobile, or tablet? The consumption of information has shifted from offline to online.

Digital connection has transformed the way we share information and buy things. That's why digital marketing is so important – it's affordable, fast, measurable, and engaging. So if you want your business to succeed, you need to start thinking about digital marketing from the very beginning.

What is Digital Marketing: The Holy Grail of Customer Acquisition for Startups

Start-ups are always trying to gain a competitive edge in their industry, but they often lack the resources of bigger companies. Digital marketing is a powerful tool that can help them connect with their target audience, track and analyze customer behavior, and get insights that can help them improve their business.

Digital marketing makes your brand visible! With numerous ads and campaigns online, your product is marketed well and you will be able to make an online presence. According to an analysis by digital coast marketing, 85.5% of the total US population is active on the internet.

With such a large chunk of the population being active on the internet, digital marketing is bound to bring giant heaps of customers to your startup.

Essential skills to look for in your Digital Marketing Expert

While digital marketing may sound simple and seem like an effortless job to post ads and bring traffic to your website, it is much more than that. There are numerous other parameters that a digital marketer has to be skilled at to run the market smoothly.

  1. Mastery Over Digital Tools: If you want your startup to have the best digital marketing executive, he or she should be proficient in all types of digital marketing tools such as:

Paid campaigns tools: Hubspot, Google AdWords SEO Tools: ahrefs, SEMRush Wordpress plugins: AIOSEO, Yoast Lead Generation tools: Pointerpro, Qualaroo Email marketing tools: Moosend, MailChimp Social Management Tools: MeetEdgar, Buffer

  1. Thorough know-how of digital marketing channels: Digital marketing is a multifaceted term and the person handling the job should be through and through with different digital marketing channels like SEO, SEM, SEA, SMM and digital PR.

  2. Data-driven approach: The digital marketer you choose should have a data-driven approach towards your brand. The candidate should be able to extrapolate customer’s desires and needs based on the collected data, to gear up your start-up’s market.

  3. Familiarity with Growth Hacking Trends: An ideal digital marketer should we well aware of the growth hacking trends. He should have the ability to strengthen your business using minimum cost strategies to attract new customers and retain the old ones as well.

And now some bonus tips: 5. A hustling mindset goes a long way for a digital marketer. 6. A potential to firefight, come what may can be an addition to your startup. 7. Last but not least, he should be adept at revamping & tweaking strategies based the traction received

QuoteTime spent on hiring is time well spent Robert Half

Digital Marketer roles & responsibilities

The roles and responsibilities of a digital marketing executive is typically based on which arm of digital marketing is the resource handling. Overall every digital marketing specialist should be detail-oriented, data-driven and dynamic in their approach.

  1. SEO Specialist: An SEO specialist handles the following roles at an organization -
  • Implementing keyword strategies
  • Tracking website performance through Google analytics
  • Creating new strategies to increase website traffic
  • Optimizing existing content to stay up to date with search engines
  1. SEO Specialist: A social media manager should be able to -
  • Increase engagement on social media
  • Collaborate with influencers
  • Respond to comments and replies on the website
  • Post with good frequency on social media platforms
  1. Paid Marketing Specialist: A paid marketing specialist should be responsible for -
  • Creating paid advertising copy
  • Executing and strategizing paid marketing campaigns
  • Optimizing and analyzing active ad campaigns
  1. Digital Marketing Analyst: A digital marketing analyst works on
  • Monitoring online marketing trends
  • Checking website traffic using Google analytics tools
  • Tracking the performance of digital campaigns and ads

How much does it cost to hire a digital marketer?

The digital marketing sector is a hot field right now and needs specialists urgently. According to a survey by the Manpower Group, labor shortage reached as high as 75% worldwide, in the past year. And guess what, marketing was a part of it.

Not only that, LinkedIn reported a giant increase of 47% demand in advertising and various digital marketing skills in the last five years.

Simply put, there is an acute demand for marketing executives and the professionals who are well prepared for this riding tide can easily stand out.

And availability of more than 193,000 jobs in the marketing field, alone in the US is another shocking figure that adds to the fact that how sweltering a sector marketing has become.

To ease your dilemma, we verified and analyzed various sources to bring to you the trends of a digital marketer salary.

The payscale for a digital marketing expert is entirely dependent on the sets of skills they bring along with them. Anyhow, on average, a digital marketing specialist expects a salary range between $60,000 to $80,0000, as calculated by Payscale.

Tips that can guide you to hire your dream marketing team

Not having a professional and efficient marketing team can break or make a startup. Hiring a digital marketing employee that can give your startup an impactful digital presence is essential. It is thus of utmost importance for the founder to start looking for digital marketers who can vouch to turn around their website in a given time and budget.

But since you’re new to this, we have taken the lead and listed out the best tips that you should consider before hiring a digital marketing specialist.

1. Set your Company Goals

Before starting your search to hire a digital marketing specialist, set clear your own company goals. Make a 6-month plan on what are the marketing requirements and budgets of your startup and how are you planning to implement those needs.

This is important because whether you hire a marketing agency, freelancer or build your own team, it becomes easy to project your expectations on them and see if they will be able to cater to your demands.

2. Identify your Marketing Channels

Another important step before hiring a digital marketer is to completely analyze your business and see what your business needs most. Pick the most important marketing channels that could yield you results in a short amount of time and the ones that your business will need at a later date.

Setting aside your marketing channel will ease your search for digital marketers as there are specialists in each field. For example: If you strategize that you want to market your product via social media platforms and paid marketing, you can focus on candidates who excel in that field and save time on your hiring process.

3. Chalk out the structure of a Modern Marketing Team

Digital marketing is not a one-man job! A brilliant team, a breakthrough strategy and a strong plan are three ingredients that can drive your marketing master plan. Take time to organize your marketing team to impart 100% to your marketing needs.

Construct a marketing org structure with established roles and responsibilities will effectively deliver and streamline all your marketing operations.

4. What to look for in a candidate

Now comes the chief tip that you should follow before hiring a digital marketer. There are varied sets of skills that you should look for in a candidate before hiring them. Some of the top required skills for a digital marketing executive include -

  • Excellent writing skills
  • Passionate about marketing
  • Top-notch communication skills
  • Innovative mindset
  • Growth-driven

5. Screen Candidates with a Skill Test

The best tip to screen a candidate in any job role is to test them by giving them an assignment or using an AI-based skills assessment tool. There are hundreds of softwares available on the web that can help you choose the best candidate without any bias and that too in less time.

6. Scrutinize their Social Media Presence

A digital marketer is nothing if they don’t have an impactful social media presence. You can go on to check their different social media profiles such as Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Instagram to see the type of content they are posting, their connections, and what kind of engagement they get.

Some social media platforms also have testimonial sections that tell how they have performed in the previous organization, you can rely on those for validating their work.

7. Check their knowledge of Marketing Tools

The most important arrow in the digital marketer’s quiver are marketing tools. A digital marketing individual needs to be highly skilled in all sorts of marketing tools such as google analytics, search engine optimization, lead generation, lead management, and so on to be able to effectively handle the entire marketing spectrum.


Being a start-up, hiring a digital marketing all-rounder might get the job done. But as soon your business starts to ramp up, you’ll want to put a well-organized team with a better workflow to get the maximum output.

Leave no stone unturned and advertise through all possible channels to source the best candidate for your business.

Attract talented marketers who are ready to dive in a hundred percent to scale your business and not only work for the fat paycheck.

As stated by Steve Jobs, “it doesn’t make sense to hire smart people and then tell them what to do, we hire smart people so they can tell us what to do”

Take it from the leadership itself, and go on to recruit the smartest digital marketer for your startup!

You can also rely on skill assessment tools to find an all-star digital marketing specialist for your company.

What are your go-to places to find top talent for your company?



Radhika Sarraf

Radhika Sarraf is a content specialist and a woman of many passions who currently works at HireQuotient, a leading recruitment SaaS company. She is a versatile writer with experience in creating compelling articles, blogs, social media posts, and marketing collaterals.

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