The first option for implementing The Marketing MVP is DIY; when I formed my first two companies, this was the path. In our opinion, there are two potential scenarios that determine which path should be taken; there isn’t too much in-between.
First-Time Entrepreneur or Side-Hustle
If you have an existing company far along (funding or revenue) skip this. If you are a first time entrepreneur or doing your company as a side-hustle, I highly recommend you implement these exercises yourself.
The reason being is not so much marketing related as business-related; inevitably, your first company is going to be practice; just look at the rates of failed entrepreneurs, and approach it realistically. As such, your primary focus should be becoming a better entrepreneur – the most effective way to do this in my opinion, especially as solopreneur, is to work within every are of your business. (Development, Business, Product, Marketing, Sales etc) This is the exact opposite advice you hear given to most small business owners– and with good reason; a business you intend to sell should have yourself working on different parts of your business, that is rather than in.
But with The Marketing MVP this is not the case. In reality, its a learning exercise, I think best undertaken by you, yourself. I’m going to imagine you’re a smart person (you wouldn’t have gotten to this point if not!) so all this is going to take you not-so -long to implement in raw time – but you’ll have to donate resources (ads, paying for design assets – product stuff) to get the maximum.
Keep in mind this is a temporary solution and ultimately if you are not the source of marketing strength on your team, or do not intend to be, you must move on and get it covered elsewhere – discussed in the next lesson.
You have two hiring options, internally at the end of the day. Getting a CMO – a critical mistake I think we have addressed at-length before – really it’s down two options
Hiring and Managing Lower Level Marketers (Managers, Content People Etc)
|Quite Cost-Effective||Little Pressure/Activation on Customer Acquisition Side|
|Good for certain industries (heavy/old school b2b)||Costs that potentially increase over time|
|Duties that become more complicated and less replaceable as time goes on.|
Conclusion: If you are going to hire lower level marketing people, make sure you have a true long term budget set out because you will need to develop and expand the department to keep things in motion. Do not place too many expectations on this person – they will not be responsible for strategy and ultimately not hold the cards.
Hire a Freelance Team
|Extremely Cost-Effective||Mixed Results|
|Good for certain verticals within marketing (design, video production, social media)||Hard to Vet|
|Sanctity of Your Systems/Security Potentially At Risk|
Conclusion: Having spent hundreds of thousands on Upwork, we know it can be VERY difficult to find a great freelancer that has time and reasonable rates; all the great talent is in business for themselves.
If you are going to hire freelancers, make sure you vet them thoroughly and have a clear idea of what deliverables you want; make sure you also have a system (project management software, login management etc) to help them operate and organize as they surely will not do this for you.