There are many advantages to having your own digital marketing team, and it can be a highly effective tool in improving your marketing return on investment. However, as the owner of a digital marketing agency, I’ve seen many businesses waste money on their in-house digital marketing team by not providing proper training.
Many businesses place a focus on hiring strong candidates but don’t allocate as many resources to helping new hires succeed. While hiring excellent employees can certainly be a challenging process, whether or not an employee performs well is dependent on more than their competence at the time of their hiring. The training the company provides is one of the most critical factors in whether they will perform well in their job, feel fulfilled in their work, look for creative solutions to problems, expand their skills, and even stay with the company.
In speaking to business owners, I often find that many of them are hesitant to invest in their employees. They’re afraid they’ll spend a great deal of money and effort on training resources only for the employees to leave. But the truth is that strong training actually reduces turnover and improves employee performance, leading to better business performance and higher incoming revenue. When employees are empowered and given the tools to do their jobs well, they tend to be happier and more motivated, and their performance improves.
If you have your own digital marketing team or are in the process of building one, there’s one thing you can do to dramatically improve its success: team training. This goes beyond the training each individual receives and takes into account the entire team to ensure everyone is learning not only their individual roles but also how to work with their team members.
Team training is vitally important to your digital marketing team because, without it, people with varying knowledge and strategies begin to go in the wrong direction. Your marketing team needs to be unified in their efforts. Without a cohesive strategy that everyone is working toward, each individual may take a different approach and may even end up unintentionally minimizing each other’s efforts. A strong strategy is a necessary component of successful marketing, and that’s impossible to achieve if team members are not aligned.
It’s easy to make the mistake of thinking that whatever expertise a new hire has when they join your team is enough for them to do their job well. Whether they have a certification or prior experience in a specific area, they may have valuable skills and information they can bring to the job, but that doesn’t mean training isn’t necessary. Those credentials and certifications are important, but they’re not enough on their own. Each person has a different background with experience in different strategies, so it’s important to make sure everyone is on the same page. If you don’t properly train your team, these different strategies will begin to go in the wrong direction.
Through my own business, Hennessey Digital, I’ve seen how challenging it can be when team members take varying approaches and don’t have a strategy to follow as a team. To solve this problem, we recruited a director of learning and development to handle training for all employees and to ensure everyone has the knowledge and understanding necessary to execute our strategies well. We’ve also put standard operating procedures in place so that we have continuity in our processes.
Having someone in charge of training for your digital marketing team ensures that everyone is educated on the tools and strategies you employ. You can take advantage of many existing training resources, such as Google’s tools for certification, but you shouldn’t rely on these alone. Instead, incorporate them into your training package and build your own curriculum as well. This ensures that everyone on your team receives the same training, and makes it easy to train new hires and get them up to speed with your digital marketing strategies so they can integrate with the rest of the team smoothly.
While training is an important part of the onboarding process for new hires, it shouldn’t stop there. It needs to continue throughout an employee’s career in order to stay up-to-date. Not only does this help your team advance their skills and performance, but it also can increase employee satisfaction with their jobs and give them a sense of progress. Continuing to learn and face new challenges is important for employee retention, and it gives them new skills they can apply to their jobs, improving performance for your business.
Continuing education is particularly important in the field of digital marketing, where trends are constantly changing, especially in the world of search engine optimization (SEO). The digital world has been evolving at a pace that’s difficult to keep up with, and strategies that worked a year or two ago no longer work today. In fact, in many technological fields, by the time someone has finished a four-year degree, what they learned in their first year is often obsolete. There may be a day in the future where the rate of change in the technological landscape will slow down, but that won’t be for a long time. SEO in particular changes extremely quickly with updates to Google’s algorithm. Providing regular, continuous training for your employees will ensure everyone remains on the same page and can adjust to changing strategies smoothly.
Team training is one of the best investments you can make in digital marketing. It will help you create a more effective team, working together to execute a unified strategy, and it can improve your employees’ performance as well as their job satisfaction and motivation, leading to better performance and lower turnover. Investing in your digital marketing team will put you ahead of the many companies who don’t provide strong training for their team and create much stronger results for your digital marketing efforts.