Looking for a digital unicorn? Don't.

Illustration of an unicorn

Job advertisement:

We are looking for an enterprising and responsible digital marketer to join our team. Tasks:

  • Develop and implement a complete marketing strategy
  • Create and test digital ads on Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn and Google Ads
  • Create great content such as text, video and images
  • User testing of digital solutions
  • Collect and analyze data via Google Analytics, WordPress, MailChimp and Hotjar
  • Search engine optimization
  • Operate CRM: Email marketing, blog and automation
  • Optimizing online store
  • Think of creative marketing initiatives
  • Achieve world peace

Does it sound familiar? It's I doesn't much matter if it does. If you are not a digital marketer yourself, it is difficult to know what such a person can do. I also don't know what I should be able to expect from, for example, a programmer, or a physicist for that matter.

So let me explain.

Experts are experts

Each and every one of the points in the fictitious, job advertisement is a separate field of study. You can find professionals who know two or three of the areas well, but then they are most likely seniors with many years of experience. Putting one person to do all the things on the list, senior or not, will result in half-baked work on all fronts.

It is important to know a bit of everything, so that you have an understanding of what the others on the team are doing. But there is a difference between knowing a little Analytics, and being able to optimize an entire online store. The former means that I can find visitor numbers and CTR on a given page, while the latter requires that I know the difference between AOV and COGS. A completely different level of expertise.

What is your ambition level?

That job ad tells me that this is a company with ambitions to do well online, and that's important today. I also think that that position should be filled by between three and five people, which puts the list quite a bit higher in terms of budget and establishment time. We are actually talking about a completely new department.

Having a separate digital marketing department is a good idea, if the scope of operations and turnover can justify the cost. But if the budget allows only one or two positions, I believe there is a better solution.

The agency: a 4-in-1 solution

I work in an agency, so of course I recommend using an agency. Preferably us. But in very many (most?) cases, it is actually the reality that using an agency is a considerably more cost-effective solution than acquiring permanent employees.

If you hire someone who pretends to be a digital unicorn, you'll get a little bit of everything done, but will only get mediocre results. Although the person may focus on one thing at a time, he or she will never be able to beat the agency employee who has immersed himself in, for example, SEO and analysis for ten years.

The advantage of using an agency is that for (roughly) the price of one employee you will have access to the many decades of experience that can be found in a team. The team is used to working together, knows each other's areas of expertise well enough to understand when the next person should step in, and has established routines that make the work efficient.

Access to a safe and experienced team will also mean that you get more eyes on the marketing, and more minds that can be creative, bring in new methods and technologies, and generally stay ahead of your competitors.

Now that you know what we think about that matter, Feel free to send us a message via our contact form, then we'll find out how we can best help your business grow.


Sven is part of the Experience Team in the role as content producer and project manager. He writes about customer experience, content, trends and digital marketing from his experience and creative work.

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