Hey, everyone, welcome back. Today I’m going to be talking about that “in-between marketing team” — that time where you find yourself like, “I can’t do all this myself, but I don’t yet have the budget to hire all my marketing out.” I know that is a place a lot of solopreneurs or entrepreneurs find themselves. I’m going to be talking about how you find yourself there, how to get out of it, and what decisions to make in the process.
So that said, let’s dive in to this topic, this in-between marketing team idea.
This article has come about largely in part of two things. The first is that I saw a post about kind of this topic in a Facebook group for fellow certified master marketers like me. And the second was a phone conversation I had last week with my realtor’s graphic designer.
And I’m going to start with the graphic designer conversation first because I think I’m going to get some head nods as a reaction here. Honestly, it’s one of those times I wish podcasts had more visual and feedback that I could see for sure, because I feel like I’m gonna get some laughs on this one. So my realtor has been leaning on his graphic designer for copy and marketing implementation. And she’s really just a graphic designer. And I don’t mean that in a denigrating way. She straight up said that. But you know, it’s always one project like, “Oh, hey, can you make this happen?” So she does it. But she doesn’t really want to be doing that. She wants to be designing stuff. That’s her skill set. That’s her secret sauce. And since the marketing and the content strategy is not her natural strength, my guess is that she doesn’t feel great doing it, even though she is accomplishing it in the end.
And through the course of all the different houses that we’ve been looking at, my realtor has recently found out that I do content strategy and copywriting and he mentioned it to her. So she calls me last week to half rant and ask for help. Because all of these “just one” projects have turned into years of her doing projects that she doesn’t really want to be doing.
So I posted that quick story to the Facebook post I previously mentioned in that certified master marketers group and I got comments like, “I laugh because it sounds familiar.” And, “lol feeling this hard right now.” Those are the comments I got there. That’s why I’m guessing you’re probably nodding your head. Because as entrepreneurs, we have probably found ourselves in that jack-of-all-trades, “I guess I’ll just do this because I’m capable” place and many a time. And that post in that Facebook group was about a fellow marketer’s frustration In a similar vein.
Basically, as a small agency, she has plenty of solopreneur clients who are beginning to need more support. And this may sound familiar to you. Because a lot of the business owners in this audience are in that place right now. Her clients don’t yet have the budget for full marketing agency support, but they have hit the limits of what they can do on their own. And because of that, they need something in between. Ideally, they need a jack-of-all-trades marketer who can do anything from social media to email marketing, funnel maintenance, funnel refinement, launches, video editing, podcast management, ads management. I mean, that is a lot of different tasks, a lot of different skills.
And the problem is, of course, that person doesn’t exist. Now allow me to explain here… there are likely people who can do all of those things. I’m actually one of them. If you take video editing off of that list, I’m not a video editor, but I’m not actually great at all of those things. I’m great at a few of them. I’m good at a few of them. And I could possibly do the rest even though I don’t really want to be.
And here’s the question, guys — do you really want someone doing that work for you if they don’t want to be doing that work for you? It’s not going to be great. It’s not going to be top notch. For a one-off project, like my realtor asked his graphic designer to do the first time, not being great at something will probably get you by. But you don’t want that to be a repeat occurrence. Because it’s going to result in subpar work in the long run. Put it this way — I can run Facebook ads, but I don’t want to. I don’t even want to do it for myself. So why would I want to do it for a client?
So that Facebook post that started this whole topic? Here’s a quote from it. The girl who wrote it said, “Here’s the catch. I’ve been running an agency for the last two years that does many of these things because we have multiple team members that specialize in these different areas. But these clients’ budgets don’t really fit the agency budget. It’s like they need someone that’s one step before they are ready to hire an agency.” And then she said, “Or am I being totally unfair, and trying to find one person that I can refer these clients to that would be able to do all of this for them?” And then she went on to say, “And this leads me down a major rabbit hole AKA rant about the industry. And what it really takes to show up like the Amy Porterfield’s and Mel Robbins’ of the world. I feel like there is some secret that no one wants to talk about, that it takes massive teams to show up at their level. And these clients I’m working with have a belief that they should be able to do the same thing with just a VA and a strategist.”
Alright, so that was a long quote, hope you get that. It’s something I’ve run into as well. Because the reality is, showing up like that, in a polished, streamlined way, does take a massive team. Now I actually don’t think that they’re trying to hide that fact, I think that the Amy Porterfield’s and Mel Robbins’ of the world are pretty upfront about having a big team to handle all of that I-dotting and T-crossing. I often listen to Emily Hirsh’s Not for Lazy Marketers Podcast, and she’s very vocal about how much she leans on our team, and how she structures her business, that she’s had to put all those structures in place to make it work.
So knowing that these big names have these massive teams to show up to do all of those different marketing roles, where does that leave you? Where does that leave you, the solopreneur or the very small team entrepreneur? It may feel like it leaves you between an agency rock and a lonely, solo hard place. And the reality is that it does. Now I have tussled with this myself. How much of a team do I want to bring on? Because if I bring on too many people, the 15 to 20 hours a week that I work will all be spent managing those people and I won’t get to do the work that I actually love, the work that brought me into this business in the first place, right?
But if I don’t bring on enough of a team, I’m gonna spend all of my time doing admin and working in my business rather than on my business. I have said here before, hiring a podcast manager was the best thing I did for my business. And I can’t believe I waited so long to do it. While it really only takes an hour to two hours a week off of my plate, that hour to two hours, can now be spent doing things to better my business rather than just to keep it afloat.
And I even struggled with this whole concept as I wrote the copy for my new Visibility Accelerator sales page. I was writing that copy a week to two weeks ago. And I really struggled because this program is going to offer a done-for-you, 120-day content plan along with a marketing dashboard, like a marketing control center for your business, so that you can see exactly what content is working and bringing in leads for your business and what content is not working and can be retired. It’s going to be the thing that truly helps you repurpose, you know the last step in the proper method, so you can finally get off the content creation hamster wheel and start working more on your business. I am on a mission to rid the world of crappy content. And this program is going to be one of the best ways to do this, especially for the solopreneur businesses that are in that step before hiring an agency.
But knowing that, I still struggled hard when I was writing that copy. I had a few of my trusted colleagues suggest after critiquing the copy that I should include something like, “It’s like having a CMO or chief marketing officer in your business.” But that wasn’t a visual I wanted to include because the reality is, I don’t have the hours available to offer CMO-level work to any of my clients. A fractional CMO, maybe. But if you don’t know what a fractional CMO is, you’re in good company. I don’t think most of my market knows what that term would entail.
So I tossed the copy this way, and then I tossed it that way, and I finally settled on — and this is a quote from the sales page — “I’m your back pocket marketing strategist. When you work with me, I dive into the depths of your data and distill it so you can make strategic marketing choices for your business.” Now, in the end, if you actually didn’t know what a CMO is, it may mean the same thing to you as just saying a back pocket CMO. But I wanted to make sure that I met my audience where they are at. And what I found through writing that sales page and then writing the notes for this episode, is a realization that just because I can do something doesn’t mean I should. And I think that’s why I can’t actually give you a pat answer here. I can’t tell you, “There’s a one-size-fits-all pair of leggings for this business problem you have.” Also, side note, one size fits all leggings never look good on me and I suspect never look good on you either.
Your business is unique. So your content strategy should be fit for you and your marketing plan should be molded to your business. Your solution is probably going to be a mix of hiring one-off experts for this project, a DIY hack job for the next project, and then definitely building some systems in your business to manage it all. And yes, you’ll probably end up needing someone like me, maybe even me, to put it all together for you to look at it from that 30,000-foot view and give you the plan to make sure all the pieces play well together before you get to the agency level where they just handle it all for you. This is a decision that you’re going to have to make on your own and you’re probably going to go through hiring a few of those one-off experts at a premium dollar point. But it’s just one time rather than paying that premium agency level every single month.
You’re going to have to go through that and figure out which mix works for you. There’s no one-size-fits-all answer that I can give you here.
And I wish I could. I wish that I could just be your little genie in a bottle here. I wish I could be your marketing copilot. And maybe I could if the Visibility Accelerator program is right for you. That’s exactly what it is. It’s kind of me being the copilot to your pilot so you can fly the plane and I’m the one paying attention to all those, you know, gizmos and dashboard things that nobody really knows what they do.
The whole point here is that you’re going to have to find an in-between marketing team that works for you. When you’ve hit your level of expertise in the marketing realm, there is going to be a next level and you have to decide what it’s going to be. If I can be of assistance, please feel free to reach out. I am more than happy to help you in this arena.
Alright, I hope you guys enjoyed this article. I know I quoted someone else’s Facebook post. I know I told a personal story of another business. Obviously I’m not naming names here because these are problems that really, really do affect us all. If you found any value from this episode, even if the value was just like, “Oh my gosh, I am not alone. There are many other people dealing with the same problem, “feel free to forward this episode to someone else that you think needs to hear it. We like spreading the wealth around here. And I truly believe there is enough work for us all. The whole competition thing is just ridiculous. I don’t love that word. I don’t love that term. We should help people, we should help people rise to our level and beyond. Because, really, that’s what this is all about. We are colleagues in this great wide internet marketing world and we can all help each other.