Marketers have never been asked to do so much with so little. That pressure only intensifies when you’re a one-person marketing team tasked with making a big impact on a small budget. “That really resonates with me,” says Sophia Firth, Marketing Manager at Rungway. “One of my biggest challenges is that I'm on my own, and having the resources that I need to do my job correctly and do it well,” she says. At Rungway, an employee listening platform, Sophia’s been tasked with building the brand’s awareness and delivering pipeline—a lofty goal for a solo marketer.
Focusing on what matters
Focusing your efforts is crucial to success when you’re working on your own. Sophia believes in doing one thing exceptionally well, rather than trying to spread herself too thin. “Concentrate your efforts and don't try and take too much on,” says Sophia. “Think about what you actually need in order to do your job. For me, that’s producing high-quality content.”
Establishing a well-defined quarterly structure is pivotal to retaining this focus, allowing her to stay on course as well as align her efforts strategically. “For example, knowing that each quarter I’m going to run a couple of webinars, publish one big piece of content, and publish a certain number of blogs,” she says. “It helps you stay organized and helps manage expectations within the wider business as well.”
Making smart choices to maximize a small budget
One of the most important skills for a one-person marketing team is learning how to make the most of a limited budget, thinks Sophia. “I have to be really cutthroat with it and make sure I'm being as effective with my budget as possible,” she says. “There have been several learnings along the way with that, trying to understand where to put most of your money and where you can cut some corners just for now in order to get you building momentum.”
Determining what tasks to tackle in-house versus outsourcing is a continuous challenge, considering which areas require her personal touch and where partnering with agencies can yield the greatest impact. “I have to think about what I can do, what an agency can help with, and is that gonna be the most effective use of my time and budget?” she says. “For example, evaluating what we need content-wise versus SEO-wise.”
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Building a deep bench of external talent
Cultivating a reliable network of freelance content creators and website developers is absolutely essential. “Finding a good network of people that can help with freelance content and website development has been so important,” says Sophia.
Sophia’s also a big fan of leveraging internal networks to scale her marketing efforts with a small budget. “If you have people within your business that have a really strong Linkedin network, for example, help them see the value of using it,” she suggests. “Be clear about what your results are, and, if you're not getting results that's a conversation to have, but if you're starting to see some progress, make sure you're communicating with them and they'll start to see the value of it for your business.”
Communicating activities and results
Communicating the impact of your activities on the wider business is also crucial. “You want people to understand what you're doing, what's worked, what hasn't worked. Be transparent with your learnings,” she says. “Make sure that when you're launching a campaign you have communicated it well—have a kickoff meeting, have progress meetings, create a Slack channel and update that weekly. Keep people in the loop more than you think you need to.
"In my experience, I’ve found that the more I communicate with people the more excited they get and are much more bought in and helpful when it comes to your marketing.”