You are currently viewing Marketing takes time, but marketers’ tenure is short. What should we do about it?

Marketing takes time, but marketers’ tenure is short. What should we do about it?

Have you noticed marketing managers change jobs more often than other professionals in the analytical equipment industry?

For example, application scientists and salespeople tend to stay with the same manufacturer for several years. Some stay for decades. It takes time to learn about the products and build expertise and customer relationships. So it makes sense for them to stay for a long time.

But marketers tend to change their jobs often.

CMOs’ median tenure was 25.5 months in 2019, the shortest among the C-suites and about half of the CEOs’. Marketers, in general, have a higher turnover.


What should we do about it?

Successful marketing takes time. The buying cycle is often long, months to a few years, in the analytical equipment industry because of the high price and complicated evaluation process. So you need a patient marketer to stick around for years to make your marketing strategy work. But they don’t. So what should we do about it?

You should train application scientists to become marketers instead of hiring marketers to develop and execute marketing strategies for the following reasons:

  1. Successful marketing for analytical equipment business requires a deep understanding of the products, services, technologies, and customers. Marketers without a degree in science or engineering struggle to understand the business enough to be effective.
  2. Many of the customers are PhD scientists and engineers. The inbound content, such as blog articles, is meant for them. Writing a meaningful article for them often requires a PhD to speak their language. Also, the writer needs to hold a certain level of authority, such as a PhD, to win the readers’ trust.
  3. Even if they try, it takes time for a new marketer to learn the products, services, and technologies. If they change their job in two years, they leave by the time they learn the products, never having a chance to run effective marketing campaigns. (This actually is often the reason why they leave. They can’t produce results quickly as they hoped and quit or are let go.)
  4. Even if marketers stay long, it’s easier for a PhD application scientist to learn marketing than a marketer to learn applied science.

You do need marketers

I’m not saying you don’t need any marketers. You need marketers to manage the website, automation, ad campaigns, etc. But the core marketing strategy and content creation need to come from application scientists turned marketers.

You can hire marketers from the junior marketer to marketing manager levels. You need professional marketers to deal with the technical side, such as SEO, analytics, paid ads, social media management, marketing automation, etc.

However, content writers and marketing directors should be scientists or engineers by training. 

CMO requires a high level of business training and experience.

However, fractional CMOs are not merely ad experts or social media gurus advising from a high-level. Fractional CMOs hold the crucial responsibility of translating the vision of an organization’s CEO and Board into marketing campaigns, objectives, and outcomes. Fractional CMOs work with existing teams, and expand or cut teams where needed.

“What is a Fractional CMO? Here’s What You Need to Know” by Justin True

Because it might be a stretch to train application scientists to become effective CMO, I’d look for someone with experience in the CMO position at a manufacturer in the B2B science and engineering business. They might be hard to find and can be expensive. They also won’t last long. One way to deal with this challenge is to hire a fractional CMO. It saves you money and makes it easier to work with the same CMO for a longer time.

If you were disappointed by short-living marketers or struggling to find the right talent for marketing, you might want to look inside your organization.

Leave a Reply