The Core 4 Strategy: Bridging the Tech Marketing Talent Gap in 2024

Kevin Kerner
January 30, 2024
5 minutes

As we settle into 2024, it's still quite apparent that tech marketing leaders will continue to face significant challenges when looking to scale their marketing efforts: not the least being the widening marketing skills gap. A recent Robert Half's survey found that 90% of tech hiring managers struggle to find candidates with the necessary skills. One big reason for this is the dramatic change in the marketing landscape just in the last 18 months. AI, data compliance, new digital and no-code tools and Google's change to their cookie policy, all make it difficult for teams to keep up.

A recent study by the CMI Institute found that 79% of marketers believe their skill set has changed in the past decade due to emerging technologies and social media growth. 

This gap, a critical factor in the success or failure of tech marketing leaders, necessitates a strategic approach to team building. 

At Mighty & True, we've encountered a common challenge - finding talented marketing team members and then determining the most effective roles to help us scale our creative operations for our customers. Many of our customers are already struggling with limited time and resources and they rely on us to help them augment their own teams to get more done. After years of wrestling with this constant pressure, our most successful solution to this problem was to create a focused team structure that can easily adapt and scale as needed. One that has the most important roles at the core and can help all the other parts of our creative and marketing operations work better together We refer to this structure as our "Core 4."

The Growing Marketing Skills Gap in Tech

The tech industry's rapid evolution has led to a substantial skills gap, particularly in marketing. This gap isn't just about the number of professionals available; it's about finding individuals with a unique blend of technical and creative skills. The demand for expertise in digital analytics, AI-driven marketing, and user experience design is outpacing the supply, making building a tech marketing team a complex task. A study by Invoca states that nearly 90% of marketing professionals surveyed plan to increase their investment in AI next year. Additionally, an equal number of respondents mentioned having a budget specifically allocated for AI-powered martech. So the need for talented marketing team members with the most current expertise is only going to grow.

State of AI in Digital Marketing Report

The Core 4: A Scalable Solution to the Talent Gap

Mighty & True's solution to this issue is to focus on those roles that will have the highest return in terms of scalability for our teams. In doing some, we build a core "pod" of marketing experts that can both accomplish what is needed in their primary role, but can also drive the effectiveness and efficiency of adjacent roles (like martech, media, program management, etc). The M&T Core 4 concept addresses the challenges of the skills gap head-on. By focusing on four pivotal roles first, we create a foundation that fills the talent gap and enhances the overall marketing strategy. 

These Core 4 roles are:

  1. The Project Manager: The linchpin of any marketing team, a Project Manager in tech marketing ensures that campaigns are delivered on time and within budget. They bring order to chaos, aligning various marketing activities and ensuring all team members work towards a common goal. Their role is crucial in scaling operations, as they streamline processes and enable efficient resource allocation, especially in marketing organizations that have many roles all working in coordination for a final outcome.
  2. The Creative Director: In the realm of technology, where innovation is critical, a Creative Director plays a vital role. They are responsible for crafting a unique brand voice and visual identity, which is essential for connecting with consumers. A Creative Director's vision complements the analytical skills of other team members, ensuring that the brand's messaging is not only data-driven but also creatively compelling. Our CD's are also responsible for leading the rest of the creative team, setting the vision for the creative deliverables and ensuring that both visuals and copy are on point with the overall marketing strategy.
  3. Design Specialists: A Design Specialist(s) bridges the gap between concept and reality. They work closely with the Creative Director to bring visual ideas to life, ensuring that every marketing material aligns with the brand's identity. Their role is pivotal in scaling marketing efforts, as they provide the necessary visual consistency across all platforms, from digital to print. It's not uncommon for us to have several Design Specialists reporting into a single Creative Director.
  4. The Copy Specialist: Words are powerful, and in tech marketing, a Copy Specialist ensures that this power is harnessed effectively. They craft narratives that resonate with the target audience, working with the design and project management teams to create cohesive and engaging content. A Copy Specialist's ability to articulate the brand's message is crucial in scaling marketing efforts, as it ensures consistency and clarity across all communication channels.

Outsourcing Tech Marketing Talent: Expanding your Core 4

Recognizing the challenges of in-house hiring, outsourcing emerges as a strategic solution. It allows access to a broader talent pool, bringing specialized skills complementing the Core 4. This approach offers flexibility and scalability, crucial for adapting to the ever-changing tech marketing landscape. At Mighty & True, we call this outsourcing "Marketing-as-s-Service". Marketing-as-a-Service (MaaS) is an innovative approach we offer that combines the agility and expertise of an external team with the strategic focus of an internal marketing department. This approach involves outsourcing tasks, expertise, strategy, and execution to a team of marketing professionals who work alongside the internal staff. By augmenting their strategy, copywriting, and design capabilities, MaaS aims to amplify the marketing output and help internal groups achieve more with their campaigns. This arrangement also offers the advantage of a variable cost structure.

Conclusion: A Comprehensive Approach to Tech Marketing

Investing in the "Core 4" strategy provides a great first-step solution to the challenges of the 2024 tech marketing talent gap. By focusing on these critical roles, companies can build a scalable, efficient, and effective marketing team ready to tackle the complexities of the tech industry. If you need help augmenting your marketing team and getting more high-performance campaigns in market, check out our Marketing-as-a-Service solution and Mighty & True.

If you are looking to add to your team, feel free to take advantage of our free position agreement templates designed specifically for the technology and digital marketing roles we frequently utilize at Mighty & True.

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