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The Most Popular Demand Generation Roles Are Also the Hardest to Fill

by Wes Lieser

When I talk with candidates they often ask, “What’s the market like for someone like me?”

Let’s put it this way – there’s a reason a Minneapolis-based recruiter specializes in Demand Generation positions for companies across the county. It just so happens that the San Francisco Bay Area is the mecca for Demand Gen.

Personally, I focus on executive search so the majority of my network is made up of managers, directors, and VP’s. That being said, the positions in highest demand are those at the analyst, coordinator, and specialist level. No one goes to college to learn how to build workflows, landing pages, or integrate a CRM and marketing automation platform (not yet anyway), so many companies want to hire someone with 3-5 years of experience so they don’t require as much training.

So why don’t I specialize in placing people in the highest demand positions in the market?

Someone with less than two years of experience working in the Bay Area is just starting to understand the industry. Demand Generation is still new enough for them that they likely won’t want to leave their current role unless someone throws a bunch of money their way. (And, just a note, $3,000 more in base salary with 10,000 shares does not equate to a “bunch of money.”)

With three years of Demand Generation experience in the Bay Area, they make at least $70K-$78K on a base – why would they take $80K to come to your company? You may be tempted to say it’s because your company is “growing fast and has a great culture.” Hate to break it to you, but you’re wrong. It’s the Bay Area. If the value proposition you pitch to candidates is that you have “a fast-growing company with a great product and awesome culture,” get in line.

Back to your original question: Why don’t I recruit for these positions?

The reason is simple – most companies are unrealistic with their expectations. It’s next to impossible to recruit someone willing to take a $3K -$5K increase for an increase in responsibilities. If you want someone to move to your company, you have to make it worth their while.

One of the challenges in this market is that I have a really great network of candidates with 3-5 years of experience, but I can’t place them anywhere because they’re already making too much money.

If you’re looking for someone with 3-5 years of experience, you’ll need to either hire an entry level marketer and train them in Demand Gen, or you’ll need to pay a little extra to get someone that can walk into the role and hit the ground running. My advice for anyone looking to fill these roles is to be realistic. The candidates are out there, you just need to adjust expectations to bring in the best.

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