My new job has me doing nearly every aspect of marketing

I’ve been in my role for a month. I work for a B2B business where, prior to me, there wasn’t really anyone doing marketing. They were using a third party for some of their marketing material, but now it all falls on me.

I’m currently doing social media management, improving the UI on our website, blogs, news stories, creating digital flyers, monthly marketing reports, event planning, newsletters, writing product descriptions, SEO, you name it.

And although I enjoy the variety, it’s a bit overwhelming; I feel like I’ll become the Jack of all trades, master of none. I don’t have much prior experience, so I’m sort of teaching myself a lot of these areas.

Did anyone else ever start off in a similar position and manage to find some benefits or niches you went down?


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This question gets asked quite a bit. I think that, especially for smaller businesses and startups, it's really not uncommon to be expected to do everything. I don't know if your complaint/issue is that you have too much to do or if you don't think it's going to help your career, but it seems like it's more so the latter. Personally, when I worked at a business that had me doing nearly everything, I didn't feel like it was too much. It wasn't like I was expected to do every single area of marketing every single day. I prioritized and then worked on other stuff in my downtime. I work in ecommerce/website marketing now and find "jack of all trades" to be extremely helpful and appealing to a lot of employers. Searching for a job right now, I'm finding it common to run across job descriptions that are looking for someone who can do 3+ areas of marketing in one (or you get into interviews and find out there's more than what's in the job description), which is highly annoying because I really just want to work with websites. But the only reason I have a shot at a wide variety of marketing jobs is because I have hands-on experience in everything in marketing, and so many employers right now think it's okay to bundle writing copy, SEO, email marketing, PPC, analytics and/or social media marketing with managing the website. It's a lot more limiting to get niche experience because of how crazy employers are when they're hiring for marketing positions--it seems like only pretty big workplaces don't expect one person to do multiple areas and break down duties better. Plus, I'd think that if you ever want to get a leadership position (i.e. VP, Director, CMO, etc), having hands-on experience with and/or knowledge of every area of marketing is a must. It's not something I'm interested in, but I can imagine.


As one who has "moved through the ranks" to a director role in B2B, u/EfficiencyLogical471 here's your answer right here. In a small organization, the VP/CEO you may be reporting into might have a ton of experience in all aspects of Marketing, or may not, and you will likely have the freedom to come to an agreement on what are the specific priorities (and what are not priorities) regarding what is most-needed at this phase of the company's growth. I've worked for Fortune 500 companies, and for smaller companies, and for several VC-backed startups where I was doing "everything". Also OP - you mention "teaching yourself" which is not very efficient, nor very effective. Plenty of bad advice I've seen, likely because here on Reddit it skews young (frankly junior). First find out from your manager what their priorities for Marketing are, and have an agreed-upon set of reasonable goals for say the next 3 months. Assess your own skill-set and figure out which of these goals you will need help in learning more about. And then get serious about learning those gaps, whether a small outsourced job (where you can learn a lot by seeing how that task gets done and asking questions) or taking in-person or online training (even if it's on your own dime) or buying a few books (they are really inexpensive if you think about it) and knuckling down and studying them (and then applying them). Wish you the best.


Completely Agree with you here — I was expected to do every aspect of marketing at my previous job and even the job I have now What it did was the following: - learned how to run a full marketing operation so as the company grew, I am able to hire agencies / vendors to do the tactical task to support the growth - I am able to understand the overall needs and hire marketing specialist and managers to take on aspects that helps us move the needle…hence get more budget and really grow the department - I was then able to move up the ladder quickly (from manager to Director in 3 years) — it helped me become a master of the market and stir the ship towards ensuring my teams efforts produces amazing ROI and I am able to coach + create achievable deliverables for my team cause I was them once OP, it depends on your overall long term goal. Do you want to be a specialist or do you want to grow your career to be in the management track? If management, look at it as an opportunity to be well versed and dynamic. It does have a lot of benefits when you’re able to do a lot of things cause it can also help you find what you enjoy the most.


Yeah exactly It’s always good to be a generalist


I came here to write this lol


I agree with this, especially the last paragraph about career trajectory. I used to get frustrated about being a Jack of all trades, but as I’ve advanced in my career, I’ve realized (and read in diff thought leadership pieces) that this is how you get on the exec leadership/CMO track. Still doesn’t help my day to day though of having to wear so many hats LOL


Yes mine started like that and still is. One piece of advice is to have a conversation with yourself and then with your boss. The conversation with yourself will help you figure out what aspect you truly love the most of your role that gives you the least amount of anxiety. The one with your boss brings forth your interests in the role, and lays out boundaries so ensure smooth success. The problem I found by handling everything is that you have your hands in so many pots that every project is unfinished or half assed. It’s ok to ask for help, don’t worry about them questioning your skills. Give them proof of everything your doing. I convinced my boss go sign up at various universities to take on interns and it was super helpful! It also really helps to visually layout your action items both ongoing and deadline project based. Write it all out and give each day structure. You got this.


I’ve had two jobs like this. Both B2B. I’d say relish the opportunity to learn as much as you can whilst also coming to the satisfying realisation that not everything has to be perfect. You’ll find your rhythm, and ideally, you can eventually state your case to hire someone to support you. Then you have the rewarding opportunity to train someone else and lighten your load. Best of luck! You’ll do great.


Most small businesses tend to be like this. It definitely can be stressful when everything falls to you, and you probably aren’t being paid enough to do more advanced stuff. Bur the plus side is you get a massive amount of experience in different fields - again including stuff usually above your pay grade. My advice is to try and take ownership of it. They’ve made you the entire marketing department, so act like it. If they’re trying to give you too much work, tell them so. If you find they’re setting unrealistic expectations, try and get them to understand. If all goes well, you’ll develop your skills really quickly and will be the head of an actual department if they expand. Worst case, stick it out and learn what you can, and then find somewhere else. A lot of places will welcome someone who has gathered wide experience but wants something more focused.


Very common in first roles or when working for a small company with a 1 man army marketing department. That's how you learn.


If it's a good company, it sounds like a good opportunity. You can grow with the company and slowly build a marketing team.


Like you've seen this is pretty common. When I was there I really focused on prioritizing the largest impact projects. This is where getting the data is key. The other key is having a good relationship with management so they understand why you're making the choices you do and when they ask for more to be done you can communicate the impact (or lack there of) that it will have.


This kind of "all the things" situation can really help hone those prioritization skills too - and that can be beneficial throughout a career.


Yes, many professionals have started in similar positions and have found benefits in terms of developing a versatile skill set, gaining a holistic understanding of marketing, discovering personal strengths and interests, and building a foundation for future growth. It's important to prioritize tasks, seek mentorship, continue learning, delegate when possible, and regularly evaluate and refine strategies. With dedication and a focus on your strengths, you can navigate the challenges and develop valuable skills.


I became a head of division in a big firm and I started like this. I lead a team and I know the stuff they are doing; almost all of it. Starting the career like this helps, a lot. The only problem I faced and still facing is that my manager is the CEO of the firm and she is mostly not present to work with me. So I have to learn by hit and trials. I now mostly do meetings and up the quality of the output of the team, only possible due to me being the jack of all trades with really serious career ambitions. One more drawback I faced was things are mostly incomplete when I was the only one working. O believe someone already commented this point.


It’s who, not how it is done at a startup. Remember you can hire freelance work to make this less overwhelming. Just get approval and run with it


The trick is just to pick a few things that you just don't give a shit about and get really good at the things you DO really give a shit about.


Generalist experience is good, but as soon as you start running bigger campaigns, you will feel the stress (as you've probably experienced). You'll be making the plan, the landing page, the graphics, setting and optimizing the ads, creating and publishing the social copy, managing vendor relationships, and presenting the results. Without help, this will be a gruelling process that has the potential to burn you out. Let's say they hire more staff, but refuse to hire additional marketers -- your workload will slowly increase to the point where it won't be possible to fit everything in one day (mostly because new staff will have all sorts of ideas that you will have to implement). I guess this is to say that the experience itself could be helpful in the long run (learning about all aspects of marketing), but no reputable company could expect one person to do all of these activities on their own without some sort of a plan to eventually increase capacity, rather than expect one person to run their entire marketing department. In my experience, some companies have no problem burning marketers down, since upper management often don't understand or value that work, which is why we are often underpaid, understaffed, and overworked.


This is very common. Great trial by fire. I started like that and am niching down to content marketing.


I feel a vast majority of new digital marketers end up in your same situation as the “Jack of All, Master of None”. I know I did. I was in an agency setting as a social media/content strategist role. This meant I did EVERYTHING for my clients - Writing blogs, SEO, designing graphics for social media, managing paid spend and campaign optimization etc. I didn’t last long, I left after 8 months. I ended up figuring out creative writing, social media management, and PPC weren’t for me and that I rather work with developers and content authors/librarians to expand and optimize web experiences through CMS’ and DAMs. Now I’m a consultant at Accenture. (I didn’t go from that entry level strategist role to Accenture though - I had 3 stops along the way that led me here)


It can be a blessing - you can see if one area interests you more and pursue a specialty in that area or end up like me with so many relevant job experiences that I have been able to stay relevant through industry & economy changes. I would absolutely hate doing just one thing and am grateful I chose this career path because of the variety and change.


There’s a lot of great advice here. I also started out as the only ‘marketing person’ on the team where everything marketing was my responsibility. What helped me was outsourcing work to professionals whenever we had the budget and working closely with them to learn what they knew. When we had enough budget to bring the work back in-house, I could apply my expertise in more of a leadership capacity because I know how it should work. Hope that’s helpful.


Who is your manager? Does your manager have a solid understanding of the deliverables that you were given? The reality is that the economy is in turmoil. Some doing better than others. Many battening down the hatches for the oncoming economic storms. A good way to navigate the stormy waters is to be prepared. The "............. for Dummies" series of book on just about every topic in business, marketing, and digital marketing provide an overview of every subject. It gives you enough information to get a sense of whether or not you want to expand your knowledge and experience in that area of marketing. Make an honest evaluation of your knowledge and skills. This would be your starting point. Then create a first draft of your professional journey map. This helps you focus on what's important for your career and interests. You now have enough knowledge at your fingertips to have a decent conversation with your manager. Now comes the hard part. The "soft" people skills. Most conflicts start with simple misunderstandings of what your manager said and what you thought you heard. Not being on the same page when agreeing to deliverables can quickly result in a rocky relationship. There are a number of tools that can help you get on the good side of your manager. Personality types, what's your's and what's your manager's personality type? Google "Analytical Driver Expressive Amiable" and take the time to find the sites that expand on how to best adapt to the difference in styles. Never assume that what you thought you heard is exactly what your manager expects. ​ Maybe read "Never Split the Difference." Helps with those emotionally charged conversations. Google "Managing Up" for suggestions on how connect, converse, and engage with your manager. Good communications and no surprises builds trust. So now you're on your way to "great things." Pick up the basics of business (understanding what drives profits), practice your soft skills. GROK what you manager wants. When your manager moves up in the organization, so will you.


Yes I did pick web design social media marketing and just overall ecom manager type stuff. I liked it couldn't imagine doing one specific thing all day long. I do realize I'm not the best at any one thing as I'm doing 100 different things but I'm cool with that. I'd say this is pretty common working in house for smaller companies


I have been there- exactly where you are. It can be overwhelming, but it's a great chance to figure out what you actually LIKE to do and what you're good at. I recently got a new job after being out of work for a couple of months, and many organizations are looking for a T-Shaped marketer- where you know a LOT about one or two facets of marketing, but also know enough about the others to get by, do the work in an emergency, or at least ask the right questions to hire an agency. My suggestion is find something you like to do and go down the rabbit hole on that. But keep working on and learning about the other parts of marketing. Most of them intertwine one way or another. Like content marketing? SEO is helpful. Performance marketing? Copywriting skills are helpful.


I started my career in that sort of “marketing generalist” role and I think it’s served me well over time even though I eventually became more specialized because it helped me form a more integrated view of how communications can work across multiple touch points. That said, I think many employers expect entirely too many skills from one employee and that’s setting everything up for failure. For instance: Example A: a marketing associate might spend some time in a week writing and deploying different campaign elements (let’s say a landing page, email, social posts, maybe setting up a paid ad campaign too) BUT the overall brand strategy and graphic design direction are already established, tech stack in place, etc. This scenario is very reasonable and in fact just efficient! Why have multiple different people touching all of those things if the audience and goals are pretty much the same across each. Unless the volume is very high it probably doesn’t make sense. Example B: a marketing associate is being asked to establish brand strategy, research a new audience, write product descriptions, build a website from scratch, start a viral TikTok account, build out a CRM for sales, and do influencer outreach and management. All in one week. And they report in to the CEO who is both too busy to truly provide guidance but also has strong and frequently shifting opinions. Oh and said marketing person is fresh out of school. This scenario is sadly also very common but not reasonable because it’s mixing tactics and strategy and looking to cross several different skill sets that would be really hard to cover in one experienced person let alone someone junior. Now, this scenario CAN work IF the CEO is willing to bring in outside vendors/consultants to help said marketing associate, and sometimes that’s ok, but it’s really hard to be successful like this and totally ok to recognize it’s a bad fit and take steps to leave.


Prioritize for impact (revenue). That's all you gotta do. Career wise , your cv needs to be about results anyway


You're getting the practice in. One one can deny that resume ...


It's hard to chose what's worse, doing everything alone or being pushed into a box where a clients wants you to the x and to it y way... you know what I mean. I think there's no shame in saying you need help. I've had clients that didn't understand the workload and after sharing it with them, I'd get one or two people to join my team. I know being niche and getting to an expert level in one thing is praised all around, but this is a great learning opportunity for you!


This is me at my current job. Not only am I doing all the marketing, im doing business development and regulatory compliance. They're lucky I have severe adhd and am too disorganized to find a new job.


Yup. Did all this. Some companies it was great and some it was not managed properly and completely overwhelming. Still. It’s good to learn all sides of marketing.


How's the seo specific part of things going? Same question for any of the other specifics your managing... If any/all are lacking...and it's kind of a rhetorical question...u need focus Get more people to delegate to and or learn to automate like a boss If your boss is a cheap asshole...take your skills elsewhere once you've decided what to focus on...or launch your own thing I'd personally focus on seo since that's where most of the biz is in general across the board...and it's already warm inbounds vs cold outbound


Welcome to small time B2B marketing mf


Also working for a B2B business, literally living the same life. 🙈


same, join the club. I'm doing PPC for all the platforms, you name it, we are on it, social media posts, SEO, link building, press release, plus I am making TikTok videos, and Facebook content. Plus I have to train people in India to help me, people who keep saying yea I got it, but when it comes to doing something, I have to reteach them again. Oh, there's more, everything I said I'm doing I'm doing it all for 6 websites. So 6 Google ads account, 6 facebook post, 6 SEO backlink u get the picture.


Doing it now, i feel your stress. I go home feeling like I got punched in both eyes every day but it’s more love than hate because I enjoy marketing


I had 3 jobs like this all B2B. I think a lot of leaders think someone with the title “marketer” is also a graphic designer, copywriter, SEO specialist, web developer, and social media guru. While it kept things interesting it also can be overwhelming. The one thing I liked was I kept learning new skills.


I’ve had roles like this and I loved it. But if it seems overwhelming all at once, I would try to speak with your manager and ask to prioritize some things based on what they need to tackle first.


You need to focus on workflow and productivity. Use an app like Trello or Basecamp (both free at basic levels) to organize your work into silos: web site, social media, emails, etc. Both apps will sync your smartphone app with your desktop version for adding todos anywhere you my be. Give yourself one hour per day for each category, prioritizing what is most important and/or on deadline. Good luck with the position! 👍 —Rocco


Nothing wrong with being a marketing generalist. I prefer it. But you need to clearly communicate that with a generalist doing everything you can’t do things in as much detail as you could with a bigger team. For example; email marketing. Sending a newsletter monthly? Easy. Segmenting and automation and frequent emails? Not so easy