Building a marketing team

Ideas on building a high-performing marketing team

Ideas on building a high-performing marketing team

Emily Tomlin

July 31, 2023

In today's dynamic business landscape, marketing has become an indispensable aspect of any successful organisation. Indeed, since the pandemic, we’ve seen huge shifts in how clients engage with their target market and clients.  The ability to provide a regular flow of leads to sales teams, for firms to convey their values, and value proposition, to clients, are all part of the varied remit of marketing teams. All importantly, whether your firm is in a growing or contracting market, marketing teams are tasked with improving market share. It’s a pressured role, it’s a role which can lead to becoming a CEO (in 2019 Forbes identified 13% of FTSE100 CEOs had a marketing background), and so we wanted to share a brief guide to what it takes to build a high-performing marketing team. However, it’s important to note that these teams aren’t just about individual talent, but rather a cohesive unit that collaboratively strategizes, executes, and analyses marketing initiatives.

The first and foremost component of a high-performing marketing team is effective leadership and a clear, inspiring vision. The team's leader must be a visionary with a profound understanding of the market, customer needs, and industry trends. They must be able to articulate a compelling vision that aligns the team members towards a common goal. A strong leader fosters a culture of innovation, collaboration, and continuous improvement, providing the team with the direction and support they need to excel.

A successful marketing team comprises individuals with diverse skill sets and expertise. Marketing is a multifaceted discipline that encompasses areas such as branding, content creation, digital marketing, data analysis, and more. Often, firms make the mistake of expecting to find all of these skills in one individual. Whilst a solo marketeer can oversee all of these aspects, they are hard pushed to provide a comprehensive marketing strategy without help from an agency. In larger teams, by bringing together professionals with varied skills and backgrounds, the team gains a well-rounded approach to problem-solving and decision-making. Encouraging cross-functional learning further enhances the team's ability to adapt to evolving marketing trends, it also helps to retain top talent.

Communication is the lifeblood of any successful team, and marketing is no exception. A high-performing marketing team practices open and transparent communication, both internally and externally. Within the team, members should be encouraged to share ideas, opinions, and feedback freely. An environment that values open communication fosters creativity, nurtures innovation, and ensures everyone is on the same page. Whilst the “battle for eyeballs” has become quite data driven, creativity is still a highly valued skill.

Industrialist Lord Leverhulme was once supposed to have said “half of my advertising spend is wasted; the trouble is, I don’t know which half”. In today’s world, where CEO’s are looking for a ROI on every penny, you can’t ignore data, and high-performing marketing teams leverage the power of analytics to make informed decisions. Data-driven marketing ensures that strategies and campaigns are based on concrete insights rather than gut feelings. Teams should use various tools to collect, analyse, and interpret data, enabling them to measure the effectiveness of marketing efforts accurately. This iterative approach empowers the team to optimize campaigns in real-time, resulting in better ROI and increased customer satisfaction. It’s in this field that we’ve seen many firms, particularly large firms, invest heavily. The ability to understand where to focus their efforts, and on “who” the customer is, is a welcome development in the field of marketing.

Agility can also not be underestimated. Marketing landscapes are ever-changing, driven by advancements in technology, customer preferences, and market trends. A high-performing marketing team adopts an agile approach that allows them to be responsive and adaptable to these changes. Agile marketing involves breaking down projects into smaller, manageable tasks, setting short-term goals, and iterating quickly. If the awful COVID 19 pandemic taught firms anything, it’s that circumstances can change fast and the ability to pivot is key.

Finally, marketing doesn’t operate in isolation; it is intertwined with all the other departments in a firm. A high-performing marketing team collaborates closely with these departments to align their efforts and share valuable insights. Regular meetings and information-sharing sessions help bridge any gaps between marketing and sales, ensuring a seamless customer journey from lead generation to post-purchase support. This collaboration fosters a customer-centric approach, leading to higher customer retention and brand loyalty.

Leadership, diverse skill sets, data, agility, and commerciality are key to the modern-day marketing team. The demands placed on teams are high, it’s often stress, but the importance of a well-oiled marketing function can’t be ignored.

About Fram's Marketing practice

Our specialist Sales & Marketing Practice focuses on permanent placements across all levels from Graduate through to Senior Hires.

Contact us on [email protected] or call 01525 864 372 for an informal chat about our services.

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