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A Guide to Building a Stellar Marketing Team: Part 2

Angie Tran

Content Marketing Manager @ AdRoll

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Michael Jordan once said, “Talent wins games, but teamwork and intelligence win championships.” From sports to business to even your everyday life, rarely can you achieve a goal alone better than you would as a team. 

In Part 1 of this series, you learned about what it takes to build a top-notch marketing team. This time, however, we’re introducing you to more niche groups — including growth marketing, lifecycle marketing, and partnership marketing — that are popular in the tech world and other fast-moving industries.

Don’t worry if you’re lacking the resources to hire for every position we mention. After all, each industry and brand has unique needs, goals, and challenges which will influence hiring decisions. Instead, use this as a roadmap when considering your company’s growth plans and priorities. 

Building a Marketing Team: Growth Marketing 

Growth marketing is more prevalent than ever — it was the most popular term in the B2B Marketing Trend Tracker in 2021.

Think of it as the experimental processes, tasks, and strategies related to optimizing a brand’s marketing flywheel. By leveraging both creative and technical expertise, growth marketers target every part of the customer journey to help build relationships and foster loyalty. 

Growth marketers are modern-day marketing scientists. 

Growth marketing roles

A growth marketing team typically works alongside everyone else, except they’re completely focused on driving growth.  

Though the structure of a growth marketing team depends on a company’s products and industry, it typically comprises experts in engineering/development, product management, user interface/experience design (UI/UX), analytics, and creative, all working underneath a growth marketing manager — the person responsible for establishing metrics and delegating tasks. Larger growth marketing teams may even have SEO managers, retention experts, data analysts, digital marketing managers, knowledge base managers, and conversion optimization specialists. 

Regardless of how you structure your growth marketing team, every member should have technical expertise and specialized skills in their domain, plus a deep familiarity with how every part of your company’s marketing efforts drives the customer journey in terms of attraction, engagement, conversion, and retention. 

What responsibilities should you prioritize?

While your brand will establish its own definition of a growth marketing team, here are some skills and responsibilities you should prioritize when hiring:

  • Creativity and innovation: The best growth marketers consider ways to create unique, compelling marketing campaigns. 

  • A data-driven mindset: Growth marketers focus on experimentation, data, and analytics to draw conclusions about the next steps for products, goals, and your company as a whole. 

  • Tech orientation: Given the complexity and abundance of growth tools and software available to brands, you’ll want to hire growth marketers with a high aptitude for new technologies. Ideally, you’ll also want to hire people with a strong understanding of existing and emerging marketing channels. 

If you’re looking to hire growth marketers from your internal teams, consider drawing talent from the marketing, sales, and support departments. 

Building a Marketing Team: Lifecycle Marketing 

Here’s another buzzword you may have heard recently: lifecycle marketing, which refers to the process of providing your target audience with communications and experiences that move them further down the funnel or flywheel. Ultimately, the goal of lifecycle marketing is to retain and grow customer value over time. 

Lifecycle marketing roles

Similar to growth marketing, lifecycle marketing teams don’t have a predefined structure — instead, they vary according to your brand’s goals, products, and needs. 

A customer lifecycle marketing manager typically leads the team, followed by various members handling emails, demand generation, and other nurture programs that target every phase of the customer lifecycle, such as transforming a visitor prospect into a lead. Your lifecycle marketing team will also likely work closely with sales, customer service, and other customer-facing teams. 

What responsibilities should you prioritize?

One way to level up your lifecycle marketing efforts is by hiring the right people with these skills:

  • A clear understanding of your brand’s target audience

  • Experience in creative, strategy, and analytics related to building website pages, developing email newsletters, designing email nurture campaigns, and creating physical mail

  • Expertise in end-to-end lifecycle marketing initiatives, including retention strategies

  • Quantitative and qualitative skills that can help them understand the target market better

Building a Marketing Team: Partnership Marketing 

Then there’s partnership marketing, which targets the processes related to collaborating with other businesses to build campaigns, experiences, or even products that benefit both parties. 

Brand partnerships are invaluable opportunities for direct-to-consumer (D2C) brands — here’s why

Partnership marketing roles

Partnership marketing teams are similar to growth and lifecycle marketing teams in that they’re tough to standardize. The structure of your partnership team will depend on the  responsibilities, budgets, workflow, and partnership types you want to target. Here are some roles you might find in established companies: 

  • Head of Partnerships: Oversees the long-term strategies, budgets, and activities for partner enablement

  • Regional Leads: The leader of local partnership strategies for global companies 

  • Product Integration Manager: Ensures all new partners are successfully integrated with a company’s tech and processes

  • Partner Account Manager: Manages the partnership relationship and service the account

  • Tech or Channel Partnership Manager: Another way to manage your partnership marketing team is by organizing roles according to the various tech or channels that host your partnerships

What Responsibilities Should You Prioritize?

Brand partnerships are a powerful tool for growth, so your partnership marketing team should include experts in developing and executing channel strategy, partner enablement, account management, and product integration. 

Building a Marketing Team of Your Dreams

It’s not enough to simply hire the right people with the experience and skills to help your brand reach its goals. You need to prepare them for success, whether that means fostering fantastic company culture, providing growth opportunities, or ensuring they find their work fulfilling. 

And don’t forget there’s no harm in keeping your marketing department lean and agile. While many of these growth, lifecycle, and partnership roles can do wonders for scaling your brand, it’s not easy to transform the entire structure of your company — or fill a whole department overnight. Start small, and only consider these roles when you genuinely have outgrown your current resources. 

Check back to the AdRoll Marketing Resource Library as we conclude the series with Part 3, covering public relations and community experts.

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