What makes a successful marketing campaign? The answer depends on these three key factors:
- A defined marketing goal
- A marketing team
- A marketing strategy
And most importantly, it depends on the proper organization of your teams and marketing projects.
If you’re looking to create a marketing team within your company, you’ll need to make one structured for success.
Plus, a well-defined structure will increase the efficiency of overall business practices!
However, in-house marketing teams don’t always make sense for your company, especially when specialized campaigns are needed or if you don’t have the personnel.
When making these decisions, though, it’s essential to understand the overall organizational structure of your team and what makes the most sense for your business.
4 Common Marketing Organizational Structures
There are numerous ways to organize your marketing team but the most common center around function, the customer, company division, and agileness.
Function: You can create a functional structure that groups marketers by everyday duties and responsibilities.
Customer: You can organize your marketing team to work in correlation with the needs of your customers.
Division: You can create a divisional structure that categorizes your marketing efforts by product, service departments, or location.
Agile: You can organize by marketing products or deliverables, prioritizing all marketing efforts on one high-value proposition with the ability to adjust as the market demands.
If you’re deciding on an in-house marketing team, here are some things to ask yourself:
- What are your marketing goals?
- Who is in charge of which marketing tasks?
- What are the key functions of your marketing team?
- Do you have a multitude of products or services that you need to market?
- Who is your target audience? What are their needs? How are you solving their problems?
Answering these questions can be difficult, especially if you don’t have stakeholders invested in solving your company’s marketing problems.
This is one of the main reasons companies might outsource to an already organized digital or content marketing team.
Understanding How Marketing Teams Are Organized
How you organize your team depends on a number of factors, primarily the company’s marketing specifications.
Here is some more information on the four marketing organizational structures, pros and cons, and how each can benefit your company.
Functional Organizational Structure
When you organize by function, you arrange employees by tasks and place them on projects that best utilize their skill sets.
Each function is then managed independently by the employees, and their efforts are supervised by team leads who report on the progress of their work.
But what are functions? These are four key functions of marketing:
- Digital marketing
- Product marketing
- Creative Marketing
- Content Marketing
In the functional setup, each team has a ‘theme’ or core function, and the team members might be grouped based on roles.
For example, on a functional content marketing team, you might have a director of content marketing, a content marketer, and a content editor.
You get the point.
Creative marketing is a little broader. So, depending on the product or service your company is advertising, you may need in-house or contract graphic designers, SEO specialists, or videographers.
Functional Organizational Structure Pros and Cons
PROS: Benefits of this marketing function include efficiency as team members can work quickly without needing to consult with team members outside their department.
And since group members can be tasked with roles that highlight their specialities or skills, this team style can scale as a company grows.
CONS: It is important for the team leads to check in with each other to make sure that they do not deviate from the larger marketing goals.
Deviations occur when work is too siloed. This results in a lot of marketing efforts leading nowhere.
You can also organize your marketing team around the customer’s journey:
- Consumer acquisition
- Conversion of traffic to sales
- Customer retention
This structure consists of teams of content marketers, digital marketers, and product marketers, each responsible for a particular stage of the customer journey一customer acquisition, customer conversion, and customer retention.
Obviously, this structure focuses on the customer’s journey. Therefore, the team must work closely together and communicate each step of the way.
Each team’s efforts maximize the function of the next team as they funnel into one another. For example, customer conversion can’t be analyzed without customer acquisition and so on.
PROS: When your marketing organization is targeted towards the customer’s journey, there is a higher chance of converting leads.
CONS: Teams with poor communication or incompatible schedules might struggle here. Each team needs to work hand-in-hand to maintain the flow of the customer’s journey.
Divisional Organizational Structure
The divisional organizational structure is common in large businesses. Divisions can be categorized by location, customer segments, or product lines.
Each division operates independently and is in control of its marketing, sales, and product management teams.
You can use purpose-built marketing software to help define and clarify long-term marketing goals and strategies and keep each team on track accordingly.
There are three ways to organize your business in divisions:
Product Divisions is the most common type of division. It best accommodates companies with multiple product lines.
In this setup, each product line would have its own marketing, sales, and product teams.
Corporate marketing is then centralized and supports the brand and marketing of each product line as needed.
When using customer segmentation, brands can focus on their industry, market, or segment sizes.
As the organizational structure is focused on the customer persona, more potential consumers tend to resonate with the products, leading to more conversions.
By organizing your teams this way, product teams can focus on customizing the platform, and marketers can create content that resonates with the target audience of each product.
Trans-national enterprises tend to use geographical divisions. Each regional team would have its own SEO strategy, content and content strategy, and events or creative marketing subsectors.
Like product divisions, the geographical division would also incorporate a central marketing team that would support and communicate with the regional teams.
The key for a successful geographical division structure is to give everyone the same marketing road map so everyone is on the same page.
PROS: There are various divisions to focus on, so you can pick the type of divisional organization that works best for your company.
If you have multiple product lines, then go for product division. If your enterprise spans across multiple countries, then regional division is the best choice for your marketing team.
CONS: Much like the other organizational structures, if the divisions do not communicate with each other, it can lead to disorganization of the company as a whole.
Agile Organizational Structure
Another organizational team structure to consider is agile marketing. In agile marketing, your team identifies and prioritizes projects of high value.
This structure type uses sprints一intensive work for finite periods of time一to focus their efforts on the high-value projects and work together to complete them.
PROS: This is a great structure for small startups because it gives your new team a sense of direction by prioritizing projects with the highest value.
CONS: This structure fails to consider larger companies that spread across different regions and work in different time zones, whose staff can’t easily work together on the same projects.
Coordinating Your Marketing Structure with Your Team
The bottom line is you can’t have a consistent workflow if your marketing team isn’t organized.
If your team is experiencing conflict or miscommunication, then maybe your organizational structure needs to be reassessed.
Most importantly, the organization of your marketing team goes hand-in-hand with your marketing strategy. Having a clear marketing strategy will keep your team on track, regardless of whether or not they are separated by functions, customer stages, divisions, or high-value projects.
Content marketing is an important piece of any marketing plan, and okwrite can help you devise a strategy that works for your specific needs and organizational structure. Contact okwrite today to get started!