What is a key difference between high-performing marketing teams versus under-performing ones? Oftentimes, it comes down to one factor - the structure of their marketing department. Mid-market B2B SaaS companies with significant capital tend to split up their marketing department, creating several different teams. They go into it with a divide and conquer mentality. One team does brand and corporate marketing, while other teams may do product marketing or sales enablement.
Having marketing teams split up can be highly productive and effective, but they can also be detrimental to sales without the presence of a strong, centralized marketing leader. In many businesses, this would be the CMO or the VP of Marketing. For it is their role to create demand and momentum for their B2B SaaS product, which in turn drives long-term revenue for the company.
Without strong marketing leadership, it’s easy for a functional (divided) system to break down over time. What once started as a well-structured team, eventually breaks down into silos with a lack of direction and leadership. Establishing central marketing leadership is critical because there is someone present to cast vision and strategy for their team.
Real life example:
Jaleh Rezaei was Head of Marketing at Gusto (now CEO at Mutiny) where she led a marketing team of 20. Jaleh developed a framework to help her team move towards a common goal while avoiding the silo trap. She implemented a bi-weekly learning meeting across the marketing department, where her team could share new learnings and awareness about what’s working and what isn’t. It was an important part of their team’s culture to have leadership involved in each department to continue the push towards their common goal.
When there is a lack of strong leadership, marketing teams become siloed in a bubble with little collaboration outside of their own scope of work. Each team creates their own KPI's to prove their value to the company, creating headcount bloat within the organization. When lacking a common goal, these siloed teams often end up underperforming.
The solution? Work from the top down. Make sure the marketing executives of your B2B SaaS company are equipped to create a vision and strategy to lead their team to increase product demand and produce long-term revenue growth.