How to Build the Strongest Small Marketing Team

Think of a strong marketing team. Imagine a huge budget and a team of skilled marketers? Well, for many companies this is no longer necessarily the case.

The strongest marketing teams are made up of marketers who know how to best manage their time and resources. With a bad strategy, even teams with huge budgets can waste their resources and achieve fewer results than a smart, small, and nimble marketing team.

It’s about doing more with less.

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In the words of Paul Jarvis in Company of One: Why Stay Small is the next big thing for businesses:

“Smart small companies question their systems, processes and structures in order to become more efficient and to achieve more with the same number of employees and fewer working hours.”

With a focused marketing strategy, it has never been easier for small businesses to access the best marketing results – without large advertising expenses or human resources.

8 steps to building a strong marketing team

Here’s how to build the strongest small marketing team without adding to your budget or workload.

1. Understand your customers and what is important to them.

Effective marketing starts with a 360-degree understanding of your leads and customers and how you can provide them with the greatest possible benefit.

Remember, the most important people to your business are those who are already giving you money – your current customers. When they’re satisfied, you have a tribe of people promoting your business at every opportunity.

According to Bain & Company, a 5% increase in customer loyalty correlates with at least a 25% increase in profits.

By understanding your current customers, you can also understand the types of people you want to attract. Use a tool like the Value Proposition Canvas to define your core customer profiles and visualize the value you are creating. Then you can pivot your marketing and product to relieve pain and attract even more customers.

2. Focus on the 20% of the work that does 80% of the results.

Where are your current marketing leads coming from? Which marketing leads become customers? And which marketing channels do your happiest and best-paid customers use?

It’s time to understand where your marketing spend has the highest ROI. These are the channels, tactics, and strategies that are most valuable to your small marketing team.

According to the Pareto principle, your team should focus on the 20% of your marketing efforts that are making 80% of the impact.

The marketing strategy with the highest ROI is usually email, as explained in Campaign Monitor’s New Rules of Email Marketing:

Email marketing highest ROI

Keep in mind, however, that every single company and customer base is different. What marketing strategies can you demonstrate for you? Answer this to find the most valuable benefit for your limited marketing budget.

3. Share values ​​and offer solutions.

In her book Chill preneurentrepreneur Denise Duffield-Thomas sums up her wisdom about marketing for small businesses in a few words: “Share and make offers.”

“Share your knowledge, expertise, advice, tips, experiences, horror stories, mistakes and successes with people. And then offer a solution.”

While you can (and should) add significant value with an inbound marketing approach – such as valuable blog posts and resources – ultimately, the solution you are offering to the right people may ultimately be your product or service.

After a personalized and carefully curated lead nurturing process, your “Buy Now” button will be the ultimate goal at the end of your marketing funnel.

4. List and review all of your marketing projects.

Strong small marketing teams know they can’t do everything. It’s impossible to follow every trend and best practice, especially if you’re marketing on a budget.

To understand where to free your marketing team time to focus on what’s most valuable, first identify what your team is working on right now.

Which projects are running? What tasks do you and your marketing colleagues have on your to-do lists?

With a project management tool, you can increase the visibility of what is going on in your marketing team. This makes it a lot easier to assess what is worth continuing to invest time on and what is currently not a priority for your team.

As an example, this Trello template provides a handy company overview that quickly shows everything from a high-level perspective:

Project management for small businesses with trello

5. Regularly question how you do things.

Advice in Paul Jarvis’ book One is to routinely review your small business processes and look for areas that can be tweaked and ideally automated. He encourages business owners to ask:

“Is this process efficient enough? What steps can be left out and the end result will be the same or better? Does this rule help or hinder our business?”

The end goal here is simplicity, explains Paul. “Too many products or services, too many levels of management and / or too many rules and processes for completing tasks lead to atrophy. Simplicity has to be a mandate.”

How can you simplify processes and introduce more automation? As a first step, take a look at marketing automation tools to optimize workflows and integration tools for automatic data synchronization between apps. These are two of the best ways to improve results in your small business with less effort.

6. Review your marketing tech stack.

What marketing tools is your small business currently using? To build the strongest small marketing team, you need a strong marketing stack – or an assortment of tools to use to drive your marketing forward.

Most marketing teams get the best results when they put their CRM tool at the center of their activities. This centralizes data and gives you a simple overview of all contacts, leads and customers in your sales and marketing pipelines.

With an all-in-one CRM and marketing tool like HubSpot, you can do tasks like emailing, marketing automation, and content management in one place.

Otherwise, your small business can use standalone tools and sync them with your CRM for seamless data flows.

7. Integrate your business tools.

One of the greatest benefits of integrating your apps is that you can do more with less – less time, less budget, and fewer people. A two-way data synchronization solution can connect contact information between all of your business tools – on your marketing team and beyond.

This not only streamlines your processes, but also solves the time-consuming problems of data silos and confusing CSV imports and exports. It’s an easy solution for your marketing team to …

  • Use all available customer data for marketing campaigns;
  • Automate data management
  • Segment email lists based on the latest data across all apps
  • Update opt-ins and opt-outs for all tools immediately

8. Follow a company-wide philosophy of doing more with less.

Doing more with less doesn’t just apply to your marketing team. You can build a small and powerful sales team or customer support team by refining your focus on where the results are coming from and creating super-lean processes.

What other processes can you streamline, automate, and spend more or less time doing in your small business?

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