Giving a Marketing Team of 3 the Power of 15
Associations, non-profits, and societies tend to find themselves in the perfect storm of resource-deprivation and program decentralization.
This equates to small marketing teams with lean operating budgets working as in-house agencies to a suite of program managers. The fall-out from this often comes down to inefficacy, lack of focus, and inevitable burnout among team members.
So what can marketing team leads and managers do to shore up scope with resource reality?
While it may seem overwhelming wearing all the hats and hitting all the goals, with the right tech stack, data integrations, and skillsets, even the smallest teams can function in the most remarkable ways.
So let's explore how a wind turbine really functions. Let's take a look at the below diagram and break down the anatomical features of a wind turbine.
- Goals: Desired outcome of all of your marketing efforts. It could be a specific number of leads or potential members generated and a certain number of total engagements with your campaigns.
- Strategies: A theory on how you will achieve your goals. Smaller bits of a goal broken down by timeline, audience, campaign, channels, etc.
- Audiences: The specific people or organizations you will target based on demographics, behaviors, industry, roles, etc.
- Channels: Methods you'll communicate with your audience such as email, social media, website, etc.
- Positioning: Where your brand or organization stands compared to competitors or similar organizations.
- Timelines: When you will complete each marketing initiative or task.
- Roles: Who will complete each marketing initiative or task.
In the wind turbine analogy, this step would be like the gearbox found within the nacelle, which speeds up the rotations per minute (RPM) to get the device to the proper speed. In this case, it's part of accelerating your marketing plan by detailing your audience and how you'll engage them.
Before even launching a campaign, you should set result thresholds so that, if something doesn't reach your objectives by a specific date, you're triggered to make changes. These are the Brakes found within the nacelle that reduce (or "shift") speed to get to the optimal level.
Automation in marketing is like a wind turbine Generator; it takes what's given (rotational energy) and turns it into something useful (electricity). In this case, however, you're taking tools that you likely already have from a CRM or marketing software and using it to give your team back time that can be refocused on what's important—strategy.
The Yaw within a wind turbine steers into the direction of the wind to keep it in line with the wind's direction. In a marketing sense, you keep the operation in line with the marketing plan by reviewing your priorities, results, and goal progress.
Each member should have some level of understanding on how to use different marketing channels and content formats. There should be balance amongst your team across the following attributes:
- Data-driven vs. Goal-driven
- Analytical skills vs. Creative skills
- Strategic thinking vs. Tactical thinking
- Technical knowledge vs. Marketing knowledge
That's your base. But beyond this, each of your team members should have unopposed specialties.
For instance, one of your team members may specialize in SEO/SEM/SSM while another team member may specialize in content strategy and journey building. Circumscribing these expertise areas will help you resource plan and create efficiencies within your projects.
You can also consider SaaS products and resource outsourcing for more creative design tasks. There are tons of tools out there that give you templated starting points for content creation, plans, and work streams.
A team manager, group manager, or even resource manager acts as the Rotor Blade holding the team of digital generalists—the Blade Assembly—together to make everything work efficiently and effectively.
You can also systematically shepherd quality leads to promotional stakeholders by leveraging, workflows, lead scoring, and omni-channel nurturing approaches.
The Transformer is your channel marketing framework. It's used to distribute harnessed voltage (resources) to the switchyards (stakeholders) which, inevitably, grows awareness, leads, and conversions.
The Switchyard sends electricity to the entire community, just as leveraging different channels distributes your message to a broader base.
In this instance, the wind gives the turbine the power to operate; your members create the content, programs, and products that fuel organizational value.
Our Martech Stack Audit can get you started
Whether your marketing team is restricted by personnel, budget, or expertise, incorporating the right tech stack, data integration, and best practices can level the playing field for you. Book time with us for a Martech Stack Audit.
About Aimee Pagano
Aimee joins HighRoad Solution with 15+ years of integrated marketing and communications experience, primarily in client-facing roles within the association and SaaS space. Her specialties include persona development, content strategy/management, lead gen and awareness campaign development, and website development/optimization.