SaaS Marketing Blog

Who do you need in your SaaS marketing team?


26th January 2016

The need for a marketing team

A conventional approach to marketing is to recruit a marketing manager and expect the person to be able to use a range of skills to generate the leads for sales teams to follow up. In an ideal world this would be a solid approach.

However, marketing is complex and requires a range of skills to be deployed at an expert level. Ranging from strategic to highly technical, and project management through to creative, it is unreasonable to expect a single person, no matter how multi-talented, to possess all of the abilities at the level required to deliver marketing programmes within the timeframes today’s businesses need.

Here we look at the job roles and skills required to put together a marketing team for a SaaS business.

Strategist

This is someone that is able to think and plan the marketing strategy. Typically this might be a marketing manager that masterminds the plan, pitches the big ideas and is able to understand testing and utilise the results to improve strategy and tactics. Being SaaS focused they need to be ‘digital native’, living and breathing the latest trends in digital marketing.

Content marketers

A good content marketer is a creative force that works as part of the team to develop and deliver content ideas. It’s likely to be a person with strong writing skills and the ability to visually conceptualise, or accurately understand the appeal of a business service offer. The content marketer should be able to capture the business offer simply in words and then explain it fully for the audience.

Web designer

A good web designer should be able to work with the latest tools to deliver websites that meet the latest technical standards as well as follow best practice for conversion rate optimisation. Understanding UX (User Experience) is the key to making sure website visits translate into clicks.

Search engine marketers

Search engine marketers (SEM) need to be Google experts, with complete command and understanding of what it takes to succeed in being found through Google. Whether it’s paid clicks through PPC or natural SERP position through SEO, the SEM needs to be sharp and up to date with this rapidly changing aspect of marketing. A good understand of testing and utilising the results to improve conversion is a requirement in this role.

Marketing assistant

Often a role recruited as a junior (although not exclusively), a marketing assistant needs to be knowledgeable and conversant with a range of marketing activities, as well as theories and principles of practice. Tasks such as database maintenance, loading and maintaining website content, loading email campaigns and pushing out social media campaigns are typical of the sort of activities a marketing assistant may undertake.

Is SaaS experience essential?

Essential, maybe not. Desirable, yes. Marketing a SaaS product has its own rules and therefore experience of marketing other SaaS products would be highly beneficial to leverage experience and get off to a quick start.

How to build your SaaS marketing team

Now we have identified the ‘prime suspects’, there are three ways to build the team:

  • Recruit individual team members to form your own in-house marketing team
  • Outsource marketing to an external agency that possesses the necessary skills and experience
  • Recruit key in-house staff and support them with external expertise where there are skills gaps

Assembling an in-house team is an expensive option; from recruitment fees to salaries, office space and hardware and software it’s probably the least popular option for smaller and medium businesses. It’s also the slowest option as building and moulding a team takes time.

Outsourcing is likely to produce the fastest results at the lowest cost. Choosing the right external partner means you get an experienced team that is used to working together and is able to go to bat from the moment the green light is given. With no overheads associated with recruitment or employment, it makes financial sense.

A mix of internal and external staff represents a popular approach. Key personnel such as the strategic thinking marketing manager would work full time internally closer to the business and the management team to shape marketing at the strategic level. An assistant might support the marketing manager. Specialist skills such as content writing and web design and digital marketing expertise are ideal roles to outsource from an agency as it is unlikely a small to medium business will have enough work to fully employ them.

Next steps with building your SaaS marketing team

Xander Marketing is the marketing partner of choice for SaaS businesses that wish to outsource their marketing to a results focused agency. We have worked with many SaaS businesses globally helping them grow through more customers, leads, website traffic and brand awareness.

Whether you want to outsource your full marketing department, fill in skill gaps, or are not sure request a free 30 minute marketing consultation and talk to the experts.

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