Marketing Teams in Startups
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Marketing Teams in Startups

Why do startups need marketing teams? Build your brand, make a name in the market, and grab customers' attention.
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According to David Ogilvy, founder of Ogilvy and Mather and known as the “Father of Advertising, “What really decides consumers to buy or not to buy is the content of your advertising, not its form.”

Like all companies, startups need strong marketing teams to build their brand, establish their presence in the market, and reach their customers in a salient manner. 

This blog post will discuss the role of marketing teams in startups based on the size and stage of the company.

What are the roles of a marketing team in startups?

Each startup requires a different marketing team structure as it expands.

This graphic above was designed by Churchill and Lewis in the Harvard Business Review. 

In New, Small Startups

When the startup is relatively small and around its existence/survival stage, the first marketing lead or team will have to wear many hats. 

From shipping products, creating brand logos, managing customer service, and fostering demand in the market, it is crucial for the marketing team to pull its weight during the early stages of a startup. 

Inbound marketing, which is a form of marketing that attracts customers through valuable content and tailored experiences, is most salient for the early stages. 

In Growing, Mid-Sized Startups

After the startup has found its product-market fit, the startup grows and the marketing team needs to be scaled. It’s time to determine which channel of marketing draws the most attention and get more workers in that sector. 

If the startup is seeing a lot of online traffic with the content they output, SEO (search engine optimization), audience engagement, and website design need to be targeted.

If there is a lack of engagement in other channels, they need to be reassessed in terms of performance, expenditures, and revenue. 

Marketing focuses will change team compositions to fit what is optimal for the startup to be successful. 

In Large, Full-Operating Startups

The startup is now up and running, and has succeeded in terms of bringing in profitable revenue, establishing a strong customer base, and providing a stellar service or product. 

The marketing team of the startup has been segmented into multiple branches that each target a different niche. 

From here and on, it’s pivotal to maintain a cohesive marketing team that thoroughly documents its progress and is able to operate autonomously. 

Special Case Startups

While marketing is a crucial component of a startup, some startups can be successful without placing such emphasis on their marketing goals.

For example, stealth-mode startups are fledgling companies that work “to bring a new product or service to market under a temporary state of secrecy”, which is why they do not need as many marketing team members. 

The aspect of surprise and mystery can in fact be the alluring factor of the startup that draws more attention. 

Other startups focus on building their brand and a distinct reputation in the market, as opposed to identifying and compounding upon demand in the market.

This is usually the case for startups that are joining an already saturated market space. Still, it is pivotal to have a trademark that sets the startup apart from others and has the potential to be marketable.