The Complete Guide to Product Marketing Team Structure for SaaS
How do you set up a perfect SaaS product marketing team structure? There’s no “one-size-fits-all” magic formula. Depending on your company size, stage, and marketing goals, there are plenty of ways to do it.
Let’s dive into some tips and tricks to build your dream team.
What does a product marketing organizational structure look like?
A product marketing organizational structure varies from one organization to the other. When you’re part of a small product marketing team, usually the boss of the marketing department looks after one or two product marketers.
If there are more product marketers on the team, they might have more general roles instead of specializing in one area.
Benefits of having a product marketing team
Imagine trying to juggle all marketing tasks randomly. it’s chaos, like herding cats. Work might be duplicated and goals not met.
Here are some benefits of having a well structured product marketing team;
#1 Aligned teams
To enjoy a smooth planning experience with a new feature or product, everyone from sales to marketing needs to be in on what’s happening. That means:
- Product marketers need to know what to add in positioning and messaging.
- Salespeople need the latest info to sell the new feature or product.
- Customer service needs to be able to answer any questions customers might have.
When everyone is aligned and on the same page you’d have a successful product or new feature launch.
#2 Effective strategy
A good product marketing team can come together to develop and execute a solid strategy for a new feature or product. This involves working closely with the sales, customer success and product teams to create training, materials, and resources that show off the product in the best possible light.
Product marketing team responsibilities
Product marketing bridges the gap between product development and sales & marketing, mainly to position, launch, and promote products effectively to the target audience. Here are 10 of the key responsibilities of a product marketing team:
#1 Market Research and Customer Insights:
- Conduct market research to identify potential opportunities and threats.
- Develop buyer personas based on demographic, psychographic, and behavioral insights.
- Conduct competitor analysis to identify gaps and opportunities.
#2 Product Positioning and Messaging:
- Craft compelling messaging that differentiates the product in the market.
- Develop the product’s unique value proposition and positioning statement.
#3 Go-to-Market (GTM) Strategy:
- Plan and execute product launches.
- Collaborate with sales, marketing, and product teams to create a cohesive GTM plan.
- Define target segments and develop strategies to penetrate these segments.
#4 Content Development:
- Produce collateral like brochures, data sheets, white papers, case studies, and more.
- Collaborate with the content team to create blog posts, videos, and other educational materials.
#5 Sales Enablement:
- Provide sales teams with the training and tools they need to sell the product effectively.
- Develop sales scripts, presentation decks, and objection-handling techniques.
#6 Cross-functional Collaboration:
- Work closely with the product development team to align on product features and benefits.
- Collaborate with customer success teams to gather customer feedback and address their concerns.
#7 Pricing and Packaging:
- Conduct pricing research and set pricing strategies.
- Design product packages or bundles to maximize revenue.
#8 Product Adoption:
- Monitor product adoption rates.
- Develop strategies to increase uptake and reduce churn.
#9 Feedback Loop:
- Establish channels for collecting feedback from sales, support, and customers.
- Relay this feedback to the product development team for product improvements.
#10 Performance Metrics:
- Track and analyze metrics related to product sales, adoption, and market penetration.
- Adjust strategies based on performance data to optimize results.
Product Marketing Team Roles and Structure
This team structure is just an example. In reality, a SaaS company’s product marketing team might have more specialized roles, or some roles might be combined, depending on the company’s needs and resources.
Director of Product Marketing: Sets the strategic direction for the product marketing team, interfaces with other departments (like sales, product management, and customer success), and keeps the department aligned with the company’s overall goals.
Product Marketing Manager (PMM): Their job is to understand the product’s market, target customers, and the competitive landscape. The PMM crafts the product’s messaging and positioning, and works with other teams to drive its go-to-market strategy.
Product Marketing Operations Manager: Manages tools, technologies, and processes that the product marketing team uses. They help with data analytics, reporting, and other operational needs.
Researcher: Conducts customer interviews, surveys, and other forms of research to gather insights about market needs, pain points, and perceptions.
Content Strategist: Creates and manages content that supports the product’s positioning, such as blog posts, videos, emails, and social media posts. They ensure that content speaks to the target audience and conveys the product’s value proposition effectively.
Go-to-Market (GTM) Specialist: Focuses on creating campaigns to launch and promote the product to the target market. They work with sales, customer success, and other teams to ensure a smooth product launch and its sustained growth.
Product Analyst: Analyzes data related to product usage, adoption, and market trends. Their insights can inform product development, marketing strategies, and content creation. Their role can sometimes overlap with the product researcher.
How to set up the perfect product marketing team
Before you decide your team size and structure, these 2 things should inform your decision:
Early stage startups who don’t have the deep pockets to spend big can hire a generalist product marketer who will wear the many hats. They’re usually part of the product team and inform their developments with his findings.
If you need to hire quickly, look internally. Consider people who have a good understanding of your product and its customers. So whether its from sales or customer success or marketing, they can be a good fit from the start.
When you reach $5m ARR and above, you can afford to set up a 5 or 6-man product marketing team. $20m ARR organizations usually consist of 12 or more people.
If you go with a sales-led approach, chances are your sales team will be about twice the size of your product marketing team. But if you opt for a PLG approach, have a sizeable product marketing team size so that each role can specialize in a specific area for maximum performance.
Now you can organize your product marketing team based on any of the following criteria:
Some companies divide their marketing teams into competitive intelligence, positioning & messaging, product launch, and sales enablement. But you don’t want to separate these important aspects and hinder your success.
💡 Pro Tip: The best way to get the most out of your team is to integrate all 4 departments together. That way, you’re working as a team and not just by function.
When you organize by segment, you divide the team based on different types of customers or personas. This helps the product marketing team work closely with sales. But sometimes it gets a bit complicated when we have stuff that applies to all the segments. It’s tough to figure out who should take care of what when it falls under all the different segments.
#3 Objective or Theme
Instead of the whole team sticking to the same old theme or objective, try rearranging it based on what you need to achieve.
For example, if you want to boost brand awareness, you can put certain people together to work on that. If you want to launch a product, you can assemble a team specifically for that.
Keep in mind, this requires some serious coordination. You must ensure everyone knows what’s going on and who they’re working with. It can be a hassle, but getting the best results is worth it.
Having the right product marketing team in place will not only save you money but precious time which you can spend boosting your business growth. You don’t have to wonder how to set up your team, whether you’re building from scratch or scaling. This guide is all you need to know the different responsibilities and size needed to achieve your goals even if it’s for the future.