As the CEO of a growing B2B company, you have a lot on your plate pretty much all the time.
With so many tasks to juggle, delegation is often the key to success. Your many teams and departments exist specifically for this reason, after all.
This is especially true when it comes to marketing.
As CEOs, our usual course of action is to rely on our marketing team (or marketing agency) to create a fully fleshed-out marketing strategy—allowing us to focus on the “big picture” tasks involved in growing a business, Unfortunately, this may not end up being what’s best for business… and can be a bit counterintuitive in several ways.
So, who really should drive your B2B company’s marketing strategy?
Should Your Marketing Team Be Driving Your Marketing Strategy?
At first glance, you’d think the answer to this question would be a resounding—and fairly obvious—“yes.”
I mean, it just makes sense. You have a team of marketing specialists at the ready, so of course, they should be the ones driving your marketing strategy, right?
Well… not exactly.
The fact is, there’s more to developing a marketing strategy than “doing marketing." Though your marketing team will be the ones putting your marketing strategy into action, they’re only one piece of the puzzle when developing a comprehensive marketing strategy.
We’ll come back to that in a bit.
Why the Marketing Team, By Itself, Isn’t the Answer
Too often, marketing teams face challenges and obstacles that prevent them from being the go-tos when developing a marketing strategy. In some cases, a company’s marketing specialist or team is too specialized in a certain area.
For example, a killer SEO strategist may be able to get your content to the top of Google’s search results—but may not know how to best use this content to drive conversions. Conversely, a proven conversion rate optimization specialist may be able to drive conversions with ease but might have a tough time when it comes to content distribution.
We’ve also encountered teams that can create solid marketing plans on paper but have a tough time with implementation. Unfortunately, strategic analysis isn’t all that valuable when coupled with a lack of follow-through.
Perhaps the most common challenge we’ve seen marketing teams face is in understanding how their marketing goals relate to the company’s business goals. In such cases, a marketing team can achieve its own goals—while not doing all that much to move the needle in terms of the company’s bottom line.
Now, this isn’t to say that all marketing teams are incapable of creating a solid marketing strategy. Rather, it’s to observe the many blind spots marketing teams can have when going it alone.
Needless to say, failure to recognize these blind spots will often render your marketing team’s efforts moot, which will ultimately hurt or hinder your business as a whole. So, while your marketing team should play an integral role in developing your marketing strategy, they may not be the driving force behind it.
What Role Do Sales, Service, and the C-Suite Play in Driving Marketing Strategy?
If your marketing team isn’t completely in charge of your marketing strategy, the question is: Who is?
Well, it’s a bit complicated.
On the one hand, there is a single person who should be the one driving your marketing strategy in the best direction for your business. On the other hand, they aren’t the only person involved in this process.
“There’s more to developing a marketing strategy than 'doing marketing.”
Overall, the creation of a solid, successful marketing strategy is a team effort across the board. From marketing and sales to service and support, to your C-level executive team, everyone within your organization plays a role in developing a marketing strategy that’s best for your business.
As we said earlier, your marketing team, naturally, knows how to best engage with your audience for specific marketing purposes.
Specifically, your marketing team will know:
- What channels to focus on
- What content and experiences to deliver on these channels
- How to use all this to nurture prospective customers through the sales funnel
Your customer service and support teams play a crucial role in helping your marketing team develop their messaging. For one, they understand the challenges your customers face perhaps better than anyone. Moreover, they also understand the value your product or service brings to your customers as they (your customers) see things.
Your sales team can also help your marketing team sharpen their messaging, as well. They know what makes your audience “tick” and what triggers them to convert. Your sales team also knows what doesn’t work, and what typically only serves to improve vanity metrics (while doing nothing to improve your bottom line).
While your marketing, support, and sales teams serve to inform your marketing strategy, there’s only one person in charge of driving it in the right direction.
That person, of course, is you—the CEO.
As the CEO, your main focus is always on figuring out what needs to be done to facilitate business growth.
For our current purposes, this means:
- Knowing what resources and talent you have on hand for marketing purposes
- Knowing what KPIs are most indicative of success with regard to marketing and your business
- Using the information your marketing, sales, and support teams have given you to put a solid plan in place—and in motion
Now, we’re not looking to add yet another task to your neverending to-do list. We’re trying to make it easier for you to drive your marketing strategy by facilitating collaboration throughout your organization.
By bringing more than just your marketing team into the fold, here, it will become much easier for you to make informed decisions as to which direction to take your marketing efforts moving forward.
Create a More Comprehensive Approach to Your Marketing Strategy
I know just how challenging it can be to shift to a more cohesive and collaborative approach to developing a marketing strategy. But, we also know how financially productive it can be to do so.
That’s how the Marketing Strategy Lab becomes useful to CEOs who know they need to connect marketing to business growth goals.Check out our free training video to start building out a solid marketing strategy for your business today.