5 minute read · Published June 15, 2024

Product marketing team structure

Latest Update July 4, 2024

Product marketing is crucial for ensuring that a product gets in front of and resonates with the right audience. It connects product development with current market needs, presenting the product as the ultimate painkiller..

A well-structured product marketing team can significantly boost sales and elevate a product's market position. So what kinds of roles and skills should the ideal product marketing team consist of? 

Product marketing manager

This is the person who oversees the entire product marketing team. They could have other coordinators or assistant managers underneath them, depending on the size of the organization. 

Essentially, the product marketing manager sets the tone for the entire department. The success of every other role/subdepartment we touch on below will be impacted by the strategy set forth by the product marketing manager. 

Key responsibilities:

  • Develop and execute marketing strategies
  • Conduct market research to understand customer needs
  • Craft product messaging and positioning
  • Collaborate with sales, product development, and customer support teams
  • Monitor and analyze campaign performance

Role in strategy and execution 

The Product Marketing Manager (or PMM) is the strategic leader who makes sure that every marketing effort aligns with the overall business goals. They create the roadmap for product marketing initiatives and oversee the execution of that plan. Their goal is to ensure that every campaign is on-target and on-brand.

While they may not be the ones with their hands directly in executing, they are the ones who analyze all of the results and make strategic decisions on the best path to move forward.  

Collaboration with other departments

The PMM’s role needs to extend just outside of the marketing bubble. Since their focus is on aligning marketing efforts with other business goals, they act as a liaison between the marketing team and other departments. They work closely with sales to provide the necessary tools, content, and training, and they also collaborate frequently with the product development team to align on features and benefits. 

Although sales and marketing are the most important teams to collaborate with, PMMs will also coordinate with customer support to gather feedback and work to improve customer satisfaction. 

Content marketing

Content marketing is an important component for any product marketing team, especially for B2B products. They create the collateral that nurtures leads at all points in the funnel, whether it’s top-of-funnel thought leadership or bottom-of-funnel sales enablement. 

Key responsibilities:

  • Create compelling content that resonates with the target audience
  • Develop content strategies aligned with marketing goals
  • Write blogs, whitepapers, case studies, and more
  • Optimize content for SEO
  • Analyze content performance and adjust strategies accordingly

Importance of content in product marketing

Content is the cornerstone of product marketing. It educates potential customers, builds trust, and drives engagement. 

Product marketing is all about specificity and problem-solving, and content marketing is especially able to deliver on those strategies. Great content can position a product as a solution to a specific problem that a specific customer segment has, helping to move prospects through the sales funnel. 

Types of content created

Content marketing specialists produce a variety of content, including blog posts, whitepapers, case studies, eBooks, infographics, videos, and social media posts. Each type of content serves a different purpose, so the format selected by the team will be dependent on the exact goals they’re trying to achieve and the audience they’re trying to reach. 

Market research

The best product marketing teams have a clear understanding of what makes their target audience tick. That’s why a market research team, or at least one person who specializes in market research, is a must in an ideal product marketing team structure. 

Key responsibilities:

  • Conduct market research to gather data on customer needs, preferences, and behaviors
  • Analyze industry trends and the competitive landscape
  • Provide insights to inform product development and marketing strategies
  • Use various research methods, including surveys, focus groups, and data analysis

Market research analysts provide the data and insights that drive all marketing efforts. By understanding what customers want and how the market is evolving, they help the team make informed decisions about product positioning and marketing strategies.

For example, if research shows a growing demand for eco-friendly products, the marketing team can highlight sustainable features in their campaigns. 

Digital marketing 

Digital marketing is essentially any of the marketing that happens online (hence, “digital”). It’s pretty much impossible for a successful brand to not have some sort of online presence, and those that can craft the best presence are often the ones who shoot right past the competitors. That makes digital marketing team members some of the most important people in the overall product marketing team structure. 

Key responsibilities:

  • Manage online marketing campaigns across various platforms
  • Optimize campaigns for SEO and SEM (i.e. to get found on Google)
  • Analyze and report on campaign performance
  • Develop strategies for social media, email marketing, and PPC advertising
  • Stay up-to-date with digital marketing trends and best practices

Role in managing online presence

Digital marketers are responsible for maintaining the company’s online presence and executing digital marketing campaigns. They use various channels, including search engines, social media, email, and display advertising, to reach and engage with the target audience.

Digital marketing campaigns can be ongoing, such as regular social media posting or email nurture campaigns, as well as around specific campaigns like a product launch or events. 

Importance of SEO, SEM, social media, and email marketing

These digital marketing tactics are essential for driving traffic, generating leads, and converting prospects into customers. SEO ensures that the company’s website ranks high in search results, while SEM leverages paid advertising to drive targeted traffic. Social media and email marketing help build relationships with customers and nurture leads through personalized communication.

In-product communications 

In-product communications may make up its own role in some smaller companies, this responsibility may be tacked on to other roles. Either way, this is a crucial piece of the product marketing team structure since it is critical to increasing in-product engagement

Key responsibilities:

  • Own the adoption and management of user assistance technology
  • Manage all in-product messaging and notifications
  • Ensure messages align with the overall marketing and product strategy
  • Use data and feedback to optimize in-product communication
  • Analyze the impact of in-product communications on user engagement and retention

Importance of the role

The person or team in charge of in-product communications plays a crucial role in enhancing the user experience by delivering timely and relevant messages within the product. This can include onboarding messages and checklists, feature announcements, and interactive product tours

Tools and techniques

Often, this process is supported by automation technology like Commandbar’s user assistance tool. This helps to not only save the team time by removing the necessity to manually engage with customers, but it also leads to a better user experience since you can leverage scalable personalization techniques like conversational AI tools or segmentation. 

Design

Designers may either be part of the product marketing team exclusively, or they may be part of a broader marketing department and help on an as-needed basis to deliver visuals for product marketing initiatives. 

Key responsibilities

  • Create visually appealing and effective marketing materials
  • Collaborate with content and digital marketing teams to produce graphics, videos, and other visual content
  • Ensure consistency in design across all marketing channels
  • Stay updated with design trends and tools

Role in creating marketing materials 

Creative designers bring the marketing vision to life through well-designed visuals. They create everything from website graphics and social media posts to infographics and video content, making sure that all materials are on-brand and engaging. 

Designers work closely with content creators and digital marketers to ensure that the visual elements align with the overall marketing strategy and messaging. This collaboration is critical to make sure that the graphics don’t just look great, but are also effective in communicating the main message that the content is intended to drive home. 

No product marketing teams should exist in a vacuum

A great product marketing team is dependent on much more than just the members on their team. Successful product marketing is inherently collaborative, requiring input, support, and alignment with multiple departments across the organization.

By aligning with sales, product development, customer support, finance, and legal teams, product marketers can ensure their strategies are hitting all of the right points from every angle. 

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