The Essential Guide to Marketing Operations

The Essential Guide to Marketing Operations

Technology continues to improve rapidly, and marketing has evolved right alongside it. As customers increasingly turn to the internet to uncover new products and opportunities, brands have become more adept at adjusting their marketing strategy to get their offerings in front of prospective customers. They drive demand generation by helping consumers understand why their business can solve their pain points.

However, as marketing professionals improve their engagement with customers online, the industry has become complex. With new technology—such as marketing automation and personalization—playing increasingly prominent roles, and data collection and interpretation capabilities continuing to improve, marketing has more pieces than ever before. Marketers need to understand and use all of these pieces to drive successful marketing campaigns.

Businesses that effectively use marketing understand how to drive their conversions and sales through effective use of technology. With the complexity involved, these campaigns need the help of professional management and organization. Within marketing, the marketing operations team is concerned with creating this very guidance. As brands bring in personnel who can help them manage different marketing functions, team members can better optimize their campaigns and uncover the potential of modern marketing.

This article will explore the emerging field of marketing operations and the fundamental benefits it offers brands that incorporate it into their marketing departments. Here’s what all marketing organizations should know.

Marketing ops: Focus and functions

The rapidly evolving and maturing marketing field must now consider many different technology platforms and a wealth of data that guides a successful marketing campaign. The campaign must run smoothly from start to finish, including strong planning, excellent execution, and measurable key performance indicators (KPIs). Therefore, the marketing ops professional’s job is to be a type of “master of ceremonies” in both B2C and B2B marketing.

The role of marketing operations can be immensely broad, working across multiple disciplines. Generally speaking, many of the most successful people in the marketing field operate very creatively. They have the understanding and insight that allows them to see how to present their message to customers in new ways and attract attention. However, the marketing operations team brings a bit more structure and a data-focused mindset to the field. Chief marketing officer (CMO) team members offer organization and efficiency optimization from conception through delivery.

You’ll find that, depending on the organization, marketing ops teams and professionals can help in a variety of ways. Here are some of the most important functions of a successful team.

  • Optimizing marketing workflow: The marketing ops team will have more of a bird’s eye view of the marketing campaigns from end to end and how they interact with other brand initiatives. They can empower the rest of the marketing team to create fully optimized campaigns by providing technical support and bringing in data and operations to ensure that each campaign runs smoothly.
  • Managing marketing data: Data has become an increasingly important part of marketing operations, as technology and platforms become more efficient and capable of tracking customer data and knowing how to interpret this information. Marketing ops teams bring data management to the group, tracking return on investment (ROI), providing insight into past campaign success rates, and helping the marketing team excel.
  • Coordinating interdepartmental efforts: Since marketing teams often include various departments and need integration with those outside of marketing—such as sales and customer service—the marketing ops team can play an important role. By working directly with everyone across the marketing groups and aligning themselves with related organizational departments, they guide the marketing teams to operate in a more integrated system.
  • Budgeting and strategic planning: The marketing ops team also often uses their data to track how successful campaigns were, gather insight about customer behaviors, and uncover data regarding the department’s budget. This helps them create high-level strategic planning and guide budgeting decisions so that the department operates efficiently.

Essential benefits: Why you need a marketing ops team

Incorporating marketing ops teams into your organization provides brands with the unifying oversight that can bring the marketing department to the next level. Businesses will empower themselves to take advantage of more data and technological capabilities that marketing provides them, embracing a strategic overview to create efficiency and proficiency.

Here are six reasons why you should consider incorporating marketing ops professionals into your team.

Eliminate disconnect and duplication in your marketing team

When you have several marketing professionals operating in different silos and areas of the marketing field, duplication naturally occurs. It becomes easy for different groups to operate on their own planes and think only about their own goals and successes, rather than thinking of themselves as part of a whole.

Bringing in marketing ops professionals to serve as CMOs or marketing operations managers helps eliminate this disconnect. By working across all parts of the marketing team from conception to execution and measurement, you can bring together cross-functional departments as a single entity with common goals.

Standardize and enhance key processes

Without standardization of key processes, marketing teams can find themselves speaking entirely different languages. If they each have different preferred metrics for tracking success and unique ways of engaging with customers, understanding and comparing success rate becomes challenging, if not impossible.

Marketing ops provide standardization by bringing together different areas. With everyone operating with a core set of metrics, data interpretation, technology, and strategic guidance, it becomes easier for different teams to function effectively and work together toward the same goal.

Generate and utilize marketing data

Technology and marketers continue to improve their ability to track and interpret data collected from customers. Marketing ops teams bring their structure and data-focused mindset to the marketing department.

These professionals help establish KPIs and performance measurement metrics for the group, understand how to interpret important data regarding customer behavior and campaign performance, and guide improving marketing efforts and the customer experience.

Scale up or down to meet challenges and opportunities

One of the biggest challenges that marketing teams face lies in workload management. Marketing team needs can easily scale up and down, even within the same year, as the team uncovers new opportunities for growth or faces challenges that require them to scale back their efforts.

An effective marketing ops team can help them manage this rise and fall efficiently. By providing end-to-end optimization and support, the marketing ops team helps each part of the marketing department operate effectively. They can provide guidance and support as the need arises.

Marketing ops teams also easily incorporate independent professionals, such as those from Upwork, to manage particular operations. This enhances the ability of the group to scale up and down while maintaining excellent marketing performance.

Incorporate strategic analysis

Effective digital marketing needs to bring the different areas of marketing together to work toward a common goal. As the growth in technology, consumer expectations, and digital opportunity increase the platforms where marketers can bring their promotional efforts, departments can easily lose sight of overall strategy development.

By taking an overarching look at the different departments within the marketing team and seeing how they fit together, marketing ops professionals understand how to integrate them. They can bring their data sets together with this understanding to perform valuable strategic analysis that guides each department toward integrated goals.

Integrate independent talent into your team

With the variety of roles and responsibilities for marketing operations, building a successful marketing ops team provides the perfect opportunity to incorporate independent talent. With independent professionals, you can leverage the skills you need as they become required, taking advantage of a global workforce.

Upwork offers an excellent work marketplace for finding independent marketing leaders who provide your marketing ops support. You can easily browse the profiles of professionals with the marketing skills you want and manage the working relationship directly through the platform.

Build your marketing ops team with independent professionals

With marketing becoming an increasingly complex field with the evolution of technology, data, and customer expectations, marketing ops teams can provide your organization with the chance to seize opportunities and power growth. Their ability to incorporate structure and analysis into this largely creative field can help any marketing team improve their performance.

Take advantage of independent professionals and marketing ops with Upwork.

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The Essential Guide to Marketing Operations
The Upwork Team

Upwork is the world’s work marketplace that connects businesses with independent talent from across the globe. We serve everyone from one-person startups to large, Fortune 100 enterprises with a powerful, trust-driven platform that enables companies and talent to work together in new ways that unlock their potential.

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