Should Small Businesses Have a Marketing Department?


Marketing is an investment in growth. Whether in charge of a small business or working for an international corporation, marketing is a critical component in the success of any organisation. Even though it can be hard to measure its impact if you don't create awareness of your brand, how will people even know that you exist? Think of marketing as the engine that drives sales and leads to revenue growth.

This article will cover why marketing is essential to the success of any business and how you can structure your marketing department to suit your resources and requirements.

Do small businesses need a marketing department?

Every company needs a marketing capability. Why? Because marketing is how you reach out to customers, identify their needs, and retain them. It's how you find new customers and keep them coming back. In short, marketing is how you sell yourself.

The questions you need to ask yourself in today's world are:

· What marketing functions need to be within the organisation?

· Which ones need to be close to it?

· And which ones should be outsourced?

On balance, marketing capabilities fall broadly into two categories: thinking and experiences.

'Thinking' marketing experts Thinking is the top-level marketing expert or leader who brings the overarching marketing strategy and ensures it aligns with business goals. This might be your full-time CMO, or as the most expensive individual on the marketing payroll, you may find it more cost-effective and strategic to seek a fractional CMO or interim marketing director.

'Doing' marketing capacity.

By experience, we are referring to your team's creators and executors. They are the people who execute the strategy day in and day out. They will range from the marketing manager to your copywriter, graphic designer, and Facebook marketing expert.

What functions do you need in or near your marketing department?

Each company has different needs and may feel that it is better to outsource some of its marketing efforts, whether because of a lack of expertise or because they have more pressing issues on its plate. With outsourcing, you can take advantage of an expert's knowledge, experience and expertise to run your business marketing machine smoothly and efficiently. You don't have to have the creators in-house. Still, you need someone to own the strategy, think about how each function will influence the sales funnel and make sure daily managers and individuals execute tasks under very clear objectives.

The strategic role of a marketing expert or marketing leader is essential. Still, most small businesses, and some large ones, find the costs of a full-time marketing director prohibitive. Many can afford to have several junior team members or task-specific specialists on staff (within the company). Still, many cannot justify the overheads associated with a full-time CMO. Big marketing consultancies are available, but these tend to be more costly than a full-time recruit. This gap is where the concept of having a marketing expert 'near' the company could be the ideal solution in the form of a fractional CMO service.

Why hire a Fractional CMO

A fractional CMO is neither part-time nor interim. They are marketing experts on hand to create and oversee strategy and strategic capabilities, either ongoing or concerning a particular project, issue or phase of business development.

As a result, you get the expertise you need when needed, but without the cost of an ongoing C-Suite salary. They bring an outside perspective to your company, possibly from different sectors. You can engage your capabilities to execute the strategy by bringing them on board in this capacity.

What you get with gigCMO's Fractional CMOs

That said, some fractional CMO's, much like freelancers or even full-time CMO, is just one person, and while those working methods have their benefits, they can also create a 'key person' issue where you're dependent on one person. If they disappeared tomorrow, their knowledge and experience would be lost and perhaps the "owner" of the strategy.

This is why gigCMO operates a little differently:

A team of marketing experts

We give clients access to not just one Fractional CMO but a team. While your point of contact might be one individual, your strategy has been informed by a whole team of

marketing experts, including our CEO, who is involved and familiar with each client we work with. You benefit from more than one outside perspective from multiple industries. It's the fighting power of a team of people at the top of their game.

No 'key man' issues

As gigCMO gives you a marketing expert who works with a team, you never have the business risk associated with the 'key man' issue. If there's a change in personnel or one person leaves, the company has a collective knowledge of your business. It can continue to provide support, giving your organisation greater resilience.

Knowledge transfer

Knowledge transfer is also an essential difference provided by our team of Fractional CMOs and not by a typical marketing consultancy. We see our role as partly to mentor your in-house leadership team, both directly and by osmosis, creating awareness throughout the organisation regarding the critical marketing issues they need to be aware of to grow the business and drive sales.

However you choose to structure your marketing capability, you need a solution that can provide you with marketing leadership in good times and in bad. Marketing, done well, is critical to growth, success and resilience. So, small businesses should have a marketing department, but how you structure it makes the difference.